Dubious awards

The season for “best of” book lists is upon us.

Goodreads has their Choice Awards contest going and is already into the semi-final round of reader voting.

I know I’ve seen at least one Best of 2014 list already, even though it was barely after Halloween. (If retail is putting out Christmas decorations, I guess the literary world can declare the “best” too.)

The Word Nerds are planning our annual awards as well.

And then there’s the Literary Review’s annual award, the Bad Sex in Fiction award.

As the website says, they aren’t looking for descriptions in pornographic or erotic literature. No, they have a clear set of criteria:

 The purpose of the prize is to draw attention to poorly written, perfunctory or redundant passages of sexual description in modern fiction, and to discourage them.

This is the 22nd year for the award, so it seems they still have their work cut out for them to banish poorly written passages of horizontal mamboing from fiction.

I haven’t read any of the books in question but Literary Review (@lit_review) is helpfully tweeting snippets from the short list, such as this one:

A dark red heat poured from him. She noticed that he was lying heavier on the bed beside her.#BadSex

(This only makes me ask the question, is gravity suddenly different one of the people in this encounter?) Be warned, other tweets include more detail, clinical body parts and all. So while it’s literature, you might want to be a bit circumspect about viewing it at work, depending on the words that a co-worker or a boss might suddenly see on your computer screen.

From what you’ve read this year, anything you’d suggest for this award?




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