In lieu of their regular end-of-the-year Mean Week (which is exactly what you think it is,) HTML Giant has been running a Tournament of Bookshit, a literary competition between “book related shits” set against each other in an NCAA-style bracket. Bookshits match-ups include “literary marriage” vs. “child of famous author’s novel,” “everybody has a story” “vs. show don’t tell,” “ ‘curating’ a reading series” vs. “crossing off your typed name and signing your name below it in your book.” It is magnificent, the perfect antidote to hours of reading articles/blog posts about book criticisms or about movie reviewers breaking review embargos or whatever you get sucked into reading with growing exhaustion today.
Unlike college football teams, Bookshits can’t play for themselves (insert some kind of sports-related joke here I guess, I don’t follow football so I can’t make a joke myself and I don’t care), so the tournament is unfolding in the same fashion as The Morning News’ Tournament of Books, with book-oriented writers writing the matches. The shittier of the two Bookshits moves on to the next round.
The first round is about halfway finished; my favorite game so far has been the battle between “Gordon Lish” and “Foot Fetish,” written by Crispin Best, which includes the line, “Gordon Lish in a room at Twitter headquarters, brutally shortening URLs.”
Here are links to all the published matches: