Skip to Content

Diagram Prize shortlist 2012


The 2012 Diagram Prize for the Oddest Title of the Year

Here's the shortlist for the 2012 Diagram Prize.  It looks like it's going to be make this a serious challenger for the barmiest year ever. It's run by the Bookseller (the UK book trade weekly) with input from dedicated odd title hunters from all over the world. The prize, set up in association with the Diagram Group, has been running since 1978 and is a joyous celebration of the barmy side of publishing.

So here's the 2012 shortlist:

Was Hitler Ill? by Henrik Eberle and Hans-Joachim Neumann

Lofts of North America: Pigeon Lofts by Jerry Gagne

How to Sharpen Pencils by David Rees

God's Doodle: The Life and Times of the Penis by Tom Hickman

Goblinproofing One's Chicken Coop by Reginald Bakeley

How Tea Cosies Changed the World by Loani Prior

Philip Stone, the Diagram Prize's co-ordinator, said: "People might think this prize is just a bit of fun, but I think it draws welcome attention to an undervalued art. Publishers and booksellers know only too well that a title can make all the difference to the sales of a book. A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian has sold almost a million copies to date,
while books such as Salmon Fishing in the Yemen, The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society and The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared perhaps all owe some of their success to their unusual monikers."

If you are seized by enthusiasm as regards the absurdity of one of the titles, you can go to this page to enter your own vote.