Category: Awards (page 1 of 2)

To celebrate the end of 2017, we at SDBA are honored to now have stickers available for those who have entered and become finalists. As a special thank you for those who have submitted so bravely in previous years, this is our way of letting you know your hard work and support have not gone unnoticed.

Stickers are available for purchase in the SDBA store!

San Diego Book Awards

Unpublished Entry Window NOW OPEN

Calling all Unpublished Entries for the
2018 San Diego Book Awards!

Entry fee for each Unpublished Novel/Novels for Children/Memoir submission is $30.00.

Entry fee for each Unpublished Short Story/Poetry Chapbook submission is $15.00.

  • The submission period for unpublished entries will begin on October 1, 2017, and end on November 30, 2017.
  • The San Diego Book Awards competition is open to current residents of San Diego County only.
  • If a manuscript has multiple authors, at least one must reside within San Diego County. Manuscripts by former residents of San Diego County will not be considered.
  • Judging in the Unpublished Novel/Novels for Children/Memoir category is a two-step process:
    • Entrants will submit the first thirty pages of their novel or memoir for preliminary judging.
    • Finalists will be chosen from those entries and will be asked to send in their complete manuscripts for final judging. Finalists will be notified by phone or email before April 1, 2017.
  • Writers may submit more than one entry in more than one category, but a separate submission fee and entry form must accompany each entry.
  • All submissions remain the literary property of the writer.
  • Incomplete entries or entries received after the deadline will not be judged.
  • Submissions received with postage due will be discarded and not judged.

Please Note: The unpublished competition is open only to writers who have never:
…….** published a short story (if entering in the short story competition)
…….** published a poetry chapbook (if entering in the poetry chapbook competition)
…….** published a full-length novel (if entering the novel/novel for children competition)
…….** published a memoir (if 
entering the memoir competition). 

If you are submitting a novel for children, be sure to indicate the age/grade level on the cover page. Middle grade (grades 3, 4, 5), middle school (grades 6, 7, 8), and young adult/YA (high school and above). Remember, children like to read stories with protagonists older than they are. If you’re writing for young adults, don’t have the protagonist be 12 years old.

Deadline: November 30, 2017. Entries postmarked after that date will not be judged.

For additional information, please see our GUIDELINES.

2016 SDBAA Logo w text

At long last, our winner sticker is available for digital use! You can add it to your book covers, press releases, and website! The file comes as a PNG.

And don’t worry, our regular stickers are still available at our store!


Don’t forget to enter this year’s contest!

10/1/17 – 11/30/17 Unpublished Entry Window

1/1/18 – 1/31/18 Published Entry Window

2018 Contest Submission Window!

The entry window for the 2018 contest is now here!

10/1/17 – 11/30/17 Unpublished Entry Window

1/1/18 – 1/31/18 Published Entry Window

San Diego Book Awards

Finalists to be Announced!

SDBA Finalists for 20174 soon to be announcedThe 2017 SDBA Finalists will be listed after May 15th. STAY TUNED!

You’re Invited to the 2017 SDBA Ceremony

2017 SDBA Ceremony

June 10th, 6 p.m.
Sheraton La Jolla Hotel
3299 Holiday Ct.
La Jolla CA 92037, USA

Image result for Sheraton La Jolla Hotel conference room


Occupancy is limited, but tickets are now on sale! $29.00 for ticket purchases BEFORE May 26, 2017. $35.00 after the early bird deadline.  

Tickets can be purchased via check (Just mail it to SD Book Awards, P.O. Box 6487, Oceanside, CA 92052. *Please make checks payable to SD Book Awards) or purchase them here via PayPal.

*Please spell out the full name of all attendees at the time of ticket purchase so we will have name tags for everyone at the ceremony. If you’re mailing in your registration, write the names on a separate sheet and include with your check. If you’re paying by PayPal, write the names in the “comments” section. If for any reason the comment section does not appear, please email us your attendees names at

Wall Street Journal Honors Chet Cunningham

[Chet] didn’t wait for inspiration to strike. “A carpenter doesn’t not go into work because he has carpenter’s block,” said his daughter, Christine Ashworth, also a novelist. “He considered writing a craft, and he just did it.”

Read the full article here.

San Diego Union-Tribune’s John Wilkens Honors Chet Cunningham

This is a wonderful article about a wonderful man.

Click here to read John Wilken’s article.

Chet Cunningham, SDBAA Founder, Passes at 88

Chet Cunningham
December 9, 1928 – March 14, 2017

Chet Cunningham, a beloved San Diego writer, and founder of the San Diego Book Awards Association has passed after 88 years of life–a life which changed the very culture San Diego writing and writers.

“Chet was a tremendous inspiration to me and shaped my life by introducing me to the San Diego Book Awards Association, where we worked together for fifteen years. Yet of all of his achievements, it was his relationship with his wife, Rosie, that inspired me most. If I can be half the man and husband he was, I will consider myself a success.” -Former SDBAA President Bradley Steffens

Jean Forsythe, President of SDBAA had been in contact with him about the “Chet Cunningham Spur Award” for best unpublished entry (one of his personal passions was to promote unpublished writers in San Diego). SDBAA Board members were all excited about the ceremony June 10, 2017 at the Sheraton La Jolla Hotel. He was going to try to attend and present the “Chet” for the first time.

San Diego Writers will feel the ripples of this man’s life for generations.


2016 SDBAA Logo w text

Due to the requests of entrants, the Fall 2016 Submission Window for Unpublished Entries has been extended!


Open to all writers residing in San Diego County.

Winners will be determined by a panel of judges.


Unpublished/Published entries from 2015* and 2016 are both eligible.

*Due to the installation of a new Board of Directors in 2016, unpublished and published books with a 2015 copyright or publication date will be eligible. Only one winner will be awarded in each genre.

For complete rules, guidelines and entry forms, please visit:

Or write to: SDBA
P.O. Box 6487
Oceanside, CA 92056


We look forward to reading your stories,
San Diego Book Awards Association Board of Directors and Judges

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