Is this the month self-publishing becomes respectable in the UK?
The Guardian newspaper has joined with publisher Legend Times to offer a monthly literary prize to the best self-published novels written in the English language – translations are also eligible. Submissions are first read by a panel of Legend’s readers who will draw up a shortlist of up to 10 titles a month. The prize is respectability and exposure – the winning book will be reviewed in the Guardian. Claire Armitstead, the newspaper’s literary editor , explained why they had decided to launch the prize:
“the phenomenon of self-publishing over the last couple of years has become too big for any of us to ignore”.
Submissions will be open for the first fortnight of each calendar month. The book must have been self-published after 31 December 2011 and should be sent to email@example.com with “Self-Published Book of the Month Submission” in the subject line. Find out morehere.
Without quality controls, without an agent or a publisher to sift out the gems from the poorly written, the organisers are expecting to receive a lot of rubbish and advise that the short listing process will be brutal. Tom Chalmers, managing director of Legend Times said:.
“We are hoping to be a magnet to find the needle in the haystack. Everyone has a computer these days, and everyone is writing, which is brilliant, but it also means the market is completely flooded.”
Is this a major step forward – or has that happened already? Have you bought any self-published fiction – short stories or novels – from a writer you didn’t already know?