Shelf Media Group

Our Story.

"All we wanted was a really good magazine. About books. That was full of the really great stuff."

Everything has changed.

Publishing and reading will never be the same. And that is cool.

But there was a problem. With all of this incredible access and content, finding the really great stuff, the unexpected and unusual and self-published and indie stuff, was harder than ever. It took a lot of time and searching and slogging through unremarkable stuff. When at the end of the day, all either of us wanted was a really good magazine. About books. That was full of the really great stuff.

And, we thought, what if the magazine was digital, so that it was portable and green and responsive? And what if it was hot-linked so that you could order the books you wanted with a click? And what if it incorporated reviews and excerpts and author interviews, so that it would be the next best thing – or dare we say, even better – than spending an afternoon in our favorite indie bookstore?

So we made it. And we really like it. And we hope you do, too. Because we’re just getting started.

Our Brands.

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Shelf Unbound indie book review magazine features the best of small press and self-published books. A 2015 Maggie Award WINNER for Best Digital-Only Magazine

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Podster is a magazine for podcast listeners and serves as a curator for the best of known and unknown podcasts.

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Shelf Media Group’s digital young adult community designed to connect readers with YA authors and books.

Author Services.


Professional-level copyediting and proofing for self-published and traditionally published authors.


Shelf Media offers website design and development services to help authors with their first website.


Shelf Media connects you to our designers to help self-published authors with their cover designs.

Our Competitions.

Shelf Media hosts the annual Shelf Unbound Best Indie Book Competition for best self-published or independently published book, receiving entries from May 1 to October 1 each year.

In addition to prizes, the winner, finalists, and more than 100 notable books from the competition are featured in the December/January issue of Shelf Unbound.

This year, we will launch the Podster “Best Undiscovered Podcast” Competition. Details can be found on our competition page.


Our Founder.

Margaret L. Brown

An early proponent of digital publishing, Margaret founded Shelf Media Group in 2010 and became owner and publisher of several digital magazines, including flagship Shelf Unbound and later Middle Shelf, Foreground, and Podster.

“I have loved magazines since the time I could read. I’ve subscribed to magazines my whole life. I always read every single magazine my parents subscribed to. That’s my passion, that’s my experience.”

Our fearless publisher, Margaret L. Brown, passed away on June 4, 2018, after a 10-month battle with acute lymphoblastic leukemia. Today, her legacy lives on – a magazine about books full of the great stuff.

What They Say.



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