Self-Published Book Awards

We frequently receive inquiries from self-published writers looking for awards for which they are eligible. This list provides a brief overview of each award and is intended as a preliminary guide to awards that accept self-published books by Canadian writers. The Writers’ Union of Canada does not endorse any of the awards on this list. Always visit award websites for full information, including eligibility, entry fees, and deadlines.

Please note:

  • Deadlines below are based on 2016/2017 information and may change year to year.
  • Almost all prizes listed here require English-language books within a specific publication date range (usually within five years).
  • Many awards accept entry fees in U.S. dollars.

Have we missed an award that should be on this list? Have you had any difficulties with any of these awards? Please email us with the details so we can keep this list up to date. 

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CANADIAN AWARDS


Canadian Authors General Literary Awards
Topic: fiction, literary non-fiction, crime fiction
Eligibility: Canadian citizens or permanent residents of Canada; book must be available for purchase in physical form
Deadline: end of January
Entry Fee: $40
Prize(s): $1,000
Website: http://canadianauthors.org/national/awards/submit-for-an-award/

Whistler Independent Book Awards
Topic: fiction, Canadian, history, poetry (one award in each)
Eligibility: English-language; Canadian author or permanent resident
Deadline: early June
Entry Fee: $100
Prize(s): $500 for winners, $250 for finalists; various other prizes
Website: http://www.tidewaterfestival.com/whistler-independent-book-awards/

The Stephen Leacock Memorial Medal for Humour
Topic: Major emphasis must be on humour
Eligibility: entries must carry an ISBN; entrants must be Canadian citizens or landed immigrants; English or a translation into English
Deadline: end of December
Entry Fee: $200
Prize(s): $15,000; two runners-up are each awarded $1,500
Website: https://leacock.ca/2017-2/2017-entry-information/

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NON-CANADIAN AWARDS WITH CANADIAN REGIONAL CATEGORIES


Independent Publisher Book Awards
Topic: 80 subject categories (including regional awards for Canada-East and Canada-West)
Eligibility: independent publishing industry members
Deadline: late February
Entry Fee: various (less than $100)
Prize(s): medal, personalized certificate, 20 foil seals; related publicity includes the awards event, a print and online advertising campaign, and year-long exposure at IndependentPublisher.com
Website: www.independentpublisher.com

The Annual Literary Awards
Topic: many, including Canada-East and Canada-West regional awards
Eligibility: English-language; targeted for North American marketing; works published by major book publishers are not eligible
Deadline: beginning of December
Entry Fee: $85 per title; $25 for each additional category
Prize(s): category-specific cash prizes, ranging from $100 to $1000
Website: http://readerviews.com/literaryawards/

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CASH PRIZE AWARDS


Eric Hoffer Book Award
Topic: many categories
Eligibility: must be nominated by someone; independent books from academic, small, and independent presses
Deadline: mid-January
Entry Fee: $57
Prize(s): grand prize of $2,000
Website: http://www.hofferaward.com/

Nautilus Book Awards
Topic: spiritual growth, conscious living & green values, high-level wellness, and positive social change; books that stimulate the imagination and offer the reader new possibilities for a better life and a better world
Eligibility: English-language; all countries; small press or self-published books will also be entered into award categories for separate awards
Deadline: early February
Entry Fee: $175 for 1st category, $145 for additional
Prize(s): $2,500 to one Grand Award Winner
Website: http://www.nautilusbookawards.com/Guidelines_for_Entering.html

Indie Book Awards
Topic: 70 categories
Eligibility: independent authors and publishers worldwide
Deadline: mid-February
Entry Fee: $75 per title; $50 for additional or $175 if you enter one book in three categories
Prize(s): $1,500/$750/$500 for first/second/third in fiction and non-fiction categories; $100 winner for each of the 70 categories; listing in Indie Book Award catalogue; invitation to NYC Gala Awards Reception
Website: http://www.indiebookawards.com/

The International Rubery Book Award
Topic: many
Eligibility: indie writers
Deadline: end of March
Entry Fee: 36GBP
Prize(s): $2000 for Book of the Year; category winners each win $200
Website: http://www.ruberybookaward.com/index.html

Writer’s Digest Self-Published Book Awards
Topic: 8 different categories
Eligibility: English-language; self-published
Deadline: early April
Entry Fee: $110/$99, depending on deadline
Prize(s): Grand Prize: $8,000+ more, First Prize winner: $1,000+more; also prize for honorable mentions and entrants as well
Website: http://www.writersdigest.com/writers-digest-competitions/self-published-book-awards#how-to-enter

