Mitsufumi Asagure

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Mitsufumi Asagure

Mitsufumi Asagure 浅暮三文

Mitsufumi Asagure  (1959–)  uses a self-deprecating pen name derived from the term sanmonbunshi ("two-bit scribbler"), so it's no surprise to find that he's something of a rebel. Described by one literary critic as "the most avid of readers," Asagure does indeed seem to have digested every conceivable work of fiction or literary theory?a pursuit that has culminated in his postmodern novels. After university he worked as a copywriter before embarking on fiction writing. In 1998 he was awarded the Mephisto Award for Dabu(e)suton kaido (Dov(e)stone Highway). After turning out a series of fantasy and science-fiction parodies he received the 2003 Mystery Writers of Japan Award for Ishi no naka no kumo (The Spider in the Stone), which brilliantly plays on the conventions of the hardboiled genre. His work is self-consciously avant-garde, as evidenced by books like 2005's Jikken shosetsu nu (Experimental Fiction: Nu), a short-story collection influenced by Julio Cortázar and Italo Calvino.