The Writers’ Union of Canada provides valuable programs, services, advocacy, and support to writers. With over 2,600 members, The Writers' Union of Canada (TWUC) is a national organization representing professionally published writers of all genres. The world has changed radically since TWUC was founded in 1973, but what remains the same — and what keeps TWUC vital — is the need for community and a strong collective voice to speak up for writers' interests.
Start your application

We understand both the difficulties and the joys of being a writer — from the isolation, frustration, financial concerns, and the need for information and assistance to the elation that comes with each publication.

Benefits of Membership

By joining the Union, you can benefit from the Union's many program and services:

  • Opportunities to meet and network with other professional writers across Canada, including through regional meetings, professional development sessions, social events, and the Annual General Meeting
  • Assistance with publishing contracts and grievances 
  • Access to TWUC webinars
  • Access to the Writers’ How-to Series, including the Directory of Canadian Publishers, the Contracts Self-Help Package, and professional development publications
  • Be paid to mentor, or be mentored by, another writer through the Union’s Mentorship Microgrants
  • Access to paid readings programs, which fund writers for public readings and school presentations
  • Subscription to Write, the Union’s quarterly magazine on the craft and business of writing in Canada
  • Regular updates on the work of the Union through our e-newsletters
  • Eligibility to be a paid evaluator for our Manuscript Evaluation Service
  • Access to exclusive resources provided by the Alliance of Independent Authors (ALLi)
  • A member profile page on TWUC’s website where you can promote yourself and your work
  • Access to a group health benefits plan, for an additional fee, which includes a drug plan, hospital coverage, out-of-hospital benefits, vision care, hearing benefits, dental care, and specialists’ services. (To be eligible, members must be under 71 years of age, have a valid Provincial Health Card, and live in Canada at the time coverage becomes effective.)

Get Write Magazine for Free

Membership in the Union includes a subscription to the Union’s quarterly magazine, which provides news and views from writers' perspectives. It is filled with professional information, developments in the literary community, industry news, timely features, and valuable industry services.
Take a look at recent issues of Write

Support the Union's Advocacy

When you join The Writers’ Union of Canada, your annual dues help us work on behalf of all writers to advocate for fair legislation to support writers and their work, and to ensure that writers receive fair financial compensation.
Learn more about our Advocacy initiatives

Become a Member

Ready to join the Union and benefit from our programs and services? Applicants who have published a full-length book through a commercial or university press should complete the Simplified Application. All other applicants should complete the Extended Application, which awards points in a variety of categories.

Eligibility

There are two pathways to membership:

  1. Applicants who have published* a full-length book through a commercial or university press** should complete the Simplified Application.
  2. All other applicants will complete the Extended Application, which determines eligibility using a points system that recognizes professional publication in a variety of formats and commitment to craft. You can see the points system here.

Members must be Canadian citizens or permanent residents of Canada, and/or self-identify as an Indigenous (First Nations, Inuit, Métis) person born or resident in Canada.

Not yet eligible? The Union offers lots of information on getting published.

*The book must have reached its publication date when applying. For books that are forthcoming, applicants may complete the Extended Application instead, which awards 4 points for a contract offer.

**A book is considered traditionally published if the author has signed a royalty-paying contract with the publisher, did not pay any costs towards the book's production, and was not obligated to purchase a certain number of books as part of the author agreement. In all other cases, the book is considered self-published.

Application Process

Every application must pass before the Union’s membership committee for approval. This process usually takes 2–4 weeks for Simplified Applications and 6–10 weeks for Extended Applications (though it may take longer in some cases). A delayed response from TWUC does not in any way reflect the quality of your application.

Rejoining the Union?

Former members wishing to rejoin do not need to reapply. You can rejoin the Union by contacting the Union at info@writersunion.ca.

Cost

Did you know that membership dues can be claimed as a tax-deductible business expense?

For new members, the Union offers a special rate of
$100 for 1st year
After the first year, annual dues going forward will be
$205 per year

The Union also offers the following voluntary discounted membership rates:

Annual dues for members over the age of 80:
$155 per year
Annual dues for Indigenous (First Nations, Inuit, and Métis) members:
$50 per year

We look forward to receiving your application.