Is it appropriate, in a work of autofiction, to ask, Which part is the fiction?
I think it is. Because of how people read.
The great thing about fiction is it frees the author of the ethical considerations of autobiography and memoir. When people read something that’s about something that actually happened they read one way. When they read about something that’s not supposed to have ever actually happened they read another way. They use them for different purposes. People read books that are supposedly true to get information about how to live their own lives. People read fiction sort of that way I guess but it’s different and they probably shouldn’t. The author doesn’t owe them to get the facts right. The author is free. Hooray for fiction! Hooray for freedom!
But in “a novel from life,” like Sheila Heti’s How Should a Person Be? it seems totally normal to ask, what parts of this are “from life?” and how?
Don’t you think?
Like, maybe, given how it’s likely to be consumed, it should have a consumer label, showing the ingredients?