What Is Creative Nonfiction?
”It’s always interesting – and somewhat annoying – when a vocabulary term is defining something it is not. Nonfiction is a broad category that includes history, guides on caring for your new pet kookaburra, sociology, books on wine making nd cycling and weather. All nonfiction. This kind of writing uses summarizing, instruction, reporting, and telling to get its points across. Creative nonfiction is always about the real, true, known world. However, it specifically refers to a kind of creative writing that uses the conventions of fiction in order to tell a true story. Instead of reporting, analyzing, explaining, or describing, which is what you do in straight nonfiction or essay writing, creative nonfiction relies heavily on the technique of scene making – letting the reader see the story, instead of being told about it. In creative nonfiction, the reader is transported visually and emotionally – the reader is in a scene. The story plays out as a movie in the reader’s mind’s eye, instead of appealing to the reader’s intellect alone.
There are two subcategories of within creative nonfiction: memoir and researched creative nonfiction. In both forms the writer uses images, scenes, metaphors, dialogue, and pattern. Creative nonfiction shows a writer expanding and questioning perceptions, learning more about the world and the self. In memoir, you tell a story from your own life in order to help the reader see his or her own life in a new, richer way. Researched work (sometimes called new journalism) combines facts and imagination in order to create scenes. As with fiction, creative nonfiction can be almost any length, from a paragraph-long micro-essay to a book.”
- The Practice of Creative Writing, Heather Sellers
Check out this creative nonfiction piece modeled off Amy Sedaris and David Sedaris’ “Relationship Quiz.”
Are You a Prima or Nah?
- Dance class you…
a) show up an hour early and stretch
b) you arrive on time
c) show up two minutes late
d) you never left because you live there.
- What do you wear?
a) expressive leotard
b) a leotard from Walmart
c) a large t-shirt
- How do you wear you hair?
a) a bun
b) French twist
c) a wig
d) your black and you have a fro
- So you injure your foot and can’t perform. Do you….
a) go to the doctor
b) perform an ancient healing ritual
c) put glass in someone else’s shoe so you’ll have someone to talk to
d) set fire to the rain
- The cast list was just posted and you find out you’re an understudy for the part you really wanted. Do you…
a) try you hardest to improve
b) make up a rumor that the person is sleeping with the director
c) commit suicide
d) threaten the director’s life by way of fire
- It’s time for curtain call and someone stole your costume. You…
a) steal someone else’s
b) don’t bow
c) go out there naked
d) cut up someone’s stuff so no one will have costumes
- After the show everyone goes out to eat but you’re not invited. You…
a) don’t go and rehearse some more
b) invite yourself
c) throw your own party and invite them
d) secretly poison them at the restaurant
- You gained 5 pounds and it’s the morning of your second fitting. Do you…
a) make your self throw up
b) sneak into the costume room and adjust your costume.
c) give everybody weight gain pills
d) go work out
- You are willing to kill anyone to get what you want
- You’re at an audition and you see your best friend and they’re killing it but you really want this part. You’re holding a water bottle in your hand. Do you….
a) squirt the water on the floor
b) throw it at their heads
c) cheer them on
11. Are you a good dancer?
c) blind the “b”
12. You have shattered your hip and can no longer dance. You
a) accept it and move on
b) you become a dance teacher
c) you put your brain in someone else’s body
d) blind the “b”
If the majority of your answers are D you are psychopath and have what it takes to be a prima ballerina.