Copyright is a property right that arises initially from authorship alone. In Canada, formal registration is not required. An author has copyright in any original literary work, whether or not it is published, except in some cases where the author has been employed to write the work. Copyright in a work remains with the author or their heirs for the life of the author plus fifty years, unless copyright is assigned (by sale or gift) to someone else. Do not assign copyright to your publisher.

To register copyright in Canada and for more information:

Canadian Intellectual Copyright Office (CIPO)
Place du Portage I
50 Victoria Street, room C-114
Gatineau, QC K1A 0C9

To register copyright in the United States and for more information:

Library of Congress
Copyright Office
101 Independence Avenue, SE
Washington, DC 20559-6000