The judging panel is made up of five women, one of whom is appointed Chair by the organisers. Each judge has an equal vote. A new panel is chosen each year.
The Prize is open to any full length novel, written in English by a woman of any nationality, provided that the novel is published for the first time in print form the United Kingdom between 1 April of the year before the Prize is awarded and 31 March of the year in which the Prize is awarded. Although the novel’s first UK publication must fall within these dates, it’s still eligible if it was previously published in English elsewhere. Only books published in the UK are eligible. To prove the book complies with this rule they need to have a UK ISBN, have the price printed in Pounds Sterling and be distributed in the UK.
Translations of books originally written in other languages are not eligible for the Prize.
We encourage publishers to submit books from all genres. These must be unified and substantial works written by a single author. Books of short stories and novellas (for the purposes of the BAILEYS Women’s Prize for Fiction, a novella is defined as a story between 12,000 and 30,000 words long) are not eligible.
E-books are eligible, but must be submitted in print form (10 copies). In the event of the book being longlisted the publisher must undertake to produce hard copies for national distribution.
Children’s books (such as young adult, teenage and crossover titles) will only be accepted on the condition that they have also been published by an adult imprint within the specified dates.
Novels can be submitted only by the UK publisher – or else called in by the judges – in accordance with the rules. Authors cannot enter their own novels.
All entries must be made by an established publishing house. Self-published books are not eligible for the Prize. ‘Established’ is here defined as a house which publishes a list of titles by a range of authors with ISBNs, sells them in pounds sterling, and distributes its books nationally through recognised booksellers and online retailers. For the avoidance of doubt, ‘established publishing house’ does not include print-on-demand services or publishers which publish titles via a commercial arrangement through which they are paid by the author.
The Prize is managed by the Society of Authors.
For further details, please contact Paula Johnson at the Society of Authors on firstname.lastname@example.org