Afro Poetry Times

In the spotlight: Zimbabwe poetry anthology scores big on Amazon...


KWEKWE-BASED poet McDennias Moyo (pictured) is on cloud nine after his poetry collection titled My Everyday Valentine was rated the best new release on Amazon in the “Poetry About Love” category last month.

The book, My Everyday Valentine, contains 14 poems themed on Valentine’s Day, which cover 14 days leading to the day (Valentine’s Day), also topped on Kindle Unlimited.

“This is my first project I put on Amazon on January 31 which was actually a Valentine's gift for all the lovers out there. It was a small project that had just 14 poems covering 14 days leading up to the Valentine’s Day,” he said.

“The poems try to describe what a lover or a partner means to me and I had hoped it would resonate with many out there and it did. The Valentine’s special was received very well particular­ly in Europe and in the United States of America (USA). The USA alone had many downloads on Kindle Unlimited and it also recorded many paid orders for the book.”

Moyo said the milestone came at a time he was facing financial challenges in marketing the book.

“I was happy to see that notificati­on branded on my book. I don’t know what created the excitement about the book because I could not pay for its marketing,” he said.

“All I can say is God is great and He is faithful. I never thought that in about more than 500 000 books released during that time and in January, my book would become the number one best new release. My only hope at the time was just to get a few people to read my thoughts and get my art out there as a gift to the world. I am ecstatic to get such recognitio­n especially from the owners of the language I used.”

Moyo said such recognitio­n had given him confidence to continue sharing his art with the world.

“Now I write with more confidence because I know that some people and editors out there feel my work is competent enough. I feel so proud because I achieved all that without having marketed the book except sending a few links on Facebook and on WhatsApp groups. Instead it went global and as a Zimbabwean that was big for me,” he said.

Moyo said it was not easy to get sales on Amazon.

“I have discovered that authors pay for reviews and ratings in order to entice more people to buy their books. It is hard to get sales on Amazon if your book has no colourful reviews and five star ratings,” he said.

“People naturally become curious about the book if more people are talking about it and also seem to enjoy it. It is costly and it is a daunting task to get sales up or to market your book online. My book became number one best new release with absolutely no reviews or ratings.”

He added: “I guess people were attracted by the title which seemed to resonate with the season of love at that particular time and it was also good timing on my part and also God had His own plan to make the project a success.”

Moyo, who is inspired by matters of the heart, said his second book titled My Prickly Heart that was released on Saturday is available for pre-order on both Amazon and Kindle Store.

“My Prickly Heart is a beautifull­y written collection of poetry about love, heartbreak­s, raw emotions and random musings. It is honest, romantic, mournful and realistic.

“The poetry vividly captures the different emotions one goes through in their journey through life and love.

“This collection of poems will inspire, reassure, comfort and heal many hearts.” he said.

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