Amazon is offering a £20,000 cash prize in a newly launched Kindle Storyteller Award for the UK, which extends the reach of its Storyteller prizes after setting up a scheme in Germany in 2015.
The new prize is open to all authors who publish a book through Kindle Direct Publishing on Amazon.co.uk between February 20 and May 19, 2017. Titles must be entered into the KDP Select programme for 90 days, so you’ve got to be exclusive to Amazon during that time to be eligible.
Take particular note that you must include the exact phrase “StorytellerUK2017” in the keyword metadata field when you’re publishing the book through KDP in order for Amazon to identify the book as an entry.
The competition is not restricted to UK-based authors as the terms and conditions state, ‘Open to individuals who are the older of 18 years of age or the legal age of majority in their jurisdiction of residence at the time of entry.’
The shortlist for the award will be decided by votes from readers in a similar way to the Kindle Scout scheme which has been run by Amazon in the US since 2014. Each finalist will get a Kindle Oasis ebook reader. A panel of judges made up of ‘Amazon experts and literary authorities’ will then pick the Kindle Storyteller 2017 winner.
The prize will be announced at an event in London in July, with the winning author getting £20,000 cash, a marketing campaign to support the book on Amazon.co.uk and a deal with Amazon Publishing.
Amazon EU Kindle Content Director Alessio Santarelli says, “Great books deserve to be celebrated and that’s what we want to do with the Kindle Storyteller competition. We hope to encourage aspiring authors and those who have already been published to get writing and make their new stories available to readers across the world. Publishing a book has never been easier and the Kindle Storyteller Award will reward the author whose story resonates most with both readers and literary experts.”
Amazon claims that, ‘On any given day, up to 25 per cent of the Top 100 books on the UK Kindle store are published through KDP.’
The Kindle Storyteller prize is open to submissions of new English-language books from all authors and genres and entries must be submitted using Kindle Direct Publishing. Titles must be previously unpublished and a minimum of 5,000 words with no upper word limit and no less than 24 pages when in print format.
All books entered will be available on Kindle and Fire devices as well as the Kindle reading app for iPhone, iPad, Android phones and tablets. Print copies will also be available to buy on the Amazon.co.uk store.
For more information, authors can visit www.amazon.co.uk/storyteller.
The first Kindle Storyteller Award in Germany was launched in 2015 and was won by science fiction ‘astronaut thriller’, Paradox, On the Brink of Eternity by Phillip P Peterson.
In 2016, it was won by author Halo Summer with a fantasy novel called Aschen Kindel, which seems to translate as Ash Kindel — the True Tales, and involves princes, fairies and a Forbidden Forest.
Halo Summer (what a great name for a writer) is a very popular self-published author in Germany and has written a series of fantasy novels in her Amuylett Saga with magnificent covers.
The German requirements are more rigorous than the UK competition as Amazon.de insists on a minimum of 45,000 words and at least 180 print pages as well as being exclusive to Amazon for the three-month entry period.
Amazon has competition in Germany from ebook retailer Tolino which is run by a consortium of local publishers and booksellers together with Kobo which recently took over as the technology system provider. Both Amazon and Tolino are reckoned to have around 40% each of the German ebook market.
In the UK, Amazon is overwhelmingly dominant, taking 90% or more of ebook sales.