The Problemist: judge of Fairy section

jv-may2014The Problemist: my appointment as a judge of Fairy section 2014

Dear Friends,

I did not want to but Peter Harris has written to me as follows:

“I was so pleased to learn about your appointment as Fairies Judge for 2014 for The Problemist. You simply must put the news on JF – and not be bashful. Readers would like to know.”

Well I am following this advice! I would of course also like you to send problems to The Problemist Fairy editor Stephen.emmerson@ntlworld.com. Thank you! – Julia


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5 Responses to The Problemist: judge of Fairy section

  1. shankar ram says:

    Yes, indeed..!
    Best wishes to Julia..!
    I started my composition career with a problem in the fairies section of the problemist.. years back..
    Need to brew up something to send there again.. 🙂

    • Seetharamanseetharaman says:

      Congrats Julia.. I dont also have anything published there so far. Hopefully finish a problem very soon !

  2. peter harris says:

    It is said, sometimes in jest, sometimes not, that Awards reflect more a judge’s predilections than they do the merit of problems – that judgments are too subjective.

    Judgments are subjective. This is not a fault. Not only is subjectivity unavoidable but without it there would be no such thing as Art – or beauty.

    The objective criteria used to judge problems are the best we can do to measure what cannot be measured – but they are poor things.

    Judges are asked to place problems in order of merit. Does this equate to order of beauty? And what connection is there between beauty and enthrallment that we can feel?

    Do not shy away from making ex aequo awards. Do not strain and struggle to put A, B and C in an order – when you love them equally.

    Temper the dull aggregation of criteria points with emotion.

    And there is no harm if prefer Vivaldi to Beethoven!

    If you allow your judgment to be that of the Julia we know, all will be well.

  3. JuliaJulia says:

    Of course, I’ll try to be objective as much as possible and also I won’t escape of being subjective… I wish to be able to consider the both – merit and beauty.
    Thank you, Peter, for sharing your thoughts! Thank you, Shankar and Ram! Your originals are welcome!
    Same as originals for JF!

  4. peter harris says:

    Dear Julia,

    There could be any number of reasons why you Julia could award a problem: for example amongst others: for beauty or surprise or for enjoyment. But what you think beautiful or what surprised you or what you enjoyed may not be so with others including eminences. So what should be done about this state of affairs?

    If you try to be to be objective it means not being true to yourself – subverting your own feelings – you will all the time be asking: “How should I feel?” or “How would eminent judge X feel?”

    This would be no good at all. No one wants a quasi-X-like judgment. Your judgment is wanted and it will be unique – if you allow it to be.

    Subjectivity brings variety and life.

    I believe that the judging process has an aspect of creativity – and the creativity should be as free and unfettered as it is in composing.

    Nowhere above is the word merit. I actually think that it this notion of merit that bedevils this whole subject. Problems cannot be put in an order of merit. In whatever order problems are put it will not be an order of merit. It will be in some other order.

    I repeat this.

    Nowhere above is the word merit. I actually think that it this notion of merit that bedevils this whole subject. Problems cannot be put in an order of merit. In whatever order problems are put it will not be an order of merit. It will be in some other order.

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