What is the WritePublishRead programme?

Only 14% of South Africans read regularly according to research done in South Africa in 2016! This includes reading newspapers, magazines, and books, in print format and digitally. Six out of ten South African adults live in households where there is not one single book (SABDC, 2016).

Imagine a place where it is easy to publish your work, and where we have a multitude of authors in a community who can promote their stories to the people around them. Imagine that everyone in the community could have easy access to those stories without having to pay a fortune for them. Imagine how this community-based drive could inspire more people to write and, in return, inspire and enable more people to read. The 14% could become 20% and then 30% and then, before we know it, we could have a generation of South Africans who read regularly for pleasure. These are South Africans who, through this exposure to other ideas and worlds, have the knowledge and skills to evaluate information. We could have a whole population of sharp, informed individuals. How much better our world would be!

This is what Via Afrika, the NRF and SARChI Research Chair in the field of Intellectualisation of African Languages, Multilingualism and Education (NRF Chair in African Languages) and the African Languages Association of South Africa (ALASA) want to achieve with this WritePublishRead initiative.

The WritePublishRead programme has been developed so that anyone can learn how to write and how to publish their manuscript digitally as an ebook for everyone to read if they have access to a phone or any other digital device, no matter where they are in the world. The process is easy, and best of all, completely free for the authors who can set the price they want their readers to pay – and keep their copyright too. This publishing takes place through the Smashwords online platform.