Throughout the years, MindStir Media has seen its fair share of literary award winners. I constantly preach to my Mindstir authors about the importance of winning awards... It adds instant credibility to your author brand and can also help you land speaking engagements/gigs for which you would otherwise not qualify. Not to mention, winning an award could positively impact book sales...
But you have to enter awards competitions if you want to win. I know that's common sense for most but you'd surprised by how many authors say they want to win an award and then never enter their books!
The first step, obviously, is to locate the right awards competition for your book genre. That's as easy as googling "list of literary awards for self published authors" or some variation of that. You'll be amazed by the options!
Pick several competitions suitable for your book and closely follow the submission guidelines. If they require a Word document, send them a Word document. If they want a PDF, send them a PDF. And if they want a print version of your book -- yes, you guessed it, send them a print version. Don't do anything to disqualify yourself from the competition.
Once you've submitted your book it's important to practice patience. These competitions generally all have winner announcement deadlines, so if you're a winner, you'll be contacted by the posted deadline. Do not contact them to see if they received your book. Most of them will want a print version of your book, so simply ship the book via a trackable shipment method. This will ensure safe delivery and you'll also be able to see that it was received. For those that want a digital version, I'm sure 99.9% of those sites will send you some sort of email confirmation.
Again, sit back and be patient.
If you win, great. Go out and publicize the heck out of your new award. Write and distribute press releases, add your award-winning status to your website and all marketing materials... If you don't win, just keep on keeping on. You can still be wildly successful without winning an award.