Categories & Criteria

General Criteria

  • The book must have an ISBN.
  • The book must have a print run of at least 350 copies within its first twelve months of publication.
  • The book must be at least 48 pages long, unless it is a children’s picture book in which case it must be at least 24 pages long.
  • The book must show in print that it was published in the appropriate eligible year.
  • The main language of the book must be English, or any of the traditional languages of the Indigenous peoples of British Columbia or Yukon. All books submitted in an Indigenous language must be accompanied by an English language translation.
  • The book may have been published anywhere.
  • To be eligible, self-published books must have gone through a formal editing process carried out by a third party.
  • Anthologies, guide books, cookbooks, and how-to books will not be considered.
  • More than half of the book’s content must be new work.
  • With the exception of the Roderick Haig-Brown Regional Prize, the author must have lived in BC/Yukon for the past 12 months or have lived in BC/Yukon for at least three of the past five years.
  • In the event there is more than one author, the primary creator must fulfill the BC residency requirements or at least 50% of the authors must fulfill the BC residency requirements.
  • Three copies of the submitted book must be provided for the jury for each prize category entered.
  • Submissions must be made using the BC Book Prizes Official Entry Form.
  • The entry fee of $30.00 per prize category must accompany the Official Entry Form.

See How to Enter for more details.

Expectations of finalists and winners

  • The publishers of finalist books will be expected to participate in the shared cost of print ads placed in BC newspapers announcing the finalists. Cost per book is $100.
  • The publishers of finalist books will be asked to sponsor the Soirée. Cost per book is $100.
  • The publishers of winning books will be expected to participate in the shared cost of print ads placed in BC newspapers and BC Bookworld announcing the winners, and of the winner posters and bookmarks which are distributed to BC libraries and bookstores. Cost per book is $300.
  • All publishers, authors, and illustrators are invited to attend the Soirée which is a free event.
  • Tickets to the BC Book Prizes Gala are not provided to finalists so must be paid for by the authors/illustrators or their publishers in order for them to attend.
  • The publishers of winning books will be expected to provide up to 7 copies of the book for the “Win the Winners” contest.
  • The publishers of finalist books will provide a 50% discount on books purchased by the BC Book Prizes for the Adopt-a-Library Program.

By submitting your title for a BC Book Prize, you are agreeing to these terms.

Categories

Ethel Wilson Fiction Prize

Awarded to the author(s) of the best original work of literary fiction.

Supported by Friesens

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Hubert Evans Non-Fiction Prize

Awarded to the author(s) of the best original work of literary non-fiction.

Supported by the BC Teachers’ Federation

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Dorothy Livesay Poetry Prize

Awarded to the author(s) of the best work of poetry.

Supported by Anonymous and International Web exPress

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Roderick Haig-Brown Regional Prize

Awarded to the author(s) of the book which contributes the most to the enjoyment and understanding of the province of British Columbia. The book must be original and may deal with any aspect of the province.

Supported by Marquis

Eligibility Criteria contrary to General Criteria:

  • The author(s) may reside outside of BC/Yukon.

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Sheila A. Egoff Children’s Literature Prize

Awarded to the author(s) of literary books, including novels, chapter books, and non-fiction books, aimed at juveniles and young adults, which have not been highly illustrated.

Supported by Teresa James

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Christie Harris Illustrated Children’s Literature Prize

Awarded to the author(s) and illustrator(s) of picture books, picture story books, graphic novels, and illustrated non-fiction books for children. The prize is shared by the author(s) and illustrator(s).

Supported by Kate Walker and Vancouver Kidsbooks

Eligibility Criteria in addition to General Criteria:

  • The illustrator(s) of the book are considered authors for the purposes of residency eligibility.

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Jim Deva Prize for Writing That Provokes

Awarded to the author(s) and/or illustrators of an original work of published writing (poetry, fiction or nonfiction for adults or children, including graphic novels or picture books) that challenges or provokes the ideas and forces that shape what writing, art, and/or society can become.

Supported by a generous donation by Bruce Smyth

Eligibility Criteria in addition to General Criteria:

  • Books shortlisted for this prize will demonstrate a vitality and urgency that breaks boundaries and blazes new paths within their genre that others may follow. 
  • This prize is dedicated to writers who demonstrate a spirit of perseverance and a commitment to pushing boundaries and changing the status quo.

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Special Prize (with own Eligibility Criteria)

Bill Duthie Booksellers’ Choice Award

Presented to the originating publisher(s) and the author(s) of the book that is the most successful in terms of public appeal, initiative, design, production, and content.
The prize is shared by the publisher(s) and the author(s).
BC/Yukon booksellers determine the winner by ballot vote.

Supported by Ampersand, the British Columbia Booksellers Association, Sandhill Book Marketing, and the Western Book Reps Association

Eligibility Criteria:

  • The book must have an ISBN.
  • The book must have a print run of at least 350 copies within its first year of publication.
  • The book must be at least 48 pages long, unless it is a children’s picture book in which case it must be at least 24 pages long.
  • The book must show in print that it was published in the appropriate eligible year.
  • To be eligible, self-published books must have gone through a formal editing process carried out by a third party.
  • The publisher must have its head office in BC/Yukon.
  • The author must have lived in BC/Yukon for the past 12 months or have lived in BC/Yukon for at least three of the past five years.
  • In the event there is more than one author, the primary creator must fulfill the BC residency requirements or at least 50% of the authors must fulfill the BC residency requirements.
  • The creative control in terms of editing, design, and production must have been within BC/Yukon.
  • Submissions must be made using the BC Book Prizes Official Entry Form.
  • The entry fee of $30.00 must accompany the Official Entry Form.
  • See How to Enter for more details.

» More