A prospective Bible shortage drives home the unhealthy reliance of the US publishing industry on China’s printers

Leaving aside any debate about the rights and wrongs of the US-China trade dispute and tariffs being imposed by both sides, the dispute has brought to the fore the unhealthy reliance of US publishers on China – or more specifically of US publishers that have their books printed in China. An estimated 150 million Bibles Read More …

The India book market remains “a giant in slumber” as new taxes hit imports amid rising paper prices

In an ill-considered move aimed at protecting the domestic publishing industry, the Indian government has imposed a 5% tax on imported paper books. Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced the new duties on Friday (domestic print books remain zero-rated) to a dismayed audience of publishers and publishing stakeholders. The tax on uncoated and lightweight paper was Read More …

Toy Story 4 pays the price for historical indifference to future markets. A lesson publishers can learn from

Not for the first time, a major Hollywood movie opened in China before the US, but hopes of a stellar performance were dashed. The fourth movie in the hugely successful Toy Story franchise went head to head with a re-release of a 2001 film from Japan, and came out behind. In The Hollywood Reporter’s own Read More …

Boldwood Books goes energetically global with simultaneous ebook, audiobook and POD, but will they still be leaving money on the table?

With a name like Boldwood Books one really wouldn’t expect anything less than a bold launch of a new publishing operation, and that’s exactly what Amanda Ridout has delivered. While many bigger publishers have chosen to window releases, eschew the benefits of POD, downplay ebooks and carry on with archaic territorial restrictions, Amanda Ridout’s Boldwood Books Read More …

As China prepares to leapfrog the USA as the world’s largest film market next year, publishers should take notice

It was back in 2015 that China jumped the US to take top spot for the most cinema goers. Hardly surprising, given China’s 1.4 billion population. But the film industry wallowed in the complacency that in dollar terms – the only metric that matters for some – the US was unassailable. Not any more. The Read More …

With the “attention economy” the latest buzzword excuse for perceived falling book sales, how is it Scandinavia is seeing both video and book streaming rise simultaneously?

The rise and rise of audiobook and ebook subscription streaming across the Scandinavian countries has been mentioned here at TNPS so often it hardly needs rehearsing again. But this week the tremendous interest in digital reading in northwest Europe takes on new significance as we learn that video-streaming is still rising in these same countries, Read More …

Nigeria International Book Fair kicks off today with a mission to make digital reading acceptable

The 19th Nigeria International Book Fair got underway today. I’ll report on the event further as news comes in. Here to briefly look at a pre-launch call for the establishment of a Nigerian Book Commission to help guide the industry in a period of transition and challenges. Challenges? Everything from piracy to distribution to rising Read More …

Iceland’s Bókmenntahátíð í Reykjavík kicks off next week with the inaugural Halldór Laxness Award among many attractions

If it’s 2019, it must be time for the bi-annual Bókmenntahátíð í Reykjavík which this year has a spring date for the first time.  That will be April 24-27 for those who fancy a spring break in Iceland. Don’t worry if you flunked Icelandic at school. Bókmenntahátíð í Reykjavík is of course the Reykjavík International Read More …

New Zealand authors struggle to survive on earnings from their writing, mirroring UK authors’ plight. But is there such a thing as a fair wage for writers?

At end March a body called Copyright Licensing New Zealand published a study on author earnings in New Zealand which embarrassingly only reached my desk this week (hat-tip to Book Squad). Commissioned by Copyright Licensing New Zealand in conjunction with the NZ Society of Authors, NZ Writers’ Guild and Playmarket, the report by Horizon Research, Read More …

Marvel’s China-first strategy is a lesson western publishers can learn from

Marvel’s newest superhero movie, Avengers: Endgame, launches across the world in April, and is predicted by some optimists to be the first Hollywood movie to break the half billion dollar mark at the US box office. Given none has yet broken the $400 million mark, that’s wildly ambitious. Observes The Hollywood Reporter, The biggest U.S. Read More …

