By Olamide Babatunde
From last edition
After the publishing lull experienced in the military era, self publishing was the only way out for Nigerian writers to make their dreams a reality. Since the return of civilian administration, only a few have been able to stay atop to keep the world of fiction floating. Nigerian-American writer, Teju Cole, had also in an interview, once explained that, having a foreign publisher is not wrong because it is obvious that “there are limitations to what’s happening in Nigeria, but then what’s incumbent on us is to try support the work that’s happening here.”
Back home, Wale Okerdiran, former member of House Representatives and former national president of Association of Nigerian Authors (ANA), in a lecture he presented at the 50th anniversary lecture of Evans Brothers Nigeria Limited, made an appeal to the Federal Government for support .According to him, the publishing industry should be augmented like the film industry and not only get loans and grants. The industry and authors should be supported to get training and retraining in order to overcome the challenges facing the industry. Another plague ravishing the system is piracy, as noted by Chairman, Board of Directors of the company, Otunba Adekunle Ojora, the illegal use of printed intellectual properties has a ripple effect on the industry stretching from the distributors to authors, readers and the economy at large. Pirated works estimated at N39,020,300 were seized from pirates in 2016.
Meanwhile, the economic dip and limited foreign exchange has also made book production difficult. While the industry continues to grapple with these inefficiencies Abubakar advises young Nigerians to take advantage of the situation and make themselves competent at editing skills.