The Spanish literary world was rocked on Friday night 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 Díaz, Agustín Martínez and Antonio Mercero.
Until Friday, Mola was considered 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 on Friday night at an award ceremony for the country’s most prestigious literary award, the Premio Planeta de Novela, where Mola was announced as the 2021 award winner. Gasps were heard in the auditorium when the name of the mysterious Mola was called to accept the prize, which is accompanied by a cash prize of 1 million euros ($ 1.16 million).
All three took to the stage, posing alongside bestselling author Paloma Sánchez-Garnica (pictured above, right, alongside Díaz, Martínez and Mercero.)
Martínez is a well-known author in his own right, having written an alien abduction thriller which he later adapted into a television series, “La caza. Monteperdido ”, on which he collaborated with Díaz. The two men also worked together on “Acacias 38”.
Accepting the award, Díaz said: “Carmen Mola is not, like all the lies we have told, a teacher, but three writers, three screenwriters, three friends: Agustín Martínez, Antonio Mercero and me, Jorge Díaz.
“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.”
Agustín added: “It is a joy to be here. When we first got together to write a novel, we never thought we would end up here. “
“We didn’t hide behind a woman, we hid behind a name,” Antonio Mercero told Spanish newspaper El País, 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 gave interviews [as Mola] for years. It’s not just the name, it’s the fake profile with which they greeted readers and journalists. Crooks. “