All of us at the Literary Press Group, publishers and staff alike, have been overwhelmed and encouraged by the public support that we have received since our loss of Canada Book Fund support was announced.
If you would like to help us, there are a couple of things you can do.
One is buy an LPG book, from your local independent bookstore if you can. Support our members and their authors. But you do that regularly anyway, or you wouldn’t be reading this.
You can also help us gain political support to have this decision overturned.
While there has been plenty of speculation, at this time we don’t know anything about the decision on our support – who made it or why it was made. We don’t know if it was made by a politician, or by someone in the bureaucracy. That’s why we have some hope that the decision can be reversed.
If you have a Conservative MP, in your region or your riding, you can help. Send them a note, letting them know what Canadian literary writing means to you, and what this decision means for it. Be clear and respectful. If you’re not sure what to say, we have a sample text here, but feel free to make it your own.
You’ll have our thanks. And you’ll have your books.
Dear [your MP’s name]
I am deeply distressed to learn that the Department of Canadian Heritage has decided to discontinue support for the sales and marketing activities of the Literary Press Group of Canada.
The LPG’s sales force is essential infrastructure for 47 Canadian-owned literary book publishers in seven provinces. It is the means by which hundreds of new Canadian-authored books find their way into booksellers, retail chains, online retailers and libraries across Canada. Most of these publishers receive support from this government for their publishing programs – support that this government trumpets at every opportunity – but this decision seriously threatens their viability by critically undermining the bridge that brings their books to Canadian readers. It makes little sense to support the creation of new Canadian books while blocking the road by which they find their way to their readers.
We are hopeful that Minister James Moore will overturn this decision, which we believe must have been made without full knowledge of the consequences that it will have. Any assistance you could provide in this regard would be of great benefit to Canada’s readers and writers.