Tuesday, April 17, 2012
That's Right Folks - No Pulitzer for Fiction 2012
The Pulitzer Prize committee could not find a majority agreement for which of the three nominees would receive the Pulitzer Prize in fiction this year. The solution? No winner will be awarded.
Yes. Three books, three authors nominated, no winner.
First, I would imagine that each of these three authors: David Foster Wallace, Karen Russell and Denis Johnson are more than gratified at simply being nominated. I can't truly speak for them, but if it were me I would be. Consider how many wonderful novels get released each year. To whittle that down to three must have been difficult. But to not choose a winner seems like an egregious lack of planning or creative problem solving. Seriously? They couldn't deliberate until a majority had been swayed? They couldn't bring in some well-appointed tie-breaking committee? They couldn't award a three-way tie?
Nobel Prize winners share the distinction when one cannot be decided on, why can't the Pulitzer Prize be given in the same way? Here's what the Pulitzer Prize administrator Sig Gissler had to say about the decision: “There were multiple factors involved in these decisions, and we don't discuss in detail why a prize is given or not given.” (BBC news: Pulitzer Prize board drop 2012 fiction prize). Soo, we don't even get to know why they made this decision.
How unfair to those three authors. If their books are considered great enough to be nominated, then one or all three deserve the prize. Why none?
In other news, the word for this week's Poetry Friday will be Tie.