Recognition through book award programs
Publishing a book takes time. If your goal was defined as becoming a full-time author, then you should consider Book Award programs. Especially those who offer additional promotion after you become a winner. Authors who receive recognition are viewed differently. A big publisher, for example, might not even consider a first time author’s book if the author has no prior track of success.
After receiving recognition, the recognition is not just for the reader to get interested, but for publishers to change their perspective about the author too. Publishers consider recognition as a way to decide if they want to work with an author on a future project.
Book award programs have requirements to participate, some for example are free to enter, some charge an entry fee, others provide winners only with certificates, others provide monetary prizes, and others provide additional opportunities for authors to promote themselves and their winning books. Before applying, do your research, you can even ask around for recommended book award programs.
For example, the International Latino Book Awards focuses on Latino literature or authors who write about Latino topics. They require books to be recently published. They charge an entry fee. Also, in 2022, they introduced a monetary prize for four of their award winners who are in the process of building their career as an author. All Award Winners have the opportunity to participate at events as exhibitors at a fraction of the cost and it welcomes them indefinitely.
Overall, an award represents a door into the publishing industry and the book sales market. A good rule of thumb is to look at the organization’s website and the track record of awards as well as the information included such as photos, recognition levels, and contact information (beware of those who don’t list contact information with phone number). Award recognition programs with Book Awards Ceremonies can also be beneficial because this becomes an opportunity for you to network with others besides your book getting promoted during the event. Sometimes there’s agents, translators, illustrators, editors and publishers at these events.
For self-published authors, sometimes their first book doesn’t meet publishing standards and that makes it harder to receive an Award. If the Book Awards program you apply for offers you the judges comments or reviews, then request them. Sometimes your book needs some edits and layout redesigns, therefore, you can consider republishing a new edition of your book. This can only benefit your literature work.