Celebrating Youthful Curiosity and Discovery Through Books and Reading

Guidelines & Eligibility

CLICK HERE to download printable 4-page guidelines and entry form.

Who May Enter

Authors, illustrators, publishers and self-publishers of children's books, written in English and Spanish and intended for the North American market. Authors and illustrators are welcome to enter their books themselves.


Books that are published with a 2019 or 2020 copyright or that were released since October 1, 2018 are eligible. The contest is for published books, but ISBN is not required. Submission of galley copies is permissible if finished copies are not yet available. Publishers are to select the category or categories in which the book(s) should be judged.

E-books are eligible for entry into our ebook categories, and may also be entered into our regular subject categories where they will be judged alongside print books. Ebook categories are $55 when added to a regular category; otherwise the entry fee is the same as regular categories when entering an ebook category only.

How to Enter

There are two ways to enter the awards. Enter online here to pay by credit card. Or, print and fill out this entry form to pay by check. Please include your online registration receipt or completed entry form and check in the same package as the books. 

Submission and Fees

Submitting a title into more than one category is acceptable, but an entry fee is charged for each category entered. Submit two copies of the title per category entered. For example, when you enter two categories, please send four books; when entering three categories, please send six books. Mail books to:

Moonbeam Awards 2020
Jenkins Group 
1129 Woodmere Ave - Suite B
Traverse City, MI 49686

All books entered become the physical property of the Jenkins Group and will eventually be donated to local libraries and charities. E-book entries will be erased after the awards results are announced. 

Fee and deadline schedule:

Now until May 30, 2020: $85 per entry
May 31, 2020 until August 8, 2020: $95 per entry

Ebook categories are $55 when added to a regular category; otherwise the entry fee is the same as regular categories when entering an ebook category only.


All entries must be either made online or mailed with a check, and books must arrive by the 'drop-deadline' of August 18, 2020 for the beginning of judging.

Judging Process

Judging will be based on content, originality, design, and production quality, with emphasis on innovation and creativity. Our judging panel includes experts from the fields of editing, design, reviewing, bookselling and library. Three to five medalists per category will be named on about September 30th. Awards will be presented during the Traverse City Children's Book Festival in Traverse City, Michigan on November 14th, 2020.

Awards and Presentation

Gold, silver and bronze medals will be awarded in each category. Each winning book receives a medal, a personalized certificate, and 20 sample seals. Medalists and their guests are invited to attend the awards ceremony and celebration at no charge. Extra award seals are available to all medalists in rolls of 250 and 1000, and hi-res versions of the medalist artwork is available for purchase for reproduction on book covers and promotional materials. Preview merchandise here.

Award Ceremony and Book Festival

The awards ceremony is held on the evening of the Traverse City Children's Book Festival, a family-oriented gathering of authors and book lovers, packed with entertaining activities meant to inspire kids' love of books. The Festival runs from 10 am to 2 pm at the historic Traverse City Opera House and is tied in with 'Shop Your Community Day,' a high-traffic shopping day.