Federal Supports

Writers are eligible for funding through a variety of programs available through the Canada Council. The Canadian government offers a number of funding options to assist publishers with their publishing programs.

Writers grants

Canada Council *Please note that these grants are for professional writers.

Writers are eligible for funding through a variety of programs available through the Canada Council. For more information visit canadacouncil.ca/funding/grants.

Public Landing Right
The Canada Council distributes annual payments to Canadian authors through the Public Lending Right (PLR) Program as compensation for the free public access to their books through Canadian public libraries. The registration period is open from February 15 through May 1 each year. Visit publiclendingright.ca for more information.

Publishing Grants and Funding

The Canadian government offers a number of funding options to assist publishers with their publishing programs. Funding is available at both the federal and provincial level, and eligibility varies based on the types of grants and funding organizations. For more information on provincial grants and funding, please visit your provincial government’s website.

For more information on federal funding, please see the list below.

Department of Canadian Heritage

Funding program: Canada Book Fund

The Canada Book Fund (CBF) ensures access to a diverse range of Canadian-authored books nationally and internationally, by fostering a strong book industry that publishes and markets Canadian-authored books.

The CBF’s Support for Publishers stream has two components: Business Development and Publishing Support.

For more information, visit: www.canada.ca/en/canadian-heritage/services/funding/book-fund.html

Canada Council for the Arts

Publishers of literary works are eligible for funding support through a range of programs offered by the Canada Council for the Arts.

For more information, visit: canadacouncil.ca/funding/grants

Education

Interested in pursuing a career in the publishing industry? Nearly all new employees who enter the book publishing industry have completed a publishing program.

Interested in pursuing a career in the publishing industry? Nearly all new employees who enter the book publishing industry have completed a publishing program.

Simon Fraser University – Summer Publishing Workshops
The SFU Summer Publishing Workshops offer participants the chance to learn from and work with some of North America’s top publishing professionals. Each July and August, participants and faculty gather at SFU Harbour Centre in downtown Vancouver for immersion and seminar workshops in books, magazines, editing, design, and new media.

sfu.ca/pubworks

Simon Fraser University – Master of Publishing Program
Founded in 1987, Simon Fraser University’s Canadian Centre for Studies in Publishing (CCSP) is a university/industry initiative dedicated to the development of publishing in Canada and internationally. Our special focus is on books, magazines and electronic media.

ccsp.sfu.ca/education/master-of-publishing

Centennial College – Book, Magazine and Electronic Publishing Certificate
The Book, Magazine and Electronic Publishing Program at Centennial College is one of the oldest and most prestigious programs of its kind in Canada. Established in 1974, the program has won awards and accolades for academic excellence and for the career success of its graduates. This unique post-graduate program specializes in practical, hands-on studies and prepares you for a wide variety of jobs in the exciting world of book, magazine and electronic publishing.

thecentre.centennialcollege.ca/publishing/

Ryerson University – Publishing Certificate
This program teaches the skills necessary to publish books successfully. The program will be of interest to:

  • Those who want to enter the publishing industry.
  • Those who are employed in the publishing industry or in areas where publishing skills are required.
  • Those who are working as freelancers in publishing-related fields.
  • Those who wish to upgrade their credentials with a view to career change.

ryerson.ca/ce/publishing

Humber College – Creative Book Publishing Graduate Certificate
Combining creativity and entrepreneurship, this graduate certificate program is an opportunity for students interested in book publishing and book-related enterprise. This intense concentration on books provides students with foundational knowledge in business models, acquisitions, contracts, copyright, technology, operations and content management. Students also choose three of four specializations: editorial, marketing, literary agenting/rights management, or advanced technology.

creativearts.humber.ca/programs/creative-book-publishing

Establish Your Credibility

You must prove your ability to a prospective publisher: are you an expert on the subject at hand? Do you have writing experience? Do you write regularly as a part of your job? Do you have any previous writing experience? Have you had work published in the past or taken a writing course?

You must prove your ability to a prospective publisher: are you an expert on the subject at hand? Do you have writing experience? Do you write regularly as a part of your job? Do you have any previous writing experience? Have you had work published in the past or taken a writing course?

If you have little or no writing experience, it is a good idea to start by taking a writing course. Aside from providing useful feedback, instructors (who are usually writers themselves) often have experience in the publishing industry. They may not get you in the door of a publisher’s office, but they can point you in the right direction.

