Let the Readers Decide: An Open Letter to the CBC

I petition the CBC to have self-published books and e-book originals written by Canadian citizens considered for nomination in the Canada Reads program. The current policy, which only allows for literature produced by “traditional publishers,” is anachronistic, unfair, and serves as yet another protectionist measure for established publishers in an industry that already institutes countless obstacles for independent writers and artists to overcome.

If the aim of Canada Reads is to indeed showcase the best our country has to offer in this field, then allow Canada’s readers the last word in whom they nominate. Do not limit which books they can or cannot support based on the name of their publisher.

The theme of Canada Reads 2014 is to “look for a novel that has the power to inspire social change in Canada.” I believe that very same theme begins by meeting the humble request of this petition.

Richard H. Harris
Toronto, Ontario
October 8, 2013

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