Please submit manuscripts in standard format. Revisions to submissions require a new fee. If your work has been selected, you will be notified--due to the volume of submissions we receive, we are unable to respond on an individual basis.

We are currently accepting manuscripts for the AUXmedia roster that can be adapted for film and/or TV. 

·         Literary Fiction

·         Mystery/Suspense/Thriller

·         Memoir

·         Romance (Must have well-rounded characters and a solid plot. No erotica, please.)

Please allow 4-6 weeks for a response. Processing fee is nonrefundable.


Fiction Grand Prize: $1,000 and publication

Nonfiction Grand Prize: $1,000 and publication

The Willow Books Literature Awards recognize literary excellence by writers of color. 

The 2018-2019 Grand Prize Winner for Fiction is Loreen Lilyn Lee for The Lava Never Sleeps: A Honolulu Memoir. 

The postmark deadline for entry forms is December 15, 2019. Four Finalists will be announced on February 15, 2020. The Grand Prize winners will be announced April 15, 2020.


A. Fiction and Nonfiction categories will be selected by the editorial staff of Willow Books (a division of Aquarius Press), and guest judges. 

B. Four Finalists will be announced on February 15, 2020. 

C. One Grand Prize Winner in Fiction will receive $1,000 and publication by Willow Books. One Grand Prize Winner in Nonfiction will receive $1,000 and publication by Willow Books.

D. Winning manuscripts may also be considered for development by a media studio.


Style, subject, and length requirements:

1. Style and subject open. Manuscripts should be paginated and formatted in Adobe Garamond 11 pt., Minion Pro 11 pt. or Palatino Linotype 10 pt. font. Please do not include any identifying information such as name, address, or headers/footers containing entrant's name. Full-length manuscripts not exceeding 200 pages in length, including front and back matter (table of contents, title page, etc.), are eligible. Collections of short stories, novellas, etc. are also eligible. Entries must not be under consideration by any other press at time of submission.

2. Entries should be double-spaced with single spacing after punctuation. 

Other guidelines for submissions

1. All submissions must include a title page (title only; no identifying information). Author must be a U.S. citizen and self-identify as a writer of color; please attach a brief bio and brief statement attesting to identification as a writer of color. Entries lacking the required elements will be disqualified.

2. Anthologies containing work written by multiple authors are not eligible.

3. A planned reprint of a book published in a previous award year is not eligible.

4. In the event of a dispute as to eligibility, the Willow Books Editor and Publisher will decide whether a book is eligible, and their decisions will be binding.

5. Authors previously published by Aquarius Press/Willow Books and/or currently under contract are not eligible.


A. Entries must be postmarked no later than December 15, 2019.

B. Please submit your manuscript and nonrefundable submission fee via Submittable. There is a $25 entry fee. Payment must be included with the entry by the deadline. There is no limit on the number of entries, but each entry should have its own entry fee.

C. Disqualified entries are nonrefundable.

D. Submissions cannot be returned.



Writer must agree to the following:

1. Finalists must agree to participate in Aquarius Press/Willow Books' website-related publicity, including any scheduled online events with readers.

2. Monetary prizes will be paid out with author’s first royalty statement.

3. Grand Prize winners are responsible for meeting personal tax filing requirements.

Author agrees that the decision of the Aquarius Press/Willow Books and/or the judges will be final as to all matters, including eligibility, timeliness of submissions, and compliance with these Entry Rules and the Awards. Aquarius Press/Willow Books shall have the permanent right in any and all media throughout the world to use and exploit all radio, television, merchandising, promotional, and publicity rights that the author may have in connection with participation in the Willow Books Literature Awards without further consent or payment. Author also releases any claim he/she/they might have by virtue of his/her/their respective participation in the Willow Books Literature Awards competition, for use of his/her/their respective photographs, names, likenesses, voice, or appearances in connection with the Willow Books Literature Awards.

Aquarius Press/AUXmedia/Willow Books