Monday, September 08, 2008


I don't seem to be able to stay away, do I?

Well. I've just been invited to the Prime Minister's Literary Awards ceremony on Friday night, as the assistant of my Aged Poet friend, so I just thought I'd yoo-hoo out there to any of you blogging literary types who may be attending as well. I'll be with the nice old lady using the walker. I'll probably be dressed in black, like everyone else. I may be scowling.*

Come and say hello.

*Because of the pitiful selection of works to be honoured. You're fucking up, Kev.


Bernice said...

Yes, I was SO disappointed Bryce was overlooked yet again...tisk...

And please feel free to take the opportunity to break a few parliamentary toes with said walker. The elderly have their uses.

Pen said...

Hope they have tasty snacks, at least.

Miles McClagan said...

No nomination for Billy Brownless and his "Book for Blokes?"

Saying things like that is why I don't get nominated for no awards...

Elsewhere007 said...

Wow. (It sounds very 'wow' from hereI, assure you.)

You could always branch out and wear pastels with white shoes.

Pavlov's Cat said...

They are both incredibly weird lists. I've read four from the fiction list and it's not that they're bad books by any means, it's just that there are a number of better ones about.

WTF are James and Greer doing on that nonfiction list?

Beth said...

Weird, but interesting! Having poetry and short stories (collected stories, no less) in the mix makes it a kind of genre-off.

Looking forward to your impressions of the ceremony, &d.

fifi said...

oh, have fun. There may be smoked oysters and jatz.

hope we catch up next week.

Ariel said...

Yes, I thought they were weird lists, too - missing the obvious candidates. Which can be a good thing, and make it interesting, to have surprise inclusions, but not in this case, I think. It just doesn't feel right. And there are huge prizes at stake. I am curious as to how on earth these lists were decided.

Have fun!

Pavlov's Cat said...

'I am curious as to how on earth these lists were decided.'

Yes, so am I -- I've been on a few literary prize judging panels, and the dynamics can be quite amazing even with a much more predictable and/or homogenous panel than what we have here. Given that both these judging panels are very strange combinations of people, I imagine the lists were arrived at by fairly tortuous consensus, possibly through gritted teeth.

Pen said...

Let's hope the judges can speak courteously through gritted teeth tomorrow night. Or at least fit their jatz in their slot-like mouths.

We're supposed to be going to the awards too, but round two of the flu has hit our household.

Narky said...

Least it looks like it wasn't just a case of judge's just putting their mates on the list (which happens in my experience on literrary awards panels) - so that's something good.

And why not give some exposure to some good books not from the usual big name authors?

Pavlov's Cat said...

'Least it looks like it wasn't just a case of judge's just putting their mates on the list'

Yes, I thought that too.

'(which happens in my experience on literrary awards panels)'

Only sometimes, in mine. At other times people bend over so far backwards not to do that that they are in danger of disadvantaging the writers they know; the literary community, here as everywhere, is pretty small and everyone tends to know everyone else anyway.

'And why not give some exposure to some good books not from the usual big name authors?'

This is one of the questions that goes round and round the in the great washing machine of debate about literary prizes. In this case I'd say that exposure's one thing, and a whacking great slab of money for the inaugural Prime Minister's Literary Award is something else again.

Besides, Gail Jones's Sorry has been nominated for practically everything it's eligible for. And Malouf and Keneally aren't what you'd call small names.

The one I'm really curious about is Steven Conte's The Zookeeper's War, which seems to have been getting lots of attention and praise, but I had to Google it to find out anything about it or him. I'd never heard of it before.

worldpeace and a speedboat said...

smoked oysters!

man. I'd love to get invited ;-)

Helen said...

Go you!!

And I fully support your failure to stay away from your blog.

Pavlov's Cat said...

I don't -- I want a long post about Teh Awards!!

I'm sure it will be full glitz, which is always incredibly entertaining. The badness of the behaviour of the writers tends to increase in direct proportion to the amount of money spent by the organisers on decor and food.

Ariel said...

I want a long post about Teh Awards too!

And yes, I think that while it's nice to give exposure to some lesser known books, the whopping fistful of money being awarded for this one (and the fact that it's the inaugural awards) means those awards should (in theory, not thinking about the inevitable politics of the panel) go to the most deserving books, regardless of whether it might be 'predictable' or not. (And yes, of course 'most deserving' is somewhat subjective, but you know ... allowing for a bit of that, too.)