Guidelines & Submission

The Stella Prize is an annual prize celebrating Australian women’s contribution to literature and is named after Stella Maria Sarah ‘Miles’ Franklin.

Both nonfiction and fiction books by Australian women are eligible for entry. Books entered in the 2020 Stella Prize must be first published between 1 January 2019 and 31 December 2019. The winning book will be original, excellent and engaging.

Entries for the 2020 Stella Prize are now open!

Submit via Submittable


Eligibility Guidelines – 2020 Stella Prize

  1. The Stella Prize is open to books by female and non-binary writers who are either Australian citizens or permanent residents of Australia at the time of entry.
  2. To be eligible for entry in the 2020 prize, books must have been first published in English anywhere in the world between 1 January 2019 and 31 December 2019.
  3. Both fiction and nonfiction books are eligible for the prize. This includes: novels of all genres, collections of short stories by a single author, memoirs, biographies, histories, verse novels, and novellas of at least 20,000 words. Illustrated books, including graphic novels, are eligible, provided they are accompanied by a substantial quantity of text.
  4. Books that are not eligible for the prize include: academic textbooks, guidebooks, self-help books, poetry collections, play or film scripts, books written primarily for children, books consisting of illustrations or photographs, and adaptations, unless they represent a significant and creative transformation of the original text.
  5. Books that are not eligible for the prize include books written by current Board members or employees of The Stella Prize.
  6. Books can be co-authored but edited collections will not be accepted. Books cannot be entered in the name of an editor or a committee. In the case of a book with multiple authors, all authors must meet eligibility criteria number 1.
  7. Self-published books and books published only in ebook form are ineligible for entry.
  8. Entries must be in English. Bilingual editions are eligible, as are books first published in another language and then translated into English and first published in English during the eligibility period.
  9. Books may be entered by publishers, writers or agents. If the book is being entered by a publisher or agent, the author’s consent to enter the work must be obtained. The author’s personal contact details must be included on the nomination form.
  10. It is the responsibility of the publisher and submitted authors to familiarise themselves with Stella’s Policy on Funding Sources, Sponsorship and Partnerships. In submitting their book, all longlistee, shortlistee and prize-winning authors are committing to accept the source of the funds awarded to them.
  11. The shortlisted and winning authors will be asked to participate in a number of public and media events at the time of, and in the months following, the prize announcements. Entry into the prize confirms the author’s willingness to make herself available, where possible, to a number of media commitments. All shortlisted authors are encouraged to attend the award ceremony, and publishers may be expected to contribute towards various travel, media and promotional expenses.
  12. Publishers of books shortlisted for the 2020 Stella Prize will be expected to contribute between $500 and $2,000 per title (depending on the size of the publisher) towards the costs of marketing the 2020 Stella Prize Shortlist.
  13. Each entry must be accompanied by the relevant entry fee. Early-bird entries will be eligible for a discounted entry fee of $60 and will be accepted from Thursday 1 August till 5 p.m. AEST Thursday 22 August 2019. The rate for general entries is $80. General entries will be accepted from Friday 23 August till 5 p.m. AEST Friday 27 September 2019.
  14. Entry forms can be completed online via Submittable. Six copies of the entered book must be supplied. If the book is longlisted or shortlisted, additional copies will be requested. All components of an entry – online form, fee, printed acknowledgment of entry and six physical books – must be received by the relevant closing date above, i.e. by 5 p.m. AEST Thursday 23 August 2019 for early-bird entries and by 5 p.m. AEST Friday 27 September 2019 for general entries. This year we will be accepting late entries along with advanced review copies and bound manuscripts of books published between 28 September 2019 and 31 December 2019. Delivery of these books will be accepted up until Friday 22 November 2019. Please contact us no later than Wednesday 11 September via info@thestellaprize.com.au if you intend to enter a book that falls under one of these categories.
  15. Stella welcomes all entries submitted in good faith and reserves the right to refuse entries submitted with malice or with the intent to mislead or deceive others, or which otherwise may harm the reputation of The Stella Prize Inc. All decisions of Stella and the Judging Panel are final. Stella and the Judging Panel will not enter into any discussions or correspondence regarding its decisions.
  16. If you are unable to complete the online entry form, or pay the entry fee online, please contact us via info@thestellaprize.com.au before Wednesday 11 September 2019 to make alternate arrangements.

The Stella Prize longlist will be announced in February 2020, and the shortlist in March 2020. The prize winner will be announced in April 2020.

For updates on the Stella Prize’s events and activities please subscribe to our email list below.


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