On this auspicious day, as we celebrate the advancement of civil rights and the bravery of the movement’s leaders, we have chosen to unveil our first official Boys Don’t Read book prize.
We present: THE “BANNED IN THE SOUTH” AWARD.
Months ago, we launched a contest to design a professional-looking gold seal for this prestigious award. We didn’t expect you to respond. We underestimated you, and we have learned our lesson. Our two winners are:
Designer: Kurt Okimoto. (He also designed THIS.)
Designer: Bryan’s Mom. (Note: This is not a “your momma” joke. Really. This was designed by Bryan’s actual mom.)
Doubtlessly, you are now interested in receiving your very own official Boys Don’t Read Banned in the South Gold Seal. With a few easy steps, this prestigious award can be yours. You will first need to: 1) Publish a book. Then, 2) Get your book banned in the South.
Done? Good for you. Now, please take the time to read the following:
OFFICIAL “BANNED IN THE SOUTH” SELECTION CRITERIA
1. The nominated book is a young adult or middle grade novel currently or previously banned in a southern state.
Note: For the purposes of this award, Boys Don’t Read chiefly defines “southern state” in accordance with the most recent US Census data, April 28, 2011. Books banned in the “Deep South” will receive equal consideration. Books banned only in Texas may not qualify for the Banned in the South Award, but are encouraged to submit for the forthcoming BITCHS award [Banned In Texas Community High Schools]. In special cases, we will also consider books banned in non-southern states with well-documented southern leanings (eg. Kansas, Missouri, and southern Illinois.) Those wishing to contest the Boys Don’t Read classification of “Southern” may submit all of the following along with a written, signed, and notarized appeal:
i. Audio, photographic, or video proof of individuals commonly using the term “Coke” to describe the full spectrum of available soft drinks.
ii. Documentation of the common usage of “y’all” in a non-ironic way
iii. Five (5) menus from area restaurants serving both grits and sweet tea. All five menus CANNOT be from Waffle House.
2. The nominated book is good. (Note: Boy’s Don’t Read will be sole arbiters of “good.” For a partial list of things the Boys find awesome, please see paragraph 3.)
While the following invitational priorities are not necessary for selection, we at Boys Don’t Read actively solicit nominations for the following types of books which ALSO meet the official “Banned in the South” selection criteria:
a. Books banned for the realistic documentation of a young person’s sexual orientation.
b. Book banned for dropping necessary F-bombs. (“Necessary” may include reasons such as: character authenticity, voice, emphasis, or because the sentence just wasn’t as funny without using an F-bomb.)
c. Books banned for suggesting evolution is possible.
d. Books banned for depictions of religious institutions or systems as anything other than Totally Awesome.
e. Books banned for discussions of race, violence, rape, drug use, mental health, suicide, or other issues that occur in the lives of young people whether or not they happen to be in a book.
f. Books banned for “wizardry.”
When submitting your nomination, please include the invitational priorities under which the book may qualify.
If your book hasn’t yet been banned in the South, don’t give up: there is still plenty of time for you to become a pariah south of the Mason-Dixon Line. Please visit the American Library Association’s list of the top 100 most challenged books of 2000-2009 for examples of how one can be banned for writing quality fiction. If these works are beyond the reach of your talent, simply email email@example.com for information on how to be more offensive.
We look forward to hearing from you!