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  • Pacific Islander in Publishing

Why We Created This Website

Updated: Oct 18, 2023

Welcome to Pacific Islanders in Publishing, a website to amplify, connect and support Pacific Islander voices in the publishing industry. We hope to spotlight the many voices and cultures of Oceania and to address the industry erasure of our storytellers.

We have provided a database for publishing professionals looking for Pacific Islander voices. This database is a work in progress and more creators will be added as they send in their information.

As Pacific Islander creators ourselves, a barrier we often run into is when non-Pacific Islander people write stories about us. These stories may seem authentic to others, but we can easily spot their lack of cultural accuracy and depth. Many fiction, academic, and non-fiction books about us, written by outsiders, are filled with inaccuracies and stereotypes that have been, and are still, harmful to Pacific Islander communities.

Pacific Islanders are master storytellers and we are perfectly capable of writing our own stories. Serie Barford, a Samoan poet and short story writer, wrote, “Our stories are within us. You’ll find them encoded in genealogies, embedded in our hearts, imprinted in our minds. They migrate with the tongues that tell them, flourish in the presence of orators and gossips and are readily transported to the arenas of lotu and aiga…” (Indigenous Pacific Islander Eco-Literatures, 2022: 21).

We are grateful to all the Pacific Islander creators who came before us, especially those who have significantly shaped our own work. We continue to look to their leadership as we begin this endeavor.

In the past few years, we have seen a shift in the traditional publishing space. Publishing professionals at all levels of the industry are currently looking for Pacific Islander creators to fill the demand for more Pacific Islander books.

For creatives interested in pursuing traditional publishing and/or self-publishing, we aim to provide resources while amplifying the already existing Pacific Islander creators and professionals working in publishing worldwide.

It is our desire that Pacific Islanders in Publishing can connect readers, creatives, and current Pacific Islanders working in the industry to increase the visibility of our stories and prevent ongoing, and future, erasure.

We invite you to browse our home page featuring recent book releases by Pacific Islanders. We encourage you to diversify your reading list and explore our creator and professional spotlights to find current Pacific Islander voices in publishing. Please share our website to spread the word.

If you are a Pacific Islander creator and want to be featured on our database, please fill out our submission form so we can add you to our list. We relied on our combined memories and resources to compile the current list so there will be human error. We apologize if we missed anyone. We look forward to the connections that we hope will be made through this organization.

Pacific Islanders in Publishing Team

Keala Kendall

Manuia Heinrich

Kealani Netane

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