There’s crafting your public persona, and then there’s Lemony Snicket, the pen name and alterego of the writer behind the Series of Unfortunate Events books. And then there’s the yearly prize he just founded with the American Library Association, to give librarians who go above and beyond the call their due. And even the official description of the prize abounds with Snicketian prose.
It is of the opinion of Lemony Snicket, author, reader, and alleged malcontent, that librarians have suffered enough. Therefore he is establishing an annual prize honoring a librarian who has faced adversity with integrity and dignity intact. The prize will be a generous amount of cash from Mr. Snicket’s disreputable gains, along with an odd, symbolic object from his private stash, and a certificate, which may or may not be suitable for framing. It is Mr. Snicket’s hope, and the ALA’s, that the Snicket Prize will remind readers everywhere of the joyous importance of librarians and the trouble that is all too frequently unleashed upon them.
Mr. Snicket (secret identity Daniel Handler) says that “this seems like a better way to channel money to librarians than my previous strategy, which was incurring exorbitant late fees.” The monetary portion of the prize will be comprised of a $3,000 check and a $1,ooo travel stipend so that the winner may attend the ALA Annual Conference and receive their prize in person. The winner will be chosen by a jury of five ALA representatives.
So if you know a librarian who perseveres over dwindling public funds, delivers vital services to a needy community, and has not let a single book go quietly into the night of banning or blacklisting, you’ve got until May 1st to nominate them here.
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