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We Are!

Updated: Oct 13

A musicologist, a medievalist, and an editor start a publishing company during a pandemic…


Our story goes back over 30 years, to when Elizabeth and Joanna met on the first day of first grade in Charleston, West Virginia. Elizabeth was the new kid, and they bonded over a shared tendency to play quietly by themselves and have very rich inner lives. They once made themselves very unpopular with their fifth- grade teacher by reciting Tennyson loudly on the playground.


They’ve never met John in person, though through the wonders of Google Meets they feel as though they have! John was hired as Elizabeth’s assistant at a small press in Glasgow after she had suddenly left the country. He is the namesake of one her favorite characters from eighteenth-century Scotland, so she knew immediately they would do good work together.


Though all three of us were in the already cutthroat job markets of academia and publishing, we were undaunted as opportunities diminished even further due to Covid-19. We joined forces and created our own employment. Blackwater Press was born.


We share an attention to detail, a love of words and good, thought-provoking writing. With our varied backgrounds in music, history, and writing we are well-placed to offer constructive criticism, provide feedback and support through creative projects. We will go head-first into rabbit holes, and help to shape meaningful stories.


With bases in the United States and Scotland, we are easily able to work with an international market.


Our name comes from the Blackwater River and Blackwater Falls in the Allegheny Highlands of West Virginia, where Elizabeth and Joanna plan to open a bookshop, and where John hopes to visit once it doesn’t involve major risks to health and safety.



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120 Capitol St
Charleston, WV 25301

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