The creation of a new $150,000 annual literary prize, for the best novel published in English, was announced yesterday in Paris. It is named for Ernest Hemingway.
The idea for the Ritz Paris Hemingway Award came from Pierre Salinger, White House press secretary under President Kennedy and now a correspondent for ABC News. The sultan of Brunei, Sir Muda Hassanal Bolkiah, is putting up the money.
The Hemingway name long has been connected with the Ritz, and after World War II, the Ritz, on Place Vendome, became Hemingway's home when he was in Paris.
The prize, which has Hemingway family backing, may be awarded to a book written in any language, but the book must be published in English. The author will receive $50,000. The remaining $100,000 will be distributed in grants to institutions for the study of literature and the life and works of Hemingway.
A jury for the prize will be brought to Paris on March 28 and the prize will be announced the next day during a gala dinner at the Ritz.
Jury members include Salinger; American writers William Styron, James Dickey, Peter Viertel and William Walton; Lady Antonia Fraser, the British historian; Peruvian novelist Mario Vargas Llosa, and French writers Jean d'Ormesson, Lucien Bodard and Philippe Labro.
Among those serving on the board of directors for the prize are Ernest Hemingway's sons Jack and Patrick.