Month: July 2014

Fiction in disguise

Fiction does not necessarily have to be a narrative per se. However, we might come across forms of writing which share some of the characteristics of fiction. Here are a few of my favourites:

1. Interviews

Generally speaking, these are long streams of dialogue which give the name of the speaker, and the two talking backwards and forwards. Often times, you’ll see column in a magazine or similar publication which includes the following format:

Sarah Verne: “Hello, Mr Redworth.”

Mr Redworth: “Hi.”

You may see transcribed cassette conversations and podcasts following a similar structure.

2. An academic essay

It has a beginning, middle and end, and there is usually some background information to it. Particularly if this is a descriptive essay, or one with a narrative form, it may seem very much like a story. Other types include imaginative or emotive pieces of writing.

3. An autobiography

This is perhaps the most obvious example. Many Victorian novels are written in the style of a fictional autobiography (or third-person biography). One notable example is Jane Eyre, as we learn about her childhood, days at Lowood and romance at Thornfield hall.

4. News stories

When you see an article in the newspaper about a story – such the sentencing of a Paedophile or the slating of J.K. Rowling – it is often written with quoted speech and the writer as the VoiceOver.

5. Adverts

We might see a sequence of events in a series of snapshots to convey a story in an advert. Notable examples might include the Freederm adverts, where a boy and a girl are getting ready to go out on a date, but car adverts showing the history of a couple becoming a family are other examples too. Of course, not all adverts are like this, but many are.

6.Diary entry

This is a little bit like writing a letter to yourself. This will include what happened in your day, some moods and emotions, and quoted speech. Generally speaking, they are written in prose.

7. Letter

Yes, Frankenstein, you certainly spring to mind. However, if you are writing to your penpal in Austria, you might tell them about your day. The term “letter” is fairly generic here; it could be an email, or you could even create a scrapbook with captions and photos in it.

8. A family tree

Story or -history? Most family trees are presented as branches, but sometimes this more of an umbrella term for a narrative. Victorian novels blur the lines sometimes – as does postmodern fiction – but often times. History is a strange thing, because it is not just about stories from the past, but culture and chronology too.

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