Arabic Kindle: authors allowed to publish eBooks in Arabic

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Updated 21 December 2017
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Arabic Kindle: authors allowed to publish eBooks in Arabic

JEDDAH: Amazon Kindle has announced a new beta program that will allow Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) authors to publish e-books in Arabic for free and earn up to 70 percent royalty on sales through Kindle stores worldwide.
Kindles enable users to browse, buy, download and read e-books, newspapers, magazines and much more on a wireless network.
Since the launch of the device in 2007, many Arabic book readers have urged Amazon to provide a service for authors and readers alike to properly use it.
Arabic readers are reportedly only able to add a specific font that would enable users to download a book in PDF form, but not to convert it to an e-book.
For publishing Arabic-language e-books on KDP, the system is currently in beta testing and a step-by-step guide is available on its website, with warnings that errors may occur and it is improving support for books written in Arabic.
The website also offers a guide to creating your own content available for both e-books and paperbacks, though Arabic is still not available in paperback form.
“Kindle is a very easy and convenient way to read books as they’re extremely user-friendly, and with the new e-ink technology I can read without straining my eye too much,” said Kindle user Dr. Asma Mohurji.
“I’m currently more into sci-fi novels, but with this news I’m leaning toward going back to discovering new Arabic books,” she added.
“It’s bothersome to go and search for books in bookstores, since many aren’t available or are expensive.”
While speaking to Arab News, she tried to download and open an Arabic book but was unable to due to compatibility issues.
With over 20.5 million users worldwide, Kindle is the market leader. It is a good platform for authors, said Hayaat Q, a short-story author based in Boston, Massachusetts.
“Publishing printed books is always a risk, and they require a large budget for it to happen,” she added.
“There are many online platforms available for publishing your work online, but it’s difficult since you don’t know who’ll use your material; there are copyrights issues and more,” she said.
“With Kindle, I can publish my e-book for free, keep track of who orders my books and create a domain for myself on an established platform. It’s easier this way and more convenient.”


Secrets of the world’s greatest trailblazers

Updated 14 July 2018
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Secrets of the world’s greatest trailblazers

  • The author takes us on a fascinating journey through the minds, experiences and ideas of people whose innovations have transformed the world

Why are some people so innovative? Are they different from the rest of us? Is it a question of genes, education or luck?

The idea for the book “Quirky” goes back to 2011. Melissa Schilling was teaching a class in “innovation strategy” when she overheard students commenting on Steve Jobs’ sudden weight loss. What would happen to Apple without its iconic leader, they asked.

“I began to study Steve Jobs, comparing every detail I could find on him with the existing research on innovation and creativity,” Schilling said. After finding similarities between Jobs and other innovators, she decided to go ahead with a research project on eight serial innovators.

“I didn’t care if it turned into something I could publish,” she said.  “I knew it was a high-risk project. I did it because it was pure fun. It was illuminating.”

This enthusiastic tone is present throughout the book. The author takes us on a fascinating journey through the minds, experiences and ideas of people whose innovations have transformed the world. One characteristic shared by most innovators is a sense of separateness and estrangement that manifests itself in a rejection of rules and norms, and a lack of interest in social interaction. 

Jobs was described by his girlfriend Chrisann Brennan as “disconnected and awkward.” Microsoft founder Bill Gates has also been characterized as an introvert, lacking strong social skills. Elon Musk, the man behind SpaceX and Tesla, has said that “he never truly had a chance to make friends.”

What is surprising is that some innovators possess little previous training or knowledge in their field. Musk, for example, had only an undergraduate degree in physics and economics but was able to design a prototype for a reusable rocket after being told by US manufacturers that it was impossible.

Breakthrough innovators do not live normal lives. They cross boundaries, ignore limits — and remain in a league of their own. As our “quirky” journey comes to an end, we understand the potential for innovation lies within all of us.