The Kindle Book Awards
Topic: 7 categories
Eligibility: Any independent and small press author; English-lanuage; .mobi format
Deadline: Start of May
Entry Fee: $29
Prize(s): 7 category winners will receive $300 cash and $549 in promotion & tools
Website: www.thekindlebookreview.net/2016-kindle-book-awards

Library Journal Indie Ebook Awards
Topic: Romance, Mystery, Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Young Adult
Eligibility: English-language; self-published
Deadline: end of July
Prize(s): each genre prize winner shall receive $1000; full LJ review, promotional ad, recognition at awards ceremony
Website: https://library-journal.biblioboard.com/?promotionId=a88e92ef-35ac-496f-9d9c-396d8c734d93

The BookLife Prize in Fiction
Topic: Fiction in 6 categories
Eligibility: English language; unpublished or self-published fiction by independent authors
Deadline: late September
Entry Fee: $99
Prize(s): $5,000; author profile in Publishers Weekly
Website: www.booklife.com/about-us/the-booklife-prize-in-fiction.html

Shelf Unbound Best Indie/Self-Published Book Competition
Eligibility: English-language independently-published books
Deadline: early October
Entry Fee: $50 per book
Prize(s): $500 for Best Independently Published Book and $1000 for Best Sports Book
Website: http://www.shelfmediagroup.com/pages/competition.html

First Page Competition
Topic: Short Stories
Eligibility: English-language; unpublished
Deadline: end of November
Entry Fee: 6GBP for first story, 4GBP per entry thereafter
Prize(s): 500/100/50GBP first/second/third
Website: http://www.wordswithjam.co.uk/p/competitions.html

Bookstore Without Borders’ LYRA
Topic: original fiction; many categories
Eligibility: English-language; independently-published; submitted in epub format
Deadline: end of December
Prize(s): $1000/$300/$150 first/second/third
Website: http://www.bookstorewithoutborders.com/for-authors/lyra-contest/

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BOOK FESTIVAL AWARDS


Green Book Festival
Topic: many categories; books that contribute to greater understanding, respect for and positive action on the changing worldwide environment
Eligibility: English- or Spanish- language; published, self-published, and independent publisher works
Deadline: end of April
Entry Fee: $75
Prize(s): cash appearance fee and a flight to San Francisco for gala award ceremony in May
Website: http://www.greenbookfestival.com/

Paris Book Festival
Topic: many
Eligibility: French, English, Spanish, German, or Portuguese; published, self-published, or issued by independent publishing house
Deadline: end of April
Entry Fee: $50
Prize(s): appearance fee and flight to Paris gala in May 2017
Website: http://www.parisbookfestival.com/

San Francisco Book Festival
Topic: many
Eligibility: published, self-published, or issued by independent publishing house
Deadline: end of April
Entry Fee: $50
Prize(s): $1500 appearance fee and flight to San Francisco in May 2017
Website: http://www.sanfranciscobookfestival.com/

New York Book Festival
Topic: many
Eligibility: English, Spanish, French, or Italian language; published, self-published, and independently published
Deadline: end of May
Entry Fee: $50
Prize(s): $1500 appearance fee and a flight to gala in New York
Website: http://www.newyorkbookfestival.com/

London Book Festival
Topic: many categories
Eligibility: English, Spanish, French, German, Portuguese, and Italian language; published, self-published, or independent; ebooks welcome
Deadline: mid-December
Entry Fee: $50
Prize(s): $1500 appearance fee and a flight to London for January gala
Website: http://www.londonbookfestival.com/

New England Book Festival
Topic: many
Eligibility: English-language; ebooks welcome unpublished welcome
Deadline: mid-December
Entry Fee: $50
Prize(s): $1500 appearance fee and a flight to gala in Boston in January
Website: http://www.newenglandbookfestival.com/

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NON-MONETARY PRIZES

See websites for details


Foreword Reviews Book of the Year Awards
Topic: 60 categories
Eligibility: independently-published books, incl. those from self-published authors and university presses, and available for purchase in print or e-book formats
Deadline: mid-January
Entry Fee: $99 per entry, $79 for additional categories
Website:  www.forewordreviews.com/services/book-awards/botya

eLit Book Awards
Topic: 65 e-lit categories
Eligibility: English-language; open to all members of the electronic publishing industry; worldwide
Deadline: end of January
Entry Fee: $70/$80/$90 depending on deadline met
Website: www.elitawards.com

