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Chapter 1205: The Qilu Literature Prize Judging Panel

    Chapter 1205: The Qilu Literature Prize Judging Panel

    Translator: Legge  Editor: Legge

    On this day.

    The nominee list for one of the most coveted literary awards, the Qilu Literature Prize, was released!

    The list was packed with several dozen names and novels!

    Spring Returns, Han Dong

    Love by the Lake, Liu Tianqi

    River Maple, Li Duan

    Fortress Besieged, Zhang Ye

    And so on.

    This was the grandest affair in the literary field. After the warm-up that was the Yanhong Literary Prize, the Qilu Literature Prize selection attracted even more attention.

    The Yanhong Literary Prize, Qilu Literature Prize, and another literary award made up three of the most coveted awards in the literary field. Although they were supposed to be equal in standing, some basic differences in value and influence still existed between the three awards. It was headed by the Qilu Literature Prize since full-length novels were the most influential to the mainstream. So the Qilu Literature Prize was considered the most prestigious of the three highest awards in literature and also the most difficult title to achieve in the literary field.

    Just like the Mao Dun Literature Prize, Lu Xun Literary Prize, Lao She Literary Award, and other literary awards 1  of Zhang Ye's previous world, it was clear that the Mao Dun Literature Prize was the most prestigious of all.

    The Qilu Literature Prize was basically the equivalent to the Mao Dun Literature Prize back in Zhang Ye's previous world!

    Online.

    "It's finally here!"

    "The Qilu Literature Prize, what a heavyweight!"

    "I wonder who the winners will be this time!"

    "Master Liu Tianqi should be able to win, right? The committee owes him one from the previous time!"

    "That's difficult to say. Just look at the Yanhong Literary Prize awards. Everyone felt that Zhang Ye had a very good chance of winning, but how did that turn out? He didn't get anything at all, so it's really too difficult to make any predictions."

    "Don't bring up the Yanhong Literary Prize anymore, ptui!"

    "Haha, the officials on the Yanhong Literary Prize committee have been badly scolded the past few days."

    "Yeah, even for someone like me who's not a fan of Zhang Ye feels that he has been wronged this time. When Zhang Ye got into fights, I criticized him. When he created trouble, I couldn't bear to look. But when he deserves the honor, I have to give it to him. We have to be reasonable here. His poetry and essays are truly deserving of the Yanhong Literary Prize!"

    "Previous poster's view is very fair. I am not Zhang Ye's fan either. I feel that the seven Heavenly Kings and Queens all know how to behave better than Zhang Ye, but his results and contribution to the literary world cannot be denied."

    "Eh, have a look at this, quickly!"

    "A look at what?"

    "Huh, why is Zhang Ye's name on the nominee list?"

    "Ah? Damn, it's really there!"

    "Zhang Ye? Fortress Besieged?"

    "What is this? What book is this Fortress Besieged?"

    "Zhang Ye hasn't written that book."

    "You silly people, there are so many authors out there who are named Zhang Ye. I personally know of two literary figures named Zhang Ye."

    "Hai, so that's how it is. I was surprised for a moment there."

    "He really does have a common name."

    "Haha, that's what I thought too! Would Zhang Ye know how to write literary fiction 2  !"

    "I love Ghost Blows Out the Light the most!"

    Everyone joked around some and did not take the appearance of this name too seriously after that.

    Even the media reporters and industry insiders did not think too much about it. Zhang Ye's previous books were all famous, and everyone had really not heard of him writing a book titled Fortress Besieged.

    The reporters were all busy working on their drafts, with some of chasing after interviews with several key authors, while others were writing reports to help the general public understand more about the literary awards.

    Such as the following: The literary field's awards are unlike those given out in the film and television industry. In the film and television industry, there are all sorts of different top award ceremonies held in China, in Hong Kong, and also globally. It's possible for one person to win a lot of them, like Zhang Yuanqi, or even Ning Lan, who had won the highest honors in the film and television industry more than once. It's even possible to win the same awards repeatedly. Perhaps they would take the crown of Best Actress this year, and then win it again during the next year. Even though it rarely happens, it's still a possibility. However, it's different for the highest honors of the literary field. Here, although there are no hard and fast rules outlining it, there are some practices and traditions that have gained the consensus of the Chinese literary field. For one, an author could only win one of the highest domestic honors in their entire lifetime!

    Take for example.

    Once a certain person won the Yanhong Literary Prize, the future Yanhong Literary Prize committees would never let them be nominated again. No matter how good that person's future works are or how well they do, it wouldn't matter. This is due to the fact that they've won it before. Furthermore, once either one of the three highest honors were won, they would lose their qualification to receive any of the other two highest honors.

    If they'd won the Yanhong Literary Prize before, they wouldn't have a chance of winning the Qilu Literature Prize.

    If they won the Qilu Literature Prize, there wouldn't be a need to win the other awards anyway.

    This was generally how it was.

    The public was getting rowdy.

    Especially in the literary field. It was as though they were in the opening of the Olympics. Many of the literary figures were currently very active, appearing on all the different major television stations and enjoying the attention that this grand literary affair was shining on them.

    ...

