Hammond: You ever think of writing a book about your exploits in the line of duty?At the end of a movie or story, a character is shown to have written a book related to the experiences in the movie, usually after they settle down and have their happy ending. If it happens at the end of a book, the implication is that you have just read that book; sometimes it's stated a lot more bluntly. Sometimes the first thing they write is the first thing you read: the passage becomes Book-Ends. This is usually a straight out invocation of the Literary Agent Hypothesis, with the implication that anything that doesn't quite make sense was due to the main character forgetting things, being mistaken, guessing wrong about events that he or she didn't personally witness, or lying for the sake of practicality. A more recent variation more common in film and television is to end with a film or television series being produced about the events. Many times the ending itself will switch from "reality" to the film under production before the camera pulls back to reveal the set and crew. Often this will involve self-mockery by taking previously utilized tropes Up to 11, the story being Recycled In Space or another increase in weirdness. May be responded to with Who Would Want to Watch Us?. Compare with Narrator All Along and Tagalong Chronicler. Write What You Know and Write Who You Know occur when an author draws general inspiration from their experiences or people in their lives. See also It's for a Book, when writing becomes an excuse for dubious interests. Don't confuse with Wrote the Book on It, as there they may not have literally written a book.
O'Neill: I've thought about it. But then I'd have to shoot anyone that actually read it.
O'Neill: I've thought about it. But then I'd have to shoot anyone that actually read it.
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Anime and Manga
- The end of the second season of Digimon has TK (Takeru in the Japanese version), who has written books based on their adventures in the Digital World.
- Before that, in the season one dub Tai (Taichi) says, "This would make one great story. Of course no one would ever believe it."
- In Kore Wa Koi No Hanashi, this is suggested in the beginning. Oogaki thinks that Haruka's presence around Shinichi could result in a love story with a large age-gap and tells Shinichi, that he should write such a story. Shinichi begins to write the romance novel, though he insists at times that the concept is similar and not about their own age-gap.
- The endings of both the anime and the manga versions of Chrono Crusade feature this in the end, although in two separate ways. In the manga, there's some brief quotations from Azmaria's memoir about her adventures with Chrono and Rosette. In the anime, Joshua is shown working on a storybook about "a boy that goes on an adventure with his sister and a demon to see the astraline!" referring to Rosette and Chrono. However, the horns damaged his mind so much that those are the only memories he seems to have of the two of them.
- In a slight variation, at the end of Eyeshield 21, the quarterback for the Alexanders and aspiring mangaka says that she was ordered to write a manga about Eyeshield 21. She just wants to draw shoujo, though.
- In Letter Bee, Vincent Alcott is a down-in-the-dumps writer we meet in the first season who wanted desperately to be a great writer is an utter failure. Then in Letter Bee Reverse (season 2), during the final battle against Cabernet, he's scribbling in a notebook. It's later revealed that dear old Vincent wrote about it and got famous.
- Mizuki Kawashita drew a manga adaptation of Chikamatsu Monzaemon's play Sonezaki Shinju (The Lovers' Suicide at Sonezaki) in which Tokube and Hatsu faked their famous double suicide and ran away, and that Tokube wrote the play using Chikamatsu Monzaemon as his pen name.
- Throughout Fairy Tail, Lucy is slowly writing about her adventures and making it into a novel.
- Inverted in Princess Tutu: Fakir Rewrites Reality at different points (thus, he writes "about" the events of the story), however, the first time he does it successfully (and possibly with all of the others), he burns the "story" afterwards.
- Much of the last several chapters of Wandering Son revolves around Nitori writing what essentially is a novel version of the series.
- At the end of Jaco the Galactic Patrolman Tights is mentioned having become a successful science fiction writer, with her debut novel being a No Celebrities Were Harmed version of the manga. It was her only failure.
- The original comic has the oracle showing the girls a possible future, to cheer them up, where they all reunite as adults. Adult Will then reveals that she just wrote a book about their adventures as Magical Girls.
- In the short stories published during the New Power Saga alongside the main saga, Will got roped into writing the subject of a musical. She wrote a musical version of the first arc.
- A spoof: there was a series of one-shots in which Goofy is a historical or famous literary character. As Ulysses (in his adventure with the Cyclops), he ends the story by saying the trope name. Mickey (as Diomedes) then points out that he is illiterate. Goofy then says he'll just get himself a ghost writer, turns to a crewman and goes "Right, Homeros?".
- In JSA: The Golden Age, this was Tarantula's last thought before he was killed by Dynaman.
- Astro City has the cosmic-powered superhero, Starfighter, who retires from heroics and writes about his past adventures as a hobby.
- The final page of Red Sonja: The Forgiving of Monsters shows Halayah scribing Sonja's stories for posterity, starting with the first scene of Queen of Plagues.
- In God Slaying Blade Works, Illya starts working on a manga based on the events of the Fifth Holy Grail War. Of course, she changes several names and details.
- In the final episode of Pretty Cure Perfume Preppy, Chloe decides to write about everything that happened.
