The Swedish Academy Thursday said it is considering 198 writers for the 2015 Nobel Literature Prize, adding that 36 of them are the first-time candidates.
"Now the hard work begins," Permanent Secretary Peter Englund said.
The Academy will have to make a provisional list of 20 to 25 names that will be cut to five by the end of the May. The winner will be announced in October.
Last year the academy considered 210 proposals and the Nobel prize for literature and awarded it to French author Patrick Modiano.