Filthy lucre for the CWA Daggers

I held off on posting this till Monday for a few reasons, mostly because I found it pretty ridiculous that there was actual need to embargo the damn thing. I mean, hello? So they got a new sponsor and it’s a nice little ole private bank. Cool, but embargos? Eh?

Oh, the press release in question is quoted below:

The Crime Writers Association today announced it has secured

Duncan Lawrie Private Bank as the new sponsor for its largest annual prize for

crime fiction.  The award will be renamed the Duncan Lawrie Dagger (replacing

the Gold Dagger) and will increase in value from £3,000 to £20,000, making it

the largest award for crime fiction in the world.

Crime author and CWA Chair, Danuta Reah, said: “In the year that the Dagger awards celebrate their golden

jubilee, the CWA committed itself to significantly expanding the scope and reach

of its activities.  Crime and thriller writing is the largest and most popular

genre in the market today and we can at last offer an award which truly reflects

that fact.”

She continued: “We began our search for a sponsor

a while ago, but we felt it was important to tread carefully.  We needed to find

one who understood how we worked and would respect the legacy built up by the

CWA.  With Duncan Lawrie we feel we have found the right sponsor, one that has

integrity and an already-established standing in the literary world.”

Peter Ostacchini, Deputy Managing Director, Duncan Lawrie

Private Bank, said: “We are delighted to sponsor this prestigious award and

look forward to a long relationship with the Crime Writers Association.  Duncan

Lawrie has for many years supported literature in its various forms. Many of our

clients are involved in the arts; a large number are writers and literary agents

while others simply have an interest in literature.  We are often referred to as

‘the writers’ bank’ and sponsoring this award is a nice way to acknowledge our

literary legacy.”

The CWA Dagger awards are the longest established

literary awards in the UK and are internationally recognised as a mark of

excellence and achievement.  By sponsoring the awards we can help the CWA to

reflect the national and international status that crime fiction and thrillers


So the upshot is thanks to this new sponsor, the Daggers have been moved up to June (before they were almost always held in early November.) I’m not sure how I feel about this yet: on the one hand, maybe I’ll actually get to go this year, but what’s this going to do to eligibility? Will a smaller number of books be considered for next year and then it evens out for the year after that? Will books and stories that were eligible at the tail end of this year be considered for next year? And then there’s the Debut Dagger, but I don’t think it’s a bad thing that the eligibility period is cut way down, to be honest.

I just wonder if everything’s been properly factored in…