National Best Books Award – can everyone be a winner?

Psst… want an award for your self- or vanity-published book?  Got $69 to spare? 

If the answer to both those questions is “Yes,” why not try the US National Best Books Awards?  If you’ve still got some spare cash you could buy a gold medallion sticker to put on the front of your book to acknowledge your award too.  You can enter more than one category of the multitude of categories available, providing you pay the entry fee each time so can win multiple awards for one book. 

So what’s the catch?  You knew there had to be one, after all, being awarded an award for your book can’t be as simple as paying an entry fee can it?

Most competitions and some book awards do charge an entry or administration fee.  This fee covers the costs such as running the competition/award, paying the judge(s) and the prize-money where relevant.  However, most book awards consider all the entrants, whittle books entered down to a shortlist, which may or may not be published, and give the award to a selected book or a selected book in each category perhaps with an overall best book award.  It’s this process of selection that confers prestige on the award.  With little or no selection, there’s no prestige. 

And there’s the catch.  The National Best Books Awards have very little selection.  The title may be similar to the National Book Award, but I doubt book buyers, who tend to rely on recommendation, will be fooled.

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