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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So now that I have published my book to Amazon, I'm waiting for my Literary Awards to all start rolling in so the world can finally discover my creative genius and realize what they have been missing all along lol "How could God give One Man... SOO much talent!"

In all seriousness I would actually just like to know if anybody has won a Literary Award before? Which one did you achieve? And, what did it feel like to be honored by the Literary Gods?

For those of us who are just around the corner from substantial critical acclaim (haha) which Literary Award would you most like to achieve?

I managed to find a ridiculously comprehensive list of Literary Awards

Ridiculously comprehensive list of Literary Awards

I didn't know there were so many in existence. Since I have absolutely no idea, are we able to submit our masterpieces to any of the Awards? Are there highly acclaimed International Awards, or are they country specific where you have to be born within a specific region of a specific town, bumchums with all the literary guys on the "inside", and have achieved a certain number of sales?

Sufian
 

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Dalya said:
If I cared, I'd easily go broke on all the entry fees. Easily!
THIS!!!

I'd love to win one (ironically[?] for my little novella/long short story that nobody reads) but the truth is, if you have to pay to play, to me it seems more a racket to pull in entry fees than a legitimate celebration of quality. Yes, I admit to being naive, and yes, I love unicorns. I guess if I had an agent (and scads of money) it would be worth it as a marketing expense to pay all those people to deign to consider you, and if I ever got there, I'm sure I'd be fine with reaping the rewards of their particular approval, whoever they are. It would be awesome. But from a broke-as$ starving artist perspective, I sure don't see it. I don't have health care, my glasses are so old I almost see better without them now, and I have gotten to the point where I actually dream of being able to go to the dentist. So, yeah, no entry fees from me just yet.
 

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I plan on entering some awards this year, but like others say, it can be EXPENSIVE!

I suppose I'll submit to most of the free ones I can find, and possibly, if I can scrape together some money, a few select awards I like the look of. It's tough though because I'm not sure how relevant they are. I mean, say I win a couple, what does it matter?

Other than a few of the big awards, does being a winner help sales? I'd be interested to hear the experiences of people who have won an accolade or two.

Matthew
 
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Be careful about awards. Do your research before submitting anything. As others have said, you can go broke submitting to awards and not always get a whole lot of value out of them. I actually serve as a judge for the IPBA's Ben Franklin awards (I don't judge in the categories I publish in to avoid conflict of interest issues).

1. Beware of awards that exist ONLY to give out the award. There are a lot of "award mills" out there that are not associated with any legitimate institution. These companies only exist to run their awards, which generate quite literally millions of dollars in revenue for the companies involved. Always look at the sponsor of an award to determine if the award is a legitimate award or an award mill. This is particularly true with programs operated by any organization that claims to "specialize" in marketing indie/self-published books.

2. In general, the harder the award tries to "sell" you on how great it is, the less real-world value it actually has. Particularly if it stresses over and over how "important" awards are. Awards are nice. They aren't "important." You can sell lots of books without ever winning an award. Just look at half the NYT bestsellers' list.  :eek: ::) In particular, beware of awards that offer "opportunities" to spend money on useless things like award stickers, attendance at the awards ceremony (which you will be invited to, at your cost, as a nominee  ::) ) and other things.

3. In regard to prizes: beware of contests that inflate the value of their prize package with useless nonsense. Lots of the mills inflate the value of their awards with stuff designed to upsell you. For example, the prize may include a "consultation" with a marketing professional (VALUED AT $250!). That is a fake prize. It's an artificial value designed to make you think you are getting something.

4. Many awards have very strict entry requirements. You may have to be a member of the organization, for example. Or you may need to be nominated by a member. Many of the biggest awards do not accept self-published books. Unfair? Maybe. But having served as a judge and knowing the enormous amount of time involved, sometimes you just have to make what feel like arbitrary rules to avoid a glut of submissions that are going to waste time. The Ben Franklin awards DO accept indie books...and I have seen some horrific submissions that people wasted $80 on the entry fee sending in. Unless you have judged in a program, it is hard to explain the difference between the worst trade book compared to the worst indie book. For competitions that don't have entry fees, they often don't allow indie books simply because the fact that the competition is free would flood them with bad stuff.
 

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Thanks, but I don't think that's a comprehensive list. I didn't see, for example:

-  The Ludlum Prize for the best new novel written by a dead author

-  The Lance Armstrong Award for Fiction, which goes to the author using the highest levels of performance-enhancing drugs

-  The Manti Te'o award for worst novel given five stars on Amazon by a fictional girlfriend
 

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Caitie Quinn said:
I'd like a Rita. Indie's don't qualify yet (they're moving that way, FINALLY) but, Yes. I want a Rita.
Same here.

