Washington Book Publishers
Serving Publishing Professionals in the Washington, DC, Area

Book Design & Effectiveness Awards

Call for Entries

Now in its 29th year the Washington Book Publishers Book Design and Effectiveness Competition recognizes, celebrates, and encourages excellence in bookmaking across the greater Washington, DC book publishing community. The competition’s judges evaluate the excellence of each book’s design and effectiveness in achieving the publisher’s goals, meeting the readers’ needs, and reaching its market. Prizes are awarded in 15 categories, five designs for each of the three publisher categories – plus best of show.
Submit entries by March 28th, 2014; submit entry fees and hard copies of books by April 10, 2014

The entry fee is $40.00 for each online entry; that is, for each book and each category.

Make checks payable to Washington Book Publishers, taxpayer ID # 52-2032077

About the Awards

 Who Can Enter?

Membership in Washington Book Publishers is not required. Anyone affiliated with the production and publication of a qualifying book may submit an entry.

Submitted books, whether priced or disseminated for free, must meet the following criteria:

*The publisher must be located in the
  District of Columbia, Maryland, Virginia,
  West Virginia.
*Books must be copyrighted by or carry the
   ISBN of an eligible publisher
*Books must have a spine
*Books must have been published between
  April 1, 2013 and March 31, 2014
*Entries must be received electronically by
  March 28, 2014
*Entry fees must be paid online or via check
  by April 10th

Publisher Categories

Books will compete against others within the same category of publisher.
The publisher categories are:
Commercial publisher
Small-to-medium-size non-profit publishers (35 or fewer books per year)
Large non-profit publishers (more than 35 books per year)

Co-published volumes will be judged in the commercial category if any of the co-publishers is commercial. A non-profit publisher may include membership and trade associations, university presses, branches of federal or state government, IGOs, and policy and research organizations.

Design Categories

Awards are given to books that are exemplary in the execution of their text and cover designs in each of three publisher categories. In addition, one book—judged to have the best overall design and effectiveness—will be awarded Best of Show. Books may be entered under any of the following five design categories:

Illustrated Text:
Illustrations (such as photographs, line drawings, and maps) drive the design of these books. Examples include (but are not limited to) art, museum, pictorial history books, and illustrated reports.

Typographic Text: Typography (the effective use of type) drives the design of these books, which may include a signature of illustrations. Examples include (but are not limited to) biography, fiction, history, popular science and social science books.

Technical Text:
  Typography and the presentation of data (in figures, tables, graphs, charts, photographs, and line drawings) drive the design of these books. Examples include (but are not limited to) scientific, technical and medical books.

Illustrated Jacket or Cover:
In this category, illustrations drive award-winning jackets and covers. Photographs, images, and illustrations should dominate the design.

Typographic Jacket or Cover:
In this category, typographic treatment of words drives award-winning jackets and covers. A textured background or thumbnail image may be present, but words in type should dominate the design.
How to Enter
Deadlines and Entry Fees

Deadline for entries: March 28, 2014

Deadline for entry Fees: April 10, 2013

The fee for each entry in each category is $40. Complete a separate online entry form and pay the fee for each book and each category (even if the same book is entered in two categories).

For example, if you are entering the same book in the Technical Text category and the Typographic Jacket or Cover category, you must complete an entry form for each category, send a separate copy of the book for each category, and pay a total of $80 for the two entry fees.

(For Illustrated or Typographic jacket or cover submissions, please do not send jackets without the books.) All books will be donated to DC Public Libraries after the awards ceremony.

o Enter

Online Entry Form

1. Complete the online entry form and then print it out.

2. Place the completed form inside the book’s front cover. Folding is okay; so is a rubber band. Please do not use tape, staples, or paper clips (or anything that would damage the cover).

Two Ways to Pay

1. Send a check for the total of all individual entries--$40 per entry category. Make checks payable to Washington Book Publishers, taxpayer ID # 52-2032077.

2. Pay online by credit card using PayPal for the total of all individual entries--$40 per entry category

Where to send entries and checks:

Ship entries via courier, UPS, USPS, or Fed ex to arrive by April 10, 2014
Send a copy of the book to:
Kathleen DeBoer
OECD, 2001 L Street NW, Suite 650
Washington, DC 20036-4922

Fine Print:

WBP is not responsible for delayed or lost mail. Overpayments will be refunded at the conclusion of the competition. Books for which entry fees have not been paid by April 10th will be removed from the competition. Entry fees are non-refundable unless entries are disqualified. Books will not be returned.

About the Judging

Four judges, with extensive experience in publishing and bookselling will review the entries and may select first, second, and third place winners in each of the 15 categories, as well as the Best of Show. Depending on the merit of the entries, the judges may also award honorable mentions or may elect not to award prizes in a category.

All judges’ decisions are final. Judges with any potential conflict of interest related to the entries in a category will excuse themselves from voting on that category. If a publisher enters a book in an incorrect publisher or design category, WBP reserves the right to reassign the entry to the correct category. WBP’s decision in such cases will be final. Books not published between April 1, 2013 and March 31, 2014 will be removed from the competition.

Please note that books published on or after April 1, 2014 may be entered in next year’s competition.

Please note: After the judging, a pdf or tiff file will be requested from the awardees to prepare a slide show and website of winning entries.

WBP reserves the right to publish the names of winning publishers, individuals, and books, as well as photographs of said individuals and books.


About the Awards Ceremony

Winners will be announced and the awards will be presented at a reception and ceremony on Friday May 16th, 2014. Cosponsored by the DC Public Library, the reception and ceremony are open to the public and will be held at the Tenley-Friendship DC Public Library.

The event will feature an interactive forum with the judges, the designers, and editors of winning entries, and the audience. All books submitted to the competition will be on display, with the winning entries shown prominently. After the ceremony, books entered in the competition will be donated to DC Public Library.

Tickets for the event must be purchased in advance and cannot be purchased at the door. Look for invitations in your email or on this website.

Email: Kathleen.deboer@oecd.org
Kathleen DeBoer, WBP Vice President 2013-2014