- Turnabout Storm:
- In a variation mixed with Shout-Out, Twilight suggests Apple Bloom to write a book about the strange incident she claims to have gone through in the Everfree Forest.
- In a straight example, the credits and the "Where Are They Now?" Epilogue start off with the cover of a novel based on the events of the series written by Apple Bloom herself, titled Turnabout Storm.
- George McFly, at the end of Back to the Future, has written a book inspired by Marty's radiation-suited visit to him in 1955.
- At the end of Enchanted, Nathaniel has written a self-help book, and Pip has written a memoir.
- In National Treasure 2: Book of Secrets, Riley has written a book about the events of the first movie and other conspiracies.
- Throw Momma from the Train
- The bonus: two completely different books about the same events.
- In Scream 2, Courteney Cox's character has written a book about the first movie, which has been made into a movie. By Scream 3, she's written a book about the second movie, which has been made into a movie. Scream 3 follows the production of a third, obviously fictionalised movie featuring the original characters. No doubt Gail wrote a book about it.
- The events of Stand by Me are being told in a book written by the now-adult main character (also the narrator), which he is shown finishing at the end.
- Romancing the Stone
- Bob's "Death Therapy" book in the epilogue of What About Bob?
- The movie Duplex has the main character trying and failing to write a book throughout the movie, mostly due to his upstairs tenant. The end of the movie shows his published novel, also titled Duplex, presumably about the events he experienced during the movie.
- Alex & Emma.
- In the third The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor film, we learn that Evie has done just this, publishing the books as fiction.
- In the sequel Shanghai Knights, Roy O'Bannon has published books vaguely based on the first movie Shanghai Noon
- Chasing Amy.
- Alice actually says this in the Disney version of Alice in Wonderland.
- At the end of the Bela Lugosi movie Voodoo Man, a producer considers making the events of the film into a movie. The hero suggests that Lugosi would be a perfect choice to play the villain.
- Race to Witch Mountain
- The Spanish Apartment is narrated from the perspective of the main character, as he's writing a book about the story.
- A Knight's Tale ends with Paul Bettany's Geoffrey Chaucer saying that he should write the events of the film as a story. Bonus points for also including the implication that the story could be The Canterbury Tales.
- The film Better Than Chocolate ends with the revelation that the protagonist eventually published a book called (wait for it...) Better Than Chocolate.
- Near the end of My Sassy Girl, the main character Gyeon-woo not only written a book based on the movie's events, but it's being made into a movie... Wait...
- In the Jackie Chan fantasy film The Myth, his character has written a book of the same name at the end of the movie, and it is dedicated to his Dead Sidekick.
- In-universe, the protagonist of Repo Men writes The Repossession Mambo, which is the title of the Real Life novel on which the film was based. He does this in the middle of the movie, and even kills an attacker with the manual typewriter he'd just finished writing it with.
- In Dragonheart, poetry-loving monk Brother Gilbert is trying to write an epic like Gilgamesh, and decides to frame it around the adventures of the protagonist Bowen. Not a book per se, but as the film takes place in a time before novels were common, it otherwise fits.
- At the end of Wes Craven's New Nightmare, the Ultimate Evil has been defeated and Resealed away now that Wes has finished the screenplay portraying it. Heather Langenkamp and her son read from the screenplay, which depicts the first scenes of the movie.
- Moulin Rouge! uses Christian writing a book as Book Ends for the film's story. Satine even tells him when she dies that he needs to write their story.
- In the Winona Ryder adaptation of Little Women, Jo is inspired to write a novel about her life with her sisters when going through her sister Beth's things after she dies. (This does not happen in the book, although the Jo of the books does become a successful author.)
- One of the events depicted in the epilogue of Elf shows Buddy adapting his experiences into a bestselling children's book.
- In The Umbrella Coup, Pierre Richard's character only realizes that he has been involved in a mafia Mob War at the end of the movie, when his partner (an undercover policewoman) spells it out for him (throughout the movie, he thinks he has been hired by a movie studio for some method acting). He then decides that the story would make for a great movie. Cut to the epilogue — he is now a celebrated film director at Cannes with Money to Burn.
- In Misery, Paul's agent pitches him the idea of writing a non-fiction book regarding his experience, he elegantly disregards it as a cheap shenanigan.
- At the end of The Egg and I, Claudette Colbert turns to the camera and says, "I could write a book!"
- Clash of the Titans ends with Ammon mentioning to Bubo that the tale would make a fine heroic poem or play.
- Francis Ford Coppola's The Outsiders opens with Pony Boy writing the story in class.
- In A Thousand Words, Jack is shown bringing the book to his own publishing company to work out a deal.
- The film version of On the Road ends with Sal Paradise, quite appropriately, typing out his experiences on a long scroll. It's mostly appropriate, except that the real-life Jack Kerouac didn't finish the novel for years later, causing many of his fans to believe he was still a twentysomething adventurer, when in reality he was a middle-aged alcoholic suffering from chronic depression.
