October 19, 2008

My Big Fat Shiny Silver Medal

I always love a good rumor, especially when it's about me. Imagine my excitement yesterday when a travel writer friend shot me an email congratulating me on my recent Lowell Thomas Award. I was like, really? So I checked it on their site and sure enough, it seems that I won the Lowell Thomas for my latest book, Iceland.

Now wait a minute, there. I didn't WIN win. I won SILVER, which if I am not mistaken, means I am not the greatest guidebook author in the universe, but only the second best guidebook writer in the universe . . until next year. But that's okay, because I love silver. In fact, I prefer wearing silver to gold, and it makes me feel just like the United States women's gymnastics team.

Here are the judges' nice comments about my book:

Full of fascinating details in writing, graphics and photos, “Iceland” delves deeply into the country in a format that often resists depth. Evans knows the country, and it shows. But he also organizes the essential information in an easy-to-use way. It’s the combination of depth and breadth that sets this guidebook apart from many others. Evans takes his subject seriously and invites the reader into the experience of Iceland with wit and authority.

"Depth and breadth . . . wit and authority." Oh, I'm so flattered and I have way too many people to thank: Dr. Brian Gratwicke (my trusty sidekick and the photographer whose images made the book pretty), my awesome contributors, especially Gudni Johannesson and Eliza Reid (who fact checked and wrote interesting text boxes), Nick Gilroy, and Dennis Riege. My awesome editor Anna Moores, who was extremely patient and full of good ideas, not to mention smart, meticulous, and respectful of all my little primadonna moments. Thanks to Adrian Phillips, Tricia Hayne, Donald Greig, and the rest of the team at Bradt Travel Guides in England. The biggest thanks of all goes to Hilary Bradt who gave me a shot at writing a book. Thank you, Hilary.

To Iceland and the Icelanders, I can't say Takk enough. Thanks to Einar Gustavsson for his interest and longstanding support of my book project, to Magnus Gustavsson for his genuine kindness and promotion of the book, and to Ambassador Albert Jonsson for his personal support. I am indebted to way too many Icelanders to squeeze into a blog post, but please know how grateful I am to all of your contributions big and small.

Getting a Lowell Thomas means a lot to me, so a huge thanks to the Society of American Travel Writers. It's really nice to be recognized for a book that took a whole year to research and write.

So what will I spend my prize money on? A ticket, to somewhere.

1 comment:

The Macfam said...

WAY TO GO DREW!!! We're proud of you! Besides, we prefer silver jewelry to gold anyway! We've been having a great time checking your blog - keep those awards coming. We sent your Slovenian hitch-hiker article to Karisa's sister and bro-in-law (Tara and Evan Haglund), who are currently living in Ljubijana. They say hi! Let us know when the Economist prints any more of your articles-- that's our favorite news magazine and we get it every week. Good luck with your next book! --John and Karisa McAllister