NonfictionProse that deals with real events and people Characters, settings, and events must conform to what is true Story cannot be manipulated by the writer’s imagination
Types of NonfictionEssay: Brief examination of a subject in prose,usually expressing a personal or limited view of thetopic Formal Essay: Serious in tone and subject and more objective in point of view. Informal Essay: Informal tone, as if the author is speaking directly to the reader
Purposes of Writing EssaysTo EntertainTo InformTo ExplainTo Persuade
ExpositionExplains a subjectWriter’s main purpose is to informMost objective type of nonfictionFacts are presented as neutrally as possibleAuthor’s opinion on the subject DOESN’Tintrude
PersuasionAttempts to influence the reader’s ideas or actionsMajor purpose is to convince the reader to think,feel, or act in a certain wayWriter selects and arranges facts so that the readerwill share the writer’s opinionSuccessful only if the reader believes that the factssupport the writer’s opinion
DescriptionPresents a picture or an impression of a subjectRe-creates for the reader a person, a place, or anevent, largely through language that appeals tothe sensesTells us how something looks, smells, tastes,sounds, and feels to the touch
NarrationAuthor’s purpose is to relate a series of eventsEvents usually related in chronological orderHas the form of a story, but the events are factual andactually recordedAuthor depicts characters and may even usedialogue
BiographyAn account of someone’s life, written by another person.The focus of a biography: The Character His/Her Career His/Her Place in History Uniqueness and Universality of the Character’s Experience
Characteristics of a Good BiographyAccurate presentation of the life history of anindividual (sometimes may be from birth todeath)Honest effort is made to interpret the life so asto offer a unified impression of the character’smind and personality of the subject
AutobiographyA story of a person’s life as written by that person.Characteristics of an autobiography: Usually a chronological, narrative account of a person’s life Author relates person’s life story to crucial historical events Author offers personal evaluations of actions and speculates on the significance of certain actions and events
Journal Form of autobiographical writing including a day-by-daychronicle of events, usually a personal and intimate record of events and thoughts kept by an individual.
Diary Specialized journal that is a day-by-day chronicle ofevents, usually a personal and intimate record of events and thoughts kept by an individual.
OratoryFormal speech intended to inspire some action. Carefully prepared and delivered in an impassioned manner, theoration carries its greatest power in its emotional appeal.
PsalmLyric composition of praise, usually applied to sacred themes
Sermon Formal discussion, usually oral, of a serious subject forthe purpose of religious instruction or urgent advice and recommendations.
Aphorism or Proverb Brief statement of usually one sentence that expressessome truth about life in terse, easily remembered form.
Epitaph Commemorative verses or lines inscribed on tombs orheadstones. This information usually includes the name of the deceased, the dates of birth and death, age, profession, and some pious motto.
LettersCommunication in writing to another person or a groupof persons; correspondence. A specialized form of letter,called an epistle, is a more formal document prepared for public reading.
Elements of NonfictionCharacters, Plot, and Setting Like fiction, nonfiction has characters, plot, and setting. However, these elements are real, not made up. The main character in an autobiography or biography is called the subject. The subject’s words, thoughts, and actions are presented.
Elements of NonfictionPurpose Different types of nonfiction have different purposes. Biographies and autobiographies have the purpose of informing the reader. They use explanatory, descriptive, and narrative paragraphs. Newspaper Editorials are intended to win readers over to a certain opinion. They use persuasive paragraphs. Diaries can be used to both explain and persuade.
Elements of NonfictionTone The writer’s attitude toward his or her subject matter is called tone. A writer’s tone may be sympathetic, bitter, comical, hopeful, solemn, enthusiastic, etc.
Which selection do you enjoy reading the most?
Turtles poured out of the surf in wave after wave through the darkness. Heaving, huffing, gasping, turtlesplowed the coarse black sand with their noses, laboring on to the shore. National Geographic
Female sea turtles do not normally leave the water, except to lay their eggs. Thefemales often migrate thousands of miles or kilometers to reach their breeding beaches. They drag themselves onto a sandy beach, bury their eggs, and then return to the sea. World Book Encyclopedia
The jaguar is the biggest and strongestcat in the rainforest. The jaguar’s jaw isstrong enough to crush a turtle’s shell. They also have very powerful legs forleaping from branch to branch to chase prey. Student Sample
As the sun disappears from the heart of the forest, the jaguar leaps through the underbrush, pumping its powerful legs. It spies a gharial gliding down the river. Thejungle cat pounces, crushing the turtle with his teeth, devouring the reptile with pleasure. Student Revision
SampleThe macaw uses its sharp beak to strike intruders.
ImprovementTearing, ripping, battering, the bluemacaw strikes the intruder until it is defeated.