- Koko and the Ghosts begins with a news story about the protagonists' previous exploits having inspired a children's book. The film ends with the same news reporter asking our hero if another book were to be written based on the events of the film, what title he would give it. Cut to the film's title as the credits roll.
- Hook: Wendy reveals that everyone knows about Peter Pan, because James Barrie wrote a book based on Wendy's stories about him.
- The Hard Way is an example of the "produce a movie about the events of the movie", with actor Nick Lang starring a film called "The Good, The Badge and The Ugly", in which he drops a This Is Reality speech told to him by Cowboy Cop Moss. Moss complains that Lang stole the speech from him as he sees it.
- Another "make a film" example: a Running Gag throughout the movie Get Shorty is Chilli Palmer working on a pitch for a gangster film which gives off some of the backstory for his reason to be in L.A. The very last scene is the filming of the movie of the events of the film. The aftermath of said filming (the In-Universe movie was good enough to merit a sequel, but the reception of it was bad enough (many people crying out Sequelitis) that Chili got fed up with filmmaking) is mentioned on the first act of the actual sequel Be Cool.
- At the end of John Carter, the titular character tells his nephew Edgar Rice Burroughs to do something with his life, like travel or write a book. The implication is that the John Carter of Mars books are the result.
- Star Wars might be an example of this. Among Lucas' unrealized (but still possibly canon) ideas was to have R2 record the events of the films, then relay them in the distant future to "the Keeper of the Whills".
- The Great Gatsby: The 2013 version ends with Nick writing the story down and sending it to a publisher.
- The Case For Christ: At the end of the movie, Lee Strobel's wife Leslie suggests that Lee write a book documenting the research he has done throughout the film.
- Logan has Wolverine state that "maybe a third" of the material presented in the X-Men comics actually happened, and not in the way that they say it did. It's implied that this applies to the Loose Canon of the other films, as well.
- In the first Animorphs book, Jake writes that he's "writing this so more people can learn the truth", implying that he and the others are writing the series as events unfold.
- The Book of Lost Things has this near the end. It states that the book you're reading is the one the character wrote. It then gets confusing because things happen in the end that doesn't happen until after he wrote it and published. So you're reading things in his book that the character says he wrote but couldn't have despite actually happening.
- Well, he obviously didn't have Protection From Supernatural Editors.
- The Lord of the Rings has Bilbo's and Frodo's The Red Book of Westmarch, a continuation of Bilbo's There and Back Again: A Hobbit's Holiday by Bilbo Baggins.
- Q in the Star Trek: The Next Generation novel Q-Squared:
Q: Make a hell of a log entry, don't you think. Captain's log, stardate yakkity-yak. Got up. Brushed teeth. Charted some stars. Saved the universe. Had dinner. Brushed teeth, went to bed.
- Atonement is an odd case, because Briony admits to having changed the ending because it would have been too depressing otherwise. The movie makes it clear that Robbie and Cecilia died rather than living happily ever after.
- At the end of Things Fall Apart, one of the Evil White Colonialists is writing a book called something like "The Pacification of the Tribes of the Lower River Niger." Bit of a subversion, in that he imagines that the incident he has just witnessed - Okonkwo's suicide - might make up a good chapter of padding, or a paragraph at least.
- A very common 19th-century literary device. In Charles Dickens' David Copperfield and Jonathan Swift's Gulliver's Travels, the book is written by the hero, as a memoir of the events narrated, and will make occasional references to the present ("Looking back upon that time, I feel...").
- Happens at the end of some Enid Blyton adventure stories like The Famous Five.
- Lots of Roald Dahl stories end like this, usually with the very strong implication that the book they wrote is the one you just finished reading.
- The Outsiders ends with the protagonist being assigned to write five pages about his own life and asking "Can it be longer?". The final line of the book is Ponyboy writing the first line of the book. One wonders as to how the teacher felt about grading a 180-page novel.
- Plus, the fact the author wrote it BECAUSE she saw something at school and said (paraphase), "I should write a book about this!"
- I, Claudius is framed as the Emperor Claudius' autobiography.
- In the Japanese Ring/Ringu series of books, many of the events from the first book (Ring) have been publicized as a novel with talks of a movie in the second (Spiral). Unfortunately, these methods are also new and somewhat Squicky methods through which Sadako can reproduce.
- Played with in the most recent Thursday Next book: the Thursday Next books as they exist in Thursday's world evidently bear little resemblance to the events as we read them, and Thursday is very unhappy with the way she is portrayed. To make things more complicated, as Thursday can travel into novels, she ends up meeting versions of herself as she appears within the books. However, at the end, the books are being rewritten and it is strongly implied that these new editions are the series we know.
- At the end of Charles Stross's Saturn's Children, we learn that the book we have just read is a message Freya is about to send back to her sisters on Earth, to warn them that their supposedly long-dead mother Rhea is still alive and dangerously insane.
- Be More Chill.
- At the end of Jodie Picoult's Vanishing Acts, the Unlucky Childhood Friend and journalist character reveals towards the end that he has been writing - surprise! - a book about this entire event. However, there's the fact that the book was written in first-person, revolving between the four main characters, so this means that the guy was obsessing over the thoughts of the girl he's been in love with since he was a kid. Romantic or Squicky?
