Difference Between Fiction and Literary Fiction

Even though there is substantial difference between fiction and literary fiction, a lot of people, primarily non-book lovers, end up confusing the two to be one and the same. The only difference that they seem to notice is that of “literary” being as a prefix in the latter. However, the difference between fiction and literary fiction is not simply limited to their name.

Fiction differs from literary fiction in terms of writing, with the former being creative writing, involving imaginary characters and imaginary events, whereas the latter is serious writing on reality-based serious issues existing in the society.

Fiction and literary fiction also differ from each other in terms of how they affect the readers. While the former focuses on entertaining the reader by presenting a plot and climax, complete with a beginning, middle and an end, the latter aims to provoke intellectual thoughts, making the reader actually take out some time to sit and think, altering their beliefs.

Another really big difference between fiction and literary fiction is that fiction is based around a plot that is designed in such a way that it appeals to a broader audience and people with different beliefs. Literary fiction, on the other hand, is based around a certain topic of discussion and is written with the aim of appealing to a certain type of audience.


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    Fiction is basically prose literature such as stories and novels that are based on imaginary events and people. This type of writing is plot driven and does not aim to present a certain viewpoint to the readers. Fiction writing focuses on giving readers a fun time and does not really care about facts. Fiction writing is also referred to as commercial fiction and includes a number of categories such as romance, humour, mystery and science. Fiction does not exactly stick to formal language and instead uses language that the readers are expected to understand easily. Some famous fictional writers include Sidney Sheldon, Danielle Steel and Stephen King.

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    Literary Fiction

    Literary fiction can be described as serious function that deals with serious issues. Literary fiction writers intend to expand the intellectual horizon of their readers, provoking them to give serious thought to issues that are prevailing in the society. Literary fiction typically caters to a specific niche, comprising of readers that share a viewpoint and are interested in such topics. Barbara Kingsolver and Toni Morrison are two renowned literary fiction writers.

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