Coimbature Book Festival attracts 125,000 visitors and sells $218,000 of books amid claims social media and smartphones are destroying the reading habit

The fifth Coimbatore Book Festival has run its course and once again the nonsense talked about how smartphones are drawing people away from reading has hit a reality check. More people buying books. More than 1.25 lakh (125,000) people visited the 10-day Coimbatore Book Festival which wound up at the weekend, with business worth Rs 1.5 crore Read More …

A new StreetLib-TNPS presentation shows the digital advantage for publishers at the Zimbabwe International Book Fair

The Zimbabwe International Book Fair is underway in Harare, and to mark the event, which coincides with news that there are now over half a billion Africans online, TNPS and parent company StreetLib have produced an updated version of our March presentation on the African digital opportunity. The StreetLib press release, always, is presented below Read More …

Publishers look the other way as VOD streamers target Middle East’s “spiral of growth” in a “highly lucrative market of digital first consumers”

India’s SonyLIV is the latest video streaming operator to enter the lucrative and fast-growing Middle East market. Uday Sodhi business head of digital, Sony Pictures Networks India, explained, With a bustling young population who are essentially digital first consumers, the Middle East serves as a highly lucrative market for content creators like us to spiral Read More …

Partition, privilege and a Pakistani cop making it big as a crime novelist. Start The Day Global in South Asia

We start the day global today in South Asia, with a look at the literary scene in India and Pakistan. While India is often part of the global publishing debate, Pakistan much less so, and that’s a tragedy, as Pakistan has so much to offer. Take gritty crime novels, for example. They don’t come much Read More …

Festival Poetas D’Alma – A look at Mozambique’s flourishing poetry scene

As this post goes live the CCMA – Mozambican-German Cultural Center, Goethe-Zentrum Maputo and the Poetas D’Alma Collective are holding the inaugural edition of POETAS D’ALMA (International Festival of Poetry and Performative Arts) in Maputo, Mozambique. The event marks 15 years of the Night of Poetry program, “one of the most important and influential performative arts events Read More …

Romania’s Eurocon nominations offers an insight into Romania’s vibrant sci-fi scene

Eurocon, the convention of the European Science Fiction Society, is being held in Belfast, Northern Ireland this year, from August 22-25, and the Romania sci-fi journal Helion has just published the Romanian nominations. The nominations come from the Romanian Association of Science Fiction Authors and Clubs, which organises the National Science Fiction Conventions. The European Read More …

“Publish Africa – the digital advantage” # 3 is now available

The joint StreetLib-TNPS bi-weekly newsletter Publish Africa – the digital advantage released its third issue today. Publish Africa is a bi-weekly review of the Pan-African publishing scene across all formats, but with an unashamed tilt towards the digital opportunity unfolding. Written by TNPS Editor-in-Chief Mark Williams in The Gambia, West Africa and published by Italy-based global Read More …

Africa hits 525 million internet users. Nigeria leapfrogs Japan as 6th largest country by online population. Publishers continue to look the other way

It’s happened. As of June 30th 2019, Africa, at just 39.5% internet penetration, now has more than half a billion people online. Nigeria, which leapfrogged Russia into 7th place in the global internet users stakes in December 2018, just edged ahead of Japan in the half year count. African Publishing – The $5 Billion Digital Read More …

India’s youngest librarian. Bookboats in Sweden, Norway and, sadly no longer, in Finland

We Start The Day Global today with a look at floating libraries in Scandinavia and a free public library in India where the librarian is still at school. Twelve year old Yashoda D Shenov has a unique claim to fame – she runs her own free-to-use public library. Taking up the top floor of her Read More …

The San Diego Comic Con reminds us the attention economy is a two way street for the publishing industry, not an us-and-them battle of buzz-phrases

Tom Cruise. Natalie Portman, Patrick Stewart… The San Diego Comic Con has been dominated by celebrity news about the latest film, TV, comics and games. The attention economy in action, right? How can publishing compete in this brave new world? But actually it’s a reminder that the games, films, TV and celebrity that grab the Read More …

Storytel’s subscription royalties rose 6.4% in Q2. But is $0.20 per hour enough to keep publishers happy? Does the subscription model have a future?

