Advice from the Masters: Lee Gutkind

Jul 6, 2016 | Writing A Book

Wikipedia describes Lee Gutkind as a “writer, speaker, and literary innovator.” That “literary innovator” part is because he was the first or one of the first or the person who is most identified with “creative nonfiction.” And what, you might ask, is “creative nonfiction?”

According to Gutkind himself on the Creative Nonfiction web site, it is nothing more or less than “true stories well told.” For a little more depth and detail, check out “The Three R’s of Narrative Nonfiction.

I write business books and I help other people write business books. Creative nonfiction is what we do. We strive to get the facts right and tell the story well. And let’s be clear: the word “creative” doesn’t give you license to make stuff up.

That’s what this bit of advice is about. It’s taken from Gutkind’s book: You Can’t Make This Stuff Up: The Complete Guide to Writing Creative Nonfiction–from Memoir to Literary Journalism and Everything in Between.

“It’s the responsibility of the creative nonfiction writer to confirm every fact that can be confirmed.”

Want more? Check out the complete list of Advice from the Masters posts

If you want even more writing advice from writers, check out Jon Winokur’s blog, “AdvicetoWriters.”

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