The ABRAMS Amplify Award FAQs

How do I submit an entry?

  • Click here between April 1, 2023, and September 1, 2023, to access our entry form. Once you have filled out your contact information and a brief bio, you can upload a short synopsis, the first 50 pages of your manuscript, and a detailed plot summary as part of your entry form.

Who is eligible for this specific award?

  • We encourage the work of creators who self-identify as Black, Asian/Pacific Islander, Latinx, Middle Eastern, or Native American/Indigenous.

Why encourage BIPOC creators?

  • The ABRAMS Amplify Award is our contribution to the effort in publishing to share and uplift—in a word, amplify—those whose voices have traditionally been excluded.

I live in a U.S. territory. Am I eligible to submit to the ABRAMS Amplify Award?

  • No. Only writers from the 50 United States and the District of Columbia are eligible.

Can I still submit to the ABRAMS Amplify Award if I am self-published?

  • Yes. If you are a self-published author, you are eligible for the award. However, please submit a new manuscript for consideration rather than one that has already been self-published.

I don’t have an agent. Can I still submit my manuscript?

  • Yes. In fact, this award is only open to manuscripts from unagented writers. If your entry is a winning submission and ABRAMS makes an offer for publication, you may choose to find an agent to represent you.

By entering this contest, am I giving up my copyright?

  • No. Your intellectual property will remain yours.

Is there a fee to enter?

  • No. Entry is free.

Once I email my submission, will I receive confirmation that it has been received by ABRAMS?

  • Yes. Once your entry form and submission have been received, you will receive an automated email confirming receipt.

What kind of manuscript should I submit?

  • We are seeking middle-grade fiction or nonfiction for readers ranging from ages 8–14. Submissions can be in any genre—fantasy, contemporary, science fiction, mystery, humor, etc.—as long as they center a child character and the kid point of view. We are looking for books that reflect the diversity of the world around us, but we don’t expect every story to be about the character’s identity.

Does my manuscript need to be complete at the time I submit it for this award?

  • For the purposes of this award, we are only asking for the first 50 pages of each manuscript plus a brief synopsis (200 words max) and a one-page full plot summary (700 words max). However, we strongly recommend that your manuscript be completed at the time of entry; if you are a winner and would like to be considered for publication, submission of a full manuscript must be made within one month after receiving notification of the award.

Is there a specific word count you are looking for?

  • Most middle-grade novels are between 40,000 and 70,000 words, but this is only a guideline and not a requirement.

Who will be judging submissions for this award?

  • A panel of five publishing professionals, including ABRAMS editors and a published BIPOC author, will review all submissions.

What will the judging be based on?

  • The panel will judge each submission on originality, strength of voice, unique and memorable characters (or unique and memorable subject matter for nonfiction), appeal to readers between the ages of 8–14, and thought-provoking themes.

When does this contest begin and end?

  • Entries will be accepted via email between 5:00 pm EST on April 1, 2023, and 5:00 pm EST on September 1, 2023.

How many prizes will be awarded, and what could I win?

  • Three prize levels are available:
  • 1st prize = $5,000, editorial notes, and a one-on-one video conference meeting with an ABRAMS editor to discuss your submission
  • 2nd prize = $2,500 and editorial notes on your submission from an ABRAMS editor
  • 3rd prize = $1,000 and editorial notes on your submission from an ABRAMS editor

If I win one of the prizes, will you publish my manuscript?

  • All winners will have an opportunity for their manuscript to be reviewed by the ABRAMS editorial team for a possible offer of publication. While all eligible submissions will be considered, an offer for publication is not guaranteed for any winners or entries. If an offer of publication is made, you don’t have to accept it; you may evaluate the details of an offer if/when it is made with no obligation.

How and when will I know if I’ve won?

  • We will notify winners by email on or about February 16, 2024. If you have not received an email from us by the end of February 2024, you may assume your submission has not been selected and you should feel free to submit the manuscript elsewhere.

How and when will winners be announced publicly?

  • ABRAMS will announce the winners on our website and in a public press release shortly after winner confirmation.

Can I send in a manuscript that I’ve already submitted to other publishers, agents, or contests?

  • No. Manuscripts that have been submitted to other publishers, agents, or writing contests are not eligible, and manuscript submissions for this award may not be submitted to other publishers, agents, or writing contests while under consideration at ABRAMS.

Can I submit more than one middle-grade manuscript for consideration?

  • We will only be accepting one submission per person for award consideration.

I don’t write for the middle-grade audience. Will there be future awards for different genres?

  • Yes! We look forward to welcoming submissions for many different genres in the future. For our 2024 ABRAMS Amplify Award, for example, we will be inviting picture book creators to submit their work.

I want to check out the Official Rules for this award. Where can I find those?


Thanks very much for your interest!