1. Funding
  2. Prizes
  3. Governor General's Literary Awards

Governor General’s Literary Awards

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The Canada Council for the Arts celebrates the best in literature from Canada: its Governor General’s Literary Awards recognize finalists and winners in seven categories, in both official languages, for readers of all ages.

Visit ggbooks.ca to discover the best books!


The Awards

The Governor General's Literary Awards recognize Canada's best English- and French-language books in each of the following seven categories: Fiction, Non-fiction, Poetry, Drama, Young People’s Literature – Text, Young People’s Literature – Illustrated Books and Translation (from French to English and vice versa).


The books must be submitted to the Canada Council by an eligible publisher.

To know the eligibility criteria or get more information about the awards, see the guidelines.

Prize amounts

Winning books: 14 prizes of $25,000 and a $3,000 grant to each publisher

Finalists: $1,000 per book


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 Awards were created. In 1959, the Canada Council for the Arts assumed responsibility for them and added prizes for works written in French. In 1987, three categories were added: Translation and the two children’s literature categories (text and illustration), which are now known as Young People’s Literature – Text and Young People’s Literature – Illustrated Books.

Additional information


1 800 263-5588 (toll-free) or 613-566-4414 ext. 4068


July 15, 2024

Annual competition

$1,000 -


Cumulative list of winners

The Canada Council is committed to equity in all its activities, including the administration of prizes and awards.


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The Canada Council for the Arts can also receive calls from a video relay service (VRS). For more information, visit the VRS Canada website.