Winning Writers is pleased to announce the results from its fifth annual North Street Book Prize for Self-Published Books. 1,657 entries were received from around the world. J.R. Weber of Ewa Beach, Hawaii won this year's Grand Prize across all genres for his verse-drama Lay of the Land, which combines an ambitious hybrid literary form with meticulous research and heroic imagery to re-create the doomed Mdewakanton Sioux uprising in 1862 against European immigrant farmers who colonized their land. He received $3,000, a marketing analysis and one-hour phone consultation with Carolyn Howard-Johnson, a $300 credit at BookBaby, and 3 free ads in the Winning Writers newsletter (a $525 value). For a limited time, visitors to Winning Writers may download Mr. Weber's book for free.
Six category winners each received $1,000, a marketing analysis and one-hour phone consultation with Carolyn Howard-Johnson, a $300 credit at BookBaby, and one free ad in the Winning Writers newsletter (a $175 value). 
  • Jeanette Stickel of Mendocino, California won First Prize in the Children's Picture Book category for Mama's Needle, a gentle tribute to an African-American mother's imaginative artistry expressed through quilting.
  • Dmitri Jackson of Ballwin, Missouri won First Prize in Graphic Narrative for Blackwax Boulevard, which collects the first five years of his funny and poignant webcomic about a struggling inner-city record store and the misfits who call it home.
  • Katy McKinney of Trout Lake, Washington won First Prize in Poetry for Fireproofing the Woods, a lyrical and environmentally conscious collection that connects the fragility of our marvelous planet to her beloved sister's death from cancer.
  • Li Mo of Cambridge, Massachusetts won First Prize in Creative Nonfiction for Spirit Bridges, an imagistic memoir that depicts a childhood indelibly marked by the 1949 fall of Shanghai to the Communists, her coming of age in the American counterculture of the 1960s-70s, and a midlife re-integration of herself through the visual and performing arts.
  • Suanne Laqueur of Somers, New York won First Prize in Genre Fiction for An Exaltation of Larks, an ambitious family saga spanning world events from the 1973 CIA-backed coup in Chile to the aftermath of September 11, 2001.
  • Bob Sylva of Sacramento, California won First Prize in Literary Fiction for The King of Karaoke, a magical-realism-tinged story collection that celebrates the resilience and creativity of his city's diverse working class.
Seven Honorable Mentions of $250 went to Melissa Yap-Stewart, Stephen Barnwell, Jessica Goody, Joan Alden, Alexander Watson, Molly Lazer, and Abigail Anklam. Excerpts from all the winning entries are published with the judges' remarks on $10,750 was awarded in all, making this one of the world's most generous contests for self-published books.
The sixth annual contest is open now through June 30, 2020. One Grand Prize winner across all genres will receive $5,000 plus benefits from contest co-sponsors BookBaby and Carolyn Howard-Johnson, with runner-up prizes of $1,000 and $250 in each genre. The entry fee is $65 per book. This year's categories are Mainstream/Literary Fiction, Genre Fiction, Creative Nonfiction & Memoir, Poetry, Children's Picture Book, and Graphic Novel & Memoir.
In addition to the North Street Book Prize, Winning Writers sponsors the Tom Howard/John H. Reid Fiction & Essay Contest, the Tom Howard/Margaret Reid Poetry Contest, and the Wergle Flomp Humor Poetry Contest (no fee). Writer's Digest has named it one of the "101 Best Websites for Writers" (2015-2019). Join our 125,000 followers on Twitter.