Ekstasis Editions is a Canadian literary publisher, with emphasis on poetry, fiction and criticism. Since 1982, Ekstasis has published literature of international quality in a way that is beautiful and lasting. The word ‘Ekstasis’ comes from an ancient Greek word, meaning ‘to stand outside oneself.' We strive to publish literature that is integrative rather than disintegrative, oceanic rather than continental, and holistic rather than fragmentary.
Originally, Ekstasis published almost exclusively poetry, but it has diversified and branched out into related forms such as literary fiction, metaphysics, theatre and most recently Children’s and Young Adult books under the Cherubim Books imprint.
Ekstasis Editions was founded by Richard Olafson in 1982 in the basement of the now-defunct, Gallerie Untitled in Victoria, BC, in order to publish local poets. The first book produced was Blood of the Moon by Richard Olafson, with cover art by Miles Lowry, printed on a 1250 MultilithPress in the gallery basement. In its early years, Ekstasis issued small editions of privately-printed, exquisite books, often printed by the publisher on quality papers and bound by hand. For the first ten years, it offered both limited editions and trade books, publishing many new and emerging poets. In 1986 Carol Ann Sokoloff joined Ekstasis Editions from a background in educational publishing and broadcasting, working on editing and marketing aspects of the press. In 1992 the limited editions were suspended to concentrate fully on producing trade books that would maintain the highest possible standards of typography and design, reflecting the original concerns with the craft of bookmaking––but addressing the increasingly critical need for serious publication of poetry as larger commercial publishing houses abandoned less profitable literary work, especially work by emerging writers. Since its founding in 1982, Ekstasis Editions has published over 200 titles.