This month's OBS Author of the Month, the Russian-born Andre´ Makine, won the 92-year old Goncourt Prize recently for his autobiographical novel, "Le testament franšais." While the cash value of the literary prize itself is about $10, winning it is one of the greatest honors an author can achieve in France, and practically guarantees an increase in book sales by hundreds of thousands of copies.
Making money by publishing on the Internet and making money by winning France's coveted Prix Goncourt may be very similar endeavors. Both confer low cash value on the authors, yet both can offer instant international status and a vast new readership.
Makine's book tells the story of his family, beginning with his grandmother, who moved from the exclusive Parisian suburb of Neuilly to a small town in Soviet Central Asia. Makine and the other grandsons were raised as Soviet children, but learned a sense of French culture from their grandmother.
Makine has lived in France these past eight years. In keeping with the Internet, Makine's work transcends the boundaries of fiction and nonfiction, and the national boundaries of Russia and France. OBS is honored to mark his "coming home" to France, his winning of the Prix Goncourt, and his exceptional literary achievement by naming him OBS's Internet Author of the Month for February.