- The book Freaky Friday turns out to be Annabelle's English project, thought the events were supposed to have really happened.
- At the end of Nausea, by Jean-Paul Sartre, the protagonist decides he wants to write a novel.
- The children's book The Enormous Egg features this.
- Biloxi Blues
- The second Artemis Fowl novel implies this in its opening.
- The Sherlock Holmes stories are presented as the memoirs of Dr. Watson. At the end of the first one, Watson tells Holmes: "Your merits should be publicly recognized. You should publish an account of the case. If you won't, I will for you."
- Mark Frost's The List of 7 has an similar example. The novel centers around a young Arthur Conan Doyle becoming embroiled in a conspiracy against Queen Victoria, during which he is befriended by a dashing, yet mysterious (and potentially unstable) detective named Jack Sparks. At the end of the novel, he learns that Sparks had apparently died in battle with his hated brother, and chooses to immortalize Sparks by writing a series of novels about him renaming Sparks' character as "Sherlock Holmes".
- I Am the Messenger, which ends with the author delivering the text of the novel to the main character, who then decides to rewrite it in his own words. Whether the text you're reading has been written by the author or said character is up for interpretation.
- In These Happy Golden Years by Laura Ingalls Wilder, Laura's older sister Mary, visiting home after enrolling in a school for the blind, confides to Laura that she's planning to write a book about her experience. She then observes that she'd once thought she'd become a schoolteacher before she went blind and now Laura is doing that for her, so maybe Laura will write the book - a suggestion which Laura finds hilarious.
"I, write a book?" Laura hooted. She said blithely, "I'm going to be an old maid schoolteacher like Ms. Wilder. Write your own book."
- Used in the novel Murder in Moultonboro (which you haven't heard of; everyone who has knows the author personally). The hero, Harry, doesn't initially like the idea, though. When Harry's friends suggest that he write a book about some of his strange cases, he answers, "What the hell would I do with a book like that... shim up my fridge?"
- Lemony Snicket A Series of Unfortunate Events books. There's even an "unauthorized autobiography" on "Lemony Snicket".
- Luke Skywalker and the Shadows of Mindor. Throughout the book there are references to pulpy holothrillers with names like "Luke Skywalker and the Dragons of Tatooine", and at the end we find that the character who researched and wrote up something about the Mindor incident sold it to one of the holothriller companies for an absurd sum of cash. Luke's not happy about this, but grudgingly gives in and insists on some rewrites. It doesn't matter if the holothrillers liked it as it was, he can be very persuasive.
- The classic book Interview with the Vampire (and the movie too, I would guess) is an interview done by a guy with a vampire. It is implied that Louis (the vampire) destroyed the record afterwards, but in the next book n the series (The Vampire Lestat) the book has been published to the world. Then Lestat himself took over that custom and started writing his adventures, with each successive book referencing the former one.
- Megan Whalen Turner's The Thief implies that Gen wrote the book chronicling his adventures at the request of his sovereign.
- Tried (not particularly effectively) by William Goldman in The Color Of Light. It's glaringly obvious throughout the novel that it's an edited version of his own life, including tons of shoutouts to his previous stories. The novel ends with him deciding to turn his life into a novel. It's a pointless ending at best.
- Prom by Laurie Halse Anderson ends with the narrator musing that she's a pretty good authority on "normal kids" such as herself, and that she could even write a book about them, making this example a little more ambiguous than others (it could just be irony of the This Is Reality variety).
- Although Proust has repeatedly stated that In Search Of Lost Time was in no way autobiographical, it is pretty clear by the end of Time Regained that the narrator, who has discovered his artistic vocation, plans to write the very book we are reading.
- In "The Invention of Hugo Cabret" Hugo isn't content to just write his story. He builds a human-shaped clockwork automaton that writes out the entire book and draws all the pictures with a dip pen every time it's turned on. Quite the feat considering that this book is as thick as one of the later "Harry Potter"s.
- The Saga of Darren Shan ends like this when vampire Darren sends his journals to alternate-timeline fiction-writer Darren to be published into a novel.
- The First Wives Club ends with one of the women producing a book she's written about the events of the novel, entitled "The First Wives Club."
- Christopher Moore's Bloodsucking Fiends ends with Tommy suggesting he's going to write a book, presumably about the events of the trilogy.
- Implied (or at least, hypothesized by fans) about The Dresden Files. In a recent book, we learned that Harry's mentor keeps journals of his own life and career, and his own mentor did as well, forming a tradition of wizards' journals going back centuries. A brief excerpt Harry reads is sort of in First-Person Smartass format, which fits the mentor's personality but also fits Harry's personality and the series' own narrative style. So some think that the series itself is Harry's contribution to that legacy.
- There's the fact that the narration is in past tense, but some details are given in present tense ('I did X, Y and Z, then went back to my apartment. My apartment is...') which would be consistent with Harry writing about events a short time after they've taken place.
