About Us and Submissions Guidelines

The Discover Great New Writers program celebrates its 25th Anniversary in 2015, having introduced readers to more than1,800 extraordinary literary talents - many of whom have gone on to become household names -- since its inception in 1990.

The Discover program's selection committee is comprised of Barnes & Noble booksellers from across the company and around the country. They are voracious readers who meet weekly throughout the year to look for compelling voices, extraordinary writing, and indelible stories from literary talents at the start of their careers.

Roughly sixty books are handpicked for the program each year from the thousand-plus submissions from publishers of all sizes, and from those, an independent panel of distinguished writers chooses the winner of our annual Discover Awards, presenting a total of $35,000 to six young writers.

Recipients of the Discover Award include Anthony Marra, Justin St. Germain, Cheryl Strayed, Amanda Coplin, Ben Fountain, Chang-rae Lee, Joshua Ferris, Elizabeth McCracken, and Hampton Sides, among others.

Selection Process and Eligibility

Publishers recommend writers making a strong literary debut. Authors cannot submit their own work to the program; self-published writers and titles published via print-on-demand or available only as NOOK books are also ineligible for submission.

Literary fiction, short story collections and literary non-fiction, such as travel essays, memoirs, or other non-fiction with a strong narrative will be considered. Books should be intended for an adult or a young adult audience.

The Discover Great New Writers program does not publish original work; please do not submit unpublished manuscripts for consideration.

Single titles authored by more than one person are not eligible for consideration.

Submissions must be made at least three months prior to publication date.

Once selected, participation in Discover Great New Writers™ includes:

  • Face-out display in the Discover bay in each of our bookstores (length of display is usually 12 weeks)
  • An individual shelf-talker with a teaser line placed under each face-out
  • A 20% discount on Discover titles for the length of the promotion
  • Promotion online at www.bn.com/discover and The B&N Review as well as via consumer emails, @BNBuzz and @BNDiscover Twitter feeds, and Nook features for the Discover Award finalists and Discover Seasonal selections.
  • Special consideration for Discover-selected writers for in-store events and book group discussions

  • Debuting authors and writers with fewer than three previously published books who have yet to receive a major literary award are eligible for consideration. Exceptions are sometimes made for authors who have published more titles, but have yet to break out to a larger audience. Submissions must be original publications, penned by one author.
  • Deceased authors and those previously featured in the Discover program are ineligible. Books submitted for a prior season and rejected will not be reconsidered.

    2015-2016 Submission Deadlines
    Submission Deadline
    Spring 2015 (January-March 2015) Closed
    Summer 2015 (April-July 2015) Closed
    Fall 2015 (August-October 2015) Closed
    Late Fall (November-December 2015)
    Spring 2016 (January-March 2016)
    Summer 2016 (April-July 2016)
    June 18, 2015
    September 10, 2015
    October 8, 2015

    For further information on submissions, contact:

    Miwa Messer
    Director, Discover Great New Writers
    Barnes & Noble, Inc.
    122 Fifth Avenue
    New York, NY 10011

    E-mail: MMesser@bn.com
    Phone: (212) 633-4067