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Creative Non-Fiction

Christine Diane Galvan, CSPE, LPT

Fiction vs Non-Fiction
Fictional literature is imagined Non-Fiction literature is based
on fact

Often based on actual event Loses credibility if fabricated

Subjective Objective

Can be different points of view Authorial point of view

In general, FICTION refers to plot, settings,
and characters created from the

While NON-FICTION refers to factual stories

focused on the actual events and people.
• is fabricate and based on the author’s
• Short stories
• Novels
• Myths
• Legends
• Fairy tales
While settings, plot points, and
character in fiction are sometimes based on
real-life events or people, writers use such
things as jumping off points for their stories.
• is factual and reports on true events.
• Histories
• Biographies
• Journalism
• Essays
• Usually has higher standard to uphold
than fiction

Note: A few smatterings of fact in a work of

fiction does not make it true, while a few
fabrications in a nonfiction work can force
that story to lose all credibility.
An example is when James Frey,
author of A Million Little Pieces, was kicked
out of Oprah’s Book Club in 2006 when it
came to light that he had fabricated most of
his memoir.
• However, nonfiction often uses many of
the techniques of fiction to make it more

• This has given rise to a new trend called

techniques of fiction to report on true
According to Lee Gutkind, the creator of
Creative Nonfiction Magazine, creative

“Refers to the use of literary craft, the

techniques fiction writers, playwrights, and
poets employ to present nonfiction – factually
accurate prose about real people and events –
in a compelling, vivid, dramatic manner.”
• “The goal is to make nonfiction stories
read like fiction so that your readers are as
enthralled by fact as they are by fantasy.”
Salient Features of Fiction
Fictional works can be determined based on the
following features enumerated:

1. Fiction is heavily drawn from one’s imagination.

2. It depicts the world and an experience that can be
perceived to be mainly contrived or created by the
3. It involves people who do not truly exist. However,
the literary characters can be observed to be entirely
4. It presents situations, conditions, and
surroundings that are closely similar to what
is real.
5. Fiction includes 2 important
composites – characters and plot; that
should go in harmony and unity.
Basic Forms of Fiction
The forms of fiction have similar conventions
regarding the elements that comprise it. However,
they differ regarding the length and complexity.

1. Flash Fiction
- an emerging form of fiction that is best remembered
because of its relative shortness.
- words used by the writer range from 100-150 but
still considered a complete story since all the
essential elements of fiction can be observed.
2. Short Story/Short Fiction

-this form relatively can be done in one

sitting since it deals with a single
complication and a limited number of
3. Novella
-this fiction form goes between a short fiction
and a novel
-this is relatively long for a short story but is
somewhat short to be classified as a novel
4. Novel
-this greatly covers several plot
complications since it is composed of
several chapters
-the number of characters is relatively bigger