Categories of Nonfiction - Creative Nonfiction Lesson 2
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Categories of Nonfiction - Creative Nonfiction Lesson 2

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Categories of Nonfiction

Categories of Nonfiction

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    Categories of Nonfiction - Creative Nonfiction Lesson 2 Categories of Nonfiction - Creative Nonfiction Lesson 2 Presentation Transcript

    • Categories of Nonfiction
    • Categories of Nonfiction
    • General overview of the nonfiction genre
        • Academic Articles
        • News Articles
        • Biographies
        • Self-Help/How-To/Professional Advice
        • Reviews
        • Opinion pieces (commentaries/op-eds)
        • Literary Essays
        • Memoir/Personal Essay
    • Academic Articles
        • Experts in particular fields conduct research and report the results in several professional journals or magazines.
        • In order to write these types of pieces, you must satisfy one or more of the following:
          • Be an "acknowledged expert" in the field
          • Have the required credentials, including a PhD or have a professional background in the field.
          • Work as a co-author who is an expert in the field (often the "experts" can't write very well and need a co-author).
        • When you get to college, these articles will be your best sources for information for your compositions and research. They are not of much use in this class.
        • This genre also includes textbooks
    • News Articles
        • These articles published in newspapers and magazines are written by trained journalists/reporters.
        • The reporters are usually experts in their beats (areas of coverage), but rely on actual experts to write their stories.
        • Each story you read in a newspaper or magazine will generally have at least three sources (interviews, published pieces).
        • Articles begin with what's called a "lead"
          • Lead: The first, or first few paragraphs of an article which explains the entire piece. The lead makes it possible to understand the news without having to read the rest of the article.
          • Lead example: Ronnie Lee Gardner, the convicted double-murderer executed by a firing squad in Utah in the pre-dawn hours Friday morning, died in a manner that even the state that killed him no longer wants to use. - LA Times
    • Biographies
        • A description of another person's life and the times they lived.
        • One of the more popular forms of nonfiction today.
        • In journalism, short biographies are known as "profiles"
    • Self-help/How-to/Professional advice
        • These are some of the most popular genres in bookstores today.
        • Religious books, such as  The Purpose-Driven Life, The Power of Now,  and In Conversations with God are usually written by religious folks, such as pastors, nuns, and priests.
        • Self-help books are usually written by therapists and sometimes by religious leaders.
        • Health and fitness books are written by personal trainers, nutritionists, or even celebrities.
        • Professional advice books include how-to (garden, dance, do a particular hobby), and parenting, family and relationship advice books.
    • Reviews
        • Movie, music, video game, book and restaurant reviews are in nearly every publication. 
        • The writers of these articles must see the movie, listen to the album, play the video game, read the book, and visit a restaurant before they write a review.
        • Reviews must balance objectivity and subjectivity.
        • If reviewing a movie or book, NEVER give away the ending.
        • Visit rottentomatoes.com to read several good movie reviews. 
    • Opinion Pieces
        • A 500-750 word article written by authors who feel passionately about an issue and wants to persuade others to see things the same way.
        • Published in newspapers or magazines and Websites. 
        • The writers of these pieces should be some type of expert in the field or should bring something new to the argument.
    • Literary Essays
        • While the word "essay" might conjure bad feelings regarding one-chunk and two-chunk paragraphs, an essay is one of the more eloquent forms of writing. Instead of a passionate plea (as is done in an opinion piece) or a report (as is done in a news article), a literary essay allows the writer to inform the reader and show off his or her writing skills.
        • You can write a literary essay about any topic.
        • You should have a significant amount of knowledge about your topic.
    • Personal Essay/Memoir
        • In personal essays, the subject is  you.  More specifically, it is an essay about one of your personal experiences or memories.
        • Personal essays are written in narrative, or story-telling, form (otherwise they would be considered literary essays). 
        • These essays are always in the first person.
        • In a personal essay, ANYTHING GOES. You may write about whatever topic you choose.
        • Take the essays by David Sedaris. One is about his mother locking him out of his house, the other is about him quitting smoking.
        • The subject must be interesting to a general audience.
        • THESE ARE THE TYPES OF ESSAYS YOU WILL WRITE FOR THIS CLASS.