The Goddess Inanna was the most prominent female deity of ancient Mesopotamia: her vast dominion included the domains of Love, Wisdom, War, Fertility and Lust. Likewise, Inanna Publications, a publisher based in Toronto, is a feminist press proudly publishing all facets – love, war, wisdom, fertility, lust, and still more – of women’s writing.
Theytus Books is the first and oldest Indigenous Publishing house in Canada. It’s recognized the world-over for its contributions to Aboriginal literature – giving Indigenous authors, illustrators, artists, and professionals a home to speak out with the utmost respect for cultural authenticity and integrity.
J. Gordon Shillingford Publishing wasn’t the first publishing venture for Saskatchewan native Gord Shillingford. In 1986 under the name Blizzard Publishing, Gord and Peter Atwood teamed up to take on the literary world of Winnipeg, Manitoba.
There was much to learn and many details to see to but things continued on until 1992 when Gord decided to strike out on his own, forming J. Gordon Shillingford Publishing.
Signature Editions began its publishing career under the name of Nuage Editions in 1986. As a 16-person collective based in Montreal, Nuage published two to four books a year for the next several years.
In 1992 one of the partners, Karen Haughian, took over the reins and ramped up production, releasing six to nine titles a year, and she’s been running the show ever since.
“You’re dreaming the book, the tangible, tactile object. You haven’t heard yet of perfect binding, of dingbats, of saddle stitching, Corel, Ventura, fulfillment, or financial statements. You certainly are not contemplating twenty years of labour, of screening twenty thousand manuscripts, of Editorial Board meetings, conferences with writers, proofreading, copy-editing, launches, grant-applications, Literary Press Group, the ACP, conference calls – if you had, you probably would not have hazarded the dream. The work alone would have thrown you off.
Tightrope Books celebrated 10 years and plenty of works of fiction, poetry, non-fiction, and YA this year. Founded by poet Halli Villegas in 2005, Tightrope was conceived as a “writer-centric press,” involving its authors and poets throughout the publishing process.
Theytus Books is a leading North American publisher of Indigenous voices. Located in Syilx territory on the Penticton Indian Reserve in British Columbia, Theytus Books is proudly First Nations-owned and operated in partnership with the En’owkin Centre. As the oldest Indigenous publishing house in Canada, Theytus Books is recognized and respected internationally for its contributions to Aboriginal literature. Since its inception in 1980, Theytus Books has been a leading proponent for Indigenous authors, illustrators and artists.
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BuschekBooks is an Ottawa-based press that has a strong focus on poetry, though they have published fiction and non-fiction in the past. For Buschek, the whole point is sharing manuscripts of exceptional quality.
Also important to Buschek is spreading exceptional work beyond the barriers of language. They often publish the English translations by Canadian authors, as well as Canadian translations of international poets, often done as bilingual editions.
The University of Alberta founded the Banff Centre in 1933, with help from the Carnegie Foundation. While the Centre initially started only in the area of drama, by 1935 creative writing was also taught and the stage was set for the printed word at the Banff Centre.
By 1970 programming at the Centre had really expanded so it was renamed The Banff Centre for Continuing Education, with a focus on arts programming and conferences. With access to so many creative minds at work it wasn’t a huge leap to begin documenting this creativity in book form.