1180 Ormsby’s summer fundraiser

Ormsby’s summer fundraiser
by Richard Mackie

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Dear Friends, Colleagues, and Readers of The Ormsby Review,

Richard Mackie, February 2021, Victoria Drive, Vancouver. Photo by Susan Safyan

On behalf of The Ormsby Literary Society, its Board of Directors, and our Advisory Board (listed below), we must appeal to our readership for financial assistance. We are most grateful to the 96 donors who contributed to our 2020 fundraiser. Our request for private donations will be an annual campaign to help keep the review in a healthy state. As well, we continue to pursue other sources of income, mainly earned income (such as advertising) and public support from government agencies.

If you’re a regular reader you’ll be familiar with our unrivalled coverage of BC literature and culture. Writers and publishers face diminishing opportunities to draw attention to their work. Each year we publish around 250 insightful book reviews, essays, and memoirs relating to British Columbia’s arts & letters — books, literary profiles, and cultural and historical issues whether they are expressed through fiction, poetry, non-fiction, or the personal essay. In this, we strive to remain at the forefront of supporting authors and publishers of fine work with respect for the plurality and diversity of their voices. Our main categories, listed on our home page, are fiction, poetry, and non-fiction; we link to Indigenous, Black, Asian-Canadian, and LGBTQ2 authors and topics in our homepage categories.

During the difficult pandemic time, which is not yet behind us, Ormsby’s service to the community has proved especially necessary. Shut-in readers are challenged to learn about what is taking place within the world of BC books and authors, and Ormsby provides a guide. Unlike other publications with a paywall, Ormsby is free.

In providing this community service, The Ormsby Review is now asking its readership to show its support financially. Every dollar counts; every dollar makes a difference to help maintain our robust delivery of original and insightful reviews of BC  books and the essential cultural dialogue they represent in British Columbia, with its population of five million.

Government support for the literary arts is shrinking. To keep publishing we need your support. If you can help us extend this meaningful literary conversation, please consider making a donation by PayPal, Interac e-transfer, or cheque through our secure donate button on our website.

Cheques made out to the Ormsby Literary Society may be sent to:

Ormsby Literary Society
1865 Kitchener Street
Vancouver, BC
V5L 2W5

We can mail you a receipt, but it won’t be tax deductible.

In a healthy society ideas matter and we at The Ormsby Review are asking you, our readers, to help support us financially.

See below for a selection of unsolicited (and anonymized) plaudits received by email between January and July 2021.

Finally, may I also invite you to join the 450 people who subscribe to The Ormsby Review? Sign up here to receive an email with every third Ormsby post.

Thanks for your support in this critical fundraising campaign for The Ormsby Review.

Yours sincerely,
Richard Mackie, Publisher & Editor

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Board of Directors, Ormsby Literary Society: Joanne Arnott, Trevor Carolan, Daniel Francis, Ron Hatch, Imogene Lim, Renee Sarojini Saklikar, Byron Sheardown, LiLynn Wan, and Eldon Yellowhorn.

Advisory Board, The Ormsby Review: Jean Barman, Wade Davis, Robin Fisher, Cole Harris, Hugh Johnston, Kathy Mezei, Patricia Roy, Maria Tippett, Graeme Wynn.

We acknowledge the Indigenous peoples of British Columbia whose traditional territory we occupy and whose natural resources still sustain us.

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W.G.R. (William George Richardson) Hind, Indians Gathering Shellfish, Victoria Island, near Victoria [sic: Vancouver Island], circa 1863. Courtesy McCord Museum, Montreal, gift of Mr. David Ross McCord.
Edward Roper, Burrard Inlet, circa 1888, looking eastward up Burrard Inlet. In the distance at right is Hastings Sawmill; across the inlet at left is Moodyville Sawmill. Ships await loads of lumber at both mills. Courtesy City of Vancouver Archives

Consider: Recent (January-July 2021) unsolicited words of support from Ormsby readers, reviewers, and publishers:

