Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: From whodunnits to literary fiction : the charting of an author's transition from crime writer to literary novelist
Author: Joss, Morag
Awarding Body: Oxford Brookes University
Current Institution: Oxford Brookes University
Date of Award: 2013
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Access from Institution:
The study examines the nature and functioning of genre in the commercial marketplace and the negotiations concerning genre labelling that a contemporary writer must undertake in relation to publishers’ decisions, reader expectations and critical responses. Part One assesses and theorises some problems of genre by means of an exploration of the terms ‘crime fiction’ and ‘literary fiction’. Focusing on the perceived conventions and boundaries of the two genres and some important sub-genres, it explores the extent to which such perceptions not only reinforce the notion of a divide between novels labelled as ‘crime’ and novels labelled as ‘literary’, but also perpetuate a debate about the ranking of texts on a ladder of literary merit. Part Two is a self-reflective critical appraisal of my eight novels, written over the fifteen-year period between 1998 and 2013, which underwent this process of commercial classification in both Britain and America, the main English language markets in which they were published. It offers a literary analysis of the novels in the context of their critical reception and in the light of my growing perception of the limitations of crime genre conventions on my choices as a writer and, incrementally, my attempts to outdistance those limitations. Part Three consists of conclusions: these concern the influence of a reader’s knowledge of genre on the reading experience as well as on reader expectations, the influence of a writer’s reputation for one kind of fiction on any aspiration to be recognised as having written another, and the tension, in the lived experience of a fiction writer, between the theoretical fluidity of genre boundaries and their rigidity in practice.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available