International Excellence Body, Mind, Spirit Book Awards
Topic: Alternative Medicine
Eligibility: any book dealing with alternative medicine; ISBN and be published
Deadline: mid-February
Entry Fee: $75
Website: www.bmsbookawards.com/index.html

IndieReader Discovery Awards
Topic: fiction and non-fiction
Eligibility: Indie authors who have self-published books; ISBN or ASIN number; eBooks and paper books
Deadline: end of February
Entry Fee: $150 for first category, $75 for additional
Website: www.indiereader.com/the-indiereader-discovery-awards-welcome

Independent Press Award
Topic: many
Eligibility: Must have an ISBN; independent author and press books; no books published by big 5; audio books accepted; eBooks not accepted
Deadline: end of March
Entry Fee: $75
Website: www.independentpressaward.com

National Indie Excellence Awards
Topic: many
Eligibility: ISBN; English-language, sold in bookstores and Amazon.com; no ebooks
Deadline: end of March
Entry Fee: $75
Website: www.indieexcellence.com/award-rules.htm

Readers’ Favourite Book Reviews and Award Contest
Topic: only competing against books in your genre
Eligibility: English-language; manuscripts, unpublished, and published books
Deadline: beginning of April
Entry Fee: $89/$99/$109 (early bird/regular/final)
Prize(s): entered to win prize packages just for submitting your book
Website: https://readersfavorite.com/annual-book-award-contest.htm

Global eBook Awards
Eligibility: Ebook released to public
Deadline: end of April
Entry Fee: $79
Website: www.globalebookawards.com

International Book Awards
Topic: many
Eligibility: open to all books, published in the English language with an ISBM and currently available for sale online to global consumers
Deadline: end of April
Entry Fee: $59-$79
Website: www.internationalbookawards.com

CIPA EVVY Book Competition
Topic: many
Eligibility: English-language or bilingual with English as one language; ISBN; independently or self-published print book, e-book, or audio book
Deadline: late May
Entry Fee: $95
Website: www.cipacatalog.com/pages/CIPA-EVVY-Awards

Living Now Book Awards
Topic: 29 lifestyle, homestyle, self-development, and fiction categories
Eligibility: English-language; appropriate for North American market
Deadline: beginning of July
Entry Fee: $75/$85/$95 early bird/regular/final
Website: http://www.livingnowawards.com/index.php

Hollywood Book Festival
Topic: many categories
Eligibility: published, self-published, and independent publisher; ebook entries welcome
Deadline: early July
Entry Fee: $75 for each book
Website: http://www.hollywoodbookfestival.com/next.asp

EPIC eBook Competition
Eligibility: English-language; Must be submitted as non-DRM PDF format electronic book (including self-published books)
Deadline: mid-July
Entry Fee: $25 for EPIC members, $35 for non-members
Website: www.epicorg.org/competitions/epic-s-e-book-competition.html

Moonbeam Children’s Book Awards
Topic: children’s books; many categories
Eligibility: English- or Spanish-language; intended for the North American market
Deadline: mid-August
Entry Fee: $75 per category
Website: http://www.moonbeamawards.com/

International Beverly Hills Book Awards
Topic: many
Eligibility: all English language books in print that are available for sale in the US; ISBN; published books available on Amazon.com
Deadline: end of October
Entry Fee: $75
Website: www.beverlyhillsbookawards.com

IACP Cookbook Awards
Topic: 16 cookbook categories
Eligibility: English-language; bilingual submissions accepted but judged on English content; eBooks eligible with certain restrictions
Deadline: end of November
Entry Fee: $175/$200 depending on entry date
Website: www.iacp.com/awards/cookbook

Axiom Business Book Awards
Topic: 22 different business categories
Eligibility: English language; authors and publishers throughout North America
Deadline: mid-December
Entry Fee: $95 per title
Website: www.axiomawards.com

New Apple Book Awards for Excellence
Topic: many
Eligibility: English-language; for sale online or offline to North American market; self-published or associated with a small press
Deadline: mid-December
Entry Fee: $50/$70 early bird/final
Website: http://www.newappleliterary.com/awards.html

IBPA Benjamin Franklin Awards
Deadline: end of December
Entry Fee: $95 for IBPA member; $225 for non-IBPA members
Website: http://ibpabenjaminfranklinawards.com/

The Wishing Shelf Book Awards
Topic: several
Eligibility: predominantly in English; published by a small, independent, or academic press
Deadline: end of December
Entry Fee: $59
Prize(s): feedback from judging; Amazon and Goodreads review; catchy quote for the back of next book or reprint
Website: http://www.thewsa.co.uk

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