The National Outdoor Book Awards(NOBA) nomination process begins with the announcement of the program in late May and early June. Books may be received at any time after the announcement is made, but all entries are due by the program's fall deadline (approximately September 1st). For exact dates, see NOBA Schedule.
Nominated books are received at the NOBA central office based at Idaho State University where they are processed, packaged and sent to the appropriate judges. (For more details on the nomination process including the application, see: NOBA Policy Guidelines).
In accordance with the program's high standards of objectivity, a great amount of effort goes into making the evaluation process as fair as possible. Books are judged on the quality of writing and their merit and not by the author's or publisher's reputation. To remove regional bias, judges serving on the panel come from throughout the country. Additionally, the make-up of the panel is balanced as much as possible between men and women.
The backgrounds of the judges are diverse. Included on the panel are educators, academics, trade representatives, authors, book reviewers, and outdoor columnists. All of the judges serve without pay.
Judging takes place during a six week period in the fall. Judges use a pre-printed evaluation form and independently score books based on a series of criteria. The best accumulated scores determine winning books.
Winning books are announced in mid November on the NOBA website. (The actual date of the announcement is found here: NOBA Schedule.) News releases announcing the winners are provided to the wire services, selected newspapers, periodicals, web sites, and corporate and independent buyers.