What We Do

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Crime Writers of Canada (CWC) is a national non-profit organization for Canadian mystery and crime writers, associated professionals, and others with a serious interest in Canadian crime writing. Our mission is to promote Canadian crime writing and to raise the profile of Canadian crime writers with readers, reviewers, librarians, booksellers, and media.

We promote our members’ work within Canada, and beyond, in many ways

The CWC Websitethis receives an average of 5000 visitors per month, and is the online portal for Canadian crime fiction; it presents a unique promotional opportunity for our members. The public uses the website to access the following: member Bio pages; a calendar of events featuring our members, day-by-day, across Canada and around the world; a unique searchable database of our members’ works (by author, title, year, category or region); Cool Canadian Crime – our digital catalogue of our members’ works, updated quarterly. Our Homepage features the cover art of new releases by our members on our moving “scroll of honour”, updated monthly.

Cool Canadian Crime:  this is the digital catalogue produced by CWC for use by readers, libraries and bookstores across Canada, and around the world. It’s the best single source of information about Canadian crime books and novella. Our members provide information about their works to us, and we make that information available to the world.

Crime Beat: CWC’s monthly public e-newsletter is sent to an impressive mailing list of almost 2000 people across Canada and around the world. Crime Beat contains the following: notifications of new releases by our members; events being held across the nation, and around the world, featuring our members; the entire, up-to-date version of the Cool Canadian Crime catalogue.

Participation in Regional, National & International Eventsincluding, but not only, Word on the Street (various cities across Canada), WORD Vancouver, Ontario Libraries Association Conference, Left Coast Crime, and Bouchercon, where our members can benefit from being part of a larger, recognizable group.

CWC organizes and sponsors The Arthur Ellis Awards for excellence in Canadian crime writing

The Arthur Ellis Awardscelebrating the best in Canadian crime fiction with a juried annual competition, these awards have acknowledged distinction in Canadian crime writing since 1984. They draw readers’ and critics’ attention to excellent works. Judges are drawn from a pool of award-winning writers, reviewers, booksellers, librarians, and academics across Canada. Finalists, as well as winners, recognize their exceptional promotional value.

Arthur Ellis Award Shortlist Eventsthese are organized by CWC and are held across Canada in various venues in April each year to announce the works shortlisted for the Arthur Ellis Awards. They feature panels, discussions or readings, and offer our members the chance to meet and mingle with each other, as well as readers and members of the public.

Arthur Ellis Awards Banquetthe annual gala event held in Toronto at the end of each May at which the winners of the Arthur Ellis Awards are announced. The Grand Master Award or the Derrick Murdoch Award (each is a biennial award) is also presented. This prestigious banquet is open to all, and is usually attended by publishers, reviewers, authors, and the press.

The Unhanged Arthur Award:there is an annual competition to discover the best crime manuscript by an unpublished writer – we want to support tomorrow’s authors, as well as today’s.

For more information about the Arthur Ellis Awards click here.

We promote professional connection and development for our members in various ways

Regional Representatives: each region nominates a director from the Board who becomes the main point of contact for members in that region. Regional Representatives (RRs) are there to support members in whatever way they can; many give advice on setting up local events, and are able to pass on their experience in many ways.

Crime Time members’ newsletter:  We have an informative monthly newsletter for members; it contains articles and information relevant to crime writers in Canada, and around the world. Members contribute to the newsletter, sharing their experience and experiences.

“Members Only” area of website:  this private area of our website offers the following services just for members: an archive of Member Marketing Memos to help members understand how to better market their work, including a reviewer directory; a private online discussion forum where members can connect; access to CWC archives containing past members’ newsletters, Board minutes, AGM documents, bylaws, etc; direct access allowing members to upload their events into the events calendar; direct access allowing members to create and update their Bio pages; direct access allowing members to upload information about their new releases into our Cool Canadian Crime catalogue; database where those members who wish to do so share their email contact details so members can connect with each other.