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This study examines the productivity, eminence, and impact of literary authors using Lotka's law, a bibliometric approach developed for studying the published output of scientists. Data on literary authors were drawn from two recent surveys that identified and ranked authors who had made the greatest contributions to world lit- erature. Data on the number of records of works by and about selected authors were drawn from OCLC WorldCat in 2007 and 2014. Findings show that the distribution of literary authors followed a pattern consistent with Lotka's law and show that these studies enable one to empirically test subjective rankings of eminent authors. Future examination of distribution of author productivity might include studies based on language, location, and culture.


This article was originally published in Library and Information Science Research,



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