Author Self-Referencing in Fiction?
April 22, 2014 9:13 PM Subscribe
Can you think of examples of a work of fiction directly referencing its author's prior but unrelated work of fiction, when these works do not take place in the same fictional universe or contain any characters in common?
posted by sallybrown to Writing & Language (41 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
I was recently reading a novel called Love, Dad by the author Evan Hunter, who also wrote the novel The Blackboard Jungle. In Love, Dad, one of the characters is described as reading...The Blackboard Jungle (the actual book, not a different book by the same name). To the best of my knowledge, these works are set in completely different fictional worlds, with no characters in common (i.e., this is not like one Nancy Drew book describing a past caper Nancy's been on, a novel in which the real-person author includes himself/herself as a character in the same universe, or a work of nonfiction that describes a real person reading a fictional book by the author).
The Blackboard Jungle was sort of a zeitgeisty work, and Love, Dad is set in the '60s, so it makes logical sense that a character in the latter would read the former, but I still found it a bit strange and don't recall seeing this before. (I do have a vague memory of hearing that Kubrick would include movie posters from his earlier films in his later ones, which would qualify, unless that was intended to suggest all his work took place in one coherent fictional world.)
Can anyone think of any other example of whatever this is, or anything close? (I'm placing this in Writing & Language, but happy to hear examples from other mediums too.)