NBCC Meeting

The board of directors of the National Book Critics Circle met in New York on Saturday to chose the finalists for its 2008 book awards.

Board members are not supposed to discuss the process. I will, however, offer this short film, which sums up the experience quite well.

I chaired the committee that named Ron Charles as this year's winner of the Nona Balakian Citation for Excellence in Reviewing and after getting home yesterday a short item about him for Critical Mass.

See also Leon Neyfakh's article for The New York Observer asking whether this was an effort to lobby The Washington Post to preserve Book World. My two cents:

Anyone saying that has things precisely backwards. We are raising the alarm about Book World in order to make sure that critics of the calibre of Ron Charles have a nationally prominent venue in which to publish their work. To the best of my knowledge, nobody raised the idea that we were sending semaphore messages to The Post when Charles was a finalist in years past.

All the book finalists are listed here. Members of the board have to read everything on the list that we haven't already between now and early March. My eyeballs can hardly wait.

January 26, 2009 6:41 PM | | Comments (2)

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I find it interesting that you called it a "short film": I was wondering who would go to such trouble to produce such a short, funny film, and actually was a little surprised when the advertising copy started rolling....

I think this first ran about ten years ago during the Super Bowl -- hence the high production values.

It's a great favorite around here, given the daily struggle with our two-feline "herd."

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