Spain’s model of Elena Ferrante has been revealed to be three middle-aged males.
Late on Friday evening the €1m Planeta prize — the world’s highest paying literary trophy — was awarded to Carmen Mola, an writer who till now has been offered as a female university professor who writes underneath a pen title due to her want for anonymity.
Though Mola’s books are decidedly gory, the author has been publicised because the “Spanish Elena Ferrante” — a reference to the reclusive, and in addition pseudonymous, Italian literary novelist.
However when the primary prize on the Planeta awards ceremony was introduced within the presence of King Felipe VI in Barcelona, three individuals stepped as much as the rostrum — and none of them was a girl.
Neither Jorge Díaz, Agustín Martínez nor Antonio Mercero are lecturers, however actually tv scriptwriters of their 40s and 50s who’ve labored on Spanish reveals equivalent to On Responsibility Pharmacy, Central Hospital and No Heaven Without Breasts.
Their story may barely be extra totally different from previous examples equivalent to Mary Ann Evans, the nineteenth century English writer who wrote as “George Eliot” to guard her privateness and keep away from being stereotyped as a feminine gentle novelist.
“Carmen Mola shouldn’t be, like all of the lies we’ve been telling, a college professor,” mentioned Díaz on successful the prize. “We’re three mates who sooner or later 4 years in the past determined to mix our expertise to inform a narrative.”
Martínez prompt in an interview with Spain’s EFE information company that the authors selected to put in writing underneath one title as a result of “collective work shouldn’t be as valued in literature [as in] different arts equivalent to portray or music”.
Looking back Planeta tipped its hand to multiple particular person successful the prize on Thursday, when it introduced the primary award could be elevated from €600,000 to €1m, so outstripping the Nobel Prize for literature, which at present trade charges is price simply over €100 much less, at 10m Swedish krona. Every of the authors will take away a 3rd of the €1m complete.
Carmen Mola is finest recognized for a trilogy of violent novels starring police inspector Elena Blanco, a hard-charging police inspector with a passion for karaoke, grappa and informal intercourse. The books, published by Penguin Random House, have offered greater than 200,000 copies, been translated into 11 languages and are being adapted for television by Endemol Shine and ViacomCBS Worldwide Studios.
However the Carmen Mola ebook that received the Planeta prize — beating 653 different contenders — is a historic thriller, The Beast, coping with the homicide of youngsters throughout a cholera epidemic in Madrid in 1834.
The prize can also be a means of securing and publicising works of fiction for Editorial Planeta, Penguin Random Home’s nice rival in Spain. The award is reserved for unpublished work, and the winner’s acceptance of Planeta’s publishing rights is a situation of entry. The circumstances additionally state that each one pseudonymous authors should embrace their particulars in a sealed envelope, which is able to solely be opened within the occasion that they win.
Within the case of Friday’s win, because the prize’s organisers mentioned, there was a “pseudonym behind a pseudonym”, since The Beast was submitted underneath the pen-name Sergio López, which was then revealed to be Carmen Mola, and subsequently unveiled as Díaz, Martínez and Mercero.
The ebook is because of be printed by Planeta underneath Carmen Mola’s title subsequent month, though Mola remains to be listed as a Penguin Random Home writer.