Best Published Novel | Prize: £10,000

Terms & Conditions | Criteria for Published Work

In these Terms & Conditions: ‘Foundation’ means The Wilbur & Niso Foundation; ‘Award’ means the Foundation’s Best Published Novel Award; ‘Work’ means the book (or books) being entered for the Award; ‘Publisher’ means  the publisher of the Work in the United Kingdom; and ‘Author’ means the author of the Work. 

By submitting a Work for entry to the Awards the Publisher and Author accept and agree with these Terms & Conditions:


   a) The prize for the Award is £10,000. The Award recognises the best in adventure writing. The Foundation defines ‘adventure writing’ here.

   b) The longlist of twelve (12) Works will be announced on Wednesday 1st May 2024.

   c) The shortlist of six (6) Works will be announced on Thursday 30th May 2024.

   d) The winning Work will be announced at the Foundation’s Award Ceremony on Thursday 19th September.

   e) The Award will be given to the Author who, in the opinion of the Judges, has written the best full-length novel that is submitted and eligible for the Award. 


   a) The Award is open to Authors of any nationality writing in English.

   b) Translations of books originally written in languages other than English are not eligible for the Award.

   c) The Work must be first published between 1st May 2023 – 30th April 2024. Proof copies are accepted.

   d) The Work may be first published in any country, but must also be published in the United Kingdom by a recognised Trade Publisher on or before 30th April 2024.

   e) In these Terms & Conditions ‘Trade Publisher’, means a publishing house which publishes a list of at least two fiction novels by different authors and with ISBNs every year, sells them in Pounds Sterling, and distributes its books in the United Kingdom through established retail and/or online outlets. For the avoidance of doubt, ‘Trade Publisher’ does not include print-on-demand services or companies who publish titles via a commercial arrangement through which they are paid by the author. To comply with this rule, books need to have a UK ISBN, have the price printed in Pounds Sterling and be distributed in the United Kingdom through established retail and/or online outlets.

   f) Self-published books are not eligible for the Award. If the Publisher is a company which has been specifically set up by the Author to publish the Work, the Work is not eligible for the Award.

   g) Entries must be submitted by a Publisher. The Author's literary agent may also enter their Work for the Award provided that they have the Author's and Publisher’s consent to do so (and that the Author and Publisher have agreed with these Terms & Conditions).

   h) All Works must be unified, substantial works of fiction. Books of short stories and novellas will not be accepted. 

   i) The Award is for adult fiction. Young adult fiction is also eligible. Children's or middle-grade fiction will not be accepted. 

   j) Multiple works by the same Author may be submitted.


   a) Entries must be submitted digitally, as a .pdf file. You may watermark the file. Please contact if you have any questions about file type.

   b) The Publisher must ensure that the Author of the Work submitted for the Award gives their consent to entry and agrees to abide by the Terms and Conditions.

   c) Publishers should complete an online entry form for each Work they are submitting, which is available via the Wilbur & Niso Smith Foundation website.


   a) The Publisher agrees that if a Work is longlisted or shortlisted for the Award or wins the Award, the Publisher will feature the roundel artwork on all subsequent editions or reprints of the Work published by the Publisher. The longlisting, shortlisting or win must be acknowledged in all online sales copy. 

   b) The Publisher agrees that if a Work is shortlisted: 

     - the Publisher will contribute £750 (plus VAT if applicable) towards the Foundation’s promotional activities connected with the Award and the Work. Payment of this contribution shall be made by the Publisher by bank transfer within seven (7) days of the Publisher’s receipt of an invoice from the Foundation.

     - the Publisher will provide twenty-five (25) printed copies of the Work to The Foundation for promotional and administrative purposes. These copies will not be returned to Publishers.

     - the Publisher will provide copies of the Work in ebook and audiobook format (or discount codes providing free access) if requested by the Foundation, for use by the judging panel alone. 

   c) After the announcement of the shortlist, the Publishers of Works that have been longlisted, but not shortlisted, are invited (but not obliged) to contribute £250 (plus VAT if applicable) towards the Foundation’s promotional activities connected with the Award and the Work. Examples of the types of promotional activities carried out by the Foundation in connection with the Award are detailed below. 

   d) For each Work entered for the Award: (i) The Publisher will provide the Foundation with a digital copy of the Work and an approved photo and biography of the Author for use by the Foundation in connection with the Award and the Foundation may freely use such materials (in the case of the Work, extracts thereof) in all formats and media in connection with the Award. The Publisher agrees to inform the Foundation of any copyright notices and credits to be used in connection with such uses; and (ii) the Publisher warrants and agrees that the Publisher has obtained all necessary permissions from the Author and any other applicable third parties for the Work to be entered into the Award and for extracts of the Work, and the Author's name, photo and biography to be freely used for promotional purposes in all formats and media in connection with the Award.


   a) The Foundation does not accept any responsibility for late or lost entries. Proof of sending is not proof of receipt.

   b) Any queries relating to the Award should be emailed to:


   a) The Foundation cannot accept any responsibility and shall not to the extent permitted by law be liable for any damage, loss, injury or disappointment suffered by any Publisher or Author in respect of any Work submitted for the Award.  

   b) The Foundation will comply with relevant data protection legislation.

   c) These Terms & Conditions are governed by the laws of England and Wales and are subject to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of England and Wales.

   d) The Foundation reserves the right:

     - to not give the Award, where circumstances are beyond its control, or if the judges’ overall verdict is that the level of entries is not up to the required standard.

     - to extend the judging process and/or announcement of the longlist, shortlist and/or winner should the number of entries exceed expectations.

     - to disqualify any entry if the Foundation has reasonable grounds to believe that the entry does not comply with these Terms & Conditions or if the Publisher breaches these Terms & Conditions. 

     - to amend these Terms & Conditions from time to time where reasonably necessary or desirable to do so.