- The roleplaying game and several other supplemental materials refer to Harry's "case files" referring to the events of several novels, and named as the books themselves.
- Mr. Small, an entry in Roger Hargreaves' Mr. Men series, depicts Mr. Small attempting to hold down a variety of jobs. He eventually meets an author who writes children's books; after hearing Mr. Small describe his adventures, he decides to write a book about them. It is explicitly stated that the reader has just read the book in question.
- In Stephen Lawhead's Song of Albion, the entire trilogy is a set of books written by the narrator. The final sentence of the third book is the first sentence of the first book:
"It all began with the aurochs."
- At the end of the The General series by David Drake and S.M. Stirling, one of Center's predictions is that Barton Foley will win an award for writing Raj Whitehall's biography.
- Loial's goal throughout The Wheel of Time series is to write a record of Rand and company's exploits.
- A mind-warpingly meta example is implied by much of The Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica. To wit: Most of the Caretakers of the Geographica are famous authors, especially of sci-fi and fantasy. The implication is pretty strong that they get a lot of their ideas from the Archipelago.
- In Jack Williamson's Darker Than You Think, one of the characters plans to write a book warning the world about the Witch Breed but it—the book you're reading—is dismissed as pulp fantasy.
- At the close of T.H. White’s The Once and Future King, King Arthur on the eve of a great battle asks his page Tom to ride home to Warwickshire and to tell people about the King’s idea, that force should only be used for justice. The boy kneels to kiss the King’s hand before he goes, “his surcoat, with the Malory bearings, looking absurdly new”. It would be Sir Thomas Malory who would write Le Morte D Arthur.
- Implied at the end of Peter Ackroyd's novel Chatterton.
- The Abomination, the final novel in The Omen series (which followed a different continuty from the movies after the third) ends with one of the characters deciding to write about the events he encountered. The book then ends with the opening lines of his novel, which are the same as the opening lines of the first novel, Armageddon 2000.
- At the end of A Macabre Myth of a Moth-Man, Nina tells Moth-man how she's written the whole adventure they were on down in her diary. Moth-man recommends she hold on to it, in case she ever wants to turn it into a book. To account for how his chapters are in first person, he also suggests she switch to first person for him, so he seems more like a private eye from some detective noir film.
- Morrow from Horde repeatedly states his desire to do this, and follows through with it at the end.
- The titular character of the Alice Series decides at the end of the last book when she has hit her 60th birthday to write a series of books about what it's like to grow up as the only girl in a small family, who lost her mother when young and her experiences with her three best friends and marrying her childhood sweetheart.
- In the Mortal Engines Quartet, the final scene of the last book ends with Shrike reciting the first chapter of the first book to a captive audience.
- In the fourth book of the Inda series, it's revealed that Fox is writing a book about Inda and his own experiences with Inda. That book becomes important to the plot of Banner of the Damned, sequel to the Inda series and set in the same world but 400 years later. Whether Fox's memoir actually is the Inda series is uncertain.
- At the end of The Sussex Downs Murder, the police officer in charge of the investigation explains to one of the witnesses how he solved the crime. The witness in question is an author of detective stories, who decides to write a fictionalised account of the case. The last chapter is the opening paragraph of his account, which is the first paragraph of the book.
- In Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, Alice muses (while trapped in the White Rabbit's house due to her new gigantic size) that "there ought to be a book written about her," and plans to do just that when she grows up—only to realize that she's technically grown "up" right now, and there's no room to write.
- Each of the novels in Cherry Wilder's Torin trilogy is an account written for posterity by that novel's protagonist. The narrator/protagonist of the second novel mentions that she's not much of a storyteller and that she's only doing it because she was asked to specially by the narrator/protagonist of the first novel, who'd missed some important events that she'd been present for.
- John Wyndham was rather fond of this trope: The Midwich Cuckoos, The Day of the Triffids and The Kraken Wakes all use it as a framing device for the first-person narrative. Day of the Triffids takes it still further by briefly mentioning another character who did much the same thing, and a third who said he intended to do the same, but didn't survive the Cosy Catastrophe and get the chance.
- In the first Sven Hassel novel Legion of the Damned, Sven keeps saying he's going to write a book about everything they've gone through as soldiers in a penal regiment in Hitler's army. His colleagues, having long since crossed the Despair Event Horizon, say that no-one will bother to read it.
- In the Italian childrens' book series Bat Pat, all the books are supposedly written by Bat Pat himself as retellings of his many adventures.
Live Action TV
- The last episode of The Dick Van Dyke Show has Rob Petrie writing his autobiography and subsequently being offered the chance to write his own sitcom based on his life as a comedy writer.
- The Made-for-TV and later released on home video movie Noah's Ark ends with Noah writing down his adventures, and expresses concerns that someday, people will say they weren't even there. Indeed, the movie's story is a mixing of the Biblical stories of the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah and, of course, the Flood... in that order. The character of Noah is sort of a mashup of Noah and Abraham, except that Abraham never lived in Sodom.
