Arabic Kindle: authors allowed to publish eBooks in Arabic

Updated 21 December 2017

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.”

The Six: Celebrate the Man Booker announcement with these regional reads

Books from the Middle East to read. (Shutterstock)
Updated 17 October 2018

The Six: Celebrate the Man Booker announcement with these regional reads

DUBAI: With the 2018 Man Booker prize being announced on Tuesday, we take a look at six books from the Middle East that deserve to be read before the year is over.

‘Where the Bird Disappeared’
Taking inspiration from the stories of Prophet Zakariyya and his son Yahya, Palestinian poet and writer Ghassan Zaqtan’s book is a beautiful novel set in the village of Zakariyya, in modern-day Palestine.

‘Ascension to Death’
Syrian novelist Mamdouh Azzam tells the story of a young girl’s fate in a southern Syrian village.

‘Tippu Tip’
Stuart Laing writes a biography that transports the reader into an extraordinary world with an exotic cast of characters.

‘Elsewhere, Home’
Written by Leila Aboulela, the book is an enchanting collection of short stories that stretch from Khartoum to Scotland.

‘The Merchant of Syria’
Diana Darke interweaves the story of a cloth merchant with the development of Syria in an insightful look at the life of a businessman who expands his trade.

‘The Baghdad Clock’
Shahad Al-Rawi’s extraordinary novel turns life in embattled Iraq into a fantastical world of characters and memories by following two young girls who meet during Operation Desert Storm in 1991.