Amazon is so pleased with the success of its first publishing imprint that it announced a new funding commitment today. Amazon has promised to spend to spend $2 million a year for the next five years on Amazon Crossing. The money will be used to increase the number and diversity of its books in translation.
As one of the largest publishers of translated literature in the United States, since 2010 Amazon Crossing has published more than 200 titles by authors from 29 countries writing in 19 languages, including 77 titles which will be published in the US this year.
And that figure is going to grow. Amazon said that the funds "will go toward fees paid to translators over the next five years and increasing the countries and languages represented on the Amazon Crossing list".
In addition to the funding commitment, Amazon has also launched a webpage where agents, authors, and publishers can recommend titles for translation. That page can be found off the (limited-access) Amazon Crossing site at translation.amazon.com/submissions.
According to the press release, Amazon Crosssing is reviewing submissions in the following genres: mystery, thriller, women's fiction, literary fiction, memoirs, science fiction, historical fiction, and fantasy.
Apparently Amazon is only looking for fiction at this time, which makes some sense. Facts can be researched, but good storytelling skills are harder to find. And by looking for works in other languages, Amazon is essentially going where there is a ready supply of content - that only needs to be translated, and not created from scratch.
image by micurs