Alice Munro wins the Nobel Prize: 'Master of the contemporary story' -

Alice Munro wins the Nobel Prize: ‘Master of the contemporary story’

Short-story author celebrated for ‘finely tuned storytelling’


(CP photo)

Alice Munro has won the Nobel Prize for literature.

The author has been no stranger to accolades during her distinguished career as one of the world’s top short fiction writers. When she was awarded the Man Booker International Prize in 2009, judges called her work “practically perfect.” Here at home, she has been honoured with three Governor General’s Literary Awards and, most recently, a third Trillium Book Award.

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There had been speculation that Munro would win the award. Bookies at Ladbrokes suggested it was a matter of 4:1 odds — just behind Haruki Murakami.

In July, Munro, 82, announced her retirement, telling the New York Times that “Dear Life” would be her last book. “Put your money on it,” she said.

She went on to win the $10,000 Harbourfront Festival Prize at the International Festival of Authors.

In her inteview with the Times this summer, Munro admitted she was not always comfortable with being a short story writer:

“While working on my first five books, I kept wishing I was writing a novel. I thought until you wrote a novel, you weren’t taken seriously as a writer. It used to trouble me a lot, but nothing troubles me now, and besides, there has been a change. I think short stories are taken more seriously now than they were.”

As for reaction to this morning’s honour?

Update: Contacted in Victoria this morning by the Canadian Press, Munro said she is delighted and terribly surprised. “I knew I was in the running, yes, but I never thought I would win.”

Related link: A list of Canadians who have won the Nobel Prize. 

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