Friday, April 20, 2012

No More Great American Novels?

What happened to the next great American novel?

According to the Pulitzer Prize judges, it doesn't exist - at least not in 2012.

The nominees for the Pulitzer Prize for fiction included Train Dreams by Denis Johnson, Swamplandia! by Karen Russell, and The Pale King by David Foster Wallace - and none of these were selected.  

This is the first time the Pulitzer Prize for fiction has gone un-awarded since 1977, and the judges' decision has had the publishing world in an uproar for days.

The decision upset the Pulitzer Prize jurors, the ones who selected the nominated books from about 300 different novels, because they put in a lot of time and effort to narrow down the selection to just three novels. 

Want more info on this literary scandal?

Check out The Guardian's articles (this one or this one) to get a British perspective on this American fiasco.

You can also check out these article from the New York Times:
Publishing is Cranky Over Snub by Pulitzers
And the Winner Isn't..., an op-ed by writer Ann Patchett.

Here's a complete list of 2012 winners.
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Unrelated to the fiction prize, but related to the Pulitzers: 24-year-old Sara Ganim of the Harrisburg, PA Patriot-News  won the local reporting award for covering the Sandusky scandal.  Three cheers for central PA!

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