As we count down toward the 2009 Pulitzer Prize announcement (to be made Monday, April 20), bookish types are eagerly debating the possible winner of the fiction title.
But even as the literati take their best guesses, some more scientific types have conducted a regression analysis and built a model designed to give us the most probable answer. Using their analysis based on awards, award nominations, positive mentions in the press, and bestseller lists, they have compiled a list of 15 books they predict may win the Pulitzer Prize.
This group has a track record: last year a similar model they constructed picked the winner (No. 3 on a list of 10) and one finalist (No. 5 on that list.)
You can read all the details at the website pprize.com. Caveats there warn that there is no certainty involved and that there are, "many factors that cannot be quantified as variables that certainly contribute to the award process."
With that in mind, for what it's worth, here is the 2009 Pulitzer Prize Final Prediction List:
2. The Widows of Eastwick by John Updike
4. The Lazarus Project by Aleksandar Hemon
5. Fine Just the Way It Is by Annie Proulx
10. Dangerous Laughter by Steven Millhauser
13. My Sister, My Love by Joyce Carol Oates
14. Lush Life by Richard Price
15. Our Story Begins by Tobias Wolff