The Cringe D’Or


Rachel Cooke has a nice article in The Guardian about  Mortification: Writers’ Stories of their Public Shame, with contributions from luminaries like Margaret Atwood, Deborah Moggach, Anne Enright, Rupert Thomson and John Banville. It’s always satisfying for us unknowns to hear about such people reading to an audience of one, or none,  being unfavourably compared to Rolf Harris,  or being asked “What makes you think you’re so bloody good anyway?”

Michael Dibdin reviewed the book when it first came out in 2003:

…the winner of the Cringe d’Or must surely be Simon Armitage for his portmanteau account of a reading at a Portakabin in a provincial car-park where he is introduced as Simon Armriding, upstaged by a signer for the deaf, put up for the night at the squalid home of an amateur poetaster who insists on regaling Armitage with selections from his own oeuvre, and then while waiting for his train home the next morning discovers an early volume that he had inscribed to his mother and father on sale for 10p in a charity shop.


15 thoughts on “The Cringe D’Or

      1. There’s actually a very funny scene with the writer giving a reading at the library and one of the women in the audience has the audacity to mention that she’s waiting to get the book from the library. He berates her for not buying a copy.

  1. There’s nothing more humbling than attempting to create a piece of art/literature and it falls flat on the audience. Now there is an award for that?

  2. Wonderful! Made my day. I heard recently that Simon Armitage is in Canberra at the moment and a friend of mine (and fellow Armitage fan) is going to see him perform. (Hope he gets an audience of more than one.) I was blown away by a reading he gave in Adelaide some years ago.

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