Monday, March 07, 2011
"How to Avoid Huge Ships", "Greek Rural Postmen and Their Cancellation Numbers", "People Who Don't Know They're Dead", or "The Big Book of Lesbian Horse Stories" - nothing is too far fetched to score in a competition of the oddest book title of the year. If you have a minute or two, I recommend browsing at least through the list in the Wikipedia article for the Diagram Prize (see just below) - I promise, you won't regret it.
The Bookseller/Diagram Prize for Oddest Title of the Year, originally known as the Diagram Group Prize for the Oddest Title at the Frankfurt Book Fair, commonly known as the Diagram Prize for short, is a humorous literary award that is given annually to the book with the oddest title. Wikipedia article
The Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest (BLFC) is a tongue-in-cheek contest that takes place annually and is sponsored by the English Department of San José State University in San Jose, California. Entrants are invited "to compose the opening sentence to the worst of all possible novels" – that is, deliberately bad. According to the official rules, the prize for winning the contest is "a pittance", or $250.
The Lyttle Lytton Contest is a diminutive derivative of the Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest, and was first run in the year 2001. Both are tongue-in-cheek contests that take place annually and in which entrants are invited "to compose the opening sentence to the worst of all possible novels." The Lyttle Lytton Contest varies from the Bulwer-Lytton in favouring extremely short first sentences, of 25 words or fewer. Since 2008, the maximum word count was increased to 33 words.
And to illustrate all this, here is the blog post 11 Strangest How-To Books, loaded with title pictures and Amazon links, followed by the like Yet Another 12 Insanely Titled Books and Another 10 Insanely Titled Books and 15 Most Insanely Titled Books, and...