The Impac Dublin Literary Award is an exciting thing for fans of international writing, not just because of the big fat prize purse of €100,000, but also because the longlist is put together by librarians all around the world. Which makes for a very long and international list of nominees. Some libraries plump for translations from their national language (good old Bremen public library) and some just go for books they love, regardless of where they're from. The only conditions for the 2013 nominees is that they were first published in English or in English translation during 2011 and are of high literary merit.
And this year is a very good year for German-language writing. The longlist of 154 titles includes six translated from German:
Alina Bronsky, The Hottest Dishes of the Tartar Cuisine, trans. Tim Mohr
Judith Hermann, Alice, trans. Margot Bettauer Dembo
Ulrich Peltzer, Part of the Solution, trans. Martin Chalmers
Thomas Pletzinger, Funeral for a Dog, trans. Ross Benjamin
Julya Rabinovich, Splithead, trans. Tess Lewis
Ingo Schulze, Adam and Evelyn, trans. John E. Woods
It's so exciting! I can't possibly decide who to root for. If a translation wins (which does happen but not always) the translator gets a quarter of the money. I like that. The poor judges have until April to wade their way through and choose a ten-strong shortlist. Incidentally, I'm pleased to see that they've made their website very beautiful compared to the way it used to be.