26 February 2013

Nominations for 2013 Diagram Prize!

The Diagram Prize  surely ranks with the Razzies and the IgNobels as one of the most coveted awards availale in this world today A few days ago the nominations for the 2013 prize were announcedandquite a fine line up there is as ever!

How Tea Cosies Changed the World – the 160-page follow-up to Really Wild Tea Cosies – is up against How to Sharpen Pencils and God's Doodle: The Life and Times of the Penis to win the little sought-after accolade of the oddest book title of the year.

Loani Prior's tea cosy extravaganza, containing "24 vibrant new designs that transform the conventional tea cosy into a knitted piece of art", is one of six books shortlisted for the Diagram prize, alongside David Rees's "manifesto and a fully illustrated walk-through of the many, many, many ways to sharpen a pencil" and Tom Hickman's look at man's relationship with his penis.
A niche guide to pigeon housing, Lofts of North America: Pigeon Lofts, fairy hunter Reginald Bakeley's Goblinproofing One's Chicken Coop and Was Hitler Ill?, an examination from a historian and a professor of medicine of whether Adolf Hitler was fully responsible for his crimes, complete the lineup for this year's Diagram prize

The Bookseller's Philip Stone said he was "particularly fond" this year of How to Sharpen Pencils, "not only because of its oddity, but because I find something beautiful in the fact a publisher has been brave enough to publish a book concerning a centuries-old implement in hardback in the digital age. Upon my next trip to my local independent bookshop, I hope to see it alongside all the pornographic literature that appears to be keeping the entire book industry in rude health."

According to Stone, the prize "draws welcome attention to an undervalued art".

"Publishers and booksellers know only too well that a title can make all the difference to the sales of a book," he continued. "A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian has sold almost 1m copies to date, while books such as Salmon Fishing in the Yemen, The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society and The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared perhaps all owe some of their success to their unusual monikers."

The winner will be chosen by a public vote at thebookseller.com and welovethisbook.com and announced on 22 March. The Bookseller's diarist and the prize's custodian Horace Bent said: "It remains a great honour of mine to represent a prize that draws attention to authors not called Hilary Mantel that may need a little help in gaining column inches and subsequently entering public consciousness and bookshop bestseller bays."

The shortlist

Goblinproofing One's Chicken Coop by Reginald Bakeley (Conari, £9.99)
God's Doodle: The Life and Times of the Penis by Tom Hickman (Square Peg, £12.99)
How Tea Cosies Changed the World by Loani Prior (Murdoch, £12.99)
How to Sharpen Pencils by David Rees (Melville House, £12.99)
Lofts of North America: Pigeon Lofts by Jerry Gagne (Foy's Pet Supplies, £51.50)
Was Hitler Ill? by Hans-Joachim Neumann and Henrik Eberle (Polity Press, £20)

I cant wait to see who wins!


Andrew MacLaren-Scott said...

I took a look at that book "The Life and Times of The Penis", to see if it was as brief and uninteresting as I thought it might be (don't ask me why), and was interested to discover that Sophocles said,'To possess a penis is to be chained to a madman'

Hmmm... Some mad men spend most of their time curled up in a dark corner quietly weeping. Is that what he meant?

jams o donnell said...

A source of joy and sorrow!

Claude said...

If Man had learned how to promote a penis (the same way than Woman promotes a pair of breasts) he would not feel so bloody inadequate, and in need of historical evaluation.

jams o donnell said...

Haha true Claude!

SnoopyTheGoon said...

Not bad, in its own way.

Otherwise: what Claude says. Should serve as an inspiration to fashion designers. I can see a hit in that branch of fashion already.

Liz Hinds said...

Difficult choice there!

jams o donnell said...

An excellent idea Snoopy!

Indeed.Ia not sure which to choose myself Liz

Mike Young said...

My book 'Managing a dental practice the Genghis Khan way' lifted this prize in 2011. Since then my book has gone global (yes, dental books can be Amazon best sellers).I love the Diagram Prize. This year's nominations look like a madcap bunch. Best of luck to all the nominees and may the oddest title win.

jams o donnell said...

And a very worthy winner it was too Go Amalgam Horde I say!