that's how long we've been around now. this month marks the three year anniversary of the launch of our first issue.
with all the hassles of putting out an ezine i never thought we'd see it last this long.
canadian content was started as simply a place for people to speak their mind in a structured environment. the notion behind cancon was to provide a forum for thoughts and rants on what canada is (and isn't) from the inside and out. this meant lots of questioning of canadian identity, politics, and art. i thought we would take a lot of flack for questioning these concepts in a relaxed manner, but the opposite happened - we were criticized on several occasions for being 'anti-american' (even though we have had many u.s. writers contribute their perspectives). oh well, you can't please them all.
if you've been reading cancon since its inception you'll probably notice that a lot has changed. the biggest change was in going from a monthly 'issue' based method to a continual 'in progress' method of printing. this was our way of escaping the stress of trying to put together issues that got progressively better each month. instead we sat down, redesigned the site, and came up with a format that allows us complete flexibility.
the other thing that has changed many times has been our focus. this isn't because we don't have one, but mostly relates to the fact that we rely on our contributors to make this thing work. we have never paid contributors (we have a $0 operating budget), and this has a tremendous impact on the areas you can cover. the one thing this policy has never hurt, however, is content. perhaps this is what surprised us the most. it never ceases to amaze us how many incredible writers out there are willing to share their material with the world and receive no material gain in return.
this shifting focus can be stressful, but allows complete freedom. for a while we had a music editor, now we don't. we've had various interviewers, reviewers, illustrators, cartoonists, and columnists. many of them have come and gone. this is the way ezines work, i guess.
best of all, in the midst of this chaos we call an ezine, we have had tremendous support from the canadian publishing industry. they have provided us with an endless supply of great books to review.
as cancon continues to mutate we will try to keep up with it. it has seen so many twists that i cannot possible anticipate where it will go next. the primary goal we have is to receive financial backing - with the naive hope that we can avoid becoming a commercial venture while at the same time paying our contributors what they deserve. this is the only way we can possible continue to grow.
my only request is that the canadian council send the grant application package i asked for several months ago. i suspect that while they support online publications *in theory*, this seldom happens.
the biggest thanks goes out to everyone who has helped make this happen over the past three years. we thank the writers for their words, and we thank the many interview subjects for access to their busy schedules and minds. and because i couldn't end this without being entirely cheesy, i thank all you who keep reading and thinking. maybe one day you'll actually see us on the newsrack.
now where the hell is my bronze statue?