You may have seen the recent announcement by the Government of Saskatchewan about a new Creative Industries Agency and a $1-million transition fund that will be available for all creative industries. There has been some confusion about what exactly constitutes a 'creative industry' and what the fund will do etc. Surprise, surprise. There's always confusion about new agencies and funding and it usually takes some time for the fog to lift and reality to surface.
As a writer and publisher in Saskatchewan, I have a vested interest in this announcement. As a small publisher who also does self-publishing, DriverWorks Ink does not qualify for the majority of grants out there (which are few in number across Canada anyway) - so we look forward to anything that can help us publish more quality work by Prairie authors.We are hopeful that some new program will arise that can assist Saskatchewan publishers in producing books based on the quality of the product and not on whether it is self-published or not.
As a publisher, I was disappointed by the absence of representation from our publishing sector in the media coverage of the government's announcement. As a journalist, I get it. You can't talk to everyone in every industry about every announcement, and the film industry's recent loss of a provincial tax credit has drawn a lot of attention and is worthy of follow-up. Still, it would have helped the general public to better understand some of the impact of the fund if book publishers had added a few words to the discussion... and it's a reminder to us as publishers in Saskatchewan to speak up a little more about our work, our great books and what we contribute to the province and its culture.
With that in mind, here's a blog that caught my attention for its knowledgeable explanation of Creative Industry versus Arts in Saskatchewan and what the new announcement might actually mean. I can't say I agree with everything the writer says because I'm still struggling to understand it all myself, but I particularly like the explanation of the Arts Continuum and how the Creative Industries are the producers of artistic products."Writing is an artistic endeavor. Publishing is a creative industry."
Nicely said. I'm just going to print off that blog and keep it handy to remind me of who we are and where we might go with this in the future.