Biblioasis was founded in the back of a bookstore in the fall of 2004. Without knowing much, or anything really, about publishing, their first book was Salvator Ala’s Straight Razor and Other Poems. An exciting experience but one that also highlighted the fact that if they were going to keep doing this whole publishing thing, they were going to need to learn a few things.
The bookstore closed in 2007 but the press continued to thrive in its new home of Emeryville, Ontario. They had taken over CNQ: Canadian Notes and Queries magazine from The Porcupine’s Quill the previous year and had launched the Metcalf-Rooke Award in 2005, which celebrated the short story. One of the very first winners of the award was Kathleen Winter, with her first story collection, boYs.
In 2006 they launched their Rendition series with Cape Breton is the Thought-Control Centre of Canada by Ray Smith. For Biblioasis, a reprint series that kept important titles from going out of print was work someone needed to be doing. They’ve since relaunched the series under the name ReSet Books and have published such classic titles as Lunar Attractions by Clarke Blaise and Quickening Terry Griggs.
With over 130 titles in print, Biblioasis has racked up an impressive list of titles including The Idler’s Glossary by Joshua Glenn and Mark Kingwell, 2010 Giller Prize-nominated Light Lifting by Alexander MacLeod, and 2012 Amazon First Novel Award-winning Malarky by Anakana Schofield.
Back in Windsor as of 2012 in a new bookstore, Biblioasis has a lot to celebrate these days, including three titles on this year’s Giller Prize longlist!