Non-Fiction-Fiction: An Introduction

There have been a few occasions already where I have been asked to classify some of the writing I had done. Whether it was using KDP to stick Adjective Narcissism on Amazon, or whether it was submitting early drafts of that same text for university coursework. Of course, with university, I could make my argument within the submission itself, but on Amazon there is, unsurprisingly, no section for ‘How does one define fiction, as opposed to fiction?’

Of course, I understand that whilst you may believe there are differences between the two, perhaps such a wide distinction as ‘one is true, and the other is made up’, but that would surely be an incorrect assumption. If anything has to pass through the human psyche, then surely it immediately becomes fiction? I would argue that there is no way of creating non-fiction, there is, in fact, an idiocy in that very statement.

How can writers create truth? How can anyone create truth? It is, simply, impossible to create something entirely based in fact. There will always be something absent from writing, or there will always be something added in for the purposes of entertainment or simply narrative. But then, equally impossibly, is the idea that anything can be wholly created. Whether confined by the language in which it is written, or the impossibility of imagining an entirely new reality, there is no such thing as ‘fiction’.

Perhaps my opinions here are taken to extreme, I mean, surely such things as instruction books, (y’know, those little white pamphlets that come with over-priced Swedish flat-pack furniture), cannot be considered fiction? But then, they expect the world to be a certain way. The demand perfection, if not a sterile environment, within which they can aid in the creation of some dull piece of furniture.

Whilst I many not desire to do this, fearing it to be far too close to advertisement, I will use my own eBook as an example here. It is set in a real place, it is based on real events and the language it uses is a real language. Is that not enough then, to be considered non-fiction? Is there a limit to how much fantasy is allowed into something before it becomes fiction? Do all texts begin as non-fiction, and it is only through the interference of its writer that it becomes fictional?

Obviously, this is only a very brief pondering, and has been more to help organise my own thoughts, to provide the questions which I will attempt to answer, even though I have asked them of myself and, of course, of you.

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