A new book genre for South African books, ‘Diary Chronicles’ – Please support these local books

Two South African publishing
entrepreneurs – Setlhodi Paul and Tiisetso Maloma – have coined a new book
genre called ‘diary chronicles’ or ‘diary-chron’ in short. They say that most
of this type of fictional diary-like stories emerged as daily Facebook posts
around 2013 and 2014.

They define books such as Lesego
Maake’s ‘Diary of a Side Chick Makhwapheni’ and Mike
Maphoto’s ‘Diary of a Zulu Girl’ as one of the pioneering
titles of diary chron. Both these books started
out as Facebook posts. They have since been published into successful books.

“Diary chron stories and books
tell chronicled tales of usually a young adult’s bizarre life. They are fast
paced, written in a diary like sense, narrate intense sex scenes, and contain
shocking twists and turns. It is commonly the main characters chronicling their
misdoings and relationships in the era of social media, blessers, blessees, slay
queens/kings, players, and the consumption of alcohol,” describes Tiisetso.

Diary chron stories usually start
out as Facebook or blog posts and quickly amass a following in thousands. Lesego
Maake’s Facebook page Diary of a Side Chick Makhwapheni
has over 75 thousand fans. Mike Maphoto’s Facebook page Diary
of a Zulu Girl has over 130 thousand followers.

“On average, a good Facebook
diary chron page has a following of above 20 thousand followers,” says Tiisetso.

He further indicates that the other
books that he would throw into the diary chron genre – although some did not
start out as Facebook or blog posts – are Jackie Phamotse’s best-selling ‘Bare’, Mofenyi Malepe’s ‘283: The
bad sex bet’ and Dudu Busani-Dube’s ‘Hlomu
The Wife
’ series. These books can be either novels or true story chronicles.

All the books mentioned here have
sold thousands of copies and some feature on best-selling lists.

Setlhodi states that Maloma
Content started publishing ‘diary chron’ books by co-publishing Lesego Maake’s ‘Diary of a Side Chick Makhwapheni.’ Other titles in this genre
they will publish include ‘Diary of a Cheating Wife,’ ‘Diary of a Slay Queen’ and ‘Diary of a Social Flirt.’ Setlhodi
and Tiisetso say that with great marketing wit on the side of the publishers,
diary chron books can be the country’s next consistent best sellers
overshadowing even political books, and have a chance of penetrating the
international market.

Please add and/or
vote your favourite ‘Diary Chronicles’ book on
goodread.com: Popular South African diary chronicle bookshttps://buff.ly/2WwFvgE

Tiisetso says, “The in thousands
following that these diary chron stories have on social media are a mathematical
validation that people love them and want to read more of them. Moreover, the
books feed people’s inclinations: relatability, drama, sex, and social issues.
In most reading countries, fiction sells more than other book categories. I
think South Africa isn’t selling much fiction because people aren’t putting out
the kind of fiction that appeals to South African’s adjacent majority. Also,
coining this genre of diary chron books is a way to promote local books.”

Setlhodi Paul is a writer, an editor and now a publishing entrepreneur. Tiisetso Maloma has been in the business of publishing for a while, he is also an author – ironically of business books, a founder at www.bulabuka.co.za which is a book and e-book publishing consultancy, and is a publisher at Maloma Content.

Press release by www.bulabuka.co.za