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Hi, I'm columnist, blogger and author Gail Krawetz.
The Project & My Purpose
I have researched and written a book telling the story of the
little-known beginnings of the Saskatchewan Party in 1997, the
groundswell of support it received and its meteoric rise to forming
government in 2007. This is a feat unequalled among modern-day
political parties in North America.
By providing this account I want to ensure that a more fulsome and
accurate historical record is documented than has to date been
available, and to create the first book on the subject. Also, I am the
wife of one of the party founders and as such lived through the times
even before the party was formed. I’m a writer, and even in the
earliest days felt I was keeping these stories for a future time,
though I didn’t realize it would be a book 20 years later. I think I
can provide a uniquely behind-the-scenes perspective, balanced with
factual research and sources, that will tell the story in a uniquely
Why is This Book Important?
The creation of this party changed the political landscape of this
province and, therefore, deserves its rightful place in the annals of
Saskatchewan history. As well, the book will reveal how a strong
political will, the right circumstances and a group of dedicated,
like-minded individuals accomplished what many thought was impossible.
Here's how it all started...
The 1995 Saskatchewan provincial election saw the nearly five-decade
juggernaut of the New Democratic Party once again secure power
partially because of vote-splitting. Internal struggles within the
Liberal Party and recent scandals of some Progressive Conservative
members meant that neither of these was in a position to present a
viable alternative to the powerful NDP organization on its own.
The "Original 8," as they’re called, were a group of 4
Liberals and 4 PCs who banded together, each for different reasons and
taking on different, but significant, risks, to create the new blended
party. They would name it the Saskatchewan Party, much to the chagrin
of their opponents, who likely were mostly just miffed they hadn’t
thought of it first. :)
These 8 brave souls risked family, friends, fortunes and the most
priceless good of all, personal reputation, in the action many saw as
disloyalty in the extreme to their original parties. They did it
because together they imagined something better for their beloved
province of Saskatchewan.
But even they had no idea the impact they would have and the
spectacular speed with which it would happen, nor the legacy it would
create that is evident today in so many ways.
How I Am Telling the Story
The many supporters of the SaskParty who are keen on learning this
history are an important audience for this book, as are those who are
interested in the political process and history of Saskatchewan.
The tone of this book will be informative and educational, but also
revealing, as many never-before-known details will be shared. The book
will be an easy and entertaining read, as humorous and personal
anecdotes of those who lived this history will be shared directly from
interviews I’m conducting as part of my research.
My Challenge & The Goal
Book publishing is expensive. I have many reasons why I want to
self-publish this book, not the least are that I want to maintain an
objective distance from the Party itself. Even with my own experience
as part of this history, I’m very serious about presenting an
objective and well-researched book that shows as fair and balanced a
picture as possible.
Our first goal is $20,000 to help pay for editing, design, marketing
and printing costs to print 400 hardcover and 400 softcover books. We
will announce additional stretch goals during the campaign as well.
I'm supported by a great team of wonderful people helping me with
this campaign to whom I’m grateful. They’ve helped me put together all
the ways in which you can help me bring this important historical
story into being, and get your copies first!
How You Can Help
Your support has allowed me to focus on my research and writing,
completing the manuscript and research according to schedule. Even
though I’m bearing some of the costs for making the book, I will know
from your support that there is the interest I believe is out there to
hear these stories.
Also, crowd support will create an important buzz for a successful
book launch. This story needs to get out to the public to counter any
incorrect material that is already in print. You can help not only by
contributing to the campaign to pre-purchase your book or books, but
by sharing the campaign with those in your networks. (It's easy to do
through the various sharing methods here on the campaign page!)
Reaching our campaign goal will ensure that the result is the best
possible product, both from an academic perspective as well as an
esthetic one. Getting a "thumbs up" from the original
players would be most gratifying to me personally.
Without you, this can’t happen. And the time is now, as those who
were involved at the earliest stages may not always be around to tell
these stories later. Unfortunately, we’ve already lost one of the
So I thank you for your support, whether it’s in purchasing books and
other perks, or sharing the campaign with everyone you know. Finally,
you are helping to create an historical document that will be a
valuable resource for future study, commentary and reference.