Writers Proverb: Does Non-Fiction Rules Influence Our Story?

Patrick Greenwood
2 min readOct 5, 2022

Non-fictional writing should be about the actual event and documented conclusions. Does non-fictional writing entitle you as a writer to insert your narrative and draw a different conclusion? Do we not save this writing experience for historical fiction or maybe, “inspired by actual events?”

The importance of non-fictional writing is the value learned by researching the topic, collecting several points of view for many, and learning to consolidate the narrative into a readable form with a conclusion many did not see coming.

Bob Woodward, the author of “All the Presidents Men” and “Veil,” among other books, is the gold standard in this writing methodology. When he wrote about Donald Trump(I know, OMG), John Belushi, or other famous people, he drew a distinct conclusion only he could write. Non-fictional accounts for public and privately known facts many people have very little access to.

Non-fictional also can become very fictional. Watching the narrative around the Biden family and other politicians, for the average reader, what are the truth and fiction? Is information distortion destroying the balance between nonfiction and fictional storyline?

We often question, “what is the real truth in writing?” Usually, this is based on the reader and writer’s points of view and less on one being the grand master of all facts. How often do we see 20% of the truth come out as the decision tree genesis? What happens to the remaining 80%?

As writers, how do we balance our 20% and 80%? What role do the publisher and editor play in adjusting the balance between known facts and facts that should not be disclosed for fear of not creating a readable story?

Ultimately, we need to recognize the purpose of our writing and what conclusion we want to stick with. Knowing that our editors and publishers have a say in our writing, do we succumb to the book publishing world and let our story becomes something we oppose?

We write because this is what we do. We capture, we express, and we often cry. Yet, gliding throughout the writer’s journey seeing how non-fiction becomes more fictional, where is the ending truth in the conclusion?

The decision to how you end your story starts with why you did it. Write it. Did you want a greater narrative of truth to come out, or did you wish to alter non-fictional reality and divert your readers in another direction?

This is why we write every day :)

Love,

Patrick

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Patrick Greenwood

Patrick Greenwood, is a fictional writer, award winning podcaster, blogger, and global cyclist.