2023 SCWC Notable Book Awards open for submissions

The Southern Christian Writers Conference is accepting submissions through Dec. 20 for its 2023 SCWC Notable Book Awards contest, which recognizes outstanding fiction and nonfiction by Christian authors.
The Southern Christian Writers Conference is held in June and features keynote speakers, breakout sessions and networking opportunities.
Photo by Tracy Riggs Frontz/The Alabama Baptist

2023 SCWC Notable Book Awards open for submissions

The 2023 SCWC Notable Book Awards, an annual competition sponsored by the Southern Christian Writers Conference, are now open for submissions. The awards recognize outstanding published work by Christian authors during the previous year, and include categories for both self-published and traditionally published works of fiction, nonfiction, devotionals, children’s and young adult books, and e-books.

Three finalists in each category will be announced on Jan. 13, with winners announced in a formal ceremony on Feb. 9, 2024. The deadline to enter a book in the competition is Dec. 20.

Southern Christian Writers Conference coordinator Cheryl Wray said that the awards, which debuted in 2018, offer a unique way to recognize authors.

“We wanted to do something to recognize quality books that have been written and published by both traditional publishers and authors themselves,” she said. “There are a lot of wonderful books being written today, and we want to draw attention to them.”

Educating, encouraging

Wray’s organization, which works in partnership with TAB Media, was founded in 1991 as a way to both educate and encourage writers of faith throughout the Southeast. Its book awards extend that goal of encouraging writers.

“This is our way of validating authors’ calls from God to serve and witness through their writing,” Wray said.

All Christian authors are encouraged to enter, and membership in the Southern Christian Writers Conference is not required.

Books are judged by SCWC staff members and professionals in each contest category. Winners receive a cash prize, certificate and marketing kit to promote their writing. All finalists and their families are invited to attend the SCWC Notable Book Awards ceremony, which is held in Northport, Alabama, and hosted by SCWC founders David and Joanne Sloan.


Following are the rules to enter the contest:

  1. Books must have been published in 2023.
  2. Books don’t have to be published by a religious publisher, but they should be inspiring and reflect a Christian mindset.
  3. Books can be entered in any of these categories: Fiction (traditionally published); Fiction (self-published); Nonfiction (traditionally published); Nonfiction (self published); Devotional (any type of publisher); Children’s/young adult (any type of publisher); and E-book.
  4. A submission fee of $15 must be included with each entry. Email scwritersconference@gmail.comto get information on how to pay by Venmo, PayPal, credit/debit card or check.
  5. If you’re submitting an e-book, email a link to the e-book or a PDF copy to scwritersconference@gmail.com.
  6. If you’re submitting a printed book, mail a copy to SCWC, PO Box 3057, Hueytown AL 35023.
  7. Please include the following information with your correspondence: Name, email address, phone number and category entering.

Books can be submitted by either authors or publishers.

According to Wray, books are judged on writing quality, publishing quality and message.

“We want to show the world that there are high-quality books being written and published by Christian authors,” she said. “We pray that the Notable Book Awards will spread the word and also provide exposure for Christian authors.”

Previous winners

Last year’s winners were:

  • Self-published fiction: John Cunningham, Turfmen and the Prodigal.
  • Self-published nonfiction: David Chancey, Marvelous Faith: Pursuing the Faith that Makes Jesus Marvel.
  • Traditionally published fiction: Kathy Maresca, Porch Music.
  • Traditionally published nonfiction: Mabel Ninan, Far from Home: Discovering your Identity as Foreigners on Earth.
  • Devotional: Lettie Whisman, Climbing Higher: 40 Devotions for Hikers.
  • Children’s and young adult: Wendy Lanier, Too Many Pigs in the Pool.

For more information, contact Cheryl Wray  at scwritersconference@gmail.com

EDITOR’S NOTE — This story was written by Cheryl Wray.