Just as American has the Harveys and The Eisners, Canada has the Shusters and the Doug Wright Awards, the latter established in 2005. The Doug Wright award nominees are chosen by a jury of top-notch cartoonists and the winners by another distinguished jury, and the selections definitely represent the literary end of Canadian cartooning. Here’s the list:
The 2008 DWA finalists for Best Book are:
365 Days: A Diary by Julie Doucet (Drawn and Quarterly)
Spent by Joe Matt (Drawn and Quarterly)
The Magical Life of Long Tack Sam by Ann Marie Fleming (Riverhead Books)
Southern Cross by Laurence Hyde (Drawn and Quarterly)
The 2008 DWA finalists for Best Emerging Talent are:
Essex County Vol. 1 Tales From The Farm & Vol. 2 Ghost Stories by Jeff Lemire (Top Shelf)
Pope Hats by Ethan Rilly (self-published)
Kieffer #1 by Jason Kieffer (self-published)
The Experiment by Nick Maandag (self-published)
In addition, the Wright Awards is pleased to announce a new category—the first since its debut—dedicated to works that fall outside the bounds of traditional storytelling. The Pigskin Peters Award (named after a character in the classic Canadian comic strip Birdseye Center) was created to recognize progressive works by Canadian cartoonists that are either more experimental in nature or lack a traditional narrative structure.
The finalists for the first annual Pigskin Peters Award are:
Milk Teeth by Julie Morstad (Drawn and Quarterly)
Little Lessons in Safety by Emily Holton (Conundrum Press)
Excelsior 1968 by John Martz (self-published)
Fire Away by Chris von Szombathy (Drawn and Quarterly)
The finalists for the 4th Annual Doug Wright Awards were chosen by a nominating committee that included cartoonists Chester Brown and Seth, Canadian director Jerry Ciccoritti, comics historian Jeet Heer and writer and Sequential blogger Bryan Munn.
The winners will de decided by a jury including writer and film critic Katrina Onstad, gallery curator Helena Reckitt, writer Mariko Tamaki and cartoonist Ho Che Anderson.
The winners will be handed out in Toronto in August 2008.