2019 Theme: Stories that Teach Foundational Buddhist Topics

After a successful competition in 2017, Khyentse Foundation and Bala Kids are again teaming up to offer the Khyentse Foundation Children’s Book Prize for best Buddhist manuscript for children. Khyentse Foundation and Bala Kids share a vision to inspire and educate future generations about Buddhism and to encourage the development of Buddhist resources for parents and children. 

This year, the prize will be offered to the best Buddhist book about one or more of the following foundational Buddhist topics:

  • The Four Noble Truths
  • Dependent Arising
  • Karma
  • Rebirth
  • Impermanence

We welcome the submission of fiction and nonfiction stores for children ages 0 to 8 years, about any of the above topics, from all Buddhist traditions. New authors are encouraged to apply.

The winning submission will receive a $5,000 publication offer from Bala Kids. Before submitting your manuscript, please read the following guidelines carefully. They have been updated since the last competition.

Submission Guidelines

Content: A complete English-language picture book manuscript for children ages 0 to 8, on one or more of the major Buddhist topics listed above. Submissions that do not directly refer to these topics will not be considered.

Format: The book should be conceived as a full-size standard children’s picture book (not a board book). The exact trim size and page count will depend on the content and will be determined by the publisher, but generally the story should range between 20 and 40 pages, not exceeding 2,000 words.

Illustrations: The prize is intended only for book manuscripts; please do not submit illustrations. Illustrations for the winning story will be provided by the publisher in consultation with the author.

Consideration: Submissions will be reviewed by both Khyentse Foundation and Bala Kids, and will be assessed on their creativity, message, and adherence to the theme. It is possible that Bala Kids will make publication offers to multiple submissions; however, the Children’s Book Prize will be awarded to only one recipient. If there are no submissions that meet the standards of Khyentse Foundation and Bala Kids, the prize will be withheld until there is a new round of open submissions.

Contract: Bala Kids will offer the winner a publishing contract. . All terms and conditions of the contract will be worked out between the author or authors and the publisher. Khyentse Foundation will not be directly involved in this process.

How to Submit:Send your submission via email to balakids@shambhala.com with the subject line KF Book Prize 2019. Submit your manuscript as a PDF file, along with a brief summary and short author biography in the email.

Closing date: December 1, 2019

The winning author will be notified by March 1, 2020.

Prize award: $5,000 publication offer from Bala Kids

About Bala Kids

Bala Kids is dedicated to encouraging the values of wisdom and compassion for children of all ages with books on Buddhism, meditation, yoga, mindfulness, and more.

Read an interview with last year’s prize winner, Carolyn Kanjuro.