writers The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today  

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List Rules Authors and writers who are still alive. Vote up the best, most talented, living writers.

If you consider yourself a bibliophile, this list of the absolute best living authors should be of great interest to you. It features writers who have forever shaped the literary world, producing many books that will go down in history as classics. The art form of literature and writing usually attempts to depict the changing world around us in one aspect or another. It's important to understand the times in which we live and forever record that for the next generation to read. Who are the best living writers attempting this feat?

The novelists on this list are some of the most famous writers in history, not just in modern times. Many of the books these authors have written have been made into blockbuster films, while others are simply modern day literary classics, that need to be read to be truly appreciated. These writers, and their works, will be remembered for generations to come.

This list features the best living writers who are producing some of the world’s best written work including, Philip Roth, J.K. Rowling, Suzanne Collins, Stephen King, James Patterson, Nicholas Sparks, and Tom Wolfe. Vote up the best living authors below and see how the writers you think are the best rank!

list ordered by

1
+ - 898 518
Stephen King is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Stephen King The Shining, The Stand, Carrie

The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked The Best Novels About World War 2

2
+ - 875 606
J. K. Rowling is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
J. K. Rowling Harry Potter series, The Casual Vacancy

3
+ - 585 405
Cormac McCarthy is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Cormac McCarthy All the Pretty Horses, Child of God, No Country for Old Men

4
+ - 238 145
George R. R. Martin is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
George R. R. Martin A Game of Thrones, A Feast for Crows, A Dance with Dragons

5
+ - 327 223
Margaret Atwood is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Margaret Atwood The Handmaid's Tale, Cat's Eye, Alias Grace

6
+ - 417 320
Haruki Murakami is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Haruki Murakami A Wild Sheep Chase, Norwegian Wood, The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle

7
+ - 377 295
Thomas Pynchon is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Thomas Pynchon V., The Crying of Lot 49, Gravity's Rainbow

8
+ - 296 209
Neil Gaiman is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Neil Gaiman Stardust, The Graveyard Book, American Gods

9
+ - 317 243
Toni Morrison is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Toni Morrison Jazz, The Bluest Eye, Song of Solomon

10
+ - 298 234
Philip Roth is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Philip Roth American Pastoral, The Human Strain

11
+ - 264 211
Salman Rushdie is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Salman Rushdie Midnight's Children, Shame, Fury

12
+ - 230 175
Don DeLillo is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Don DeLillo White Noise, Libra, Mao II

13
+ - 174 121
John Irving is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
John Irving The Cider House Rules, A Son of the Circus, A Prayer for Owen Meany

14
+ - 214 162
Milan Kundera is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Milan Kundera The Unbearable Lightness of Being, The Joke

15
+ - 182 138
J. M. Coetzee is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
J. M. Coetzee Life & Times of Michael K, Foe, Age of Iron

1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die The Most Overrated Books of All Time

16
+ - 181 138
Alice Munro is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Alice Munro Friend of My Youth, Open Secrets, The Love of a Good Woman

17
+ - 176 135
Kazuo Ishiguro is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Kazuo Ishiguro The Saddest Music in the World, The White Countess, The Unconsoled

18
+ - 179 144
Ian McEwan is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Ian McEwan Saturday, The Innocent, Atonement

19
+ - 153 119
Tom Wolfe is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Tom Wolfe The Last American Hero, Bonfire of the Vanities, The Right Stuff

20
+ - 102 67
Ursula K. Le Guin is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Ursula K. Le Guin The Left Hand of Darkness, The Dispossessed, A Wizard of Earthsea

21
+ - 139 113
Michael Chabon is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Michael Chabon Wonder Boys, Summerland, The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay

22
+ - 113 82
Rick Riordan is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Rick Riordan The Lightning Thief, The Sea of Monsters, The Red Pyramid

23
+ - 117 90
John le Carré is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
John le Carré The Tailor of Panama, The Spy Who Came in from the Cold, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy

24
+ - 129 118
Michel Houellebecq is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Michel Houellebecq Platform, Whatever, H. P. Lovecraft: Against the World

25
+ - 101 70
Khaled Hosseini is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Khaled Hosseini The Kite Runner, A Thousand Splendid Suns, Cometas En El Cielo / The Kite Runner

26
+ - 106 94
Donna Tartt is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Donna Tartt The Secret History, The Little Friend, The Goldfinch

27
+ - 84 67
Mario Vargas Llosa is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Mario Vargas Llosa The Feast of the Goat, The Way to Paradise, The Cubs and Other Stories

28
+ - 151 130
Chuck Palahniuk is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Chuck Palahniuk Fight Club, Choke, Rant

29
+ - 119 109
Joan Didion is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Joan Didion Slouching Towards Bethlehem, Play It As It Lays, The Year of Magical Thinking

The Best Rolling Stone Covers The Best Things About Fall

30
+ - 119 99
Dean Koontz is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Dean Koontz Phantoms, Demon Seed, Reino de Las Tinieblas

31
+ - 125 109
Anne Rice is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Anne Rice Interview with the Vampire: The Vampire Chronicles, Mayfair Witches

32
+ - 119 104
Junot Díaz is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Junot Díaz The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, This is How You Lose Her

33
+ - 77 72
V.S. Naipaul is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
V.S. Naipaul A Bend in the River, A House for Mr Biswas, In a Free State

34
+ - 109 109
Joyce Carol Oates is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Joyce Carol Oates Snowfall, Love and Its Derangements and Other Poems, The Journals of Joyce Carol Oates

35
+ - 99 98
Jeffrey Eugenides is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Jeffrey Eugenides The Virgin Suicides, The Marriage Plot, Middlesex

36
+ - 138 134
Jonathan Franzen is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Jonathan Franzen The Twenty-Seventh City, How to Be Alone, Freedom

37
+ - 53 46
Bill Bryson is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Bill Bryson A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail, A Short History of Nearly Everything, The Life and Times of the Thunderbolt Kid: A Memoir

38
+ - 126 121
John Grisham is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
John Grisham The Firm, The Chamber, Mickey

39
+ - 53 52
Julian Barnes is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Julian Barnes Flaubert's Parrot, The Porcupine, The Lemon Table

40
+ - 35 26
Diana Gabaldon is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Diana Gabaldon Outlander, A Breath of Snow and Ashes, Voyager

41
+ - 90 94
Barbara Kingsolver is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Barbara Kingsolver The Poisonwood Bible, Animal Vegetable Miracle, The Bean Trees

42
+ - 112 124
Zadie Smith is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Zadie Smith Piece of Flesh, White Teeth, On Beauty

43
+ - 89 88
Marilynne Robinson is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Marilynne Robinson Housekeeping, Gilead, Home

The 10 Most Bizarre Sex Ed Videos The Best British Documentaries

44
+ - 51 55
Sherman Alexie is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Sherman Alexie Smoke Signals, The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, Reservation Blues

45
+ - 82 82
Martin Amis is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Martin Amis Money, London Fields

46
+ - 56 59
Tobias Wolff is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Tobias Wolff This Boy's Life: A Memoir, Old School, The Barracks Thief

47
+ - 89 91
John Green is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
John Green The Fault in Our Stars, Looking for Alaska, An Abundance of Katherines

48
+ - 47 49
John Banville is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
John Banville Albert Nobbs, The Book of Evidence, The Sea

49
+ - 52 58
Gene Wolfe is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Gene Wolfe An Evil Guest, Return to the Whorl, On Blue's Waters

50
+ - 35 38
Orhan Pamuk is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today
Orhan Pamuk My Name Is Red, Snow, Istanbul: Memories and a City