- Maya, from Kamen Rider Dragon Knight actually does this, selling the story of the Kamen Riders as a children's novel at the end of the series.
- The very last scene of Arrested Development plays with this with Maeby acquiring the rights to the family's story to be developed into a television series. However, she presents the material to Ron Howard who tells her "I don't see it as a series. Maybe a movie."
- Although not revealed in the series, Word of God is that Steve and Susan from Coupling made a sitcom based on their relationship (which, since they are, in fact, Steven Moffat and Sue Vertue, isn't very surprising).
- Doctor Who:
- Joan Redfern — the love interest of John Smith, a certain humanized-amnesiac Time-Lord — is revealed to have kept John's diary and her memoirs in an attic. Over ninety-five years later, her great-granddaughter publishes them as a book...only for a man, just like the one from the diary, to come to the book signing.
- Lots of fans theorise that the Peter Cushing Dalek movies were written by Ian and Barbara based on their own experiences. This was almost canonised in "Day of the Doctor", but Steven Moffat couldn't budget the rights to show the movie posters, so the subplot was cut.
- The last episode of Roseanne reveals that Roseanne wrote the series based on her life - except the final season, which she completely made up after Dan died.
- McGee wrote Deep Six in NCIS. It is implied the books were fictional events, although the characters were clearly based upon Gibb's team.
- This happens frequently in Californication, in ways that relate to the ongoing story arcs and with the implication that most of Hank Moody's novels come from this trope. The main example is "Fucking and Punching", a novel that Hank writes during season 1 about his experience with Mia, which Mia subsequently steals and publishes under her own name, creating an ongoing conflict for much of the show.
- During the end credits of the final episode of Babylon 5, it is revealed that the entire series was a documentary featuring the history-changing events that occurred on the station. It showed a huge group photo of the actual production team, and ended with the entire run of the main cast's pictures and actor names. This makes the credits avoid Breaking the Fourth Wall and instead say "this Minbari actually existed in the future and played Dilenn".
- The Stargate SG-1 quote above gets (unintentionally?) parodied late in the series, when it turns out an ordinary citizen, who had acquired a psychic connection with O'Neill, attempted to publish the team's mission reports as books for years...unsuccessfully. Also, there's "Wormhole X-Treme," the Self-Parody Show Within a Show that acts as the SG-1 of the SG-1 universe.
- In the How I Met Your Mother episode "Brunch", where Ted, after hearing his parents' less-than-impressive story of how they met ("I think it was in a bar"), declares that when he's older, he's gonna make sure to tell his kids the full story of how he met their mother. Fast forward twenty-four years to 2030, and he does, although as far as we know he never published it.
- There's also the movie with the show, The Wedding Bride, which was written by Tony who ran away with Ted's intended bride, Stella. Since Tony actually got Ted his teaching job out of guilt for the incident, we can surmise the film is highly fictionalized since the character, Jed Mosely is extremely abusive.
- Bosom Buddies: In the opener, Henry is shown typing, and the voiceover says "This experience is gonna make a great book."
- Gilmore Girls: In the 2016 revival A Year in the Life, Rory begins work on a book telling the story of her life with her mother. She even titles it The Gilmore Girls.
- The final scene of Orphan Black likewise shows that Helena has written a memoir which has the same title as the show.
- Some versions of the King Arthur mythos introduce us to Blaise, Merlin's former tutor. Merlin visits him often to share recent stories from Arthur's court, thus creating the mythos in the first place.
- Our Miss Brooks: In the episode "Miss Brooks Writes About A Hobo," Miss Brooks seeks out a hobo to write an article entitled "The Vanishing Hobo." At the end of the episode, the hobo relates he had bought a set of new clothes with the money he earned from writing about "The Vanishing Schoolteacher."
- Subverted in Avenue Q. Princeton thinks he's finally discovered his purpose in life when he sees a kid fresh out of college just like he once was: put together everything he's learned about struggling through life after college and make a Broadway show out of it. The recent grad flips him off and leaves, and everyone else thinks it's a bad idea too.
- Adaptations of Little Women occasionally do this; examples are the "Dramatized Classic" feature by Plays Magazine and the musical.
- Older Than Steam: In A Midsummer Night's Dream Bottom, thinking the fantastic events of the play were All Just a Dream, says that "I will get Peter Quince to write a ballad of this dream: it shall be called ‘Bottom’s Dream’, because it hath no bottom;"
- Cabaret ends with a heartbroken Cliff leaving Berlin on a train and beginning to write a novel about his experience (after failing to write one during the rest of the show).
- Legacy is an important theme throughout Hamilton, and so the finale, "Who Lives, Who Dies, Who Tells Your Story" shows the two surviving Schuyler sisters, Eliza and Angelica, trying to preserve the story and legacy of George Washington, soldiers like Hercules Mulligan and John Laurens, and most importantly, Hamilton himself, after their respective deaths. The song ends with Eliza wondering if she's done enough to tell her husband's story - then the fourth wall drops, and Eliza sees the scores of people who have come out to see Hamilton's story. It's an emotionally charged moment, for sure.
