Here are the bookies’ odds for the 2023 Nobel Prize in Literature.

Emily Temple

September 28, 2023, 10:03am

This year’s Nobel Prize in Literature will be awarded next week, on October 5th. If you’re wondering who will win the prize, well, no one knows. No one ever really knows (though last year, some people guessed), considering that the nominations and deliberations are shrouded in secrecy, and also Swedish.

But as always, people are out here making predictions—and making bets. So what do the odds look like? As usual, I consulted my favorite-named betting website, NicerOdds, to find out.

There are some of the usual suspects—Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o, Michel Houellebecq, Anne Carson (who won’t win the year after Annie Ernaux, come on, the literary cool girls can’t have everything), and Can Xue, who is pretty much always in the mix, though this year she’s sitting pretty at the top. If recent history is any indication, that probably means she’ll win in 2024. Also as always, there’s a curveball or two. (Paul Simon? Get out of here.)

See the full list for yourself below, and remember: In just a few days, one of these writers (or possibly another person altogether) will win 11 million Swedish krona (almost a million US dollars). So place your bets!

Current Odds (as of this writing):

Can Xue – 4/1
Jon Fosse – 5/1
Gerald Murnane – 7/1
Anne Carson – 9/1
Ludmila Ulitskaja – 11/1
Mircea Cărtărescu – 11/1
Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o – 11/1
Thomas Pynchon – 11/1
César Aira – 14/1
Haruki Murakami – 14/1
Michel Houellebecq – 14/1
Pierre Michon – 14/1
Raul Zurita – 14/1
Salman Rushdie – 14/1
Jamaica Kincaid – 17/1
Ko Un – 17/1
Maryse Condé – 17/1
Helle Helle – 19/1
Karl Ove Knausgård – 19/1
Edna O’Brien – 29/1
Elena Poniatowska – 29/1
Homero Aridjis – 29/1
Joyce Carol Oates – 29/1
László Krasznahorkai – 29/1
Margaret Atwood – 39/1
Paul Simon – 49/1
Stephen King – 49/1

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