2018 STAR Award for Published Women’s Fiction

The STAR Award is designed exclusively for the published women's fiction author.

The STAR Award has only two categories. 

The first category is a general category for all published women's fiction, regardless of time period of the premise or additional plot element.*

The second category is ‘Outstanding Debut’. To be eligible, the entry must be the author’s debut published work in any genre. A novel may be entered into both the debut and general categories. In this case, the entry fee is required to be paid for both categories.

*Not sure if your novel is eligible, Guidelines below.

The STAR Award Contest is limited to the first 50 entries in each of the two categories.  Entries with the top three scores in each category will be declared finalists and advance to the final round.
First round judging is by readers of women's fiction, the final round by librarians with an interest in women's fiction.

Entries are judged on a scale of 1-10 (1 is lowest, 10, highest) on quality and enjoyment of the book. Fractions are encouraged to lower the incidence of ties.

Important Dates

Entry Opens: January 2, 2018 (3:00 pm EST) for WFWA members; January 16, 2018 (3:00 pm EST) for non-WFWA members, space permitting

Entry Closes: January 31, 2018

Deadline for Entered Books to be Received by the Award Coordinator: February 15, 2018

Finalists Announced: May 14, 2018

Deadline for Finalists' Books to be Received by the Award Coordinator:  May 31, 2018

Winners Announced: September 26-29, 2018 at the Annual WFWA Retreat

Entry Submission Details

Preliminary Round: Complete the entry form, pay registration fee, and mail three (3) copies of the printed book to the STAR Award Contest, P.O. Box 31434, Flagstaff, AZ 86003-1434. Entered books must be received by the award coordinator by February 15, 2018

Final Round: Mail three (3) copies of the printed book to the STAR Award Contest, P.O. Box 31434, Flagstaff, AZ 86003-1434. Finalists' books must be received by the award coordinator by May 31, 2018.

Entries will be disqualified and fees forfeited if not received by the award coordinator by the specified deadlines.

Entry Fee

$40 WFWA Members**
$50 non-WFWA Members

**Member entrants who agree to be judges for WFWA’s 2018 RISING STAR Award for unpublished women's fiction, will receive a $10 discount on their entry.

Guidelines

Eligibility

Definition

Format

Frequently Asked Questions


Eligibility

Open to all authors of book-length women's fiction (60k words or more). All work must have an ISBN, and have a copyright page with a copyright date in the calendar year 2017. 

My book is available online as an ebook only. May I enter?
Yes. But for The STAR Award, all entries must be submitted as printed books.

I’ve self-published my book. Can I still enter?
Yes. Providing it has an ISBN and is available at retailers, either physical stores or online.

I’m published in another genre, but this is my first work of women's fiction. Can I enter as a debut author?
No, sorry. The novel entered in this category must be a true debut – your first published in any genre. Novellas count as being published.

Definition

How do I determine if my novel is women's fiction?

Women's fiction may include romance, or it may not. It could be contemporary or historical and have magical, mystery, thriller, or other elements. What defines a novel as women's fiction is that its driving force is the protagonist's journey toward a more fulfilled self. Whereas the driving force of a romance novel is a love story, a mystery's is the exposure of an event, a thriller's is a fear-inducing chase or escape, etc.

If your manuscript's driving force best fits another genre, such as romance, science fiction, thriller, etc. it is not eligible for the STAR Award.

Format

The STAR Award accepts published paperback and hardcover entries only. If your novel is only available in e-book format, you must submit a physical book for the contest (Traditionally bound as a hardcover, trade or paperback. No unprofessionally printed manuscripts will be accepted.)

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I enter more than one of my novels?

No. One novel per entrant. However, if the entered novel is a debut, it may be entered into both categories - general and debut.

What if the same novel wins both the general and debut categories?

That's feasible.

How many finalists are there?

There are three finalists in each of the two categories.

How will I be notified if I final or win?

The finalists will be notified via email, and the official finalist list will be posted on the WFWA website. Winners are announced at the Annual Retreat. WFWA will also issue press releases to the industry with the results of each round.

What is the prize for winning?

The winner of each category will receive a STAR Award trophy. All Finalists will receive a certificate. Winners and finalists will also receive a digital badge for their website and stickers to put on their book covers that dub the book STAR Award Winner or STAR Award Finalist.

There may be additional prizes, at the discretion of the Board.

Additional Questions? Contact the STAR Award coordinator at [email protected].