TheAmazingRando wrote:It also serves as a genre marker for "literary fiction," which tends to be less about plot and narrative and more about characters, psychology, and philosophy. This makes poorly written literary fiction infuriating to read (as opposed to a bad work of genre fiction, which might still have an entertaining story), but there's plenty of really good stuff out there too.
Can you provide some examples? I would be interested to give them a read
By Coetzee.100 Years of Solitude
by Gabriel García Márquez (It's better if you don't try to figure out the timeline too much). Blind Assassin
Most of the stuff I've read by Kevin Brockmeier. Daniel Woodrell is also good. --And I'm not just recommending them because of their connection to my University.
Basically, if you pick up the Best American Short Stories collection you're going to find a lot of good literary fiction. Or, The Norton Anthology of Short Fiction.
Another hint is if they've been published in The New Yorker, Glimmer Train, or other prominent journals.