Cyber Monday Amazon’s biggest shopping day ever. But still way behind Alibaba. What future the international Kindle stores?

Cyber Monday 2017 broke records in the US. Amazon claimed it was even bigger than Prime Day, and it is believed to have accounted for over half of Black Friday’s online sales. Pretty good going from what is often termed the biggest e-commerce company on the planet. But by what definition? By market capitalisation Amazon comes Read More …

Book-swap parties trending in India

This won’t go down well with the digital fundamentalists who believe print belongs to a different era, but book-swap parties, where eager readers get together with other readers to swap books, is a growing trend in India. And it makes perfect sense. In a country of over a billion people the chances of you sitting Read More …

Brazil book sales buoyant as Justice League breaks box-office records

Justice League, the latest superhero film from Warner Bros and DC Comics, has not been the spectacular success it was hoped. At least. not in the USA. But globally it has outperformed expectations. And that’s just at the box office. Plenty more revenue streams to roll in from DVD sales of course and, this being Read More …

Waterstones to open five new bookstores in time for Christmas. Barnes & Noble, please take notes

As Barnes & Noble continues to struggle, management will be looking on enviously as its British counterpart, Waterstones, defies the odds to rebuild a national bookstore chain that not long ago seemed a hopeless cause. As reported here last month, Waterstones is being lined up for re-sale. Waterstone’s was rescued from near bankruptcy several years Read More …

Ireland a “thriving” and “hugely important” book market for HarperCollins. Here’s why

With a population of just 4.7 million the Republic of Ireland sold an impressive 10.9 million books last year to the value of €130.9 million. That of course is according to Nielsen BookScan, so by no means the entire book market. The Bookseller this past week reported, HarperCollins UK is doubling the size of its Read More …

Yaoundé Conference – analogue thinking in a digital age. African publishers needs to embrace digital, not re-invent First World battles.

It’s a sad commentary on the state of Cameroon publishing that the best overview of the industry I can find is from 2005. That may be about to change. This past week in the Cameroon capital Yaoundé a conference on the future of African publishing was wide-ranging in its discussions. Titled ‘The Publishing Industry in Read More …

Iceland exports its authors as a prelude to exporting its books

Who’d be an Icelandic author? With a population of less than half a million and a language pretty much unique to the island, there is of course no significant publishing industry in the country, and very little chance of earning a living as a writer in the home market. Remarkably this hasn’t stopped Iceland having Read More …

Social media and Instagram are making books sexy again – in NIgeria

Time was, if you had heard of an African author at all, it would be either an author in the US or Britain that originally came from Africa, or a prize-winning African author that had attracted the attention of the western publishing establishment. Put simply, we in the west got to read only that African Read More …

Tencent joins the half-trillion club, and look how close it is to Amazon…

On Tuesday Tencent, the Chinese e-commerce titan, leapfrogged Facebook to become the fifth most valuable company on the planet. China now holds two of the top six places in the world rankings for market capitalization, and while Apple is still too far ahead to be dislodged, both Tencent and Alibaba are within shouting distance of Read More …

Romania’s Gaudeamus Int. Book Fair opens today. Expected to attract 125,000 visitors

Romania’s Gaudeamus International Book Fair opened its doors in Bucharest earlier today, and over the course of the five day event some 125,000 visitors are expected to squeeze through its doors. The Gaudeamus event, not to be confused with the bigger Bucharest Int. Book Fair that took place in May, is organised by Radio Romania Read More …

Charlie and the Crowdfunded Chocolate Factory

Back on November 1st a little known children’s product start-up by the name of Yoto launched a crowdfunding campaign on Kickstarter for its smart-speakers project. Of course we are all by now familiar with smart-speakers, and they are even shaping storytelling, with interactive audio content being created specifically for devices like Amazon’s Alexa. But for Read More …

SE Asia “one of the most promising publishing regions”

That was the sub-header in Publishing Perspectives today as Porter Anderson updated us on StoryDrive Asia 2017. I covered StoryDrive Asia here in TNPS a few days ago, where I argued the SE Asia publishers were not embracing digital as quickly as they ought, leaving many hurdles standing. Today Anderson’s coverage develops the hurdles theme. Read More …

Penguin India Bags Publisher of the Year Award

The Mumbai LitFest has just wound up, and Penguin India took the Publisher of the Year award at the Tata Lit Live event. The award goes to India’s largest English-language publisher as it celebrates thirty years in the country. Penguin has been at the forefront of developing commercial fiction (genre fiction), which as Jean Burke-Spraker Read More …

The Hot Sheet Reviewed – second November 2017 edition

The Hot Sheet is a publishing industry news-sheet for authors, produced every two weeks by Porter Anderson and Jane Friedman, and reviewed here every other Sunday as one of the best twice-monthly industry overviews available to authors. We’re not interested in delivering breaking news, but perspective on stories that are likely to retain meaning for your long-term decision Read More …

Uruguay’s Night of the Bookstores. Who says Latinos don’t read?

If you’re one of those who like to believe Latinos don’t read, then do yourself a favour and don’t read this. After all, it’s far easier to not think about maximising distribution and sales and looking into Spanish and Portuguese translations to grab a share of the lucrative Ibero-American book market. On the other hand, Read More …

Argentina’s publishers prepare for Amazon’s arrival

Time was, when Amazon targetted a new country to launch in, it used the Kindle store as a spearhead – Mexico, Brazil and Australia being recent examples. Nowadays AWS is more likely to be the first sign of interest, and it’s always possible a non-books move might be on the cards next, as we saw Read More …

StoryDrive Asia 2017 – Not yet embracing digital the way it ought

StoryDrive Asia wound up a two day conference on Tuesday that has received little coverage in the western industry media beyond that offered by Porter Anderson over at Publishing Perspectives. The following snippets from a StoryDrive press release just issued gives some insights into what we missed, each followed by some off-the-cuff reactions from yours Read More …

Pakistan 3G/4G users hit 46 million. Ebooks widely unavailable as Big 5 ebook retailers look the other way.

We’re just weeks away from the 13th Karachi International Book Fair in Pakistan (7-11 December) and it’s a safe bet that, despite Pakistan having 46 million 3G/4G subscribers and 141 million mobile phone users, and despite being the third largest English-speaking country on the planet, ebooks will not be on the agenda. Reporting on the Read More …

Shanghai pop-up bookstore sets the scene for the Shanghai Int. Children’s Book Fair

The biggest children’s publishing event in Asia kicks off tomorrow, 17 November. The Shanghai International Book Fair is a trade-focussed event, attracting 9,000 trade visitors last year, with 23,000 public visitors squeezing in. This year will be the fifth incarnation, and at a time when children’s literature is booming in China. But for anyone arriving Read More …