The ABR Audiobook Listener Awards™ aim to celebrate the wealth of talented independent authors and narrators who are creating exceptional audiobook content and selling on all major audiobook platforms.
We believe that independent producers working in a range of genres that other awards ignore deserve recognition, and therefore we are the first mainstream audiobook award to include niche genres like Horror, Contemporary Fantasy, and LGBTQ+.
We see ourselves as a hybrid of Sundance and the People’s Choice Awards because those who vote for the winners are actual listeners of audiobooks. In giving the listeners a voice, we discovered just how passionate they are about following their favorite Indie authors and narrators and giving them votes.
The ABR AudioBook Listener Awards™ are taking the Independent audiobook community by storm!
Changes to this Years Competition:
- The selection committee is larger. Now includes Audiobook/Book Reviewers, Book Bloggers, and Librarians.
- The selection committee will verify the “listener’s” votes.
- The selection committee is solely responsible for nominating and choosing the winner of CHAMPION OF INDIE AUDIO™. They will also be selecting the winners of BEST MALE and FEMALE NARRATOR.
- Additional categories added: CHAMPION OF INDIE AUDIO™, INDIE AUDIOBOOK OF THE YEAR, LGBTQ+, APOCALYPTICA, CONTEMPORARY FANTASY, BEST MALE and FEMALE NARRATOR.
- Other categories redefined as needed.
- Listener voting will be only ONE vote per email address, and voting will happen over the month(s) of April and May and be 4 weeks long.
- The release date range includes all of 2018.
- Entry fee as been increased to $25 per entry to better cover costs.
Who Can Enter
- All entries into the second annual ABR Audiobook Listener Awards™ competition must carry a release date between November 1, 2017 and December 31, 2018. “Release date” is defined as the date the title was first made available for sale in audio to the public in the United States. Titles reissued in a new format are not eligible unless the “first release date” is within the qualifying period. Collections of previously released materials are eligible if the “first release date” of the new collection is within the qualifying period. Submitters may be asked to submit documentation supporting the release dates of the titles they nominate. The date the product was released for sale must be submitted on the online form.
- Submission deadline is January 1st, 2019. (11:59 PM CST, 12/31/2018)
- Audiobooks MUST BE self-published or published by Independent publishers. If you are unsure if you are considered independent, please ask.
- Entries must be submitted by the rights-holder, whether that be the author/publisher, a licensee/distributor, or the producer. For royalty share titles the narrator is considered a rights holder.
- The same title may not be submitted by more than one submitter. If this does happen the second submission will be rejected.
- There is no limit to the number of categories a title can be entered in. Provided, of course, that it fits inside the categories.
- There is a $25 entry fee per title per category that must be paid upon submission.
Judging and Selection Process
- Entries will be screened by a committee for eligibility, including release date and completeness of the online form. It is the responsibility of the submitter to determine and select the appropriate category. However, the committee reserves the right to move the entries to appropriate categories or dismiss inappropriate submissions. In the event, if a submission is disqualified the entry fee will be returned to the submitter.
- The selection committee will use the following to make their choices
- Cover artwork design/readability
- Audio sample
- Publishers summary
- The selection committee’s and judges’ decisions are final.
- Up to five finalists – except in a case of a tie – will be selected for each category from all entry submissions and announced in April 2019.
- At least five entries must be submitted in a category or the category may be canceled or combined. If a category is canceled, entry fees will be refunded, or entries will be reassigned to other categories with permission of the submitter.
- Categories may be modified or split into sub-genres during the submission process.
- Each finalist title will receive:
- ONE finalist medallion.
- Several social media call outs.
- Bragging rights.
- Winners will be selected by popular vote of listeners on social media and website visitors, limited to ONE vote per email address.
- When public voting has concluded the selection committee will select the winning entry.
- Winners will be announced and awards will be distributed to the submitter or their representative during the 7th Annual HEAR Now Festival, June 6-9, 2019 in Kansas City, MO.
- The overall winner in each category will receive:
- You will get a fun badge to place on your website/audiobook cover artwork.
- You will be awarded ONE award medallion at the 7th Annual HEAR Now Festival June 6-9, 2019 in Kansas City, MO.
- Several social media call outs.
- Bragging rights.
- (0) CHAMPION OF INDIE AUDIO™
- This award recognizes an individual (narrator, author, or indie publisher) that should serve as a worthy ambassador to Independently published audiobooks. Nominated by and selected by the selection committee.
- (1) INDIE AUDIOBOOK OF THE YEAR
- The submitted book with the highest number of valid votes. Confirmed by the selection committee.
- (2) BEST MALE NARRATOR
- For a solo reading of an audiobook by a male, any category. You need to submit a title to this so the selection committee knows there is an indie title you worked on during the eligible publication date range. Selected by the selection committee from valid entries.
- (3) BEST FEMALE NARRATOR
- For a solo reading of an audiobook by a female, any category. You need to submit a title to this so the selection committee knows there is an indie title you worked on during the eligible publication date range. Selected by the selection committee from valid entries.
- (4) GENERAL FICTION
- This category is for those titles that do not fit into the more specific fiction categories (5-21). Including historical fiction, faith-based fiction, alternate history, etc.
