Mieko Kawakami is a novelist, poet, musician and actress. She began a career as a singer in 2002 and in 2007 she made her literary debut with the short story “Watakushi ritsu in ha-a, mata wa sekai” (Myself and a Toothache), published in the literary journal Waseda bungaku zero. The story was nominated for the Akutagawa Prize. The following year, she received the Akutagawa Prize for “Chichi to ran” (Breasts and Eggs), and in 2010 she was awarded the Murasaki Shikibu Literary Prize for her novel “Hebun” (Heaven). In 2010 she also won the Kinema Jumpo Newcomer’s Award for her acting in the film “Pandora no hako” (Pandora’s Box).