Cats with books, originally uploaded by 160507.
1. Why do we care so much about awards?
a. the publicity/celebrity
b. the prize money
c. the additional income from sales generated by the publicity
d. possible role in reality show featuring ex-celebrities
2. Awards are
a. all about the flavor of the season; next year no one will give a shit.
b. an indicator of the zeitgeist.
c. given to the work that all the judges can get behind, and not to the work that causes discomfort, offence, or debate, which is what great work tends to do.
d. excellent for padding one’s CV or grant application. (I am a beneficiary of the awards culture; if I hadn’t won a Palanca my book publisher wouldn’t have known I exist.)
e. according to a snooty friend, “so midul-klass”.
3. Inevitably, anyone who is adored by critics and the public becomes the subject of a backlash. We’re already seeing the McEwan backlash.
4. I cannot stand biographical notes that begin with “multi-awarded” or “award-winning”. It’s like I’m being cowed into admiring the artist because some jury somewhere gave him a trophy for being the least annoying entry.
5. Then again, there is an element of schadenfreude to all this.
6. As a Marxist, a Groucho Marxist, I wouldn’t want to belong to a club that would have someone like me for a member.
Take pictures of your pets reading books and send them to firstname.lastname@example.org.