At the start of this year Storytel changed its remuneration model for publishers, from a fixed payment per unit consumed to a rate per hour of consumption. Under the old model Storytel paid publishers between $1.81-$2.13 per book consumed, which disproportionately rewarded shorter works and penalized longer ones. It’s a debate we are all familiar Read More …

Big Bad Wolf announces first Thailand dates for 2019. Three million books to Bangkok

We don’t know for sure yet how many trips Big Bad Wolf will be making to Thailand this year, but we do know the dates for the Bangkok bonanza. At a press conference yesterday Big Bad Wolf announced it would be shipping 3 million books – mostly English – to Thailand for an eleven-day 24/7 Read More …

India’s Coimbatore Book Fair launches amid more nonsense about how social media and smartphones are killing the reading habit. It really is time publishers took the blinkers off

Summer is a quiet time in the Indian book fair scene, with the mega-events that attract millions of visitors tending to cluster around winter-spring, but there are some exceptions, and one is kicking off tomorrow, July 19. Organised by the Coimbatore District Small Industries Association (CODISSIA) and the Booksellers and Publishers Association of South India Read More …

Washington National Book Festival poster reveal

The Library of Congress National Book Festival 2019 has been revealed, and it’s a stunning feast of geometry around an open book. Marian Bantjes is a designer, illustrator, typographer and writer and this poster for the one-day festival on August 31 shows all those skills in action. The Library of Congress blog quotes Bantjes as saying, Read More …

Brazil’s Jaraguá do Sul Book Fair says it cannot guarantee the safety of guest speakers amid death-threats

Banned books at book fairs is nothing new, and we are mostly eager to condemn such practices, in the name of free speech and freedom to publish. But where do we stand when it comes to censoring guest speakers? Jaraguá do Sul, a city in the interior of Santa Catarina, Brazil, has announced the line-up Read More …

As OverDrive’s Libby partners with Apple’s CarPlay, how long before publishers start reigning in digital library audiobooks?

Thanks to a deal between Apple and Rakuten-OverDrive, the digital library app Libby is now compatible with Apple’s CarPlay in-car entertainment system. According to OverDrive the Libby app is now available from 90% of North American public libraries, and drivers with a library card and the CarPlay system can, select and navigate audiobooks with large, Read More …

Pearson to phase out print textbooks in US as digital gathers momentum

As one of the world’s largest education publishing companies, the news that Pearson is to phase out printed textbooks in its core US market is a serious blow to the “screen fatigue” brigade’s efforts to downplay the rise and rise of digital. In a press release today Pearson has announced it is, breaking from the Read More …

As Big Bad Wolf South Korea winds up, BBW is already live in the Philippines, and will be in Indonesia and Pakistan this month

Big Bad Wolf’s debut event wound up in South Korea yesterday. No news yet on how many turned out for the 24/7 eleven day sale of 2 million English-language books, but I’d be very surprised if we don’t see the Big Bad Wolf team organise a second South Korea event before this year is out. Read More …

Google announces Equiano – a new submarine cable to connect western Africa with Europe. Publishing opportunities abound

Submarine cables are what drive the global growth of the internet. The whole world is connected in a way unimaginable as this century started, thanks to a network of submarine cables that link continents, countries and even remote islands. I’m able to write this from The Gambia, West Africa, on a (relatively) high-speed internet connection Read More …

Malta Book Festival programme will be delivered to every household in Malta and Gozo

Malta’s National Book Council has announced that the 2019 Malta Book Festival will take place 6-10 November at the Mediterranean Conference Centre in Valletta. With a population of just 430,000 it’s not a major logistical challenge but still a remarkable gesture of support for books and reading that the Festival programme will be published in Read More …