Today is the inaugural BC Book Day, celebrating the achievements and significance of BC’s book publishing industry.
As explained in the press release from the Association of Book Publishers of BC, “On April 9th the BC Legislature will celebrate the achievements of BC’s publishing industry with a proclamation and an exhibition of BC-published books at the Parliament Buildings in Victoria.”
In its inaugural year, BC Book Day is an opportunity for government representatives (Members of the Legislative Assembly and staff) to “meet the province’s publishers, authors, writers’ festivals directors, librarians and booksellers”.
Some interesting facts about the BC publishing industry
- BC publishers estimate that 80% of their titles are authored by residents of the province
- BC is only behind Ontario in the number of local publishers
- BC is the home to the largest Aboriginal publishing company in the country, Theytus Books
- BC has one of the best and largest of children’s publishing houses, Orca Book Publishers
- CBC’s Canada Reads has (in recent years) included Indian Horse by Richard Wagamese, Bone Cage by Angie Abdou, and The Jade Peony by Wayson Choy
- The University of British Columbia Press has one of the largest academic programs in the country
- The ABPBC is the largest regional affiliate of the Association of Canadian Publishers (ACP)
- BC books are also translated in languages across the globe and sold in over 75 countries including the US, UK, Australia, Korea, France, Germany, Iran and China.
- BC books have won national and international recognition through awards such as the Scotiabank Giller Prize, the Governor General’s Literary Awards, the IMPAC Dublin Literary Awards and the RBC Taylor Prize.
And this little nugget of news, buried in the press release: “In the autumn of 2014, the ABPBC will launch a collection of 2,000 books in EPUB format for BC’s public libraries; the collection will be the first of its kind in Canada.” Sweet!
Hopefully BC Book Day will grow to be a community celebration of the industry, as well as a chance to educate MLAs about our rich and thriving publishing community.