I’m thinking of setting up a writing award scheme/program/investment vehicle, call it what you will. Oh no, not another one, I hear you cry but in the true spirit of Roy and HG, too many writing awards is never enough. And the beauty of these awards is that everyone’s a winner because you get to choose your own award category, so that there’s no competition and there’s no need for comfort dogs at our glittering award night. (I’m thinking it might take more like three days to present them all but we’ll get that sorted.)
Based on what I’ve seen published in recent years, my early tips for categories to look out for include:
A history of oppression – One-armed blacksmithing in pre-revolutionary Russia.
State secrets – Nobody told me that migrating to another country would be hard.
Caterpillars I have known – Essential knowledge for true environmentalists.
You think your life sucks? – The story of an Indigenous vegan transgender person with a terminal illness in Outer Mongolia.
Murder by mirth – The wittiest hitmen in history.
Given the judges will have little else to do, they will be tasked with selecting literary gems from the entries including:
The longest and least comprehensible sentence after several readings.
The most clichés and tropes in a single chapter.
The best paragraph of maudlin self-pity.
The first novel to send a judge to sleep during Page 1.
The best erotica involving an inanimate object.
The entry fee will be $1,000, not only to ensure my financial survival but to discourage writers of merit starving in garrets (i.e. the crawl space in their parents’ ceiling) from entering.
More details at the launch but, in the meantime, make those keyboards dance and start saving up for the entry fee. (Note – discounts are for losers, so don’t even ask.)