Under investigation in this work is the self-similar propagation of light waves inside optical fibers with varying resonant and Kerr law nonlinearities, dispersion, and gain or absorption. A generalized resonant nonlinear Schrodinger equation (NLSE) with distributed parameters that describes the pulse evolution in such inhomogeneous optical system has been studied by the similarity transformation method, and a class of self-similar cnodial wave and similariton solutions is presented. It is found that the obtained bright and dark similaritons have a quadratic phase variation in time implying that the associated frequency chirp is linear. We also discuss the applicability of these linearly chirped optical similaritons in a periodic distributed fiber medium. The results show that a suitable choice of the dispersion and cubic nonlinearity parameters enables one to control the similariton structure and dynamical behavior. (C) 2020 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.