#LoveOzLit: Ambelin Kwaymullina on Australian Publishing Changes

Ambelin Kwaymullina on what the Productivity Commission changes mean for diverse authors

Last week, Maria Lewis shared her thoughts on what the Productivity Commission’s suggested changes to Australian publishing mean for debut authors like her. And here, Ambelin Kwaymullina shares what those changes mean for diverse authors who already find it difficult to have their voices heard.

#LoveOzYA  is a grassroots organisation here that supports diverse Australian authors and I’ve linked to their submission to the Productivity Commission’s changes, describing how Australian publishers who publish Australian authors will not be able to compete with overseas publishers who will be able to see their books cheaper to Australian bookstores. An Australian publisher is going to understand and appreciate an Australian story, and that isn’t going to be possible with overseas publishers — if there’s an dire need for movements like “We Need Diverse Books” on a global scale, and things aren’t necessarily changing enough, where does that leave Australian voices?

What do you think of the chance of diverse Australian authors getting published by international publishing houses?


  • I want the chance to read books from around the world. Do the rules in place currently restrict Australian authors from having their works published everywhere?

    • Verushka says:

      Not at all, but an international publisher, based overseas, wouldn’t necessarily publish Australian authors with an Australian story — but, when they do, they can do it cheaper than an Australian publisher, based in Australia would, which means Australian publisher loses out, which is what these rules/changes could allow. It’s weirdly complicated and every time I think I understand it, something else comes up.

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