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Writing for Children Competition

Writing for Children Competition 

Registration opens March 15, 2024
Deadline for entries May 31, 2024 

CANSCAIP’s annual Writing for Children Competition is Canada’s largest competition for unpublished children’s writers. Registration for the Competition opens on March 15, and the deadline for entries is May 31.

Four $500 cash prizes will be awarded to the winning Middle Grade and Young Adult entries, and to the top two Picture Book entries. Two finalists in each category will also be selected. The winners and finalists will be given time to revise their entries before CANSCAIP submits them to Annick Press, Kids Can Press and Scholastic Canada for evaluations. 

Every entry receives a written evaluation from a traditionally published CANSCAIP Member volunteer reader. Entries advancing to the second round receive another evaluation, and entries on the shortlist receive evaluations from each jury member.  

We can’t wait to read your story!

Information on eligibility, how to submit, and schedules are below.  Complete submission guidelines can be found here.

The Writers' Union of Canada initiated the Writing for Children Competition in 1996, and CANSCAIP has administered the Competition annually since 2014 The goal of the Competition is to discover, encourage, and promote emerging writers of children's literature in Canada.  

Entry Fees

CANSCAIP Friends: $30 one entry, $50 two entries, $75 three entries. 

Non-members: $40 one entry, $70 two entries, $90 three entries. 

Want to become a Friend to get the lower entry fee? Join before you register.

How to Register
and Submit Your Entry

Complete the online registration form and pay the entry fee.

After registration, you'll receive a confirmation email that includes a link to submit your entry and upload your document(s). You'll need the invoice number from this email to upload your entry file(s).

You can register and submit your entry/entries any time up to the May 31 deadline.

For complete information, see Submission Guidelines.


MARCH to MAY: Writing for Children Competition open for submissions. Entry deadline midnight May 31.

JUNE: First round readers evaluate  entries and select those that advance to the second round.

JULY: Second round readers evaluate the entries that advanced, and select the longlist.

AUGUST: Longlist announced. Readers evaluate the longlist and select the shortlist.

SEPTEMBER: Shortlist announced.  Juries evaluate the shortlist and select winners and finalists.

OCTOBER: Winners and finalists announced.

NOVEMBER:  Evaluations for entries emailed to everyone who entered.

Eligible Writers

Canadian citizens or permanent residents over the age of 18.

Unpublished or self-published writers with no traditionally published books for any age, and not currently under contract with a traditional publisher. 

Writers are eligible if prior publication is limited to articles or other content in collections or anthologies, textbooks, magazines or newspapers, legal or academic publications, etc.

Writers retain full copyright of their entries.

For complete information, see Submission Guidelines.

Categories for Entries

Picture Book (PB)

Middle Grade (MG)

Young Adult (YA)

Fiction or non-fiction entries are eligible in all categories.

For details, see Book Categories.

Eligible Entries

Entries must be in English and can be fiction or nonfiction.

Picture Book: submit complete story up to 1,000 words

Middle Grade or Young Adult: submit first 1,500 words

Text only;  no illustrations

Previously submitted entries may be resubmitted

For complete information, see Submission Guidelines.

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Phone: 1-416-515-1559

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