Jump to navigation Jump to search This article is about the genre. For a text to be considered creative nonfiction, it must be factually accurate, and written with attention to literary style and technique. Ultimately, the primary goal of the creative nonfiction writer is to communicate information, just like a reporter, but to shape it in a way that reads nonfiction writing fiction.
Literary critic Barbara Lounsberry—in her book, The Art of Fact—suggests four constitutive characteristics of the genre, the first of which is «Documentable subject matter chosen from the real world as opposed to ‘invented’ from the writer’s mind». By this, she means that the topics and events discussed in the text verifiably exist in the natural world. Creative nonfiction may be structured like traditional fiction narratives, as is true of Fenton Johnson’s story of love and loss, Geography of the Heart, and Virginia Holman’s Rescuing Patty Hearst. Creative nonfiction writers have embraced new ways of forming their texts—including online technologies—because the genre leads itself to grand experimentation. Dozens of new journals have sprung up—both in print and online—that feature creative nonfiction prominently in their offerings. Writers of creative or narrative non-fiction often discuss the level, and limits, of creative invention in their works, and justify the approaches they have taken to relating true events. In recent years, there have been several well-publicized incidents of memoir writers who exaggerated or fabricated certain facts in their work.
In 1998, Swiss writer and journalist Daniel Ganzfried revealed that Binjamin Wilkomirski’s memoir Fragments: Memories of a Wartime Childhood detailing his experiences as a child survivor of the Holocaust, contained factual inaccuracies. The James Frey controversy hit in 2006, when The Smoking Gun website revealed that Frey’s memoir, A Million Little Pieces, contained experiences that turned out to be fabrications. In 2008, The New York Times featured an article about the memoirist Margaret Seltzer, whose pen name is Margaret B. Although there have been instances of traditional and literary journalists falsifying their stories, the ethics applied to creative nonfiction are the same as those that apply to journalism. The truth is meant to be upheld, just told in a literary fashion. Essayist John D’Agata explores the issue in his 2012 book The Lifespan of a Fact.
As the popularity of the genre continues to expand, many nonfiction authors and a handful of literary critics are calling for more extensive literary analysis of the genre. This is the contribution that poststructuralist theory has to make to an understanding of literary nonfiction, since poststructuralist theorists are primarily concerned with how we make meaning and secure authority for claims in meaning of language. The art of fact: contemporary artists of nonfiction. Daniel Ganzfried, translated from the German by Katherine Quimby Johnson. The Art of Creative Nonfiction: Writing and Selling the Literature of Reality.
Writing Creative Nonfiction: Instruction and Insights from Teachers of the Associated Writing Programs. In Fact: The Best of Creative Nonfiction. Keep It Real: Everything You Need to Know About Researching and Writing Creative Nonfiction. Enter the characters you see below Sorry, we just need to make sure you’re not a robot. Character Worksheets Subscribe to our FREE email newsletter and download free character development worksheets! Writing a proposal for a work of nonfiction may be intimidating and sometimes frustrating, especially if you’re unsure about the information you should include and how to structure the proposal. Authors often spin their wheels and look at multiple sources for guidance on this task.
They look for multiple resources to make sure that they are doing it right, but in the end the varying instructions often add confusion. This guest post is by Marisa A. Corvisiero is the founder of the Corvisiero Literary Agency and a senior agent. During the few years prior to starting her own agency, Marisa worked with the L. My advice is simple: Keep your proposal focused on the gist of your book and the target market, with an eye toward conveying the subject matter in the most interesting and relevant fashion in order to hook the reader. Your goal is to present a professional looking and carefully drafted document that basically tells the reviewer everything they need to know about your project. I only mean the relevant things.
They are your title, word count or work status, tagline, description, audience, bio, platform, relevant promotional information, table of content, and sample chapters. This key information should be provided in clear, concise, accurate, and interesting sections that flow well into each other, and are easy for the evaluator to read, find, and understand. Title and Word Count: The title of your book should be in the introductory paragraph of the proposal so that it’s one of the first things that the reader sees. The title says a lot about the work itself, the substance or topic of the project, the tone in which the material will be presented, the marketability of the piece, and how creative you are. If you have a great title, it might hook them right away. The word count of the work should follow the title in the same introductory section.