Publishing Books in Hindi at a Publishing House: Meera Johri Part II ep31

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Meera Johri is an MBA from the Faculty of Management Studies, University of Delhi and a partner at Rajpal & Sons. In Part II of the discussion with Meera Johri, we talk about the timelines for publishing a book through this publishing house, and also the future plans for Rajpal and Sons. And we also discuss working with Late Dr. A P J Abdul Kalam, the President of India.

Part I of the discussion is available here

In the 20 years that she has been at the Publishing House Rajpal & Sons, she has developed a range of multi-lingual dictionaries that widened the scope of publishing in English, and set up an infrastructure for selling language rights of books to overseas and regional Indian publishers.She has established a vibrant translation publishing programme for authors of global and national acclaim.

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Discussion on How To Publish a Book in Hindi

  • Minimum turnaround time for a book to get published (from the time of submission to ready for publication) is 4 months, Meera Johri cites several factors such as the editing effort required for the manuscript, the timeliness of the book or the topic, etc.
  • She believes that a good story must be shared in as many languages as possible, and notes that Meera’s belief on translations: As a publishing house, Rajpal and Sons have translated books from Odiya to Hindi, and translations from Bengali, Marathi, etc.
  • Authors whose works have a universal appeal, sich as books by Nelson Mandela and Dr. Kalam, or books by Stephen King can be easily accepted as translations. Also the Harry Potter books.
  • In the past, selling or promoting the translated works of authors or book such as Old Man and The Sea used to be difficult. With advent of technology and the Internet, it has become much easier. However, the reader’s share of mind as well as wallet has much more competition today.

 “Even if 90 or 95% of the essence from the original language is conveyed in the translations, then it is a job well done…. translations bring richness and diversity to publishing”

  • Rajpal and Sons have adopted ebooks as a format, but Meera believes that interest in ebooks has tapered down.
  • Her take on audiobooks is that tone and interpretation may change the peoples’ perception or reaction of the book- in that respect, audiobooks face the same challenge as movies. However, the single biggest advantage that audiobooks have to offer is that people who are not literate can get familiar with literature.
  • Rajpal Education Trust promotes education by paying fees for the children of the employees, and donating books.
  • Meera Johri suggested that the selection of the title of a book by Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam should be crowdsourced, which helped in generating publicity and getting orders for the book. She believes that bringing such innovations in marketing could help publishing industry.
  • Book recommendation(s) by Meera Johri: Indomitable Spirit and Forge Your Future by Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam.

Ways to contact Meera

Rajpal Publishing