This is a question asked in the Globe and Mail:
Among the recognizable Canadian publishers that have laid off editors since the economic downturn are Penguin Canada, McClelland & Stewart and Key Porter, which stopped publishing altogether early in the new year. Even plucky Gaspereau Press, the Nova Scotia publisher that brought out Johanna Skibsrud’s Scotiabank Giller Prize-winning novel, The Sentimentalists, has laid off its only full-time editor.
“We just couldn’t afford it,” said Gaspereau co-publisher Andrew Steeves, adding that he is happy to do the work himself. At the same time, he worries about the ultimate effect of industry-wide downsizing. “How do you cultivate a professional publishing ethic if you’re farming everything out?”
Authors, finding today’s downsized publishers increasingly unwilling to invest their own resources in the often laborious process of polishing rough diamonds into marketable gems, are now often forced to hire their own editors – before even before submitting their manuscripts for publication. Toronto literary agent Anne McDermid saw the landscape changing two years ago, when a publisher told her, “I cannot purchase a book I need to spend 40 hours editing.”
I saw my agent post this on Facebook, and he suggested it rang true for New York and London, too.