Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Behind the Books: The Nonfiction Family Tree

Here’s my version of the nonfiction family tree. Other authors might disagree. Heck, I might disagree in a year or two. But for now, this tree shows how I think of children’s nonfiction as a whole.
The tree has two main branches, narrative and just the facts, but it leaves room for other fundamentally different kinds that might develop. Some people seem to be using the term “informational” for what I call just the facts. I don’t like “informational” because all nonfiction is chock full of fascinating information.

My just the facts branch has three twigs with room for other possibilities. There may already be some good candidates for that fourth slot. Suggestions?

Everything in red is what I think of as creative nonfiction. Some people seem to think that the terms “creative nonfiction” and “narrative nonfiction” are interchangeable, but not me.

As far as I’m concerned, there is tons of creative experimentation and innovation happening within non-narrative nonfiction. I’ll be writing more about all these ideas over the next few months.

1 comment:

  1. I think this makes a lot of sense! It actually helps me analyze some of my own writing, which at times I've labeled with question marks (not because it deserves to be its own twig!) Thanks, Melissa, for sharing this, and I'll keep ruminating.