The Kitschies, a juried award for “the year’s most progressive, intelligent, and entertaining works that contain elements of the speculative or fantastic,” are on hiatus this year “due to job and sponsorship changes.”
The Kitschies are a spinoff from the Pornokitsch blog, with categories for novel (Red Tentacle), debut novel (Golden Tentacle), cover art (Inky Tentacle) and digitally native fiction (Invisible Tentacle). Previous winners include Margaret Atwood — who attended the ceremony and was photographed wearing her Red Tentacle on her head — Karen Lord, Patrick Ness, Becky Chambers, Lauren Beukes, Ruth Ozeki and China Miéville.
— Margaret E. Atwood (@MargaretAtwood) March 7, 2016
The British organizers offer financial prizes up of £500 and £1000 for each ‘Tentacle’, and have been looking for somebody to pay the bills. They announced in February that bookseller Blackwell’s will become the new headline sponsor.
Kieron Smith, Blackwell’s Digital Director, endorsed the award:
The Kitschies has a track record of highlighting some of the most exciting, and engaging fiction published over the last few years and matches our mission to support progressive intelligent and entertaining genre literature. We look forward to working with The Kitschies to introduce more great titles to readers in our shops, and online at Blackwells.co.uk, over the coming year.
Glen Mehn, Kitschies awards director since 2014, says:
We think that Blackwell’s are exactly the right sponsor for The Kitschies: not only are they one of the most recognised high street bookshop brands, they understand our mission: getting people talking about, reading, and loving books.
The award website now carries the promising news that “Submissions for the Kitschies will open soon”.