    Meanwhile.

    The members of the Qilu Literature Prize judging panel were almost coming to blows with each other!

    Someone banged on the table and shouted, "I don't agree with this!"

    Someone said with a darkened expression, "Why was Zhang Ye placed in the shortlist?"

    Elder Qian explained, "I was the one who nominated him."

    That person said, "Elder Qian, no one has read this book before, and it hasn't even been published yet, so how could you nominate it? This hasn't been done in accordance with the rules at all!"

    Elder Meng, who had quite a good relationship with Elder Qian, banged the table and said, "Quiet down, all of you. This is a small room, you guys don't have to raise your voices for us to hear you. Let me say this, Elder Qian has not done anything wrong at all. The novel Zhang Ye wrote has already been allocated an ISBN number from the publisher, and all the formalities surrounding it have also been completed. Although it hasn't officially been put up for sale yet, the award's rules only state that all nominated works shall have an assigned ISBN number. There isn't any stipulation that the book has to have tens of thousands of copies published before it can be shortlisted for the award."

    A female member of the panel said, "But no one has read this book before."

    Elder Qian smiled and said, "I did."

    Elder Meng sighed, "I did as well."

    A middle-aged member of the panel asked curiously, "How was it?"

    Elder Meng smiled wryly and said, "I don't know how to put it, but if you really want me to use a word to describe it, I can only say it was 'shocking.' You all can read it for yourselves to find out."

    Shocking?

    Elder Meng used the word "shocking" to describe it?

    Just how high was that praise?

    Zhang Ye? He could even write literary fiction?

    Why does it not sound believable at all!

    Someone mentioned, "But he's such a controversial person. Just look at what happened at the Yanhong Literary Prize award ceremony. They were criticized so miserably, so we better not get ourselves into such a mess as well."

    Elder Qian looked at the several of them. "Is the Qilu Literature Prize given out for the person or for the book?"

    One of them answered, "The book."

    Elder Qian said, "I don't care what Zhang Ye's character is like. I'm not bothered about what kind of personality he has either. It also does not matter to me whether or not he's part of the Writers' Association. All I know is that in the current field of literature, there aren't any books that can compare with Fortress Besieged! No one else can write something as good as it!"

    This was no longer a matter of high praise. This was the utmost affirmation that one could give a person or a book!

    No one else can write something as good as it?

    No other books can compare?

    How is that possible!

    After the meeting was over, everyone went their separate ways.

    "Where's the book?"

    "In the library."

    "OK, I'll go and read it."

    "Me too. I've already read all the other books that were nominated to the shortlist, so there isn't a need to go through those again. It's only this Fortress Besieged that I've never heard before."

    "Let's head over together then."

    "I'd like to see just what kind of a novel someone like Zhang Ye who used to write grave robbing and children's stories in the past can come up with."

    ...

    The next day.

    It was another scheduled meeting for the Qilu Literature Prize judging panel.

    The meeting was presided by Elder Meng, who was carrying out the selection progress meeting.

    Elder Meng said, "In another two days, we'll be announcing the winners of the award. Let's discuss them. By the way, has everyone read the nominated titles?"

    There was silence across the board.

    Elder Meng asked, "What's the matter? No one has anything to say?"

    A female member of the panel said, "Was Fortress Besieged really written by Zhang Ye?"

    Elder Meng laughed and said, "It wasn't written by me, that's for sure."

    Elder Qian looked at her. "Little Yan, what's your evaluation of it?"

    The woman took a deep breath and thought about it for a long time before finally saying, "For someone who can write a book like that, I don't think there's even a need for them to compete for any sort of award in the country! No author in China can write that kind of book. If I were to vote, I would surely vote for it. Not for Zhang Ye, but for the book!"

    Another member of the panel said with a wry grin, "I haven't come across a book like that in many years. Reading it gave me an indescribable feeling. It's not even possible to call it 'shocking.' All I want to do right now is run home so that I can read and analyze Fortress Besieged a few more times. The knowledge and language in this book is simply profound!"

    Someone said, "How is it possible that Zhang Ye wrote a book like that! For someone who used to write grave robbing novels and fairy tales, this is too great of a leap!"

    All of them had given Fortress Besieged a read!

    The first feeling that came to them upon finishing it was disbelief!

    How were they going to vote?

    Was there even a need to vote?

    Elder Qian spoke, "When I first met Little Zhang for the first time, I said that if there was anyone from our country who could win one of the top international literary awards in the next 5 to 15 years, it would be Zhang Ye. From the looks of it, my prediction is slowly coming true."

    "But the Qilu Literature Prize..."

    "How can we possibly award it to him?"

    "Zhang Ye is too controversial a person!"

    "He's someone who operates totally outside of our domestic literary arena."

    Elder Qian said, "You're all members of the judging panel and have the freedom to vote as you wish for whomever you think deserves to win the Qilu Literature Prize. No one can stop you."

    "Hai."

    "This is really tricky!"

    Many of the judges on the judging panel got headaches due to this problem!

    Zhang Ye had given them a colossally difficult decision to make!

    1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Chinese_literary_awards

    2. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Belles-lettres | https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Literary_fiction
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