Words on the Times & Call for Entries: Paige Nick, the GBAS Book Cover Design Awards 2021


AiW Guest: Paige Nick.

AiW note: today we bring you a combination post ~ a Words on the Times with Paige Nick – founder of The Good Book Appreciation Society, a Book Club on Facebook with over 16,000 members, and of the GBAS Book Cover Design Awards – South Africa’s first such awards, they draw attention to this crucial creative and conceptual role that introduces a book to its readers; and a call for entries for the same…


Publishers, designers and authors, enter your book covers
designed and published in South Africa and Africa
between 1 January 2021 and 31 December 2021.

Entry deadline: 1 November 2021.

The winning cover designer in each of the five categories will win a R5,000 cash prize.

~ The prize for Poetry Cover is sponsored by Fine Music Radio: https://www.fmr.co.za/
~ The prize for Illustration Excellence is sponsored by The Africa Book & Design Festival: https://africabookanddesign.com/
~ The Fiction, Non-fiction and Readers’ Choice prizes will be sponsored by the entry fees.

Fee: R100 per entry (EFT – payment goes into the Awards Bank Account in South Africa). 
Multiple entries welcome.
(For every 5 entries, publishers/designers/entrants get their 6th entry free.)



Words on the Times Q&A with Paige Nick (GBAS)

AiW: Could you tell us a bit about your involvement with the GBAS Book Cover Design Awards?

Paige Nick, GBAS: I run a book club on Facebook called The Good Book Appreciation Society. It’s a kind of secret club with almost 17,000 avid reading members. So I guess, luckily, it’s a badly kept secret.

As an author and advertising copywriter, I’ve always been fascinated by book covers and the design side of books. I know how hard they are to get right and thought it would be great to give our designers some credit, and some cash. The awards kind of came up out of that.

And could you tell us about your other work/ the work that you do and the ways that the pandemic has affected your plans for it?

For my day job I’m a freelance advertising copywriter. For my night job I’m an author, book club admin and columnist. Which means I’ve been working from home and remotely for almost a decade already.

So while the pandemic hasn’t changed my working life that much, it’s certainly rocked my world.

Could we interject a little here – could you expand a bit on the, ahem… not so brilliantly kept secret book club, The Good Book Appreciation Society? 

GBAS has really grown organically over the last 8 years of our existence, particularly because we’re in a secret nook of Facebook, which means readers have to be invited to join the club by friends, or alternatively actively come looking for us and ask to join. 

Our members read a little bit of everything, to be honest. Of course international fiction and non-fiction is popular in the club, but I’m so proud that there is such a massive and growing amount of interest in African and South African fiction and non-fiction. Our readers are hungry to find reads that excite them from anywhere! And there is no better recommendation than one from a likeminded reader who posts that you absolutely definitely have to read this or that title URGENTLY. 

We have all discovered so many new reads and authors through the club that we would never have known about otherwise. Book clubs widen our reading range. And all books are welcome, in all languages and styles. After all, the definition of a Good Book is one that you have loved, no matter the genre. 

What have you found most supportive and/or heart lifting in these times?

Like many people, I couldn’t read for the first few months of the pandemic. I just couldn’t focus. But being part of The Good Book Appreciation Society meant that I could lurk and see what others were reading. 

Eventually someone reviewed a new Anne Tyler book, it looked like something I might be able to read, so I gave it a try and that launched me back into my escapism into books, which I feel has been a lifesaver over the last two years. At least when I can’t read, I can enjoy other people reading.

How can our blog communities best support you now?

It would be really great if people could share the GBAS Book Cover Design Awards. https://gbasbookcoverawards.com/

There’s only about a week left for people to enter, but those five prize winning entries might not have been entered yet, and our designers really do deserve the airtime and the payout. 

Paige Nick is an author, freelance advertising copywriter, Columnist, Host of Book Choice on Fine Music Radio and the founder of The Good Book Appreciation Society, a secret book club on Facebook with almost 17 000 members.

Paige lives in Cape Town, where she spends an unhealthy amount of time writing, reading and making ads. She hates spiders, cellulite and plastic forks and tends to gravitate towards books. 

Instagram: amillionmilesfromnormal | Twitter: @paigen


meet the judges   |  see the gallery of entries so far  |

Categories: Calls for & opportunities, Words on the Times

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