Narrative non-fiction

I am currently working on a narrative non-fiction book about a woman who faked her own death so that she could reinvent herself. Through exploring social, political and religious reform movements of the fin de siècle period, the book traces the woman’s life and the stories of some of those closest to her. It will be published by Palgrave MacMillan early in 2016.

What is narrative non-fiction?

Narrative non-fiction (sometimes called ‘Creative Non-fiction‘) is a relatively new genre. In the 2007 anthology, The Best Creative Nonfiction, Lee Gutkind says: “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.”

Biographies are an example of a type of book that has been shaped by the emergence of narrative non-fiction. While biographies would traditionally cover every moment of a person’s life – from cradle to grave – increasingly, life writing takes other forms. There is a good article on the Guardian website by Kathryn Hughes that talks about the art of biography and the way it is changing.

Find out more about narrative non-fiction on the Wikipedia page.


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