- (5) SHORT STORIES / ANTHOLOGIES
- For single short stories or novellas. Fictional, narrative prose normally longer than a short story but shorter than a novel, Single stories should not exceed 4 hours in length. Anthologies, collections of short stories are also included in this category.
- (6) AUDIO DRAMA
- For a dramatic audio or multi-voiced performance which includes multiple readers with little to no interaction and actors portraying one or more fully voiced characters and uses interaction and dialogue as key elements. This may be augmented by sound effects and music. In any category.
- (7) EROTICA
- For erotic audiobooks. Any titles with erotic content are best served in this category. (except LGBT erotica which may be better served under LGBT).
- (8) FANTASY
- Fantasy is a genre of speculative fiction set in a fictional universe, often without any locations, events, or people referencing the real world. Its roots are in oral traditions, which then became literature and drama.
- (9) HORROR
- Horror is a genre of speculative fiction which is intended to or has the capacity to frighten, scare, disgust, or startle its readers or viewers by inducing feelings of horror and terror.
- (10) HUMOR
- Humor is a literary tool that makes audiences laugh, or that intends to induce amusement or laughter. Its purpose is to break the monotony, boredom, and tedium, and make the audience’s nerves relax.
- (11) LITERARY FICTION / CLASSICS
- Literary fiction is fiction that is regarded as having literary merit, as distinguished from most commercial or “genre” fiction.
- (12) GAME-LIT
- Short for Game Literature, is a literary genre combining the conventions of MMORPGs or First Person Shooters and the like with science-fiction fantasy novels. Game-Lit is a literary genre where games or game-like challenges form an essential part of the story.
- (13) LGBTQ+
- a collective term for literature produced by or for the LGBT community which involves characters, plot lines, and/or themes portraying male/female homosexual behavior. These titles are also encouraged to enter their specific genre.
- (14) MYSTERY
- Usually featuring a protagonist trying to solve a crime, such as murder, committed early in the story.
- (15) PARANORMAL / SUPERNATURAL
- “Paranormal” refers to something that’s not understood by current scientific knowledge; there’s the potential that something paranormal will someday be explained scientifically, and there’s a likelihood there’s a good, natural explanation for it. “Supernatural” refers to a phenomenon that is beyond our capability to understand, now and simply forever, because it just doesn’t operate under our rules.
- (16) ROMANCE
- Romance literature may refer to Medieval romance literature, a style of heroic prose and verse narrative current in Europe from the Middle Ages to the Renaissance. Romance novels, a literary genre developed in Western culture which focuses on the romantic relationship between two or more people. (except paranormal romances which may be better served under Paranormal; and LGBT romances which may be better served under LGBTQ+).
- (17) SCIENCE FICTION
- A genre of speculative fiction, typically dealing with imaginative concepts such as advanced science and technology, spaceflight, time travel, and extraterrestrial life.
- (18) THRILLER/SUSPENSE
- Thrillers are characterized and defined by the moods they elicit, giving viewers heightened feelings of suspense, excitement, surprise, anticipation, and anxiety.
- (19) YOUNG ADULT
- A category of fiction published for readers in their youth. YA books are catered towards readers from 12 to 18 years of age. While the genre is targeted to teenagers, approximately half of YA readers are adults.
- (20) CONTEMPORARY FANTASY
- Contemporary fantasy, also known as modern fantasy or indigenous fantasy, is a subgenre of fantasy, set in the present day or, more accurately, the time period of the maker. It is perhaps most popular for its subgenre, urban fantasy.
- (21) APOCALYPTICA
- Pre Apocalypse, Post Apocalypse, Dystopian, Utopian. Usually, there is or was an apocalyptic event the has or will happen and is a large part of the story. This category is used to split up Science Fiction a bit.
- (22) NON-FICTION
- For non-fiction titles that do not fall under (23) autobiography, memoir, or biography.
- (23) BIOGRAPHY / AUTOBIOGRAPHY / MEMOIR
- For a biographical, autobiographical and memoir audiobooks (these three seemingly different categories are combined in that biographies and memoirs are an account of a person’s life).
Current list of ineligible publishers (subject to change without notice)
- Audible Studios
- Blackstone Audio
- Brilliance Audio
- Hachette Audio
- Highbridge Audio
- Listening Library
- Macmillan Audio
- Penguin Random House Audio
- Podium Publishing
- Recorded Books
- Scholastic Audio
- Simon & Schuster Audio
- Tantor Media
- Or any subsidiary or division thereof
Selection Committee / Judges
- Paul Stokes (will only break ties, and serve as contest admin)
- Charla White – ABR Reviewer
- Susan Voss – ABR Reviewer
- Brian Krespan – ABR Reviewer
- Natalie Cleary – Book Reviewer
- Toad Oliver – AudioBook Reviewer
- Lilyn G – Book Reviewer
- Elizabeth Robbins – Book Reviewer
- Felicia Sparks (The Geeky Blogger) – Book Reviewer
- Omar “HorrO” Usman (Promote Horror) – Horror Blogger
- Katie Stover – Librarian
- Diana Platt – Librarian
- Crystal Faris- Librarian