Today, the Literary Press Group was given word that the Heritage Minister has overturned the decision and the sales force will be funded for this year! I’ll leave this post as an informational post about what indie publishers in Canada do and how precarious their survival is!
The LPG’s statement is here.
Dear Shameless readers,
Some of you may be aware that my day job is in book publishing. I work for the distribution arms of the Literary Press Group of Canada (LPG), an organization of independent Canadian literary publishers that provides advocacy and professional development, as well as operates a national sales team that sells the books published by 47 LPG publishers into the trade: bookstores like Chapters/Indigo, Amazon.ca, independent bookstores, school and libraries.
Last week, the LPG got word that the sales force has been defunded by the Department of Canadian Heritage with no warning and no reason. Six of my eight colleagues are being laid off. (My job is safe for now - my company is a subsidiary of the LPG and I have my own funding.)
Why is this bad news for people who don’t consider themselves part of the literary community? Well, indie Canadian publishers are often the first to publish new and up-and-coming authors, some of whom stick with these presses, and some of whom go on to sign with larger houses. Ever read anything by Margaret Atwood? Michael Ondaatje? Jane Urquhart? They all started with independent presses who gave their work a chance to be read.
And indie presses are more likely to publish books that showcase a diversity of voices and perspectives. These are some of the types of publishers who are members of the LPG: (more inside…)