Chinese author, Mo Yan
Chinese author Mo Yan has been awarded the 2012 Nobel Prize for literature.
A prolific author, Mo has published dozens of short stories, with his first work published in 1981.
The Swedish Academy praised his work which "with hallucinatory realism merges folk tales, history and the contemporary".
The 57-year-old is the first Chinese resident to win the prize. Chinese-born Gao Xingjian was honoured in 2000, but is a French citizen, notes the BBC.
Mo is the 109th recipient of the prestigious prize, won last year by Swedish poet Tomas Transtroemer.
Presented by the Nobel Foundation, the award - only given to living writers - is worth 8 million kronor (£741,000).
"He has such a unique way of writing. If you read half a page of Mo Yan you immediately recognise it as him," said Peter Englund, head of the Academy.
He said Mo had been told of the award, adding: "He was at home with his dad. He said he was overjoyed and terrified."
Born Guan Moye, the author writes under the pen name Mo Yan, which means "don't speak" in Chinese.
He began writing while a soldier in the People's Liberation Army (PLA) and received international fame in 1987 for Red Sorghum: A Novel of China.
Made into a film which won the Golden Bear at the Berlin Film Festival in 1988, the novella was a tale of the brutal violence in the eastern China countryside where he grew up during the 1920s and 1930s.
Favouring to write about China's past rather than contemporary issues, the settings for Mo's works range from the 1911 revolution, Japan's wartime invasion and Mao Zedong's Cultural Revolution.