Literary prizes seem to be falling into the don't-do-us-any-favors category. After the poor Pulitzer judges got eyestrain reading over 300 novels and short story collections, the Pulitzer Prize Board decided that none of the books this year were worthy of the big trophy. What?
Even when prizes are given there is no respect.
Take the case of Dave Eggers who won the 40,000 euro Albatross prize given by the Gunter Grass Foundation. Eggers didn't bother to attend the ceremony and just had the prize money mailed to him. (Of course, I wouldn't want to look a gift albatross in the mouth either.)
And then as if that weren't bad enough we find out that the 1962 Nobel Prize in Literature was given as a sort of booby prize. Apparently, according to recently released papers, the Swedish Academy felt none of the books that year were up to snuff so they gave the Nobel to John Steinbeck. "We've got to give it someone, might as well be the big galoot from California."
Well, My Little Publishing Company plans to single-handedly bring back the prestige of literary prizes. It is in this light that we are pleased to announce that the 2013 Prestigious Prize for Distinguished Non-Fiction goes to our very own Ari Anonymous for his brilliant memoir, I Didn't Sleep With Hillary Clinton. The following is our interview with the eminent author:
LU: May we be the first to congratulate you on winning the Prestigious Prize.
AA: Sure, you can be the first and I'll bet you'll be the last, too. Ain't nobody ever heard of this f****** award. And believe me I've asked everyone. Who dreamed up this so-called prize?
LU: A committee of editors specially appointed by independent judges screened by...
AA: I told my girlfriend Sonya, I won this award. She was all excited. She said, is this like American Idol or The Voice? I said, no Sonya, this is for my writing. For my book. Oh, the book, she says. Of course she's disappointed because she ain't a reader. Then she asks me what I get for winning it. So I put it to you. What or how much am I getting?
LU: You get the prestige of being the very first recipient of this illustrious award. And we've already ordered a very nice plaque.
AA: Plaque-schmaque. That's it? For a book about the most popular woman in America? In the bloody world? The Kim Kardashian of the diplomatic set? Where else can you read about what kind of fuzzy slippers Hillary Clinton wears on the plane? And whether or not she sleeps with curlers in her hair? And whether they're foam or wire? And if she flosses or uses a water pic? ?
LU: I admit you had more specific and scintillating details about the Secretary of State in your memoir than anything else published in the past year. Which leads me to a question, we've all been dying to ask. Can you now tell us how you get all this inside information? It's incredible that you had access to details no one, not even her husband had.
AA: Are you questioning the truth of I Didn't Sleep With Hillary Clinton? You got some nerve. You published it.
LU: Well, yes... but we were just curious...
AA: Great! Now you've managed to insult your best-selling author.
LU: Actually, sales have been a little disappointing. But with this prize...
AA: You know what? You can take your stupid award and shove it up your Melitzanopita.
Update: Needless to say the interview with Ari Anonymous didn't go as expected. Before he had a chance to sully the name of the Prestigious Prize we rescinded the award. It will now go to the runner up, 5-year-old Buddy McCormick for his trilogy The Poopy Wars. His parents have accepted the prize on his behalf. They, at least understand the value of literary prizes.
"This will look great on Buddy's kindergarten application," said Mrs. McCormick.