skip to Main Content
Publishing: New HNS Award For Indie Authors

Publishing: New HNS Award for Indie Authors

Earlier this month, the prestigious Historical Novel Society awarded its first ever award for self-published novels at its annual conference. Here are brief details of how the award came about, how it operates and who won it, plus some useful links to more detailed posts by ALLi author members who were at the event.

HNS logo

Helen Hollick wearing a cream hat

Helen Hollick, responsible for the creation of the new HNS Indie Award

The New York Times bestselling historical and fantasy novelist Helen Hollick had been campaigning for some time to have greater acceptance and recognition of self-published and indie authors of historical novels. As managing editor of the indie review section of the HNS, she knew from the books she receives for review that there are are many historical novels by self-published authors that are of a very high standard. She also works hard to raise standards by providing positive feedback and helpful advice to those who fall short. She was therefore very pleased to receive the support of HNS founder and director Richard Lee to launch a new HNS Indie Award this September, which will now become an annual event.

Any indie author may submit their historical novel to the HNS free of charge, to be considered for review. The panel of reviewers – all carefully chosen volunteers – then select from a list the ones they wish to review. Any books that are singled out by the review teams as especially worthy are given  an Editor’s Choice accreditation and are automatically entered onto a long list for the Award. Follow this link for details of how to submit your historical novel for review.

From the long list, the US and UK Editors nominate nine books to go forward as a short list to be independently judged  in order to select four finalist choices.

Photo of Elizabeth Chadwick at the microphone

Elizabeth Chadwick announces the winner of the 2014 award (With thanks to Jane Steen for the photo)

For the inaugural award, the judges were ALLi's director Orna Ross, bestselling literary novelist, who read the shortlist, and bestselling and award-winning novelist, Elizabeth Chadwick, who judged the four finalists.

  • The first prize was £100, this year personally donated by Orna Ross, and a year’s free membership of ALLi.
  • The runner-up prize was £50, sponsored by Geri Clouston of Indie B.R.A.G., plus B.R.A.G. Medallion credits for all four finalist books.
Cover of The Subtlest Soul by Virginia Cox

The winner of the 2014 HNS Indie Award

For the inaugural award, the four finalists were:

  • The Jacobites' Apprentice by David Ebsworth
  • A Gift for the Magus by Linda Proud
  • The Subtlest Soul by Virginia Cox
  • Samoa by J Robert Shaffer

The winner was Virginia Cox's The Subtlest Soul and the runner-up was A Gift for the Magus by Linda Proud.

More information about the awards and about the HNS conference at which it was presented can be found on Helen Hollick's blog here, which also includes the rules for the 2015 awards, and on the blog of alternative history thriller writer Alison Morton here, here and here


If you would like comment on this new award, to recommend any other awards open to indie authors, or any related issue, please feel free to leave a comment!

Twitter bird outlineEASY TWEET

“Report on @histnovsoc's first award for #indie #authors: https://selfpublishingadvice.org/hns/ with @HelenHollick & @Alison_Morton”




This Post Has 2 Comments
  1. […] The Historical Novel Society’s new annual award for self-published and indie authors is both a sign of the times and a positive contribution to the rising quality of self-pubbed historical fiction. Helen Hollick, a pro if ever there was one, offers advice and leadership to this blossoming sector, helping raise the standards. This year’s winner and runners up are a clear indication of that. Click here […]

  2. Thank you Debbie for the write-up – and my especial thanks to HNS for supoorting the award, judges Elizabeth Chadwick and Orna Ross, and Orna and Geri Clouston of Indie B.R.A.G. for sponsoring the prize money. And thank you to the authors, those shortlisted, the finalists and the eventual winners; the selected novels were fantastic, I am so pleased for the authors. Well done everyone!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Latest advice, news, ratings, tools and trends.

Fairly Trained

Fairly Trained Certifies First Ethically Trained Large Language Model: Self-Publishing News Podcast with Dan Holloway

In this episode of the Self-Publishing News Podcast, Dan Holloway brings attention to Fairly Trained, the first platform to certify ethically trained large language models, highlighting a major advancement in AI ethics. Dan also explores HarperCollins' innovative environmental efforts in reducing paper usage through font changes and the carbon footprint disparities between print and audiobooks. Additionally, he discusses the new partnership between Draft2Digital and the social reading app Fable, a development that offers fresh opportunities for authors to connect with readers.
Read more
Back To Top
×Close search