Creating Compelling Characters in Narrative Nonfiction Writing
Narrative nonfiction, also known as creative nonfiction, is a genre that combines the storytelling techniques of fiction with the factual information of nonfiction. However, this genre raises a number of ethical concerns for writers to consider. Here are some key ethical considerations for narrative nonfiction writing:
Respect for privacy: When writing about real people, it's important to respect their privacy and obtain their consent before including them in your story. This is particularly important when writing about sensitive or personal topics.
Fact-checking: The use of factual information is essential in narrative nonfiction, so it's important to be diligent in fact-checking and verifying information. This includes cross-referencing sources and using multiple sources to verify facts.
Transparency: Narrative nonfiction should be transparent about its sources and methods. This includes clearly indicating when information is based on personal experience or interviews and providing information about the sources used in the research.
Fair representation: Narrative nonfiction should aim to represent all sides of a story and avoid biased or one-sided reporting. It's important to interview a diverse range of sources and provide a balanced perspective on the story.
Avoiding exploitation: Narrative nonfiction should avoid exploiting or sensationalizing its subjects. It's important to be mindful of the potential impact that the story may have on the people and communities involved.
Responsibility of the author: It's important for writers of narrative nonfiction to take responsibility for their work and consider the potential impact it may have on their subjects and readers. This includes being sensitive to the use of sensitive or personal information and avoiding spreading misinformation.
Transparency in the creative process: Narrative nonfiction should be transparent in its creative process, this includes indicating if the author has changed the sequence of events, added or removed details, and notifying the reader of the process of how the story was written.