Breaking News +++ Nigeria now has more internet users than any country in Europe. India has over a half billion people online

The March 2019 internet user updates are in for some countries and the numbers bear out TNPS expectations. Nigeria, previously reported as having 98 million online – more than any country in Europe except Russia – has now leapfrogged the Eurasian giant. Against Russia’s 109 million, Nigeria now has 111 million people online, making it Read More …

While Bologna grabs the publishing industry headlines, 2 million descend on Kuala Lumpur for Malaysia’s international book fair in the land of Big Bad Wolf and the Bookfest

Malaysia seems not to be a priority book market for publishers outside SE Asia, guided by the belief that few people read in that part of the world. But as is so often the case, these urban myths evolve in response to local conditions, and fester into unfounded pseudo-facts that leave readers across the region Read More …

StreetLib publishing portals now reach half the world. Makes a $5 bn African publishing market valuation for 2025

Italy-based digital books distributor and publishing facilitator StreetLib has completed the fourth stage of its global roll-out with all of the Middle East and South Asia enfranchised. The company now offers an author and publisher portal for literally half the world. Full disclosure: The New Publishing Standard (TNPS) is published by StreetLib to further the Read More …

While publishers look the other way Big Bad Wolf takes 1 million English-language books to Pakistan

Big Bad Wolf has already shipped millions of English language books this year for its 24/7 11 day flash sales, each attracting hundreds of thousands of visitors. Indonesia, the Philippines, and Myanmar are already behind us – although most of those will be having multiple repeat events this year, such has been the demand. Malaysia Read More …

From a mortgaged dagger to World Book Capital – books are woven into Sharjah’s history and DNA

We’re weeks away from the Emirate of Sharjah, part of the United Arab Emirates, assuming the title of UNESCO Word Book Capital, and it’s likely there’s never been a more fitting choice. Not because this is the first Arab nation – in fact Egypt and Lebanon have both carried the title in past years. Nor Read More …

Publishers stand to lose sales worth $46,000 per day thanks to poor search abilities of smartspeakers

For a while it seemed like smartspeakers were the new black of digital audio, driving sales ever higher. But a new study by Score Publishing suggests all is not well in the smartspeaker market, with book-related search queries at best delivering accurate results only 72.5% of the time, and the one we’d expect to do Read More …

Bangladesh Ekushey Boi Mela winds down after a two-day extension, but has it been enough?

The month-long Amar Ekushey Boi Mela, aka the Dhaka Book Fair, has wound up for another year, and it’s improbable any records have been broken as bad weather and bad luck worked in tandem to undermine the event. It got so bad that the event was extended an extra two days, concluding Saturday March 2 Read More …

Over 5 million visitors spend over $5 million at India’s 2019 book fairs. And we’re only halfway through February

India’s Kolkata International Book Fair wound up earlier this week and the numbers are in: 2.3 million visitors spent 230 million rupees (US$ 3.2 million) on books in twelve days. Given the price of books in India the volume must have been huge. This just weeks after 900,000 turned out to the New Delhi World Book Read More …

Tanzania’s 2018 Mabati-Cornell Kiswahili Prize for African Literature sets the scene for the Kenya Swahili Literary Festival

Weeks before the first ever Swahili Literary Festival kicks off in Kenya in the first days of March comes news that the 2018 Mabati-Cornell Kiswahili Prize for African Literature will be presented at a special event at the University of Dar es Salaam in Tanzania on Friday. Brittle Paper reports that, The prize winners…Tanzanian Zainab Alwi Baharoon, Read More …

Emirates Publishers Association launches Manassah platform to showcase member publishers at regional and international book fairs

When it comes to getting noticed in the international book markets, regional and international book fairs and festivals can play a significant role. At the professional end of the book fair spectrum there is the chance to network with agents, scouts, foreign publishers and see up-and-coming tech initiatives. While consumer-facing events can put a publishers’ Read More …