Creative Non-Fiction being my niche, I found this article while on a search for sources for a college class project on the ethics of writing in this genre.
By Dave Hood
What are the ethics of creative nonfiction? The intent of the writer must be to write honestly and truthfully. The writer must not change facts, distort facts, fabricate facts, tell lies, or mislead the reader. Changing a story by adding significant, false details or events that never happened is writing fiction, not creative nonfiction. And if readers discovers that they have been deceived, the writer will lose credibility and a reading audience. And so, when writing creative nonfiction, such as a personal essay, memoir, or literary journalistic essay, the writer must strive to tell the truth the best he/she can. As well, the writer must not fabricate events or experiences.
In this article, I’ll discuss the ethics of writing creative nonfiction. The following will be covered:
- Facts and Emotional Truth
- Memory and Imagination
- What gets included and omitted
- Dealing with Exaggeration
- Compressing Time
- Composite Characters
- Cues and Disclaimers
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