Getting shortlisted for the Stephen Leacock Memorial Medal for Humour was beyond anything she could have imagined, says Heidi Jacobs.
English and history liaison in the Leddy Library, she was named one of three finalists for the literary award, named to honour the Canadian humorist, for her debut novel, Molly of the Mall: Literary Lass and Purveyor of Fine Footwear.
“Writing books is a solitary act to begin, but writing humour is basically sitting alone, chuckling to one’s self, hoping someone, someday, might laugh too,” Jacobs says. “I’ve always been very proud of Canada’s distinctive type of humour and the way humour is such a key part of Canadian life and culture.”
Her work was selected from 84 books nominated, said Michael Hill, president of Leacock Associates.
“It’s a gruelling process to read and evaluate all those books and come up with three that merit being named to a ’short’ list,” he said.
Jacobs called it “incredibly humbling” to be included on the list of Canadian humour writers nominated this year and over the years. Besides her, finalists include Amy Spurway for Crow, and Drew Hayden Taylor for Cottagers and Indians.
The winner of the medal and its $15,000 award will be announced June 5.