Lambda Literary recently closed its submissions for the 22nd Annual Lammy Awards. As always, I think we can always see who will be the winners, or at least short-listed. It's easy. First, you cut out all the self-published stuff (because most likely the authors are nominating themselves as opposed to say publishing houses; and most of the time these books are not worked out enough, I don't think so--and they have no chance). After that, you cross out all the books you haven't heard of yet. And then, you have your winner. It's usually the books with the most buzz, the books who's publishers can afford a decent cover, it's usually the gay book of the year that has already been promoted and the prize is just something a little sweet.
Unlike the major book awards (Pulitzer, National Book), it's gay and smaller authors do have a chance to win. Yet also unlike the major awards, there are so many categories. Just look at the webpage and it's so subdivided. Firstly, we have the fiction and nonfiction. Then you have to divide the fiction into gay or lesbian (queers, trannies, and bi-folk don't have such specific categories and must run amok--both fiction and nonfiction--in a separate category). And within gay and lesbian, it is further divided into debut fiction, general fiction, mystery, erotica, romance. So many categories, so many winners! It's like if you're a decent writer, you might as well win something, you're nearly guaranteed it (as long as you can fit into a category). And I think that is what downgrades the prestige of the Lammy award. It's nearly a joke when there's so many possibilities and not just one or two.
Anyway, I'm ranting now. Here are my picks for the fiction prizes.
More of This World or Maybe Another by Barb Johnson (I knew she was a lesbian!)
General Lesbian Fiction
Risk by Elana Dykewomon (You gotta love that name)
Best Lesbian Erotica 2010 by Kathleen Warnock
Gay Debut Fiction
Sugarless by James Magruder (everyone fucking loves a coming of age story)
Ugly Man by Dennis Cooper (Dennis Cooper should win)
Best Gay Erotica 2010 by Richard Labonte
Good luck to all the nominees...even though none of you are reading this...
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