AN INSIDE VIEW OF THE BOOK INDUSTRY
CON TINUED FROM PAGE 15
ated with PEN (Poets, Playwrights, Editors, Essayists and
Novelists), the international writers organization. The
PEN/Faulkner Award was founded by writers in 1980 to honor
their peers, and is now the largest
juried award for fiction in the
United States. The 2004 winner is
The Early Stories: 1953–1975,
by John Updike. The
Hemingway Foundation/ PEN
Award (www.pen-ne.org) is given annually
in April for the best first work of fiction.
Jennifer Haigh won this year for Mrs. Kimble.
The Line of Beauty.
The Orange Prize for Fiction (www.
orangeprize.co.uk), announced in June,
is given to a woman writing in English
and published in Britain. Judged exclusively by women, this year’s prize went
to Andrea Levy for Small Island.
A decidedly unpretentious prize is
the Whitbread Award (
www.whitbread-book awards.co.uk), given in January for
the most enjoyable books written in the
UK—those that can be recommended to
anyone as well-written page-turners. The
most recent winner is The Curious Incident of
the Dog in the Night-Time, by Mark Haddon.
Closer to home, the Giller Prize (www.
thegillerprize.ca) is awarded annually in
November to the author of the best Canadian
novel or short-story collection published in
English. This year Alice Munro, a Canadian
and U.S. favorite, won for Runaway.
This brief rundown of literary prizes does
not pretend to be complete; in fact, your
favorite might have been overlooked! BB
Valerie Ryan is a freelance writer and bookstore owner in Cannon Beach, Oregon.
Several awards celebrate genre fiction,
books that are specific to a certain type of literature. The list includes the Hugo (
world-con.org/hugos.html), given for science-fic-tion achievement; the Nebula (dpsinfo.com/
awardweb/nebulas), voted on by the Science
Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America; the
RITA (www.rwanational.com), given by the
Romance Writers of America; and the Edgar
(www.mysterywriters.org), given by Mystery
Writers of America and awarded in several
categories. These awards are announced each
year at the organizations’ annual meetings.
Since 1996, the Audies (www.audio
pub.org) have honored excellence in audiobooks, with 26 categories covering most
imaginable fiction and nonfiction genres. The
awards also acknowledge superior production
levels and package design. In 2004, Harry
Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, as read
by Jim Dale, won Audiobook of the Year.
Leaving these shores, the granddaddy of
them all is the Nobel Prize for Literature
each year on December 10, the anniversary of
Alfred Nobel’s death in 1896. It is granted, not
for a single book, but for an author’s entire
body of work, “to the person who shall have
produced in the field of literature the most outstanding work of an idealistic tendency.”
Three recent winners are Elfriede Jelinek, an
Austrian; J.M. Coetzee, a South African; and
Imre Kertesz, a Hungarian of Jewish descent.
They are not household names, but their works
are definitely worth reading.
Other offshore prizes to watch include
the Man Booker (www.bookerprize.co.uk),
awarded in October and the premier British
award for fiction written in English by a citizen of the United Kingdom, the British
Commonwealth, Eire, Pakistan or South
Africa. Alan Hollinghurst won this year for
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