- If you stayed on good terms with Martin Summers through Hotel Dusk: Room 215, he sends Kyle a letter explaining he's going to write a new novel based off of him. Kyle isn't much of a reader and Summers isn't much of a writer, so his reaction is less than enthusiastic. He apparently decides to go for it later in life, as the novel Summers writes turns out as the In-Game Novel version of Last Window.
- At the end of Paper Mario, one NPC says that he's written a book about Mario's quest, entitled Paper Mario.
- You can actually see the book in Luigi's Mansion, where the ghost Neville can be observed reading a novel entitled "Mario Story", the Japanese name for Paper Mario.
- Likewise, Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door has Mario's adventures being turned into a play performed by one of his teammates, Flurrie, and a former enemy, Doopliss. The game also features a collection of books describing Luigi's adventures (with some facts being exaggerated to make Luigi look cooler). After beating the game, Luigi agrees to hire his publisher to make a book about Mario's adventure.
- Non-RPG Mario example: After helping Mario save both Peach and the entire universe from Bowser in Super Mario Galaxy, Rosalina actually decided to write a book based on her experiences with Mario where he had to save both Peach and the universe from Bowser again (her first book was about her childhood and the loss of her family), but this time Bowser is now a giant, and Mario now travels in a small spaceship shaped like his own face with the help of his dinosaur friend Yoshi and a fat purple star named Lubba. The title: Super Mario Galaxy 2.
- And Rosalina then writes herself into her own story where she finally finds the white Luma she accidentally left behind in the Mushroom Kingdom at the end of the first Galaxy (he was traveling aboard Mario's spaceship), and then she writes a third book (right in front of said white Luma, who listened to her reading SMG 2) about Mario finding various green stars scattered across the universe, and again she writes herself in to give Mario his last star and boards his ship afterwards.
- In Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty, the plot of the previous game is summarized in a series of in-universe publications accessible from the main menu.
- In some of the endings of Kana: Little Sister, Takamihi writes a book based on the diary of his deceased sister.
- Done in Riviera: The Promised Land, by Rose, of all people.
- The Sly Cooper games suggest that the missions are entries in the Thievius Raccoonus, the Cooper family journal/diary/manual. At the end of Sly 3: Honor Among Thieves, it suggests that Bentley was making the last entry in it.
- In Pokémon Black 2 and White 2, Elite Four member Shauntal (already an established author) is in the middle of writing a novel about the events of the previous game; when you come to challenge her, she is brainstorming a passage about a trainer who fits N's description and whatever Legendary Pokemon he owns in the current game (either Reshiram or Zekrom) It should be noted, N defeated the Elite Four, including her, in the first game.
- At the end of Leisure Suit Larry 3: Passionate Patti in Pursuit of the Pulsating Pectorals, Larry and Patti screw over the fabric of their fictional reality, wind up at the set of Sierra studios, and receive a lucrative offer from Roberta Williams to code adventure games about their adventures. Al Lowe had to skip an entire installment in the series to undo this ending.
- Space Quest III also ends with the Two Guys from Andromeda ending up at Sierra's studio and they end up making a game, presumably the Space Quest series. No ending-reversal here, though, since the Two Guys aren't the main characters. In fact, Roger rejects the offer and goes back to Xenon. The next game starts with Roger on his way back.
- In the credits of Tales of Vesperia, art is shown of Estelle writing a book; when she closes it, the cover pretty clearly has "Tales of Vesperia" on it, though it's written in the game's made-up runic language. Whether the book is a straight-up adaptation of the game or some kind of children's story about Brave Vesperia's romps and adventures is up for debate.
- Was it Suikoden Tactics or Rhapsodia? That depends on where you live; either way, there's a reason the game's sections are called "chapters," and Andarc comes off as something of a Badass Bookworm.
- Mentioned in passing in ''Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3. Following a perilous battle in Cuba, Commander Giles mentions that maybe he will write a book about it.
- In the original Tomb Raider games, Lara has written several books which are treated as eccentric fiction, including "A Tyrannosaurus is Jawing at my Head".
- One of Madison Paige's endings in Heavy Rain has her writing a book entitled...you guessed it.
- Dragon Age:
- One of Leliana's possible comments at the end of Dragon Age: Origins is that she might write a book about the game's events...but that she'll leave out details about Fereldan food, which isn't any good even at the palace.
- Dragon Age II opens with Varric having already written "The Tale of the Champion" about Hawke's adventures in Kirkwall. Unfortunately for him, he couldn't resist embellishing things somewhat, so the rest of the game takes place in flashback as Cassandra grills him on what really happened. The fallout from that results in him having a ringside seat for the events of Dragon Age: Inquisition; the credits of the Trespasser DLC reveal that he went on to write a book about the Inquisitor titled "All This Shit is Weird".
- Zigzagged in Final Fantasy Tactics. Orlan Durai didn't say that he wanted to write a book about Ramza's brave struggle against Ultima and her cult, neither there's a sequence showing him do so. But the book, the Durai Papers, is written anyway— in fact the entire game is about Alazlam Durai storytelling it to you the player.
