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Opportunities for Self-Published Authors with Shelf Unbound

When we launched our first Shelf Unbound Writing Competition for Best Self-Published Book last fall, I was thrilled by the response (800+ entries), by the quality of the submissions, and by the sense of community, I felt from engaging with these authors and their works. In response to all of that, Shelf Unbound has some new initiatives for 2013 that might interest self-published authors.

Writing Competition

First, the call for entries for our second annual writing competition for best self-published book will go out in the middle of the year—if you sign up for a free subscription to Shelf Unbound magazine, you will be the first to know when we announce it. We will feature the winners of the 2013 competition in the December/January 2014 issue of Shelf Unbound magazine, which reaches 125,000 avid readers in the US and in 57 countries around the globe.

Notable Authors

Second, we’re launching a regular department that will feature notable books submitted to our competition that did not make it into the “winners” issue.


Third, to provide a forum and community for self-published authors, I’m inviting self-published authors to be guest bloggers on the Shelf Media blog. I’m looking for 250- to 300-word essays on writing and/or self-publishing—talk about your book and give it a plug and include your website and/or links to your book. Just email me your text and I’ll let you know when I run it ( Please put “guest blog” in your subject line.

Finally, we have ad rates for self-published authors starting as low as $250 – shoot me an email if you’d like details –

I invite you all to be a part of the Shelf Unbound magazine community. I wish you all the best in the New Year. Keep writing.

Margaret Brown is the founder and publisher of Shelf Unbound book review magazine, a 2012 Maggie Award Finalist for Best Digital-Only Magazine. She is a lifetime member of the National Book Critics Circle.

3 thoughts on “Opportunities for Self-Published Authors with Shelf Unbound”

  1. This is a great opportunity for self-published authors to advertise their work. Blogging and letting everyone know about their book. Self-publishing is all about hard work and good work.

  2. Question, “Who can you trust?” Even though my first book was self-published, I still enlisted the services of a publishing company in order to get my library of congress number, the ISBN, get listed with, Barnes and Noble, and other book sellers. My problem is, I have yet to receive any royalties even though I know books were sold. I am working on my second book and am in need of another publisher. Who can I trust?

  3. A big problem with independent writing is the leeches that feed off of you – so-called publicisits, marketers, pr firms, you name it. They swarm on you like flies, but deliver little, if anything. I’ve had my share of blind alleys up that route.

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