There were three candidates for TNPS Story of the Year this year, and little to choose between them in terms of impact on the global publishing scene, but the winner, Storytel, pipped the others because of its role as a beacon for digital publishers, proving that digital books have an exciting future regardless of a country’s population or the reach of its language.
First a nod to the two contenders that I had to set aside this year.
The International Publishers Association has blazed trails this year, and transformed the prospects of supposed publishing backwater regions like Africa and the Arab markets.
And last year’s Story of the Year title-winner Big Bad Wolf had a stunning year as it marked its tenth anniversary, culminating in a stunning announcement on the sidelines of the Sharjah International Book Fair that it intends to distribute one billion books to the emerging markets over the next five years.
Remarkably, that story warranted almost no reaction from the English-language publishing industry journals, and the same can be said for our 2019 Story of the Year winner, Storytel, which has gone from strength to strength through 2019 blazing a global trail of digital disruption that has passed mostly unnoticed outside the Nordic media.
But for TNPS Storytel has constantly been in the headlines, not so much because of the local significance of these stories, important as that is, but for their global significance.
It’s New Year’s Eve, so rather than a lengthy essay on the highs and lows of Storytel’s 2019, let’s let said headlines from TNPS as the year unfolded tell the story of Storytel 2019.
Click through to read the full posts that helped put Storytel in the #1 spot for 2019 TNPS Story of the Year.
Before I leave you with the (rather lengthy) list of Storytel headlines, let me just say, kudos to Jonas Tellander and everyone on the Storytel team, wherever they may be, who have made 2019 one of the most exciting years in publishing this decade.