Breathing Space Creative has been in the works for a long time, as a dream. I am not only president of BSC, but I am a writer too. The idea for Breathing Space Creative came to me after navigating many difficult situations as a new author while walking this tricky CanLit terrain. I have experienced racism on panels, sexism at conferences, and I have even had opportunities removed because I spoke up and asked a question about edits, or because I just plain asked for help. This is not the CanLit I dreamed of. I never expected to strike it rich as a writer (I know, right?), but I had dreams of feeling safe (or as safe as possible) to write, share, and publish my words. Since speaking up and asking for what I wanted and needed, I saw a shift in the CanLit cannon, I saw the clouds part. Hello silver lining! I want other authors to keep going and not give up because of a few negative experiences. On the other side of that coin, I know that publishers, publicists, and agents are busy people. And although you may love the back and forth with each and every writer, and you might crave the extinguishing of fires, your goal is to get that book out into the world, on time and without burnout. Your goal is to put forth the best book possible, and sometimes that means letting some tasks go to experts in this area. Enter, Breathing Space Creative, the dream.
At Breathing Space Creative
we believe in:
helping authentic storytelling emerge
creating unique and unheard of tools and support systems for authors
building, strengthening, and redefining that sense of community all writers need
uplifting our peers
open discussion, open dialogue
getting to the core of problems by using authentic communication
having the right person for the job (we know and recognize our team’s strengths and experiences)
seeing authors flourish and succeed
publishers writing time into their budgets
getting rid of burnout
Building something bigger than myself has always been etched in the back of my mind right alongside the questions that have haunted me daily as a new writer: Why aren’t there more unique supports for writers?
Why isn’t there more transparency in the publishing industry?
How can I help writers while at the same time build and strengthen relationships? Why aren’t there more organizations offering authentic care and communication as the core of their operations?
Why don’t smaller presses have more support?
I took the constant forming of these questions as a sign. A sign to not only build something for the industry, but to do it in a way that could lead to bringing on more people who believe in strengthening the CanLit community too.
And so I inhaled what Toni Morrison said about writing and applied it to Breathing Space Creative:
“If there's a book that you want to read, but it hasn't been written yet, then you must write it.”