April 07th, 2020
This is one of the few times in human history when being a scribe might be considered a preferable profession. I think of those monks in the Dark Ages, transcribing manuscripts, safe from the plague. We are still scribbling away here, keeping track of as many B.C.-related books as possible.
After consulting with B.C. publishers in early March, our survey results have rendered the result we anticipated. As the majority of our main advertisers have preferred, we will skip a paper version of a Summer issue in June and instead go digital-only (with free ads for all our publishers whose accounts have been paid in full) on BCBookLook.
Then we’ll do a Double Issue in Autumn (paper, as usual), combining the new Autumn content with the Summer content from the digital issue on BCBookLook.
This means there will be no overall decrease in coverage of your new B.C. books in 2020.
In fact—as we continue with our ABCBookLook and BCBookLook services on-line—we are now looking forward to building a new Indigenous Literary Map of B.C. This new enterprise will keep abreast of the proliferation of Indigenous writers in our province that was first recorded in Alan Twigg’s book Aboriginality (Ronsdale Press, 2005).
I am working from home; David Lester is working from home; Alan Twigg has temporarily returned to work, unpaid, to handle much of the administration during the pandemic. In this way, we are arguably more efficient than ever and we are confident that BC BookWorld and its adjunct activities (websites and various literary prizes) will remain healthy for years to come.
The ABCBookWorld reference service served 5,291 visitors per day in February [stats available]. The newer BCBookLook news hub is now up to 1,000 -2,000 visits per day. And we conservatively estimate that the BC BookWorld newspaper continues to reach 100,000 readers per issue.
Keep sending us review copies. If we don’t see the books, it’s hard to tell Canadians about them.
Together, we will navigate through this storm.
Beverly Cramp, publisher
P.S. On our planned cover for the Summer issue will be first-time author Liliane Leila Juma recalling her upbringing on the shores of Lake Tanganyika in the Congo adjoining Burundi (and near Rwanda) for her book Maison Rouge (Tradewind, 2020). She now works as a Women’s Support Worker in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside.