Our Annual

Shelf Unbound Best Indie Book Competition

Shelf Unbound

About The Competition

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

Our 2022 Awards Are Now Open For Submissions!

Call For Entries

Shelf Unbound book review magazine announces the Shelf Unbound Writing Competition for Best Indie/Self-Published Book. Any indie/self-published book in any genre in 2021 or 2022 is eligible for entry. Entry fee is $100 per book. The winning entry will be selected by the editors of Shelf Unbound magazine.

To submit an entry, mail a paper copy or email a PDF of your entire book, including the cover, to contest@shelfmediagroup.com, subject line Contest Entry, and send a check for $100 made out to Shelf Media Group to Sarah Kloth, Shelf Media Group, 2234 Patrick Lane, Waukesha, WI 53188. All entries received (and entry fee paid) will be considered.

NOTE: Shelf Unbound does not currently accept children’s picture books.

The top five books, as determined by the editors of Shelf Unbound, will receive editorial coverage in the December / January issue of Shelf Unbound. The author of the book named as the Best Self-Published book will receive editorial coverage as well as a year’s worth of full-page ads in Shelf Unbound.

The deadline for entry is 11:59pm on September 30, 2022. The winners will be notified by November 15, 2022.

For any additional questions, please contact Sarah Kloth at contest@shelfmediagroup.com

Contest Entry Fees:

  • Early Bird Discount: $75 (January – March)
  • Regular Entry Fee: $100 (April-August)
  • Late Entry Fee: $150 (September-October)

Enter Your Book

Fill out the form below to enter your book. If you are sending print copies, please upload your cover file and note in the comments that you are sending a hard copy.


Winners will be notified by November 15th and our award issue will publish the first week of December.

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