Custom «Commercial Fiction and Literary Fiction» Essay Paper Sample

Commercial Fiction and Literary Fiction


Fiction refers to imaginative work in a writing style, used either in novels or short stories. Commercial fiction is one that attracts wide audience. It may be inform of romance, mystery or science fiction. Commercial fiction does not confront life as it is, but it diverts the readers from life for sometime. On the other hand, literary fiction attracts a small audience, which may be made up of intellectuals or adventurous people. This may include aspects such as style or excellent writing. Unlike the commercial fiction, literary fictions describe life as people know it.

Literary Fiction in "Roman fever by Edith Wharton" and Commercial fiction in "a new leaf by F. Scott Fitzgerald"

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One aspects of Roman Fever that shows literary fiction is on characterization in the book. The author describes the two characters, Mrs. Ansley and Mrs. Slade as two women living parallel lives. Mrs. Slade I outgoing and joyous, she is loving and described as an extrovert. She is never escaped even by social nuances (Wharton, 779). She does not like her life as a window and wishes that her daughter could get married even if it is to the wrong man. On the other hand, the author presents Mrs. Ansley as solitary and introvert. She has no much concern for other people. This is evidence of literary fiction in this work where the author has deeply characterized the two women's lives as parallel to each other. Commercial fiction can be seen on the characterization in a new leaf by F. Scott Fitzgerald where there is no specificity in some aspects of the characters. Referring to the character Dick, the author says that he replaces alcohol with a woman and not a specific woman but any woman in general.

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Literary fiction is also seen on the way Edith Wharton in roman fever gives insight into human life. She says that due to the outgoing nature of Slade, she depends on the society to achieve maximum enjoyment of her life. On the other hand, Mrs. Ensley is described as self dependent character who struggles to overcome the pressures of the society. These two characters approach life differently and this approach is influenced by their character. A bit of commercial fiction is seen where Julie realizes that one can never change completely because one's past experiences shapes his present and the past cannot be changed in any way (Fitzgerald, 375).

Artistic Unity is also seen in Roman Fever. The title of the book is represents passion which the author has shown in the entire book. This is manifested in the meeting at Colosseum between Ansley and Slade. Also seen in the long-suppressed hostility that Slade has for Ansley and jealous for her daughter. The author has maintained powerful passion in various aspects such as fear, jealousy and hostility in the relationship of the three characters in the novel. This is literary fiction where the author has used this aspect to attract a small audience.

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In a new leaf by F. Scott Fitzgerald, the writer exposes Dick Ragland as a handsome and wealthy person but not socially acceptable. He portrays a difference between the potential of Dick and his real character. This is therefore a false impression of a character.


In the two stories, there is clear evidence of literary fiction in roman fever by Edith Wharton since the author puts things the way they may appear in real life. She has used the aspect of passion throughout the novel which is majored by the relationship between the three main characters. In a new leaf by F. Scott Fitzgerald, the author has used commercial fiction where he has described some characters in a manner that is not close to reality. One of example of such characters is Dick Ragland whose character has been so exaggerated.

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