Freehand Books becomes independent
Freehand Books was established in 2007 as the literary imprint of the academic publisher Broadview Press. This year, Freehand is becoming independent. On January 1st, 2016, majority ownership was transferred to JoAnn McCaig (owner of Calgary’s Shelf Life Books and a writer herself, as well as a long-time member of Broadview’s Board of Directors), who was instrumental in founding the Freehand imprint, and who has played a key role in Freehand ever since. The change comes as Freehand enters into its ninth year and publishes its fortieth title.
Freehand will be moving forward with the same simple mandate that has made it a success from the start: to publish excellent Canadian literature. There will be no changes to the editorial and management boards, or to the staffing, distribution, or sales representation. Freehand Books and Broadview Press will maintain their alliance through the change.
Broadview Press has been essential in establishing Freehand’s aesthetically diverse, award-winning collection of fiction, poetry, and creative nonfiction, including Marina Endicott’s Giller-nominated novel, Good to a Fault; Sarah Leavitt’s memoir Tangles: A Story about Alzheimer’s, My Mother and Me—the first-ever work of graphic literature to be a finalist for the Writers’ Trust Non-Fiction Prize; and Karyn L. Freedman’s One Hour in Paris: A True Story of Rape and Recovery, which recently won the BC National Award for Canadian Non-Fiction.
Freehand will publish three books in the upcoming season: Middenrammers, by John Bart, is a brave and provocative novel set in the 1970s; it tells the story of a young doctor struggling to find his place in a hospital that tries to prevent its staff from giving contraceptive advice or abortions. Perfect World, a novella by the multiple award-winning author Ian Colford, raises the question of how we can possibly prepare ourselves for the loss of everything we hold dear; and White Elephant is Catherine Cooper’s darkly humorous, brilliantly-written novel about a self-deluded Canadian family living in Sierra Leone.
Freehand plans to publish four to six works of fiction or creative non-fiction every year. The press looks forward to its continued contribution to Canadian literature as an independent publisher.