who are we?

riza press is an independent publishing press specializing in poetry, multimedia works, and anything thought-provoking or outside-the-box. We are based in Ottawa, ON, but publish works from all around the world.

What do we do?

Publish an annual free and open-access multimedia creative journal online and in print.
Publish books and chapbooks of all types with a commitment to 100% author rights and royalties.
Host regular contests to celebrate and support creators.
Promote creators we believe in and help them get recognized on all of our platforms.
Host various projects working towards positive social causes.

riza – or ρίζα – is Greek for root. At riza press, we believe in connectedness; and we believe art can explore and give voice to those experiences and emotions which bind us together and connect us.

We are an independent publishing press, working to make publishing more accessible, so creators can have their unique artistic voices heard. We believe that every creator deserves a platform.

At Riza, we look for the interesting, the outside-the-box, the thought-provoking… We look for work that transcends genre boundaries and searches for new artistic frontiers.


Ava Balis: Founder

Meet our founder and editor, Ava Balis, who believes creativity is the most important of our human expressions. She works to promote art in any shape or form, through making publishing more accessible and helping creators reach a public audience more easily.

Ava Balis is herself a poet, artist, and author, with ongoing projects which can be found here, on her personal website.

Beth Huston: Head of Marketing

Meet our head of marketing, Beth Huston, whose dedication to spreading love and positivity is astounding. With her extensive marketing and editing background, and her always-sunny disposition, Beth is a natural addition to the Riza team.

As the founder of Pen and Pendulum, a great support system and popular hub for Instagram’s poetry community, Beth is passionate about helping authors and poets get the recognition they deserve. You’ll either find her writing her own poetry, or find her reaching out to poets and creators, both big and small, making them feel heard.