The Spanish literary world was recently shaken by the revelation that one of the country’s most famous novelists, Carmen Mola, was in fact a work of fiction. His books are the work of three male screenwriters: Jorge Diaz, Agustin Martinez and Antonio Mercero.
Mola was supposed to be a teacher in her 40s who wrote violent crime thrillers between classes. Literary and film agency Hanska, which represents Mola, features a photograph of a woman facing the camera on her author profile page.
The ruse was revealed last Friday evening at an award ceremony for Spain’s most prestigious literary award, the Premio Planeta de Novela, where Mola was announced as the winner of the 2021 award. Gasps were heard in through the auditorium when the name of the mysterious Mola was called out to accept the prize, which is accompanied by a cash prize of US $ 1.16 million (RM 4.9 million).
All three took to the stage, posing alongside bestselling author Paloma Sanchez-Garnica.
Martinez is a well-known author in his own right, having written an alien abduction thriller which he later adapted into a television series, The caza. Monteperdido, on which he collaborated with Diaz. The two men also worked together on Acacia 38.
Accepting the award, Diaz said: “Carmen Mola is not, like all the lies we have told, a teacher, but three writers, three screenwriters, three friends: Agustin Martinez, Antonio Mercero and me, Jorge Diaz. “
“Four years ago we had a crazy idea to unite our meager talents to write a story together,” he continued. “This story became a success and turned into another, another, another and finally brought us here to that night, which is a night that we dreamed of.”
Agustin added, “It’s a joy to be here. When we first got together to write a novel, we never thought we would end up here.”
“We did not hide behind a woman, we hid behind a name,” Antonio Mercero told the Spanish newspaper. El Pais, according to The Guardian. “I don’t know if a female pseudonym would sell for more than a male pseudonym – I have no idea – but I doubt it.”
Not everyone is happy with the revelation. Beatriz Gimeno, a Spanish politician and LGBT activist, tweeted: “Beyond using a female pseudonym, these guys have been giving interviews (like Mola) for years. It’s not just the name, it’s the fake profile with which they’ve taken in readers and journalists. Scammers. “- Reuters