Unquillable

Hooray! The Quills will be returning for a third year, reports Publishers Weekly (“Revamped Quills Set for October 22“). There will be some changes, however. First, instead of letting anyone with an Internet connection cast a vote, 6,000 booksellers and librarians will do the honors. Second, the books they’ll be voting on (5 books times 19 categories), PW reports, will be selected by…PW.

To be considered for the Quills, books must have been published between July 1, 2006, and June 30, 2007. This year, the nomination process will feature a Quills/PW Selection Committee headed by PW editor-in-chief Sara Nelson. The committee will choose titles from books that have appeared as PW starred reviews or on the magazine’s bestsellers lists.

Sure, all awards are subjective, but…huh. Either it’s good (starred review) or it’s not good (no starred review) but sold a lot. It’s populism–with a critical edge! (Don’t worry, Average Internet User, you’ll still be able to vote for the “Book of the Year” at www.quillsvote.com.)

In a third change from last year, winners will be announced over a month before the actual ceremony–presumably because last year not enough winners bothered to show up.

I can’t wait. I can practically taste the Hollywood-style glitz.

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About the Author:

Keir Graff is the editor of Booklist Online and the author of five books. His most recent is the middle-grade novel, The Other Felix.

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