A Pop novel? What exactly is a Pop novel?
With his best-selling novels, author Jonathan Franzen has tried to create works that can be both literary and popular. To a strictly limited extent, he’s succeeded. His problem is that the novels come from, and are set among, a narrow class of people. The genteel people who, more or less, are already consuming literature. Franzen’s books never move out of the accepted parameters. He inhabits no new territory.
I’ve begun my attempt at what I call a Pop novel—a novel accessible to everybody, yet which is art at the same time. The goal is to be both more truly “pop,” with everything American pop embodies, yet more of a work of art than, say, Franzen’s two big books, which are wordy and literary but touch only scant levels of depth and meaning.
I’ve posted the opening of this experimental novel at my Literary Mystery blog (American Pop Lit is occupied with a writing contest).
Does the novel lay down plot threads? Are the themes and happenings relevant to America today?
Take a look and see what you think.