I have long thought that there is no real difference between the requirement of fiction and non fiction to evoke an emotion in the reader.
That emotion may be as simple as the satisfaction of knowing something. Or it may be so complex a form of emotional response that the book leaves a hole in your life when it’s finished. Non-fiction – properly written – can do that as much as fiction. Think Dava Sobel.
A lot of the writing techniques authors have to apply are the same irrespective of genre. The need for tautness, pace and structure apply to all forms of writing.
And funnily enough, the need for accuracy to authentic source is also true for fiction and non-fiction. Novelists, indeed, often do more research than non-fiction writers. Part of that is because the nature of minutiae required for authentic story telling differs from the broader brush required of, say, interpretative social history. But the key word – authentication – is true for both.
Do others see it the same way? Let me know.
Copyright © Matthew Wright 2011