Our new Literary Map of B.C. is meant to be fun. It is also meant to err on the side of content. Similar sites on the internet usually tell you next-to-nothing. Frequently their information chiefly consists of publishers’ catalogue copy that is cut-‘n’-pasted by interns. There are more than 700,000 words of original text on this site; and there are more than 600 photos. Bigger than the Encyclopedia of B.C. or Chuck Davis’ Greater Vancouver books, it has easily the equivalent of nine books worth of material.
In no way does this site purport to present the best writers of the province. Such hierarchical thinking borders on ridiculous. The 200 authors herein represent a cross-section in terms of genres, ages and geography. Some are famous; many are not. Some living, some dead.
If you ‘scroll out’ and get a Google world view of the planet on this site, you’ll find we’ve pinpointed about a dozen B.C.-related locations around the globe—in Mongolia, Iceland, Peru, etc. We did this simply because, well, it’s fun.
Not all the sites on the Literary Map of B.C. are easily visited, but directions to each location are provided.
Ideally some communities around the province will want to emulate the City of Vancouver where more than 40 literary markers have been erected to correspond to the Vancouver Public Library’s own literary map for which I provided the entries.
Some sites have great historical significance for British Columbia and therefore we have highlighted a literary work that resonates with that significance. Other times we’ve pinpointed a location from within a literary work, or else the residence of a particular author.
We are indebted to Simon Fraser University (chief librarian Gwen Bird) for hosting the BCBookLook site through which the Literary Map of B.C. can be accessed. The main webmaster who facilitated the site and posted its contents is Sharon Jackson who lives in Duncan on Vancouver Island. Her email is email@example.com
We are also indebted to both Get to the Point and Christine Rondeau for design, layout and production expertise. Freelance contributors for the entries chiefly include Beverly Cramp and Cherie Thiessen. Many people wrote and provided helpful suggestions.
A grant from creativeBC and its affiliate, the BC Arts Council, was essential. Also integral was the partnership of Vancouver Public Library from the outset, particularly Chief Librarian Sandra Singh who gave the green light in 2014 for a local initiative, sponsored by poet and philosopher Yosef Wosk, to increase public awareness of B.C. authors.
— Alan Twigg