Deadlines for Submissions: March 15 for both English & French, June 1 for English only, July 15 for French only, August 7 for English only
Prize Amounts: $1,000 to $25,000
For the winners and finalists, the awards bring valuable recognition from peers and readers across the country.
For the Canada Council for the Arts, which administers, funds and promotes the awards, they are an opportunity to promote Canadian literature and to invite people of all ages and backgrounds to read great books!
What is this prize?
The Governor General’s Literary Awards are presented in recognition of the best Anglophone and best Francophone book in each of seven categories: Fiction, Literary Non-fiction, Poetry, Drama, Young People’s Literature (Text), Young People’s Literature (Illustrated Books) and Translation (from French to English and vice versa).
- 14 awards of $25,000 per book for recipients in both languages in the seven disciplines and $3,000 to each publisher to promote the winning works
- $1,000 per book for the finalists
How to qualify
Nominations must be submitted to the Council by a publisher.
A peer assessment committee will select the winning books in each of the categories from all nominations received.
For eligibility criteria, the nomination form and further information on these prizes, refer to the Governor General’s Literary Awards Guidelines and visit the Governor General’s Literary Awards website.
- 15 March: for both English and French
- 1 June: for English only
- 7 July: for French only
- 1 August: for English only
Who created this prize?
In 1936, His Excellency the Right Honourable John Buchan, Lord Tweedsmuir, was approached by members of the Canadian Authors Association to establish a system of literary prizes. He agreed to lend the name of his office in order to stimulate writers and encourage a deeper interest in their work among the general public. As a result of these talks, the Governor General’s Literary Prizes were created. In 1959, the Canada Council for the Arts assumed responsibility for the prizes and added prizes for works written in French. In 1987, three categories were added: children’s text, children’s illustration and translation.
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