You can gain invaluable experience and recognition by having your writing published by a magazine, newspaper, literary journal, or even a newsletter. A published story or article will give you credibility, and allow you to gauge the interest in your ideas and style. Literary journals are especially good for burgeoning fiction writers or poets. Visit Magazines Canada’s website at magazinescanada.ca for a list.

Another good way to learn the value of your work is to take advantage of the manuscript evaluation service provided by the Writers’ Union of Canada. Visit their website at writersunion.ca for more information.

Literary Agents

Literary agents represent authors to publishers. They negotiate contract details and provide representation if any part of the book is illegally reproduced.

Literary agents represent authors to publishers. They negotiate contract details and provide representation if any part of the book is illegally reproduced.

Literary agents are selective about who they will represent, and it is usually helpful for an author to be referred by people who work in or are familiar with the publishing industry. Typically, agents only accept a few new clients each year. **Please note that as the ACP does not publish books or represents authors, we are unable to refer any prospective writers to literary agents.**

Please see the listings below for contact information for several literary agents/agencies in Canada.

British Columbia

 

Carolyn Swayze Literary Agency

Carolyn Swayze, Principal Agent
D.Barry Jones, Associate Agent
Kris Rothstein, Associate Agent
swayzeagency.com


Interests: Literary and commercial adult fiction, booklength non-fiction (including biography, history, science writing, travel, humour and cookbooks), young adult novels. No science fiction, fantasy, romance, poetry, or screenplays.
Submission Guidelines: Not accepting unsolicited submissions.


Integral Artists Inc.

196 West 3rd Ave., #102
Vancouver, BC, V5Y 1E9
Tel: (604) 620-6001
[email protected]
integralartists.com

Submission guidelines: Query prior to submitting manuscripts.


Seventh Avenue Literary Agency Inc.


2052 – 124th Street
South Surrey, BC V4A 9K3
(604) 538-7252 (Tel)
Robert Mackwood, Director
[email protected]
seventhavenuelit.com

Interests: Non-fiction


Lucas Talent Inc.

#6 1238 Homer Street
Vancouver, BC V6B 2Y5
Tel: (604) 685-0345
[email protected]
lucastalent.com

Ontario

 

Rick Broadhead & Associates

47 St. Clair Avenue West, Suite #501
Toronto, Ontario M4V 3A5
Tel: (416) 929-0516
Rick Broadhead, President
[email protected]
rbaliterary.com

Interests: Non fiction, including history, politics, business, natural history/environment, national security/intelligence, current affairs, biography, science, pop culture, pop science, relationships, self-help, health, medicine, military history, and humor.


The Bukowski Agency

14 Prince Arthur Avenue, Suite 202
Toronto, ON M5R 1A9
Tel: (416) 928-6728
[email protected]
bukowskiagency.com

Interests: Non-fiction as well as commercial fiction and non-fiction.


CookeMcDermid Literary Management

320 Front Street West, Suite 1105
Toronto, ON M5V 3B6
Tel: (647) 788-4010
[email protected]
cookemcdermid.com

Interests: literary and commercial fiction (including science fiction, fantasy and crime); narrative-driven nonfiction (specifically in the areas of health and well-being, popular culture, science, history, politics, natural history and personal reference); mind/body/spirit resources; and middle-grade and young adult books.


Arnold Gosewich, Literary Agent and Book Publishing Consultant

278 Bloor St E St 506
Toronto, Ontario, M4W3M4
(416) 925-7836 (Tel)
[email protected]
arnoldgbooks.com

Interests: Non-fiction in all adult categories, young adult novels.


Helen Heller Agency

4-216 Heath Street West
Toronto, Ontario M5P 1N7
Tel: (416) 489-0396
[email protected]
helenhelleragency.com

Interests: Adult fiction and non-fiction (excluding children’s literature, screenplays, or genre fiction).


i2i Art Inc.

20 Maud Street, Suite 202
Toronto, ON M5V 2M5
(416) 505-9522 (Tel)
[email protected]
i2iart.com

Interests: Representation for illustrators working for the publishing industry.


Kelly Consulting Agency

159 Oakcrest Ave.
Toronto ON M4C1B8
Tel: (416) 303-1247
[email protected]
www.kellyconsultingagency.com

Interests: Adult and children’s nonfiction; current affairs, social responsibilities, justice, health, wealth, wisdom, environmental issues, humour, biography, pop culture, relationships, and spirituality.


