ACWC Writers Blog

Assignment 6 - Creative Non-Fiction
Monday, February 15, 2021 by Cindy Sproles

What is Creative Nonfiction?

By Andrea Merrell

For the past few weeks, we’ve talked about a variety of writing elements:

  • POV (point of view)
  • Memorable dialogue
  • Speaker tags and beats
  • Relatable characters
  • Showing and not telling
  • Redundancies (pet/weasel words/phrases or speaker beats)

If you write nonfiction, you may think these elements only apply to those who write fiction. This is not the case. Today’s readers are looking for more. Instead of a stuffy, how-to textbook, they want to be as inspired by what is true as they are by what is made up.

Whether you’re writing a devotion, article, self-help book, or Bible study, all the elements above can (and should) be included. As an example, when I was working on my book Praying for the Prodigal, my managing editor (I won’t name her, but her first initial is C and last name Sproles ??) helped guide me through this creative process. She instructed me to include personal stories and incidents, presenting them in the same way as if writing a novel. This included pulling my readers in by using dialogue whenever possible and showing my examples in a way that touched their hearts. The key was to be open, honest, and transparent.

Even when writing a memoir, don’t make it “all about me.” Tell (rather, show) your story but let the readers know what you learned. How God answered prayer. How you were changed through the process. Give them something they can apply to their own lives.

Be real. The more transparent we are in our writing, the more our readers can relate, and the bigger impact our words will have on their lives.

 

ASSIGNMENT:

Read through the first chapter of your nonfiction WIP. Does it read like a textbook or a story? Does it pull you in or simply give you the facts? Spend time thinking about where you can use personal examples, painting the picture of something that happened to you. Bring in dialogue. Then give the readers a practical application.

 


Previous Posts

Assignment 6 - Creative Non-Fiction
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

Assignment 5 - Don't Waste Your Conference Experience
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

January 31, Assignment 4 - Bring Your Characters to Life
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

January 24, Assignment Four - Time to Shoot the Weasel Words
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

Assignment 3 - The Role of Speaker Tags and Beats
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

Assignment 2 (2 of 2) Week of January 10
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

January 10, Assignment 2 (1 of 2 assignments)
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

Assignment 1 - ACWC January 5 - Let's Start with a Bio
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

Assignment 8 & 9 - Titles & Sentences - Nancy Lohr
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

Assignment 7 - What in the World is a One Sheet - Andrea Merrell
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

February 1 - Assignments 5 & 6 - Linda Glaz
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

Sensory Perception Enhances Your Writing - Assignment 4
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

Don't Write Your Bio - Write WHY ME? - Assignment 3
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

How to Make the Most of Your Conference Experience - Assignment 2
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

Appropriate Emails - [email protected] - Assignment 1
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

How Not to Get an Agent - Assignment 7
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

January 27 Assignment 5 -Storytelling Your Life Lessons
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

It's Not What You Know; It's Who You Know - Assignment 4
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

Stay on Track with a Writing Schedule - Assignment 3
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

Assignment 2 - Finding Speaker Topics
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

IMAGERY–WHEN THIS IS LIKE THAT
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

Asheville Christian Writers Conference Privacy Policy
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

2018 Writers Charge
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

Last Chance - Assignment 7
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

An Adjective Safari - Assignment 6
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

Get in the Mood to Write - Assignment 5
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

Getting Rid of “I” Disease - Assignment 3
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

Curb Your Adverb Addiction - Assignment 2
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

WHO ARE YOU? - Writing Your Bio
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

WRITING IN A PICKLE
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

THE NaNoWriMo CHALLENGE
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

BRINGING YOUR CHARACTERS TO LIFE
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

DON’T LET SPEAKER BEATS RUIN YOUR MANUSCRIPT
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

HOW TO CRAFT GREAT DIALOGUE
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

AVOID REPETITION AND WRITE TIGHT
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

THE QUOTATION QUOTA – ASSIGNMENT 2
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

ELIMINATE THE EXCLAMATION POINTS – ASSIGNMENT 1
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

WRITING ADVICE FROM MARK TWAIN: WRITE WITHOUT PAY UNTIL SOMEBODY OFFERS TO PAY
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

WHEN THE STORY STALLS IN THE MIDDLE
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

WHO REALLY SELLS YOUR BOOKS ?
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

MAKE THE MOST OF YOUR 15-MINUTE APPOINTMENTS
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

ARRRGH! ANOTHER REJECTION – CINDY SPROLES
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

FROZEN IN PLACE – ICEY SELF-TALK TO FREEZE YOUR WRITING
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

THE BIO – THE FRAGRANCE OF WHO YOU ARE
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

THE PAIN OF UNSOLICITED
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

REDUNDANCY: AN EXCESSIVE, OPPRESSIVE, PERVASIVE DISEASE
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

7 THINGS TO DO NOW TO BE READY WHEN WRITING INSPIRATION STRIKES – EDIE MELSON
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

MAKE THE MOST OF YOUR 15-MINUTE CONFERENCE APPOINTMENTS
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

WHY SHOULD I ATTEND THE ASHEVILLE CHRISTIAN WRITERS’ CONFERENCE?
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

YOU NEED A PLATFORM – LIVING A STORY- ASSIGNMENT 3
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

THE ONE SHEET
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021

OVER-EDIT?
Cindy Sproles
2/15/2021