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American Novels Will Be Eligible for Britain’s Man Booker Prize Next Year

With a few weeks to go until they name this year’s winner, the Man Booker Prize committee announced that American authors will soon have the chance to win the prestigious £50,000 award — which has traditionally only been available to writers from British Commonwealth countries — starting in 2014. As for the reasoning behind the decision, the Sunday Times reports that "the organisers increasingly believe that excluding writers from America is anachronistic. The Booker committee believes U.S. writers must be allowed to compete to ensure the award's global reputation." However, writer and broadcaster Melvyn Bragg spoke for many when he told the Times he fears the Man Booker "will now lose its distinctiveness." Hopefully, winners from this side of the Atlantic will refrain from shouting, "USA! USA!" at the ceremony.