Who is this vaguely described author?
May 25, 2010 12:09 AM   Subscribe

Know an author whose later writings were considered/known to be parodies of the genre they worked in earlier?

I read something somewhere within the last several weeks (maybe NYT or in the critical intro to one of the novels that I pick up/forget about on a weekly basis, or an offhanded reference in the New Yorker) about an author who in his later works parodied his own earlier works.
I think it was someone like Carlyle or Dryden or Meredith, though the reference could have been to Huxley...
Who did I read about? I'm interested, but having a memory slip (the first of many, I'm sure... oh my gawd I'm turning into my mom!!)
posted by mdrew to Media & Arts (9 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I think Iris Murdoch's "The Black Prince" might qualify. This was her fifteenth novel. The book features Arnold Baffin, a popular and prolific writer of low quality work. His titles are listed and they sound uncannily like the titles of Murdoch works.
posted by marmaduke_yaverland at 1:30 AM on May 25, 2010

Louis Cha, the man who more or less created the martial arts novel (and, by extension, the modern martial artsmovie), ended his novel output with The Deer and the Cauldron, a parody of the genre. It has been translated into English, and there is a recent analytical book on Cha's work in English as well.
posted by GenjiandProust at 1:46 AM on May 25, 2010

Asimov did that a few times.
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 1:58 AM on May 25, 2010

Was it the bit about how Graham Greene came in second in a write like Graham Greene contest?
posted by kumquatmay at 5:27 AM on May 25, 2010

Chaucer's "Tale of Sir Thopas", part of the Canterbury Tales, is an outright lampoon of chivalric romances that were popular at the time. An earlier tale in the book (at least in ordering; I don't have the proof in front of me that it was actually written first) is the tale of Palamon & Arcite, told as the "Knight's Tale", which, while still slightly comedic, was not a parody of the style so much as a light-hearted version.
posted by IAmBroom at 7:06 AM on May 25, 2010

I kinda think Bret Easton Ellis, but I'm sure that's not who you mean...
posted by GaelFC at 8:21 AM on May 25, 2010 [1 favorite]

Robert Heinlein's Friday comes to mind.
posted by pointless_incessant_barking at 8:36 AM on May 25, 2010

Heinlein parodied his earlier works in 'The Number of the Beast'. I believe he even referred to himself as a hack. Various characters in the book are anagrams of his name and aliases.

An analysis: http://www.heinleinsociety.org/rah/numberbeast.html
posted by bq at 10:03 AM on May 25, 2010

I'd really like it to be Heinlein, but I'm sure it's not.
Much earlier, maybe late 1800's?
Definitely male, prob British or American.
posted by mdrew at 12:04 AM on June 29, 2010

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