- Embarrassing Middle Name: Ruggles.
- Epileptic Trees: It was once rumored that Pynchon and fellow reclusive author J. D. Salinger were the same person; the rumor is less popular now that the latter has passed away.
- Genius Bonus/Viewers Are Geniuses: One or the other, depending on the work; whichever it is, he's probably the king of the trope in question.
- Memetic Mutation: The Trystero sign from Lot 49, as well as the fun he has with acronyms:
We Await Silent Trystero's Empire
Don't Ever Antagonize The Horn
- Paranoia Fuel: Hoo boy.
- Squick: Often used symbolically, no less!
- Tearjerker: For all the zany antics that go on in his books, moments of immense melancholy and sadness are also bound to show up. Perhaps most apparent in Vineland, which centers around the collapse of a family and their efforts to make things right again.
- True Art Is Incomprehensible
- What Do You Mean, It Wasn't Made on Drugs?: Justified...it admittedly usually was.
- What Do You Mean, It's Not Symbolic?