The New Genre of writing.

Rick Bragg

Rick Bragg

Creative Non-Fiction

I am excited about being able to put my descriptive fiction writing abilities to work when I write non-fiction articles.

“Creative Non-Fiction Writing” is finally coming into its own. The first time I became aware of the power of creative writing when you are writing a non-fiction piece, was when I read of Pulitzer winner Rick Bragg, News Correspondant for the Atlanta Journal, and saw some of his writing style. For example, he was writing recently about Louisiana Oystermen, and here is some of his description of the area he was writing about: ”egrets that slip like paper airplanes just overhead, and the jumping mullet that belly-flop with a sharp clap into steel-gray water.” Now that is writing that puts you right there where the action in your story takes place. Now you are there on the scene rather than just reading a cold narrative about the facts of the story.Here he puts you in the situs of the story, and began to put into motion the essential parts of this writing: Narrative art, dramatic conflict, interesting believable characters—the three elements necessary in a good story.

There is another dimension now, one with color and depth. The reader will come away with pictures, images, action, motion, rather than an easily forgotten set of facts. Maybe some readers prefer facts to color. I think taking a shot at color is hitting a larger audience than the fact-only group. If you are selling something, you plant the product deeper and more desirable with color. Envision a juicy hamburger in full glowing color compared to one in black and white. Which is more desirable? Enough said.

So you can give them color, and stay true to your non-fiction contract you have with your reader that this is true, no facts altered, and he or she is getting the truth and nothing but the truth, in technicolor.

LD Sledge
March 2016