Pulitzer Prizefighting

People are drawn to existing competitions like moths to a flame.

It's precisely the wrong way to succeed.

Lots of journalists take significant detours in their careers and their writing in order to win a Pulitzer. Maybe not to actually win one, but to be in that class, to have peers that have won one. Mystery novelists stick to the center of the road, because that's where the road is. Movies are written and released in order to win an Oscar. Once there's a category, a ranking, a place to battle for supremacy, we run for it. 

Do you go to trade shows or enter markets or submit RFPs or push for a GPA or even gross ratings points because there's a list of winners or because it's what you actually want to do? Most bestseller lists and prizes measure popularity, not effectiveness.

I wonder if real art comes when you build the thing that they don't have a prize for yet.