Bella Pomer Agency Inc.

355 St. Clair Avenue West, Suite 801
Toronto, Canada M5P 1N5
[email protected]
bellapomeragency.com


The Rights Factory 

Box 499, Stn C
Toronto, ON M6J 3P6
therightsfactory.com


Beverly Slopen Literary Agency

131 Bloor Street West, Suite 711
Toronto, ON M5S 1S3
Tel: (416) 964-9598
[email protected]
slopenagency.ca

Interests: Fiction and non-fiction. Tends not to handle illustrated or children’s manuscripts or genre fiction (fantasy, horror, romance). No poetry.


Transatlantic Literary Agency (TLA)

2 Bloor Street East, Suite 3500,
Toronto Ontario Canada M4W 1A8
Tel: (416) 488-9214
[email protected]
transatlanticagency.com

Interests: Children’s literature and adult literature.


Westwood Creative Artists Ltd.

138 Sussex Mews
Toronto, ON M5S 2K1
Tel: (416) 964-3302
[email protected]
wcaltd.com

Carolyn Forde, Literary Agent and International Rights Director
Jackie Kaiser, Literary Agent, President and COO
Michael Levine, Film & TV Agent, Chairman
Hilary McMahon, Literary Agent, Executive Vice President
John Pearce, Literary Agent
Bruce Westwood, Literary Agent, Founder, Managing Director and CEO

Interests: Representation for fiction, non-fiction, film and TV. No unsolicited manuscripts.


P.S. Literary Agency

2010 Winston Park Drive, 2nd Floor
Oakville, Ontario
L6H 5R7
Tel: 416-907-8325

General questions: [email protected]
Queries: [email protected]
psliterary.com

Interests: Fiction and Non-fiction


Willenfield Literary Agency

207 Bank Street, Suite 457
Ottawa, ON K2P 2N2
Tel: (613) 518-2855

[email protected]
www.willenfield.com

Interests: Literary fiction (novels and full-length short story collections) and literary/creative nonfiction (including literary memoirs, book-length essays and essay collections, social or cultural criticism, literary journalism, nature and environment writing, travel writing, and food narratives).

Guidelines: Query first. No unsolicited manuscripts or book proposals.

Quebec

 

Robert Lecker Agency Inc. 


4055 Melrose Avenue
Montreal, QC H4A 2S5
(514) 830-4818(Tel)
[email protected]
leckeragency.com


Agence Littéraire Laëns


128, Richelieu Suite 2
Québec (Qc) G1R 1J5
[email protected]
agencelitterairelaens.com

Interests : Fiction and non-fiction. No theatre, no poetry

Prince Edward Island

 

Radici Translation and Wordcraft Ltd.Dr.

Giulia De Gasperi, CEO

71 Granville Street
Summerside PE C1N 2Z4
(902) 954-1433 (Tel)
giuliaradici.ca
radici.ca

Translation and Wordcraft specializes in translation proposals of Canadian and Italian literary works.
They work closely with individual authors and publishers and  collaborate with other literary agencies to bring the best of Canadian and Italian works to Italy and Canada, respectively.

Interests: Every genre is considered. Query before submitting.

Copyrights & Contracts

Writers protect their work by reading and understanding the Canadian Copyright laws. Understanding how contracts are drawn and how rights are determined is also a very important part of this journey.

Writers protect their work by reading and understanding the Canadian Copyright laws. Understanding how contracts are drawn and how rights are determined is also a very important part of this journey.

The Canadian Intellectual Property Office offers a useful beginner guide to copyright, free of charge. Visit their website at cipo.gc.ca. 

International Standard Book Number (ISBN)

Canadian ISBN Agency
Library and Archives Canada
395 Wellington Street
Ottawa, ON K1A 0N4
(819) 994-6872 (Tel)
(613) 995-6274 (Fax)
bac.isbn.lac@canada.ca
www.bac-lac.gc.ca/eng/services/isbn-canada

Please visit the above link to learn more about ISBN numbers and how you can apply for them. Briefly, an ISBN (or International Standard Book Number) is a 13-digit identifying number used on all published materials, including print books, ebooks, pamphlets, CD-ROM and braille publications. Specific ISBN numbers are assigned to each publisher, thus allowing their titles to be recognized quickly and easily.

