Page last updated at 11:31 GMT, Tuesday, 23 February 2010

Worm Hunter makes shortlist for oddest title award

Afterthoughts of a Worm Hunter book jacket
Afterthoughts of a Worm Hunter is one of six books nominated

Afterthoughts Of A Worm Hunter and Collectible Spoons of the Third Reich have been shortlisted for this year's oddest book title award.

A public vote will determine the winner of The Diagram Prize, to be announced on 26 March.

Trade magazine The Bookseller, which runs the competition, said it received a "record number" of entries this year.

Previous champions include Bombproof Your Horse and Living With Crazy Buttocks.

According to Nielsen BookScan, Afterthoughts Of A Worm Hunter by David Crompton has not sold a single copy in the UK or US.

The shortlist of six books was narrowed down from 90 entries, including Bacon: A Love Story and I Stopped Sucking My Thumb... Why Can't You Stop Drinking?

The Diagram Prize has been running since 1978 under the watchful eye of The Bookseller's Horace Bent.

"I received a record number of submissions," Mr Bent said.

"Sadly, however, almost half the submissions were ineligible as they were published well before 2009.

"However, even after the initial cull, the list was still considerable in size, meaning my panel of esteemed literary minds and I were forced into ruthlessness, brutally cutting any submission we felt carried a deliberately odd title."

The 2009 shortlist is as follows:

  • Afterthoughts of a Worm Hunter by David Crompton
  • The Changing World of Inflammatory Bowel Disease by Ellen Scherl and Marla Dubinsky
  • Collectible Spoons of the 3rd Reich by James A Yannes
  • Crocheting Adventures with Hyperbolic Planes by Daina Taimina
  • Governing Lethal Behavior in Autonomous Robots by Ronald C Arkin
  • What Kind of Bean is this Chihuahua? by Tara Jansen-Meyer


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