|Woman Reading with Tea, Henri Matisse|
If a story were ever to be written truthfully
from start to finish, it would amaze everyone.
Why? Why write fiction and call it nonfiction? One answer is that it's easier to get nonfiction published and sold than fiction. Dishonest writers who don't have the skills to make facts appealing on their own can embellish easily. Or the cause is laziness and the motivation simple self-aggrandizement, hope for high sales or notoriety.
So part of the challenge for the memoirist is to keep the line between nonfiction and fiction distinct, to respect life experience and write honorably. It's said that God doesn't write good drama. So, because our lives often seem a series of random events, memoir writers have to craft personal experience into something God might have written (had she been so thoughtfully inclined) while still maintaining the integrity of actual experience.
|Woman Reading with Peaches by Henri Matisse|
Please share your thoughts on this sticky subject. my ideas here are preliminary musings, but I need more perspective--so fire away. In other words, go ahead and COMMENT herein.
Next week: Techniques for keeping nonfiction, not fiction--respectfully and honorably
I'm in Italy this week teaching memoir writing at
The Heart of Memoir Writing Workshop in
Santo Stefano di Sessanio in Abruzzo.
This week I'll be posting photos of our work and play on
Facebook at Eat, Travel, Write Italy & France.