I'd settle for a Cybil or the eFestival of Words Best of Indies. (grins at Julie) :D Hey, I was nominated for the Cybil and was a finalist for the eFestival of Words!

I also agree with Julie that you need to be diligent in your research, particularly if there are entry fees involved. Not all awards are created equally...
 

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There's no way in hell I'd pay an entry fee for an award. If the award is limited to only the people who are willing to pay for it, then it's not a legit award IMO. Any takers on that?
 

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vrabinec said:
Is there a Hugo or Nebula somewhere on that sight? Because,if there is, I'm buyin' one.
Not there. I have a few Asian wholesale sites bookmarked...somewhere. I'll need to check. You could get a few and if one breaks, just play it off like "Oh, that's just a Hugo. Don't worry about it."
 
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Amanda Brice said:
I'd settle for a Cybil or the eFestival of Words Best of Indies. (grins at *****) :D Hey, I was nominated for the Cybil and was a finalist for the eFestival of Words!
And a most deserving finalist, I will say. ;D
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Julie that's some good information you shared up there, thank you for posting that. More importantly, now that I know you are a judge; how do you select the winners? Is there anything in particular you look for ("I didn't feel like killing myself after finishing his book... he should probably win"), or is it a unanimous vote ("Everybody raise your hand if you want this one to win"), or is there some kind of strenuous checklist that all the judges have to be initiated into (*Everybody is sitting in a circular panel in a dark room with lightsabers* "Julie feel the winner.. don't see, don't think, feel the force..." *the book starts floating up into the air*).
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Eric C said:
Thanks, but I don't think that's a comprehensive list. I didn't see, for example:

- The Ludlum Prize for the best new novel written by a dead author
I started laughing for about 5 mins straight to this. Then I realized I channeled a couple messages in my book ::)

- The Lance Armstrong Award for Fiction, which goes to the author using the highest levels of performance-enhancing drugs
Ever since they implemented the no-author-on-crack program, some have speculated that even though it has cleaned up the notorious writing industry, everybody's books started to really suck... and they are taking longer to write.

- The Manti Te'o award for worst novel given five stars on Amazon by a fictional girlfriend
Hollywood sponsored this one.
 

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I hope to enter my book into a couple this year. A couple, as in exactly two probably, lol! At about $75 a pop, that's all I can afford for my first time around.

The ones I'm submitting to I found from this list: http://www.thebookdesigner.com/book-awards/

I'm favoring the ones that offer real cash prizes, especially if they offer prizes to finalists and runners-up as well, and that have been won by authors I've heard of before.

I'm curious to know - if anyone wants to take a guess - if I had published traditionally, how would the award submissions be handled? Is that the publisher's responsibility, or would the author pay for the entry fees there too?
 

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Laura Rae Amos said:
I'm curious to know - if anyone wants to take a guess - if I had published traditionally, how would the award submissions be handled? Is that the publisher's responsibility, or would the author pay for the entry fees there too?
That varies from publisher to publisher. I know some publishers who will enter (pay fees and send in the books) those books they feel have a legitimate shot. Other publishers don't handle that at all. Others will do it for their "top" authors, but anyone else who still wants to enter can do it themselves.

A few years ago, Maureen Johnson finaled in the YA category of the RITA Award. After she got the call from RWA to tell her she'd finaled, she called up author Diana Peterfreund to thank her for nominating her. Diana was like "I didn't nominate you." Maureen said she figured it had to be her, since Diana was the only RWA member she knew. (That's actually not how the RITA is handled, but that's beside the point.) Turns out Harper Teen had entered Maureen for her without her knowledge. Maureen actually didn't even know what the RITA was when the RWA board member called to congratulate her.

So yeah, it totally varies.
 
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SSChaudhary said:
***** that's some good information you shared up there, thank you for posting that. More importantly, now that I know you are a judge; how do you select the winners? Is there anything in particular you look for ("I didn't feel like killing myself after finishing his book... he should probably win"), or is it a unanimous vote ("Everybody raise your hand if you want this one to win"), or is there some kind of strenuous checklist that all the judges have to be initiated into (*Everybody is sitting in a circular panel in a dark room with lightsabers* "***** feel the winner.. don't see, don't think, feel the force..." *the book starts floating up into the air*).
The lightsabers are only used if we have to break a tie. :eek: ;D

With the Ben Franklin awards, there is a checklist of items we are suppose to look for. You go through the checklist and rate each area on a scale from 1 to 10, and then provide an explanation of your score (including examples, we don't get to take shortcuts and just say "needs an editor." We have to give examples to support our point). The scores get submitted digitally, and then the IPBA tabulates the results.

I also use a checklist with my own writing contest (which is a much, MUCH smaller scale than the Ben Franklin awards.). But it serves the same purpose as to focus criticism and identify the strengths and weaknesses of a story.
 
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