A 36-year-old part-time convenience store employee has won the 155th Akutagawa Prize, a prestigious literary award, for a book that explores life in and around convenience stores, the selection committee announced.

"I still can't believe it. It seems like a miracle," said Sayaka Murata, the author of "Konbini Ningen" (Convenience store people) during a news conference soon after the announcement.

"I've always wanted to write about interesting people, and this was my first attempt," said Murata.