Writer's Digest Self-Published eBook Awards

Publish date:

Writer's Digest Self-Published e-Book Awards

Writer’s Digest 2nd Annual Self-Published e-Book Awards is now closed. Winners will be notified by December 31, 2014.

This competition spotlights today’s self-published works and honors self-published authors. Whether you’re a professional writer, a part-time freelancer or a self-starting student, here’s your chance to enter WD’s newest competition, exclusively for self-published e-books.

Enter your book into one these categories:

  • Mainstream/Literary Fiction
  • Genre Fiction (Includes all sub-genres such as Romance, Horror, Science Fiction, Humor, etc.)
  • Nonfiction (General, Cookbooks, Reference, Guidebooks, Textbooks)
  • Inspirational (Spiritual, New Age)
  • Life Stories (Biographies, Autobiographies, Family Histories, Memoirs)
  • Children’s Picture books
  • Middle-Grade/Young Adult books
  • Poetry

One Grand Prize Winner will receive:

  • $3,000 cash
  • Interview with winner featured in Writer’s Digest magazine
  • Winner’s name on the cover of Writer’s Digest magazine (subscriber issues)
  • A full 250-word (minimum) editorial review of the winning book
  • $200 worth of Writer’s Digest books
  • 30-minute platform & marketing consultation with Chuck Sambuchino, author of Create Your Writer Platform
  • One year Subscription (new or renewal) to Writer’s Digest magazine

The First-Place Winner in each category will receive:

  • $1000 in prize money
  • Recognition in Writer’s Digest magazine
  • A 140-character write-up, perfect for tweeting to fans, followers, and potential new readers
  • $100 worth of Writer’s Digest Books
  • One year Subscription (new or renewal) to Writer’s Digest magazine

Honorable Mention Winners will receive $50 worth of Writer’s Digest Books and be promoted on www.writersdigest.com.

All entrants will receive a brief commentary from the judges.


1. The competition is open to all English-language self-published e-books for which the authors have paid the full cost of publication, or the cost of publication has been paid for by a grant or as part of a prize.

2. You must enter online. You may provide a file of the book or submit your entry by using the Amazon gifting process. If submitting a file: Acceptable file types include .epub, .mobi, .ipa. (Microsoft Word documents and other word processing type documents (.doc, .docx, .odt, etc.) are not an acceptable file type.) If submitting your book by using the Amazon gifting process, please click here for specific instructions. If you do not have the book file and cannot gift us a copy through Amazon, there is a space on the entry form where you can provide us instructions for obtaining a complimentary copy of your e-book. Additional files/books may be requested of semi-finalists.

3. Entries will be evaluated on content, writing quality and overall quality of production and appearance.

4. All e-books published or revised between 2009 and your date of entry in 2014 are eligible. (Writer’s Digest may demand proof of eligibility of semifinalists.)

5. We accept check, money order or credit card payment for the required judging fee. Early-bird entry fees are $99 for the first entry, $75 for each additional if entered at the same time, during the same checkout. Regular entry fees are $110 for the first entry, $85 for each additional if entered at the same time, during the same checkout entry. Payment of entry fees must be received before a title is forwarded to the judging panel.

6. All early-bird entries must be submitted completely online no later than August 1, 2014 (11:59 pm EST). Entries submitted for the regular deadline must be submitted by September 19, 2014 (11:59 pm EST). All winners will be notified by December 31, 2014. Non-winners will be sent a competition status update following the winner notification date. Judges commentaries will be emailed to entrants by 12/31/14.

7. Judges reserve the right to re-categorize entries.

8. Books which have previously won a Self-Published Award (printed and bound, or e-book) from Writer's Digest are not eligible.

9. Employees of F+W Media, Inc. and their immediate families are not eligible. Books published by Abbott Press and Blue Ash Publishing are not eligible to participate.

10. Writer’s Digest is not responsible for the loss, damage or return of any books submitted to the competition.

11. Refunds are not provided for disqualified or withdrawn entries.

Be sure to check out more writing contests sponsored by Writer’s Digest.

Online Contest Software provided by WizeHive

Frequently Asked Questions:

What is an e-book?

An e-book is a book-length publication in digital form. It is readable on computers and other electronic devices. An e-book may also be available as a printed/bound book. However ONLY the e-book form is accepted in this particular competition.

What does “e-book format” mean?

This is the format that your e-book has been published in, because word-processing files don’t work on e-reading devices. Publishers typically submit e-book versions of a title that they publish to major e-book channels like Amazon, iTunes, Barnes & Noble, etc. Check with your publisher if you have questions regarding e-book publication.

How do I know what file type my e-book is?

The file should either be saved as “title.filetype” (so, TheShining.epub), or you can right-click on the file and select “Get Info.” This will allow you to view the file type.

What formats are accepted (if not able to gift a copy of the book)?

Acceptable file types include: .epub, .mobi, .ipa (Apple), .azw (Kindle)

Should the cover be part of the e-book?

Yes, please include your cover as a part of your submission. Please make sure the cover and text are in the same file.

How do I gift a copy of my e-book?

Amazon allows you to gift a copy of your e-book, which will allow us to get it to judges more easily. This option is offered for e-books available on Amazon. Please click here for the complete set of specific gifting instructions.

I have purchased the gift copy of my book but cannot find the email containing the GIFT CLAIM CODE from Amazon?

Please click here for a PDF containing the easy to follow step-by-step instructions

How do I enter & provide the gift claim code for my entry after I have the Gift Claim Code from Amazon?

Please click here for a PDF containing the easy to follow step-by-step instructions

How do I add the gift claim code to my draft (not yet submitted) copy of my entry form ?

Please click here for a PDF containing the easy to follow step-by-step instructions

What if there is a problem with my e-book or you do not receive the gift or file?

Due to time constraints, we are not able to track/confirm individual deliveries of e-books on a one by one basis. Please follow delivery instructions as provided. Although we appreciate the consideration, there is no need to email our office after sending a gift copy unless instructed. We will send an email to all entrants with missing files/books at times, before the judging wraps up, to make arrangements.

How do I sign-up/log-in to the online entry system?

Please go to https://app.wizehive.com/apps/WDeBookAwards14. Once on the log in page, specific instructions are listed on the left hand side of the page. Once the final deadline has passed, you will no longer be able to access the online entry system. If you are having problems, please click here for specific instructions.

PLEASE NOTE REGARDING LOG INS: Reference to log in information is unique to the specific application which you are logging into. In other words, your WDSHOP log in is NOT the same as your Writer’s Digest Community login, Forum log ins, Competition log ins, Newsletter log ins etc.

Are short stories accepted?

Short story collections are eligible.

What if my e-book has multiple authors?

No problem, just be sure to include all author’s name’s on the entry form. The email address submitted on the entry form should be the main contact for all competition related messages.

Can I replace an edited version of my e-book after I submit the entry?

Once a book has been submitted, the judges will have access to start reading it; replacements & substitutes will not be allowed. You may submit a new edition (additional) of a qualifying entry; however it would be considered as a new entry and would not replace the existing entry.

For additional questions or concerns, contact us at WritersDigestSelfPublishingCompetition@fwmedia.com.


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