I don't know why other people choose to work in literary writing and publishing, but my motivation for publishing literary works, and doing it with the uncommon care that I do, is aligned with my life-long interest in journalism. I think that publishing literature is an equally valuable tool, if more indirect and lyrical, than news reporting if your desire is to produce work that informs, equips, and supports the community. It is a tool that might ultimately penetrate more deeply and whose impact might be felt over a longer period, longer than a news cycle. It is a tool that fosters the discussion of more nuanced and complex ideas. I publish literary books because I think that they help the community to understand what is happening to it, and through it, and provide a means for articulating what it is like to be alive, here, in this place, in this time.
I also value the way that literature fosters robust thinking. Surely the reader who can wield metaphoric language, parse a complex phrase, or re-expand the compacted imagery of a work of fiction into a valid and complex universe in their mind is also likely to be someone who can wield robust arguments against injustice, parse environmental reviews or development regulations, or imagine a way forward for a community faced with difficult decisions. The skills that literature nurtures and exercises are the very skills necessary for our everyday lives as citizens. Without the robust kind of thinking and communication that a healthy literary culture enables, the coherence of the human world suffers, and with it, our ability to understand our relationship with the world at large.
- Gaspereau Press publisher Andrew Steeves, from his essay "Notes on Publishing Literary Books" in Resonance: Essay on the Craft and Life of Writing (Anvil Press, 2022).