Please don't :)
The winner of this year's prestigious Caine Prize for African Writing, Zambian writer Namwali Serpell, has told the BBC she will share her £10,000 ($15,600) prize with the other four runners-up.
"It is very awkward to be placed into this position of competition with other writers that you respect immensely and you feel yourself put into a sort of American idol or race horse situation when actually you all want to support each other," the US-based author told the BBC's Newsday programme.
The judges described her short story, The Sack, as "innovative, stylistically stunning, haunting and enigmatic".
The Man Booker International Prize and the Independent Foreign Fiction Prize are to merge to create one annual award for a work of literary fiction translated into English.
Jonathan Taylor, chair of the Man Booker Foundation, said at a press conference this morning (7th July) that the Man Booker International Prize used to lose momentum in the years it was not awarded, as it was given every two years. He also said it was difficult to understand, being awarded for a body of work rather than an individual title.
The new prize - retaining the Man Booker International Prize name - will see the £50,000 award money shared equally between the author and translator. Each of the shortlisted authors and translators will also get £1,000, meaning the winning author and translator will share a prize pot of £52,000. The total prize fund is therefore £62,000.
Congratulations to Donna Tartt, winner of this year’s Pulitzer for fiction. Ms. Tartt is the author of The Goldfinch, a 700-plus page epic about a boy who loses his mother at age 13 in a bomb explosion and weaves his way to adulthood while clinging to a mysterious painting that reminds him of her.
The book has already received lavish praise and reviews from critics and was on various bestseller lists throughout the year. This is Tartt’s third book and took her eleven years to write.
In January of this year, crowds of visitors to the Frick Museum in New York braved the cold to stand in line for an exhibit of paintings by Dutch masters. The museum anticipated that the main attraction would be Vermeer’s “Girl With a Pearl Earring,” the subject of a book and movie in 2003 starring Scarlett Johansson.
However, the lines formed to see The Goldfinch, a painting by Carel Fabritius, dating to 1654, that was the centerpiece of Tartt’s book.
The Guardian Newspaper in the UK is establishing the first ever literary prize for self-published authors. Another sign that self-publishing is still growing strong, the paper is working with publisher Legend Times to attract independent authors, ostensibly to find new talent to publish.
Recent statistics show that, at least in the UK, one in five books published last year were by an independent author. The paper reports it has a team of twenty readers who will pore through manuscripts each month to find just one prize winner.The prize itself, from the description, seems to amount pretty much to a pat on the back and a “Jolly well done!” from the promoters. There is no cash prize, but the winner will get mentioned in the newspaper along with an excerpt of the work.
The unspoken part of this is that The Guardian has started a new book section on self-published authors. This is a good way to gather info to report on. You can bet that Legend Times will also troll through the submissions looking for new talent, but they emphatically state that no promises of publication are part of the prize.
There is undoubtedly good in all this for everyone involved, but most "starving writers" tend to prefer cash over publicity. If you are an indie author and want to submit, here is a link to the rules and instructions: Terms and Conditions for entries to the competition.