Richard Mackie, July 2021. Photo by Juliet Mackie
  • “The Ormsby Review continues to astonish me… I keep thinking that you’ll run out of material and then I get another post with three more lively reviews!  Well done!” –  July 14, 2021
  • “I’m honoured to write for the intelligent, professionally run, and highly relevant Ormsby Review.” – June 28, 2021.
  • “I just wanted to send a brief note to congratulate you on covering so many books in the Review. It is hard to imagine this is making you rich, but the work the Review does enrich all of us.” — June 15, 2021
  • “Good review…made me buy the book.” – June 24, 2021.
  • “I am very grateful to have this book reviewed on the wonderful Ormsby.” – June 4, 2021.
  • “I think that the quality of oversight and orchestration that you bring to the Review creates a mosaic. The mosaic is educational, entertaining and controversial, yes, but the whole of it roots into the unconscious. This is not to scare the academics and the scientists. Ormsby is inclusive for all walks.” – May 22, 2021.
  • “Thanks for your great work promoting BC writing!” – May 21, 2021
  • “Beautifully done. Thank you. I so appreciate the very fine standards of your work on, and with, Ormsby.” — May 9, 2021.
  • “I love your on-line journal. Really.” May 8, 2021.
  • “The fine publication you’re editing: beautifully presented and impressively curated.” – May 5, 2021
  • “The Ormsby is a remarkable achievement, and provides wonderful documentation of all the literary and publishing activity associated with BC.” – May 3, 2021.
  • “Just know you are carrying out a very essential service for both writers and publishers.”  –May 3, 2021.
  • “I want to read this book as a result of this review.” – May 2, 2021.
  • “While I remember, I must tell you how much pleasure I am getting from the Ormsby Review. I am especially impressed, and occasionally enchanted, by Mlle. Poon.” – April 30, 2021.
  • “Thanks for finding a reviewer for my book, Richard! Your work serves the entire writing community!” — April 29, 2021.
  • “Wow, what an in-depth review. The kind seldom seen these days.” – April 26, 2021.
  • “Please find a cheque enclosed for $100 as a donation to your fine literary review.” – April 25, 2021.
  • “As both a reviewer and a reader, I greatly appreciate The Ormsby Review providing a venue for long-form reviews for an intelligent but non-specialist audience. There are precious few publications doing that, especially in Canada and even more so with a regional focus. It’s such a refreshing change from reviewing for scholarly journals, where the only guaranteed reader is the book’s author.”  — April 25, 2021.
  • “I appreciate your expansive cultural vision, on connecting the literary world to writers and vice versa, which you excel at.” – April 24, 2021.
  • “I appreciate Ormsby’s public recognition and support of the reviewers’ work through the colourful bios, and through your informative links to reviews previously contributed. Ormsby is a rare gift because it supports reviewers’ creative networking, voices, and passion to include themes they care about.” – April 23, 2021.
  • “It’s a terrific site. I’ve been reading some of the reviews — very eclectic and interesting.” April 17, 2021.
  • “Thank you, the support for these titles from Ormsby is very much appreciated by the press, & the authors, and we share the review links widely! Bon weekend.” — April 16, 2021.
  • “This is a great BC literary publication, The Ormsby Review, edited by Richard Somerset Mackie. I’m on their e-mail list, so get notifications whenever new articles are published. I highly recommend being on the list, and they are keen on having new people sign up.” — April 14, 2021.
  • “Thank you for what you do.” – April 5, 2021
  • “By the way, an emphatic thank you for taking a chance on me … I was totally green to book reviewing and found it both intimidating and exciting; you made the induction welcoming, easy, and rewarding (must be why I keep coming back for more). Honestly, I think you have spoiled me for future editors with your unobtrusive edits, eye for dangling modifiers, and openness to new ideas and lengthy reviews….  I think the opportunity to write for The Ormsby Review is one of the happier (and few) consequences of the pandemic.” – April 1, 2021.
  • “You are doing a wonderful job with Ormsby, Richard. The connections and understanding that you generate are especially powerful and needed for these hard times.” – March 16, 2021.
  • “Thanks for all the wonderful work you’re continuing to do for the literary world through all this.” –March 15, 2021
  • “I like the Ormsby Review project a lot.” — Feb. 28. 2021.
  • “I’ve taken note of the fine reviews coming from Ormsby, and the high calibre writers that you are assigning to review our books.” — Feb 1, 2021.
  • “You’re doing a great job assigning and featuring books that don’t always get this kind of audience.” – Feb 1, 2021.
  • “Keep up the amazing stream of good work.” — Feb 1, 2021.
  • “Thanks again and look forward to more Ormsby reading —  you are getting a lot out there to the benefit of BC/Canadian writers.” –  Jan 31, 2021.
  • “It’s extraordinary how you’ve built an online empire that keeps you so wildly busy and in demand. I’m very impressed. Of course, your reputation precedes you.” — Jan 25, 2021.
  • “Thank you for helping me to grow into a better writer.” – Jan 20, 2021.
  • “I’m just writing to inquire as to the health of The Ormsby Review. It’s been a valuable part of BC’s cultural scene.” – Jan 19, 2021.
  • “By the way I am shocked and amazed at how you keep everything running with the emails and photographs and writers and publishers and books going here and there and technology glitches and all the rest.” — Jan 17 2021.
  • “As a BC author and book publisher I am very excited about this. Ormsby Review has been publishing some of the most intelligent, well-written book reviews that have appeared in Canada over the past four years and they deserve a wider audience.” – Jan 11, 2021.
  • “What an awesome community you’ve curated.” — Jan 10, 2021.
  • “I hope your fundraising and grant-writing efforts were fruitful. Ormsby is a crucial publication and platform and you’re doing great work — keep it up.” Jan 7, 2021.

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The Ormsby Review.More Books. More Reviews. More Often.

Publisher and Editor: Richard Mackie

The Ormsby Review is a journal service for in-depth coverage of B.C. books and authors. The Advisory Board consists of Jean Barman, Wade Davis, Robin Fisher, Cole Harris, Hugh Johnston, Patricia Roy, Maria Tippett, and Graeme Wynn. Scholarly Patron: SFU Graduate Liberal Studies. Honorary Patron: Yosef Wosk. Provincial Government Patron since September 2018: Creative BC

“Only connect.” – E.M. Forster

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