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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 like 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 writing names invention in their works, and justify the approaches they have taken to relating true events.
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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. 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.
Students use critical thinking to compare Greek gods, goddesses, heroes and myths to modern superheroes. Then they create and write about special characters who aid the modern world. Greek gods and heroes are the subjects of some of the great myths in history. Their exploits have been shared for centuries through spoken word, written poetry and prose, and even stage and film productions. The classic tales of good versus evil are timeless, as is the public’s thirst for exciting narratives about heroes and their triumphs. Start by introducing the religion of ancient Greece.
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