Many could say that they do this so the editor is aware that they have - for a lack of a better word - "proven" talent.
How do you feel when you see a writer's work who has won an award? Let it be a Nobel Prize or a Daily Deviation. Any award will do. And, better yet, does it really matter if they have or have not won an award before?
This was posted on the popular art site DeviantArt by our official account. Our goal was to see what these artists, writers and casual art admirers thought about Awards and whether or not they gave an impression (good or bad) in their minds.
Here are the highlights of our conversation:
Jawline: How do you feel when you see a writer's work who has won an award?
Steve: Like I picked the best apple. Seriously, it brings a smile to my face. Especially if I buy it before it wins the award. I bought All the Light We Cannot See, by Anthony Doerr, about a month ago. At the time it was a National Book Award finalist and the New York Times Book Review listed it as one of the 10 best books for 2014. Last week, it was awarded a Pulitzer. The Daily Deviations [a feature given out by members of the community] here have not yet let me down, either; the staff knows how to pick good reading.
Jawline: Does it really matter if they have or have not won an award before?
Steve: Not really. There are some great books out there that don't have awards. And awards can't be given to every single great book there is.
Jawline: Could we say that awards are simply markers for good works noticed? What do you think?
Steve: Could we say that awards are simply markers for noticed works? Well, yes and no. While not all great works are given an award, the ones that are, usually have something about them that makes them stand out from the others that were not awarded. If I collected and read all the books on the NYT top 10 list for 2014, I'd probably find that the one which was awarded a Pulitzer stands out a bit above the others. The award winners are definitely top of their class - although sometimes the decision of who to award is likely extremely difficult.
On a different note, another member (username: neurotype) of the site chimed in on the measure an achievement given out by an art site is in comparison to traditional print publication.
nuerotype: And in terms of awards, how many people with predominantly real-world success are handing them out? Again, it doesn't mean that you're necessarily a bad writer, but in general the yardstick for print success needs to come from other print sources, and you can plug in any other descriptor there (commercial, literary, etc).
This comment particularly pecked at us and after having expanded dialogue with neurotype, we came to a very conclusive and practical discovery.
Jawline: Are social writing sites [example: deviantArt, WattPad, Figment, etc...] sandboxes for our future careers in the field of literature? Are some writers too focused on the social status of obtaining these features and losing focus on the goals as a writer (becoming published)?
neurotype: I would add that the specific reason it [referring to the site's achievements] doesn't have value is because it is wholly disconnected from wider trends and models in publishing. If it weren't, things would be a different story.
Anything can be a sandbox, but at some point you have to start building elsewhere.
We have extraordinary admiration for this user due to their honesty. They raised a very good point about social writing sites; their achievements do not have any real value to publishers and editors. Yet, they do contain a vital setting for your journey as a writer.
They are sandboxes for you to play in, to experiment and learn in. They are a place you can write.
The Jawline Review and our editor would like to thank all of our participants. Your thoughts have given texture to our topic and we are incredibly grateful for that.
Please feel free to comment below and add even more dialogue to our discussion. We look forward to seeing your jaws open.
Best regards and happy writing,
To read any further comments made by DeviantArt users, please click HERE for the original post.