Monday, May 13, 2013

The EPIC eBook Awards are Coming!

This week I'm interviewing EPIC's fearless eBook Award Competition Chair, Debi Sullivan.

Disclaimer: Several of our books have finaled in this contest, and one, Directions of Love, won. I have had the privilege of presenting the award at several EPICon conferences.

Debi, you have been managing this contest for quite a few years (akin to herding cats). How long have you taken on this challenge?

I initially volunteered to work behind the scenes and started out as a judge, moved to category judge coordinator, then inherited *grin* the Competitions Chair position in 2007. At the time, I was already the New Voices Young Writers Chair, which made for a VERY chaotic and wacky first year as EPIC’s overall Competitions Chair.

What are the biggest challenges you face?

Entrants following the rules; doesn’t matter if they are young or old, folks just don’t pay attention to the details. *sigh* Best suggestion I can give any entrant: Read the RULES! *grin*

How does a book qualify for entry?

Any English-language ebook published and available for sale to the public between June 1, 2012 and May 31, 2013 is eligible for this year’s contest.

How many entries do you usually receive, and how many awards are presented?

We usually average 700 entries within a four-week period. The numbers of awards we present vary as we constantly update the current categories to reflect genres within the electronic industry and past entries. This year we are offering 24 categories for the eBook Competition and 11 categories for the Ariana eBook Cover Art Competition.

How do you recruit judges? Who is eligible?

I am blessed to have a loyal group of volunteers who step up every year, for both the eBook and New Voices Young Writers competitions. But we can always use more. For eBook, we seek published authors, publishers, and/or editors; for New Voices, we add teachers and librarians to that mix.

What makes this award different from other writing competitions out there?

EPIC's eBook Competition has garnered a reputation for excellence from both entrants and judges, a reputation that continues to shine as we move into the future. I am extremely proud to know that I play an integral part in the progressive changes to our competitions.

What do the winners receive? How about the finalists?

Our eBook and Ariana competition finalists receive gorgeous certificates and are prominently posted on our website. The category winners receive stunning trophies and are honored at our annual EPICon ( awards banquet before being announced on our website.

What is EPICon, for those who don’t already know?

EPICon is EPIC’s annual convention. It is three days chock full of marvelous and informative workshops reflecting the current needs of the industry, both electronic and print. You never know who will be there—whether it is a well-known author or the latest marketing/promo guru and/or agent. It is the perfect venue to mingle with publishing peers. And there is so much going on that there is sure to be something for everyone.

Can only members attend EPICon?

Any industry member, aspiring writer, or reader is welcome. I would definitely suggest checking to learn about the fabulous events scheduled for March 2014. And it is taking place in one of my favorite cities—San Antonio, Texas! What’s not to love about cowboys, ghosts (the Menger Hotel is chockfull!), the Alamo, the Riverwalk, great food, the Reader eFiesta, door prizes, and incredible workshops?

When does the contest begin this year?

Both the eBook and Ariana eBook Cover Art Competitions open for entries on June 1, 2013.

Where can authors get more information?

There are links to all our competitions at

Thank you so much for all the good information, Debi! Next week, we’ll hear about the exciting New Voices/Young Writers program.

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