- In Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood, Ezio's fellow Assassin Niccolò Machiavelli mentions he will write a book based on Ezio's exploits. It's heavily implied to be The Prince. In the novelization of the game, he actually jots down notes while Ezio is giving a speech to the crowd.
- Kokoro's ending in Touhou 13.5: Shinkirou ~ Hopeless Masquerade Fighting Game, Hopeless Masquerade, has her creating a new Noh play called "Shinkirou", based on the events of the game.
- It was only mentioned All There in the Manual, but, after Mega Man Zero 4, Neige (a reporter) has written a biography detailing Zero's adventures.
- This is Invoked early on in Always Sometimes Monsters. In order to secure some help from their publisher, the protagonist agrees to turn over their personal journal to him at the end of the month, regardless of whether or not they succeed in their goal. He figures that he can turn that written account into something profitable.
- In Blackwell Convergence, Rosa receives a rejection from Rel Day Books for her manuscript "The Devil and the Deacon" — presumably an account of the events in The Blackwell Legacy. In The Blackwell Deception, Rosa has a published (but wildly unsuccessful) manuscript called "The Actor and the Artist" — presumably an account of the events in Convergence.
- In The Darkside Detective, one case requires the protagonist and his sidekick to rummage in the precinct house's evidence locker, which also contains several personal items various detectives have stashed in there for safe-keeping. The sidekick discovers and comments unfavorably on a set of notes for a comedic video game about a pair of police officers who solve spooky mysteries, with the protagonist's embarrassed reaction suggesting that they're his.
- At the end of Himatsubushi-hen in Higurashi: When They Cry, Ooishi and Akasaka write a book about what they know about the 5-year chain of mysterious deaths in Hinamizawa and the Great Hinamizawa Gas Disaster. Although it isn't the end of the series - the answers are provided in the next four arcs - it is the end of the question arcs, the arcs that lay out the mysteries that the reader is supposed to solve.
- The Word Weary is a comic by John Kossler about John Kossler, who's writing a comic. Issue 75 featured him wondering what he should do for in-comic comic's next update- he finally settled on a joke that was used in issue four.
- Girl Genius is written by Phil Foglio and his wife Kaja, also known in-story as Professors Foglio and Foglio of Transylvania Polygnostic University, who wrote the comic as textbooks for their "True Events in the Life of Agatha Heterodyne 101" class. They subsequently came to our world and published them here, to escape notice by the people they were writing about. So far in-story, Kaja has been seen as an announcer at the Vienna Opera, and Phil is an itinerant storyteller and the great-great-grandson of the Jager Oggie.
Bang: I mean, if they ever write this down, they ain't gonna be calling it "Boy Genius".
- The illustrated versions of the Girl Genius radio plays also feature the Foglios, performing the radio plays and then having to escape after being tracked down by Agatha.
- The idea of writing down the various adventures of the characters is referenced (and title-dropped) by Bangladesh DuPree.
- Apparently, the Foglios were on a separate task for the university when they encountered Agatha, and Kaja, who had not yet picked a research subject, decided to become her biographer.
- Irregular Webcomic!: Lambert writes the story of the Fantasy adventures up to the end of their first great quest. He even titles the book There and Back Again, or The Hobbit.
- One of the alternate Season 5 endings to Red vs. Blue has Caboose selling his life story to a company in Redmond, Washington who made a popular video game series out of it.
- Shin spends a good chunk of Sailor Nothing working on her book. The epilogue shows that it was pretty successful, even if this fantastic story about teenage girls with magical superpowers waging war on monsters born from the darkness lurking beneath humanity's surface was widely interpreted as allegory.
- At the end of the lonelygirl15 episode "He Said, She Said", Bree suggests that Daniel should come over and they can make a video about the phone call they are having. Daniel replies, "Wouldn't that be boring?"
- In The Tommy Wiseau Show, the Nostalgia Critic ends his phone call to Wiseau with, "I don't know what you're on, but I'm totally gonna make a sketch mocking the fuck out of you guys."
- Averted in Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated when a "big shot television producer" suggests that Scooby and the gang's adventures would make a great children's show. Immediately everyone agrees this would be a bad idea.
- In one Tom and Jerry cartoon, Jerry writes a humerous book about his experiences with Tom. Tom at first is incredibly angry about it and the jokes the book makes at his expense... Until Jerry reveals that he instructed the publishers to give half the large royalities to Tom. Then he suddenly finds the book hilarious.
- The Distant Finale to As Told by Ginger has Ginger doing a book reading for her book "As Told By Ginger" that seems to be the story of her life.
- In the 1951 Disney version of Alice in Wonderland, Alice at one point says: "I'll have to write a book about this place when I get home! …if I ever get home…". We all know this happened.
- Evan Wright wrote about what his experiences in Iraq, titled Generation Kill, which was later adapted into an HBO miniseries under the same name.
- The reason why people write memoirs.