Reluctance to Renown: Nobel Prize Winning Books

We’re big fans of books here at Lulu, so the office has been abuzz today about the recipient of the 2010 Nobel Prize for Literature, Mario Vargas Llosa. The 74-year-old Peruvian writer is the first South American author to win the prestigious award since 1982.

He’s been a very influential political figure throughout his life having written over 30 novels that revolve around life and the balance of power in Latin America (check out his works in the Lulu Marketplace). In the early’ 90s, Vargas Llosa even made a run for the presidency in Peru. He’s highly regarded throughout many Spanish-speaking countries for being a vigorous activist devoted to correcting social wrongs.

So I was struck by this line in an article from The New York Times:

“Like most writers toiling, I have always had the uncomfortable feeling that you never know if what you are doing has any real impact,” Vargas Llosa said.

I hear from writers all the time that are worried about whether their work matters, and here is an author who has reached the utmost prestige of literature with the same concern.

It should be an inspiration to all us, no matter the obstacles, to just get our work out there. You never know if The Swedish Academy might be calling you. I’d love to hear your thoughts.

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3 Comments

  1. I totally agree with you – the hardest thing for me was getting over the fear of judgement. I had the book written, the illustrations complete, the layout and design – I even had a bar code! There was only one thing left to do – allow someone to read it!

    The longest part of the journey was getting out of my own way and once I did the rest of the process flowed.

    So many books are left unwritten and so many more never reach the shelves because of fear. False Expectations Appearing Real.

    I encourage everyone to put themselves out there and just give it a go! You never know – someone might actually like it and buy it! Imagine how awesome it would feel to positively impact another persons life…
    Thanks again AJ
    Kate V

  2. AJ

    Kate,

    Thank you for the succinct and meaningful post. Well said.

  3. Thanks for sharing your fews. The fear of not sounding important in your work is what I have overcome and I see it as a teething problem at the beginning of one’s career. If the work your are working on matters to you, you are bound to find someone who values it very much.This opinion of mine became particularly stronger when I wrote my last and third major novel, DECISIVE MEMORIES. You may check it out at http://www.lulu.com/jowanshe
    Thanks.

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