BOGOTA – Spanish author Alejandro Morellon Mariano won Colombia’s Gabriel Garcia Marquez Spanish American Short-Story Award on Wednesday for his collection “El estado natural de las cosas” (The Natural State of Things).
The jury said Morellon’s tone was “convincing, witty and effectively ironic,” adding that “the metaphor contained in his fantastical plots reflects our daily concerns with great precision.”
Morellon beat out four other finalists: countrywoman Soledad Puertolas, Bolivia’s Liliana Colanzi, Argentina’s Federico Falco and Mexico’s Daniel Salinas Basave.
“Marital conflicts are materialized in the physical division of a house’s architecture, and the tragedy of daily poverty in our societies is told in the tragicomedy of a man who decides to sell his left hand,” the jury added.
Upon receiving his award, Morellon said he was thankful for the privilege of being able to write and have readers and also expressed gratitude to his family, the jury, publishers, the other finalists and the late Garcia Marquez (1927-2014), winner of the 1982 Nobel Prize in literature, whom he described as his “mentor.”
The Gabriel Garcia Marquez Spanish American Short-Story Award is accompanied by a $100,000 cash prize for the winner and a $2,000 cash prize for each finalist.
Morellon is the fourth recipient of this short-story prize after Argentine Guillermo Martinez (2014), Bolivia’s Magela Baudoin (2015) and Colombian Luis Noriega (2016).