A Publisher’s Year: A quest for Survival By now, it’s become almost clichéd to point out the challenges facing publishers, not only in Canada but around the world. The press release announcing the sale of M&S cited “the challenges facing publishers, including a difficult economy and digital-driven transitions facing the industry.”
But what does it mean to be a publishing house in this day and age? Why are publishers even necessary when a book can be produced independently — a file uploaded to Amazon and downloaded on a Kindle, no middleman required? Will McClelland & Stewart be the sole Canadian publisher to succumb to industry pressures this year, or were they simply the first domino to fall? How will technology continue to influence the future of books? Who are these people who still believe in a future with books?
Over the next 12 months, the National Post will chronicle the ups-and-downs, ins-and-outs, and day-to-day dealings of House of Anansi Press and its sister publisher, Groundwood Books — the stories behind a company devoted to storytellers — offering an in-depth look at what goes on inside a Canadian publishing house, and what it takes for a 20th-century model to survive in the 21st century.