Book Publishing Support: Block Grants



No deadline in 2016


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

Please refer to the complete Program Guidelines [PDF, 195.2 KB].

Program Description

As part of fulfilling its mandate to foster the production and enjoyment of the arts in Canada, the Canada Council for the Arts provides grants to Canadian publishers to offset the costs of publishing Canadian trade books that make a significant contribution to the development of Canadian literature. This assistance is made available through Emerging Publisher Grants (for emerging publishers) and Block Grants (for established publishers).

Book publishers receiving Block Grants are also eligible to apply for Translation Grants, Author Promotion Tour assistance and grants for the publication of art books.


Activities normally funded through this program will be eligible in the New Funding Model, starting 1 April, 2017. Learn more ...

Grant Amount

Grant amounts are based upon the production in previous years, and are awarded to offset future expenses for the publication of eligible titles.

Bonus points are awarded by the peer assessment committee, based on a comparative evaluation of each applicant’s publishing program according to the Block Grant program criteria.


Eligibility of Publishers

Please note that meeting the eligibility criteria does not guarantee that you will receive a grant.

Block Grants provide grants to established professional book publishers with an ongoing publishing program that includes at least 16 eligible titles (see Eligibility of Titles.)

To be eligible for Block Grants, a publishing company must:

  • have its head office in Canada, maintain editorial control in Canada and be at least 75% Canadian-owned
  • maintain full control over editorial processes, have editorial independence from any other company receiving Book Publishing Support from the Canada Council for the Arts, and produce separate financial statements
  • have book publishing as its primary, rather than a peripheral or occasional, activity
  • have at least 16 eligible titles in print and be committed to a sustained trade book publishing program, consisting of titles by a variety of authors
  • have published at least four eligible titles between 1 December 2014 and 30 November 2015. Of these four titles, three must be first editions and one can be a new format reprint.
  • use appropriate and effective means to market, distribute and create public awareness of its publications
  • issue clear royalty statements on a regular basis and have fulfilled all contractual obligations to writers, illustrators, translators and other copyright licensors; no grants will be issued to publishers that owe payments to writers, illustrators, translators and/or other copyright licensors as of the application deadline.
To apply to this component, publishers must have been successful in their last application for an Emerging Publisher Grant.

Eligibility of Titles

You must submit only eligible titles with your application. To be eligible, a title must:

  • contain at least 50% Canadian-authored creative content¾text or graphic
  • have at least 48 printed pages between the covers (with the exception of children’s books, which must contain at least 24 printed pages)
  • have a print run of at least 350 copies (print-on-demand titles are eligible if you can demonstrate that 350 copies have been printed)
  • be published principally in English, French or one of Canada’s Aboriginal languages
  • acknowledge the support of the Canada Council for the Arts, if produced by a publisher receiving Book Publishing Support.

Because the Canada Council’s mandate includes supporting production in the literary arts, and the study of literature and the arts, only titles in the following categories are eligible:

  • fiction
  • poetry
  • drama
  • graphic novels (minimum 48 pages)
  • publications for children and young adults, except those in ineligible categories
  • literary non-fiction.

The Canada Council defines literary non-fiction as narrative text about real events, people or ideas, where the writer’s voice and opinion are evident and the narrative is set within a context and a critical framework. The work should be accessible to a general reading audience and cannot be intended for a specialized or academic readership. Eligible literary non-fiction titles make a significant contribution to literature, or to information about the arts or to the enjoyment of writing by Canadians. Titles within the following subjects are eligible, if they meet all other eligibility criteria: art, architecture, biography, history, literary criticism, nature, philosophy, politics, reference, social sciences, sports and travel.

Audio productions are eligible if they have been previously released as books and if they are professionally produced, by eligible publishers, on CD or DVD.

If you wish to obtain a preliminary assessment of a title’s eligibility, send a written request to the program officer. You must request assessments of title eligibility on or before 15 October.

Further Information

Catherine Montgomery
Program Officer
Writing and Publishing Section

1-800-263-5588 (toll-free) or 613-566-4414, ext. 5574

TTY: 1-866-585-5559