One of the challenges of self-publishing is that you need to be your own marketing department. You have to share the fact that your book is out in the world, and that includes letting awards committees know about it too!
It can be daunting to submit your own work for an award. I’ll admit, when I first got into self-publishing, I thought submitting my own work wasn’t sacrosanct. I thought that juries combed through books, selected their favorites, and made a ballot. Self-promotion for an award was rude and uncouth. I have since learned otherwise, and I’m glad I did.
Now, some awards juries don’t accept unsolicited submissions — but many others do! And further, they say specifically that you can submit as the author of the piece! So go on — submit that work! What’ve you got to lose?
But Sonora, where do I start? That’s where the list below comes in. I’m starting a living blog post — one I’ll keep updated beyond the initial posting — with links to awards that allow you to submit your own work. Please let me know if you know of any awards that aren’t listed, and I’ll add them as well.
Happy submitting, and good luck!
- The Bram Stoker Awards (see Section 5 – Submit Your Work to the Jury)
- The Ladies of Horror Fiction Awards
- The Indie Horror Book Awards
- The Splatterpunk Awards
- Ellen Datlow’s Best Horror of the Year (2020)
- We’re Here: Neon Hemlock’s Best Queer Speculative Fiction (2020)
- Goodreads Choice Awards (2020) (you can write in your book for any category, so long as the book is listed on Goodreads)
- Red Room Press’s Best Hardcore Horror of the Year (2019)
- Critters Writers Workshop Readers Poll (you can nominate your work via write-in in its respective category) (2019 note: voting is closed)