The National Post carried a thoughtful article on the Scotiabank Giller Prize today written by Jack Illingworth, the Executive Director of the Literary Press Group of Canada. In the article Jack makes an excellent explanation of the clash of cultures that takes place when literary presses find themselves nominated for prizes like the Giller, which are usually dominated by the giant multinational book factories in Toronto.
Says Illingworth: “This may seem like willful eccentricity on the part of Andrew Steeves and Gary Dunfield, Gaspereau’s co-publishers. It’s actually something much more interesting: a commitment to a thoughtful, rigorous, refined mode of publishing. While publishing is usually discussed as a business, or an industry, all of the finest small press publishers practice it as an art form. The books that they choose to publish aren’t chosen to fill out a season with a handful of products that stand a reasonable chance of selling. Their lists are cultural projects, embodying a few individuals’ ideas of what literature can be.”
ANDREW STEEVES ¶ PRINTERS & PUBLISHERS