Domestic experts suggested allocating government orders, grants and subsidies to Kazakh authors

Domestic experts suggested allocating government orders, grants and subsidies to Kazakh authors

Domestic experts of the book industry discussed the difficulties faced by Kazakh authors when publishing books, and measures to support them. On December 10, a series of expert discussions started under the “Creative Industries” of the Nursultan Nazarbayev Foundation managers’ team for managing industry changes’.

Opening the site, Darmen Sadvakasov, managing partner of Dasco Consulting group, noted the importance of developing the sphere: “If you look at international experience, creative industries can contribute to economic growth. However, we have barriers to the development of publishing and literature in Kazakhstan.”

He said that a team of industry managers analyzed the dynamics of the development of the domestic creative industry. The results showed that the publication of printed materials in Kazakhstan for 10 years has grown by only 10-15%. This is the lowest growth among all segments.

The speakers spoke about the reasons for the poor development of the book industry during an online conference.

Vadim Golenko, General Director of “Meloman” Marwin, noted the growing interest of the Kazakh reader in domestic literature – in 2018, 315 books were published, and in 2019 – 578. At the same time, the speaker voiced specific problems, one of which is the high cost of publishing books.

“To let in a small edition of the book you need 5 million tenge. Where does a potential writer get that kind of money? This is an unaffordable amount for many people,” Vadim Golenko said.

Writer, journalist, winner of the International Prizes in the field of fantastic literature, Azamat Baigaliyev, noted that another problem is the absence of the literature industry in Kazakhstan, the system of translating fiction, in particular.

In order to increase public interest in reading books by Kazakh authors, it is necessary to identify the best writers and poets in the country, create conditions for self-realization and support the release of their works. These conclusions were reached by experts following the discussion.

To solve these problems, experts have proposed a number of measures. In particular, Orazkhan Zhakup , the head of Khan Comics, director of animated films, screenwriter expressed an idea to create a monthly collection of comics and short stories by aspiring writers.

“Readers could vote for specific works. Then it would be possible to sum up the results and support the best with state grants, help them publish. This is a good incentive for the development of their creativity,” explained Zhakup.

Supporting the idea of state support, Darmen Sadvakasov spoke about the experience of Great Britain, where the authors of creative works are paid subsidies when they reach a certain level of sales.

At the same time, the speakers took the initiative to create a support Center for writers in Kazakhstan to select the best authors. The selected books are offered to be translated into foreign languages in order to promote them for export.

The collected ideas and suggestions will be taken into account in the development concept of the creative Kazakh industry. The cycle of discussions on the development of the industry will be held until December 28.