What Is Metafiction?

My most recent writers’ e-letter (A Writer Can Be…– subscribe here!) went into more detail about Horn Book Guide Online and why it’s such a fabulous resource for writers. One writer emailed to ask me if I might explain what “metafiction” means, since I mentioned that term in the video.

Metafiction just means a book that is somehow aware of itself as a book. From the classic Sesame Street title The Monster at the End of This Book to the recent Shy (in which the main character is hiding in the gutter of the book), by Deborah Freedman, and We Are in a Book, a Mo Willems Elephant and Piggie book, metafictive characters are aware they are characters. It’s not a common technique, but there have been a number of metafictive picture books in recent years! I’m sure there have been novels, too. I really enjoyed The Great Good Thing, by Roderick Townley, a while back.

Hope this is helpful:>)


About Laura Purdie Salas

children's writer, poet, reader, visiting author, speaker/teacher, mentor, copyeditor, freelance writer
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2 Responses to What Is Metafiction?

  1. Michelle Andersen says:

    Very helpful! Thank you.

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