The term “fiction” refers to narrative works that are made up, either in part or in whole, by their authors. Fiction can generally be separated by genres, one of which is realistic fiction, a piece of work that, while made up by its author, is rooted in characters and events that can actually happen in real life. There are a few ways to look at different types this fiction, as the genre can be defined or categorized in several ways. For example, a person might separate different works of realistic fiction by sub-genre, time period and issues or themes.
It is understandable that fiction can encompass multiple genres, meaning that it can have two or more genres that overlap with each other in one story. A work of realistic fiction, for example, can also hold elements of adventure or romance, so long as the piece of work still stays within the parameters of the genre’s definition. As such, it can be said that different types of realistic fiction include not only adventure and romance, but also humorous stories, mysteries and sports stories. Of course, the different types are not limited to only these genres, or sub-genres.
Time period also defines works of fiction, and so works of realistic fiction can be distinguished by the time period in which the author places the events that occur. Two general time periods are contemporary and historical. Contemporary fiction deals with characters and situations in the present day, or a few years into the past; historical fiction, on the other hand, takes place at some point in history. These two general time periods can be further broken down into a more specific time, such as a specific year or span of years. For example, a work of fiction that is both realistic and historical might take place during World War II.
Sometimes, when it comes to literature, realistic fiction is seen as synonymous with problem novels. Problem novels are works of literature that emerged around the late 1960s. These novels dealt with personal and social subject matters such as abuse, coming of age and death. Since there are a plethora of other issues or themes that might be addressed in problem novels, it is impossible to provide a complete list of them all — just a few other examples of issues include poverty, racism and sexual identity. Different works of realistic fiction can also be defined by the story’s central issue or theme.