Yesterday, June 20, at the capital's House of Writers of Ukraine, the award ceremony was held for the winners of the annual literary prize named after Maximilian Kiriyenko-Voloshin. As we have already reported, Alexander Korotko was awarded the prize in the prose category for the work “The Moon Boy”, published by the “Summit Book” publishing house.
“The Moon Boy” was written at the very beginning of this century, but it has not lost its relevance and, especially, its literary merits. It is a remarkable work. In his preface written at the same time, Andrei Bitov admits that it is difficult to attribute this work to any genre: “At first I decided to call the work that I’d read a short story, then the suspicion crept into my mind that it was a novel. Or neither of the above. Novel and short story at the same time? The genre seems to me a kind of transformer, acquiring the necessary shape as the plot moves forward, the conflict develops from the inside. This is exactly what happens in life. But the artistic reality in “The Moon Boy” is much superior to the material reality”
Interestingly, in a recent conversation between Alexander Korotko and the famous writer Maxim Kant, which took place on the fringe of the Paris Book Fair, the categorization “novel” was proposed. Maxim Kant is not the only person to think so - for Europeans, a work with such philosophical depth is really worthy of a "great" literary term. But does it really matter to the hero of the work which genre Moon Boy falls into? There are enough riddles in the text itself, and, for example, one intriguing question: why is the subtitle on the cover “male prose from a female face”?
Among the guests at the award ceremony it was rumoured that the decision to award the prize to Alexander Korotko was made as a result of heated debate. However, it is clear that the professional jury for the Voloshin Prize appreciated not only the writer's intention, but also its unconditional artistic merits. Another quote from Bitov's introduction: “Surely, prose belongs to the poet. “Я открыла глаза. Огромное бесполое существо по имени Утро ходило за мной по пятам и ныло”, – these lines, and the name itself, is proof of this. Only a poet with his precise, targeted vision is able to handle the lonely souls of the protagonists in this dramatic story. ”