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What it means being an African author on Amazon

What it means being an African author on Amazon

 

Africa’s not for sissies is an oft-repeated phrase, but is Africa for authors?

The lists of renowned African authors contain all too familiar names. Why does it seem that the depth of our selection of authors is perhaps less than that of the other continents? Why do we seem to produce less authors, or is that a misconception bred from biased media coverage? Let’s have a look at what it means to be an African author.

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An author book launch - My experience at Skoobs

An author book launch - My experience at Skoobs

 

At Skoobs bookstore, Montecasino, in the heart of Fourways Johannesburg, I find myself attending the book launch of my friend (and now published author) Sonia Killik. Whilst browsing the weighted-shelves at this book-lovers Utopia I recognise several self-published titles. Seeing these books (cover-out, not spine-out nogal) on the shelves and in front of what must be hundreds of readers each day makes me feel warm and tingly.

These authors, are self-published. They have chosen a different route to publish. A lonelier route. Yet, here they are, alongside fellow authors, indistinguishable from their traditionally-published counterparts. F*ck Yeah. (For you Sonia.)

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Bookboon - Delivering a future, one free eBook at a time

Bookboon - Delivering a future, one free eBook at a time

 

Free books! Free books! I won’t lie, I feel like Oprah standing outside a public library dishing out free books to passers-by. The comparison might not actually be that far off from the truth…

 

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State of the third-world self-publishing industry: An interview with Dave Henderson founder of MYeBook

State of the third-world self-publishing industry: An interview with Dave Henderson founder of MYeBook

 

I almost didn't list this interview on the blog. Disecting the latest innovations in our publishing industry is an easy article. I share the good and the bad and the reader decides if the topic discussed is their cup of tea. This interview however, recorded in studio by my friend Devon Martindale from local audio production company Audioshelf has an open and honest look at the life of the rare breed of animal, the African writer.

We discuss the obvious pains of writing from our continent, dealing with issues such as receiving payments from abroad. We also look at the various publishing platforms available to writers, including their pros and cons from an African point of view.

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This week in publishing news - How Africans got the spotlight

This week in publishing news - How Africans got the spotlight

 

I love it when somebody in the spotlight takes a moment to talk about African writers. This week was double dose of limelight (why is it called limelight???) for Africans involved in the publishing industry. Both moments were brought about thanks to Joanna Penn, courtesy of her weekly self-publishing podcast titled The Creative Penn.

 

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Expert Interview with Devon Martindale: Founder of Audiobook production company Audioshelf

Expert Interview with Devon Martindale: Founder of Audiobook production company Audioshelf

 

Feeling like you have run out of readers? Has updating your eBook's keyword and category choices in the Amazon KDP dashboard not yielded the influx of new readers you expected? What option does the frustrated author have to unlock a new reader-base? 

 

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Amazon Kindle Scout - Helping new authors or continuing to exclude them?

Amazon Kindle Scout - Helping new authors or continuing to exclude them?

 

Let’s have a quick look at a recent addition to the author’s arsenal, Amazon’s Kindle Scout. Aimed at giving self-publishing authors access to the power of crowd-sourcing reader support. It seems to be a great tool for the new author, well, as long as you don’t live in Africa. 

The down-low

Kindle Scout is a platform that gives the self-published author a chance to have their eBook published by Amazon. As you could guess, being published by Amazon has its pros and cons.

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