Nightwood Editions is committed to publishing and promoting the best new poetry and fiction by writers across Canada. Our goal is to give readers a chance to explore the high-quality work of emerging Canadian writers, and new writers an opportunity to publish their work in book form. Ultimately, Nightwood Editions strives to publish books that foster a community of writers and readers, providing a forum for thought, discussion and interaction while reflecting the diversity our country is known for.
Nightwood is also dedicated to producing excellent Canadian non-fiction that helps support its literary list. Whether publishing poetry, sports, fiction or crossword titles, Nightwood Editions maintains the highest standards in all it undertakes, building on its growing reputation.
A Brief History
In 1963, Vancouver poet bill bissett founded blewointmentpress and began publishing mimeographed magazines of experimental poetry. Within a few years bissett, known for his own work in sound and concrete poetry, began to publish books that extended the boundaries of language and visual image, including work by bpNichol, Steve McCaffery, Andrew Suknaski, Lionel Kearns and d. a. levy. The activities of blewointmentpress met with wide acclaim, and have had a seminal influence on the Canadian literary community.
In 1983, blewointment was sold to David Lee and Maureen Cochrane in Ontario, who renamed the press Nightwood Editions. During this era, the house published a wide assortment of titles, in subjects as diverse as jazz music, poetry, fiction and film.
In the early ’90s, Governor General’s Award-winning children’s illustrator Kim La Fave acquired the press and added a beautiful line of children’s titles with west coast themes, some of which remain Nightwood’s most recognizable and widely distributed books.
Silas White took the helm in 2000 and expanded the mandate of publishing critically acclaimed and award-winning poetry and fiction by new writers. These include the best-selling anthology Breathing Fire 2; Tim Bowling’s Darkness and Silence; Philip Kevin Paul‘s Taking the Names Down from the Hill; Intimate Distances by Fiona Tinwei Lam; and the groundbreaking chain-fiction book Write Across Canada. In 2003, Nightwood joined forces with Junction Books, a Toronto chapbook publisher, to produce titles such as Ray Hsu‘s Anthropy and Adam Getty‘s Reconciliation.
Nightwood Editions came full circle in 2005 with its relaunch of the blewointment imprint. The first book in the series is Jay MillAr‘s False Maps for Other Creatures. Books under the blewointment name maintain bissett’s original commitment to grassroots and innovative poetry. Nightwood Editions acquired Bluefield Books in 2004, taking on a new line of titles including the popular O Canada Crosswords series.