Grants For Canadian Writers

The Canada Council for the Arts is committed to equity and inclusion, and welcomes applications from diverse Aboriginal, cultural and regional communities, including people with disabilities.

Please refer to the complete Program Guidelines [PDF, 785.2 KB].

Program Description

The Grants for Professional Writers program covers subsistence, project and travel expenses. The Creative Writing Grants component gives Canadian authors (emerging, mid-career and established) time to write new literary works, including novels, short stories, poetry, children’s and young adults’ literature, graphic novels, exploratory writing and literary non-fiction.

Exploratory writing is writing that uses technology to present literature in an innovative manner and (or) explores forms of literature outside the conventions of the novel, short story or poem.


1 April: French-Language Grants

1 October: English-Language Grants

If one of these dates falls on a weekend or statutory holiday, the deadline moves to the next business day. Your completed application and all support material must be postmarked on or before the deadline date.

Grant Amount

Emerging Writers

Grants for emerging writers are intended for writers who have published one literary book with a professional publishing house or the minimum of past literary publications required, as detailed in the eligibility criteria. The grant amounts offered are from $3,000 to $12,000.

Mid-Career Writers

Mid-career writers must have published between two and five literary books (all genres included) with a professional publishing house. The grant amounts offered are from $3,000 to $25,000.

Established Writers

Established writers must have published at least six literary books (all genres included) with a professional publishing house. The grant amounts offered are from $3,000 to $25,000.


To apply to the Canada Council for the Arts, you must be a Canadian citizen or have permanent resident status, as defined by Citizenship and Immigration Canada. You do not need to be living in Canada when you apply.

You must also meet the Canada Council’s definition of a professional artist, which is an artist who:

  • has specialized training in the artistic field (not necessarily in academic institutions)
  • is recognized as a professional by his or her peers (artists working in the same artistic tradition), and
  • is committed to devoting more time to artistic activity, if possible financially.

To meet the definition of a professional creative writer, you must also have:

  • at least one literary book published by a professional publishing house, or
  • for fiction, a minimum of four texts of creative literary writing (e.g. short stories, excerpts from a novel) published on two separate occasions in literary magazines, recognized periodicals (including general interest magazines), or anthologies published by professional publishing houses, or
  • for poetry, a minimum of 10 published poems is required, or
  • for literary non-fiction, a minimum of 40 pages (10,000 words) of literary articles published in literary magazines, recognized periodicals or anthologies published by professional publishing houses.

Further Information

Suzanne Keeptwo
Program Officer
Writing and Publishing Section

1-800-263-5588 (toll free) or 613-566-4414  ext. 5482

TTY: 1-866-585-5559