Tis the season....to complain about contests
Yes, it's contest season for us daily newspaper reporters, the time of year when we break out the glue-sticks and tape to assemble our personal best-of work from the past year, in hopes that someone, somewhere, will give us the thanks and recognition that we so rarely get from our own employers.
Do I sound cynical? Well, I guess I am a bit cranky about the whole thing. After all, as an arts journalist, my chances of winning an award are slim to none. While some might assert that that's a function of my lousy writing, I find myself stuck at the starting line.
Where are all the arts journalism contests?
Oh, there are a few out there. The Pulitzer, notably, has categories in music, theater, and letters (books). But look at the list of past winners, and it's clear that a daily reporter whose job entails writing about arts-life in a small town, for a small-circulation newspaper, does not a frequent winner make. I would be competing directly against writers at the New York Times and elsewhere, where reporters are actually given more than a couple of days to write a given story (not the case, generally, at my paper or other small papers I know of).
Beyond the Pulitzer, though, there are scant few national awards that specifically and exclusively focus on arts writing. In fact, I had an easier time finding an award for reporting on colon and rectal disease than reporting on the arts. And yet again, as I noted here last year, the Montana Newspaper Association failed to include an arts or entertainment category in its annual contest, despite the fact that every daily paper in the state has a weekly arts page or section (not true for agriculture, which still gets its own category).
Maybe I'm looking in the wrong places?
Or maybe it's just the same lack of respect that plagues the American arts world in general -- the sense, broadly held, that it is frivolous and secondary to the big issues in life and society. Ah well.
Bloggers We Love
Bridgette Redman and Lansing Theater
Drew McManus' "Neo Classical" at the Partial Observer
Marc Moss (Missoula, MT artist)
Mary Louise Schumacher's "Art City"
Other Great Sites
American Composers Orchestra
Arts & Letters Daily
Center for Arts and Culture
Cultural Policy and the Arts National Data Archive
National Arts Journalism Program
NEA Arts Journalism Institute for Dance Criticism
NEA Arts Journalism Institute in Classical Music and Opera
NEA Arts Journalism Institute in Theater & Musical Theater
New Music Box: American Music Center
USC Annenberg/Getty Arts Journalism Program
AJ BlogsAJBlogCentral | rss
Terry Teachout on the arts in New York City
Andrew Taylor on the business of arts & culture
rock culture approximately
Laura Collins-Hughes on arts, culture and coverage
Richard Kessler on arts education
Douglas McLennan's blog
Dalouge Smith advocates for the Arts
Art from the American Outback
For immediate release: the arts are marketable
No genre is the new genre
David Jays on theatre and dance
Paul Levy measures the Angles
Judith H. Dobrzynski on Culture
John Rockwell on the arts
Jan Herman - arts, media & culture with 'tude
Apollinaire Scherr talks about dance
Tobi Tobias on dance et al...
Howard Mandel's freelance Urban Improvisation
Focus on New Orleans. Jazz and Other Sounds
Doug Ramsey on Jazz and other matters...
Jeff Weinstein's Cultural Mixology
Martha Bayles on Film...
Fresh ideas on building arts communities
Greg Sandow performs a book-in-progress
Exploring Orchestras w/ Henry Fogel
Harvey Sachs on music, and various digressions
Bruce Brubaker on all things Piano
Kyle Gann on music after the fact
Greg Sandow on the future of Classical Music
Norman Lebrecht on Shifting Sound Worlds
Jerome Weeks on Books
Scott McLemee on books, ideas & trash-culture ephemera
Wendy Rosenfield: covering drama, onstage and off
Chloe Veltman on how culture will save the world
Public Art, Public Space
Regina Hackett takes her Art To Go
John Perreault's art diary
Lee Rosenbaum's Cultural Commentary
Tyler Green's modern & contemporary art blog