Should I Translate My Ebooks Into US English?

Should I Translate My Ebooks Into US English?Would my books sell better in US English?

There is no doubt that the popularity, market and acceptance of ebooks is predominantly in the US.

In two recent articles, I posted on Just Publishing; one confirmed that the US is by far the biggest ebook market in the world, with the surprise being that the UK is sixth, and only represents 3% of the world’s ebook market. The other article highlights how little the UK market values ebooks, with the Brits reluctant to venture beyond £0.99, whereas the US market is strong up to $10.00 for an ebook.

These facts bring me to having to rethink my ebook marketing because I write in British English, yet sell most of my ebooks in the US.

Common sense tells me that all of my ebooks should now be written in US English, in recognition of where my ebooks sell best.

Sure, it is quite easy to change to US spelling in a text, but with sixteen ebooks for me to change, it is still a mammoth task.

However, simply changing the spelling is not enough, as US English uses a number of different grammatical forms, particularly when it comes to the use of the present perfect and past simple.

Then there is an even more difficult bridge to cross in changing to US English. The vocabulary differences are vast. For example, cell instead of mobile, sidewalk, not pavement, fall not autumn, not to mention cookie and biscuit, trunk and boot, closet and wardrobe, zip code vs postcode, restroom and toilet, candy and sweets, and let’s stop at the first floor and ground floor!

No, it would not be an easy task at all to modify my ebooks. They would need to be completely, utterly and word-by-word translated into US English. A task almost as daunting as translating them into French!

Ok, I am probably far too lazy to get into such a massive undertaking, and will simply rely on the premise that US readers do enjoy reading in British English from time to time. Well, I hope so anyway.

1 thought on “Should I Translate My Ebooks Into US English?”

  1. KL Forslund (@KLForslund)

    You’ve hit it on the head in your ending.

    We can handle British English. Some of us want to see more BBC shows.

    Don’t dumb down your work. Exposure to other cultures is good for us.

Comments are closed.

Scroll to Top