A brief look at the definition of the Comedy Fiction Genre or Comic novel, brings us to the most obvious point first: A comic novel is usually a work of fiction in which the writer seeks to amuse the reader, sometimes with subtlety and as part of a carefully woven narrative, sometimes above all other considerations. It could indeed be said that comedy fiction is literary work that aims primarily to provoke laughter, but this isn't always as obvious as it first may seem.

There is of course black humour, for example: black comedy, dark humour and dark comedy. This tends to be a substantial aspect of much modern fiction. The term describes sardonically humorous effects derived from mordant wit and morbid or grotesque situations that deal with anxiety, suffering, or death.

But what do we find comical? Well the definition of what's funny is: everything is funny and nothing is funny and it all depends upon your sense of humour and point of view. Let's face it, everybody is different and will find different things amusing.

Comedy itself assumes many forms, such as the following:

Farce: an exaggerated comedy based on broadly humorous or highly unlikely situations
Parody: a literary or musical work imitating the characteristic style of some other work or of a writer or composer in a satirical or humorous way, usually by applying it to an inappropriate subject
Satire: a literary work in which vices, follies, stupidities or abuses, are held up to ridicule and contempt.
Slapstick comedy: this can sometimes include exaggerated but ultimately harmless violence directed towards individuals.

In literature one very popular branch of the comedy fiction genre is romantic comedies, which can include love and its effect on the central character; this often drives the story. Of course, Jane Austen has long been considered the queen of the romantic comedy with Emma and Pride and Prejudice.

More recently, Bridget Jones's Diary and some chick-lit successors have been giving these classic stories of romantic tension a more modern twist.

One of the most notable British comic novelists is P.G. Wodehouse. Other, more contemporary authors of this type include Martin Amis, Terry Pratchett, Douglas Adams, and Ben Elton.

Notable American comic novelists include Terry Southern, Robert Clark Young, John Kennedy Toole, Joseph Heller and Hunter S. Thompson.

www.findmeanauthor.com © 2012 Steve Bennett
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