The LYRA Award Independent Fiction eBook Contest

Entry Closes December 31st, 2017


Bookstore Without Borders 2017 LYRA Rules and Guidlines

**Please Read All of the Rules and Guidelines Carefully or you may forfeit your entry fee**


 The purpose of The LYRA Award is to promote excellence in independent fiction by recognizing outstanding Independently Published eBooks.

The Overall LYRA Contest Winner will be recognized with the 'Overall Winner' LYRA Seal on their book cover, and will win $1000USD cash prize as well as a free Authors Marketing Platform on Bookstore Without Borders.

Second and Third Cash Prize Winners and Winners in each category will receive a LYRA Category Winner ribbon added to their eBook cover, they may use the cover for all of their marketing efforts. All category winners will have their books permanently added to the contest winners page of Bookstore Without Borders. All winners will be promoted on our Social Media Platforms.


Grand prize: $1000USD          Second prize: $300USD          Third prize: $150USD


Contest Eligibility


The LYRA Contest is open to members of Bookstore Without Borders as well as non-members.

Neither employees of Bookstore Without Borders nor members of their immediate families will be eligible to enter the LYRA contest. “Immediate family” is defined as spouse, parents and children. Adopted, foster and step members are included in this definition.

Completed entry form and the fee of $50USD must be received by Bookstore Without Borders no later than December 31st, 2017

Any forms and fees received after the deadline will not be processed.



Entry Requirements ~ Please Read Carefully

 A book entered in the 2017 LYRA Contest must:

  • Be a work of original fiction.
  • Have an original copyright date of 2017
  • Have not been previously entered in LYRA
  • Be submitted in .epub  format, complete with cover and copyright page. We offer conversion services for a modest fee. Contact us!
  • Be independently published and all rights MUST belong to the Author.
  • Be English language edition.

If a *novel/**novella is part of a series, it is not necessary for each work in the series to be entered in the contest. Each work will be judged independently.

A collection of Novellas in One Volume or Omnibus is allowed if it has been originally published as so in 2017.


Entry Category Eligibility 

A Novel* may be entered as more than one category. For example: a Historical Romance Novel that has a strong suspense element may be entered in Romantic Suspense or Historical. An author may enter their book more than once if they wish to cover more than one category. As stated above, a separate fee will be paid for each entry.

There is no limit to the number of eligible books that may be entered for each author.


Women’s Fiction - A work directed to women that focuses on relationships, one or more strong female protagonists, women triumphing over unbearable circumstances, and the experiences of women unified in some way.

General Fiction - The books in the general fiction genre can be a combination of any three or more genres of fiction that cause them to be outside the limits and rules of those specific genres. Example: a science fiction, fantasy, romance that has strong elements of comedy and action and adventure.

Romance - The prevailing type of story in the romance genre consists of a love relationship, often from the woman’s point of view. There is always conflict that hinders the relationship, but is resolved to a happy ending.

 Cozy Romance - Same as Romance, minus explicit scenes.

 Historical Fiction - Presents a story set in the past, often during a significant time period. In historical fiction, the time period is an important part of the setting and often of the story itself.

Suspense/ThrillerPresents feeling of uncertainty and anxiety about the outcome of certain actions, most often referring to an audience's perceptions in a dramatic work.

 Mystery - Mystery fiction is a loosely-defined term that is often used as a synonym of detective fiction — in other words a novel or short story in which a detective (either professional or amateur) solves a crime. The term "mystery fiction" may sometimes be limited to the subset of detective stories in which the emphasis is on the puzzle element and its logical solution (cf. whodunit), as a contrast to hardboiled detective stories which focus on action and gritty realism. However, in more general usage "mystery" may be used to describe any form of crime fiction, even if there is no mystery to be solved.

 Cozy Mystery - also referred to as "cozies", are a sub genre of crime fiction in which sex and violence are downplayed or treated humorously, and the crime and detection take place in a small, socially intimate community.

 Romantic Suspense - Romantic suspense is any genre romance that features a prominent mystery, suspense or thriller plot

Inspirational - This fiction can cover many different genres. Usually carries a strong message of faith and hope and overcomes adversity by reaching new levels of understanding.

Novella - A work of written, fictional, narrative prose normally longer than a short story but shorter than a novel. Can cover any genre. Less than 40,000 words.

Young Adult - The subject matter and story lines of young adult literature are typically consistent with the age and experience of the main character, usually teens to early 20's, but this literature spans the spectrum of fiction genres. Stories that focus on the specific challenges of youth are sometimes referred to as problem novels or coming-of-age novels.

Science Fiction - speculative fiction, typically dealing with imaginative concepts such as futuristic science and technology, space travel, time travel, faster than light travel, parallel universes, and extraterrestrial life. Science fiction often explores the potential consequences of scientific and other innovations, and has been called a "literature of ideas."

Fantasy - A fiction genre set in an imaginary universe, often but not always without any locations, events, or people from the real world. Most fantasy uses magic or other supernatural elements as a main plot element, theme, or setting. Magic and magical creatures are common in many of these imaginary worlds.



Judging Overview

Plot (10 Points Possible)

Characterization (10 Points Possible)

Setting (10 Points Possible)

Originality (10 Points Possible)

Continuity (10 Points Possible)

Editing (10 Points Possible)

Presentation and Format (10 Points Possible)

Overall Recommended Score (10 Possible Points)

Total Possible Points (80)

In the Preliminary Judging Round, all novels are judged and the top two novels in each category move onto the Final Judging Round. Grand Prize, Second Prize and Third Prize winners will be determined from this pool by top aggregate scores awarded by the Final Round Judges. Category Winners must have a score of 60 or above to qualify for the Final Round. All Winners will be determined by the Final Round Judges.

The identities of our judges are confidential.

Announcement of Winners

The official list of category winners and the overall winner will be posted on the Bookstore Without Border's website by 12:00 p.m. MDT on April 1, 2018

On April 1, 2018, the Bookstore Without Borders staff shall notify the winners and all those authors who have entered, via e-mail. All Award Monies will be paid via PayPal within 5 business days.



* “Eligible Novel” means a work of independently published fiction of at least 40,000 words (as determined by computer word count) that is offered for sale in a readable or audio format to the general public. The work must be independently published.

** “Eligible Novella” means a work of fiction of 17,500 to 39,999 words as determined by computer word count that is offered for sale in a readable or audio format to the general public. The work must be independently published.

BWB ~ (Bookstore Without Borders) - reserves the right(s) to use and promote any and all Winner's "Likness", "Name", "Title", "Book Cover", and or "Story" of their Contest Winners for Promotional and Advertising purposes.


Please E-mail questions to


Completed entry form and the fee of $50USD must be received by Bookstore Without Borders no later than December 31st, 2017


Any forms and fees received after the deadline will not be processed.


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