Please carefully review these guidelines before submitting your entry.

Non-Refundable Submission Fee

$50 per entry


April 31, 2022 (postmarked) 


  • Author(s) must be a resident of the state of Georgia, USA

  • Entries must have been published within the 2021 calendar year (January 1 to December 31)  by a single author or collaboration of authors. Reprints and second editions are not eligible. 

  • Self and Non-traditionally published works only.

  • Entries should be professionally formatted, bound, and have an ISBN. 

  • Electronically published works are eligible but must be available on a major platform (Kindle, Nook, etc.).  For electronic entries, a URL, ISBN, and print copy must be provided.  Print copy of text is required for the judges.

  • Author(s) may enter only one book per category.

  • Books will not be considered nominated if any of these guidelines are not met and materials are not received by April 31, 2022 and payment are not received electronically at time of application. 

Winners & Awards

  • Each category will recognize a First and Second Place winner.  First place winners will be awarded a cash prize of 50.00. 

  • Winners will be announced on The Southern Pen Gifts and Books Facebook page and website on October 1, 2022.  


Author(s) may submit only ONE title per category.   50.00 submission fee per category.

  • Children’s Book—Books written for ages 9 and younger. A children’s book includes picture books and can be fiction or nonfiction.
    Fiction Categories

  • Fiction (subcategories)

    • Detective/Mystery—A novel by a single author featuring a crime or crimes

    • First Novel—First published novel by a single author

    • Literary Fiction—A novel by a single author

    • Romance—A novel by a single author intended for the mass-market and involving a primary focus on relationships

    • Science Fiction— A novel by a single author that is grounded in the science or technology of the future

    • Horror/Thriller - A novel by a single author that is intended to create fear, dread, and terror.

    • Fantasy Fiction- set in fictional universe, involve magical elements, and may be inspired by mythology or folk lore.

    • Collaborative Fiction - A novel by a group of authors

  • Nonfiction (subcategories)

    • Biography—A life history that is a fact-based, referenced life story of a person, a group of people, or a family. This category does not include autobiography, which should be nominated under memoir.

    • History—Research-based books which use narratives to examine and analyze past events

    • Inspirational—Books on topics in self-help, life improvement, motivational, religious, or spiritual.

    • Memoir—A book that is an account of one’s personal life and experiences.

    • Collaborative Non-Fiction - A book by a group of authors that is base on actual events or is inspirational.

  • Short Story Collection—By a single author

  • Specialty Book—Creative non-fiction, and fiction, and books that include a visual element such as art or photography.

  • Young Adult—Books written for ages 10 and older and are either fiction or nonfiction.

In the event a category has fewer than two entries, GIAYA reserves the right to merge the entry into the next best category and notify the author(s).

I am not sure which category to submit my book
If you are not sure which category best suits your book, we can help you.  Email us at with the title  and ISBN of your book.  We will review it and make a category suggestion.
Can I enter the same title in multiple categories?
No.  A single title can only be considered for one category
Can I enter the multiple titles in the same categories?
No.  Only one title by the same author(s) can be entered into a category
I paid someone to publish my book. Can I submit it?
  Yes.  Any book that was self-published or published in a non-traditional manner (hybrid publisher or vanity press) may submit their book
I used a publisher can I submit my book?
Books published by a small independent press are accepted.  We will not consider titles by large commercial publishing companies or their entities.
 Can I submit a title set to release in 2022?
 Titles must have a publish date between January 1 - December 31. 2021.
Who is considered a Georgia Author?
To be considered a Georgia author and thus eligible for GIAYA, an author must meet one of the following criteria: the author must have been a resident of Georgia when the submitted title was written, though she or he may have since moved out of state; or the author must be currently living in Georgia when the title is submitted.  Collaborative Titles require ALL contributing authors meet the same criteria as a single author.

Can I submit a Poetry Chapter Book?
No, at this time we do not have a category for poetry.

Any inquiries not answered here may be directed to Southern Pen Gifts & Books at:


Mailing Instructions will be sent once submission fee has been received.