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

ISSN Canada
Library and Archives Canada
395 Wellington Street
Ottawa, ON K1A 0N4
(819) 994-6895 (Tel)
(613) 613-995-6274 (Fax)
[email protected]
www.bac-lac.gc.ca/eng/services/issn-canada

ISSNs (or International Standard Serial Numbers) function in a similar way to ISBNs, except they are assigned to serials and periodicals rather than books (such as newspapers, annuals, and journals). More information, and an application form, may be found at the above link.

Barcodes

Once you have your ISBN number, you’ll need a barcode for your book cover. You may obtain your barcode by two different methods: either by purchasing special software to create the barcode yourself, or by paying to have the barcode created for you. Barcode software or services may be purchased from a variety of sources, and many businesses will offer both software and service.

Proposals/Letters of Inquiry

It is best to send a publisher a proposal or letter of inquiry instead of the entire manuscript since few publishers accept unsolicited manuscripts.

It is best to send a publisher a proposal or letter of inquiry instead of the entire manuscript since few publishers accept unsolicited manuscripts.

Be sure to review a publisher’s submission guidelines before sending a proposal or query. These guidelines are typically found on publishers’ websites.

Book Proposal Guidelines

The most important aspect of a manuscript submission to publishers is the book proposal. The author needs to prepare a carefully detailed and compelling proposal to convince a publisher that his or her book is worth publishing. The proposal is extremely valuable in negotiating a good sale by allowing publishers to evaluate the project quickly and to determine their ability to market the book successfully.

Your proposal represents the promise of your book; it must be distinctive and engaging so that the editor becomes enthusiastic about signing your project. The difference between a good proposal and an excellent one can determine whether you receive an offer—and can make the difference between a modest advance and a large one.

Every book is unique, but almost every proposal contains the elements listed below:

About the Book

Give a brief (three to five pages) overview and introduction to your project. Think of this section as the information that would be used in the jacket copy, book synopsis and market survey.

Describe the reasons you were inspired to write the book and what makes it valuable. Make sure to explain what makes your book different from other, similar books and mention any special features or approaches you offer.

Give a two or three paragraph synopsis of the contents, illustrating in detail the logic your book follows to satisfy its premise.

Explain why you as an author are uniquely qualified to write this book. Include relevant experience and credentials, as well as any supporting professional expertise or publishing credits.

Market & Competition

Who is the audience for your book, and why do they need to buy your book? Provide demographic data that reinforces your hypothesis.

Address the competition. List each title that would be in direct competition with your book, along with the author, publisher, and year of publication. Explain why your book would be better, or how it fills a vacant niche in the market.

Chapter Outline

Provide a brief chapter-by-chapter outline of the book. Try to convey both the content and tone of each chapter succinctly. Where possible, use quotations, anecdotes and examples to describe your chapters.

Sample Chapter

Include one or two sample chapters, preferably not the introduction or first chapter, to give the publisher an idea of your writing style and the actual content of the book.

Publishing Details

Describe the physical form you plan for your book. Be sure to include:

  • proposed book length, measured in words;
  • state how many, and what sort of, photographs and/or illustrations will be used;
  • list any special considerations for book size, format, design or layout;
  • estimate how much time you will need to deliver the completed manuscript.

 

About the Author

Provide a detailed biography of yourself. Stress your background experience in your field and credentials relevant to your book. If you have an established audience through social media, a blog, or other online platforms, let the publisher know. If applicable, attach a copy of your resume or curriculum vitae.

Know Your Market

Sending your manuscript to the right publisher is extremely important. Valuable time – both yours and the publisher’s – can be wasted by sending manuscripts to publishers who are not publishing in your genre.

Sending your manuscript to the right publisher is extremely important. Valuable time—both yours and the publisher’s—can be wasted by sending manuscripts to publishers who are not publishing in your genre.

Do some research! Determine which publisher is best suited for your manuscript and which publishers are publishing material that is similar to yours by visiting bookstores or your public library. Bookstore shelves offer a wealth of information, including the titles your book would be competing against, how popular your genre is, and which publishers are involved in the market. Similar information can usually be found online – visit publishers’ websites and online bookstores. Browse around. Take your time. It is probably the most important aspect of the entire process.

If you write fiction or poetry, literary journals and magazines are a good way to explore the fiction and poetry that is currently being published.