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Writing for Children Competition

Writing for Children Competition 

Registration for 2023 Writing for Children Competition |  Deadline for entries May 31, 2023 

CANSCAIP’s annual Writing for Children Competition is now open for entries! Canada’s largest competition for children’s writers welcomes submissions from unpublished and self-published writers. The deadline for entries is May 31.

Your Competition entry could win a $500 cash prize, awarded to the winning Middle Grade and Young Adult entries, and to two winning Picture Book entries. Two finalists in each category will also be selected. CANSCAIP sends the finalist and winner entries to Annick Press, Kids Can Press and Scholastic Canada for their consideration. 

Entries can be up to 1,500 words. Every entry gets a written evaluation by a traditionally published CANSCAIP Member volunteer. Entries advancing to the second round get another evaluation, and entries on the shortlist get evaluations by each jury member.  

We can’t wait to read your story!

Information on eligibility, how to submit and schedules is below. Submission guidelines can be found here.

NEW for 2023:  The identities of the writers will not be provided to the Competition's readers.  To ensure anonymity DO NOT include your name or any identifying information on your entry document.

The Writers' Union of Canada initiated the Writing for Children Competition in 1996, and since 2014 CANSCAIP has administrated the Competition annually. 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 fee? Join before you register.

How to Register
and Submit Your Entry

Complete the online registration form and pay the entry fee.

Using the link emailed to you after registration, submit your entry and upload your document.  You can do this any time before the May 31 deadline.

For more details, see Submission Guidelines.

Schedule for Entries

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 select evaluate the winners and finalists.

OCTOBER: Winners and finalists announced.

NOVEMBER:  All the evaluations for their entries are emailed to everyone who entered.

Eligible Writers

Canadian citizens or permanent residents over the age of 18.

Unpublished writers with no traditionally published books for any age, and not currently under contract with a publisher. Self-published authors are eligible.

Writers are eligible if prior publication is limited to stories, articles or poems in collections, anthologies, textbooks, magazines, etc.

For details, 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 unpublished, not represented by an agent, and not under contract.

Picture Book: submit complete text up to 1,500 words

Middle Grade or Young Adult: submit first chapter plus additional chapters/excerpts up to 1,500 words

Submit text only with no illustrations

Word or PDF document in 11-point or 12-point font, double spaced

Previously submitted entries can be resubmitted

For details, see Submission Guidelines.

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Phone: 1-416-515-1559

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