Fiction vs. Non-fiction Boundaries

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Fiction vs. Non-fiction Boundaries

Blurring the boundaries between Fiction and Non-Fiction has always been a great way for authors to make their points, yield their arguments, and to keep interest. Some may even be inclined to believe that there is not a definite boundary between the areas of fiction and non-fiction. Fiction is often used throughout non-fiction writings as more of a point of view than a character in itself. This voice is not exactly a character in the text, but it still exercises an attitude toward the material to help control the writing.

“Lola,” by Truman Capote is a great instance where these boundaries are so well mixed, that it becomes hard to tell the difference where one starts and another begins. This story is about a bird named Lola, and the main character. At first, Capote doesn’t like the bird and in fact despises it. However, towards the middle and towards the end of the story, he beings to care for the bird and treat it as a pet. This story does not state very many facts like one would expect throughout a non-fiction account, but rather tells a story like in fiction writing. By doing this, the reader would actually never suspect that the story was in fact non-fiction without being told so. It is a first person account of the events that unfold throughout the story. Capote does a fantastic job of revealing these events and holding the readers attention instead of boring the reader with the strict description, times, and dates such as one would find some non-fiction writings. He incorporates humor into the story to help with the excitement of these events. “The Kerry decided Lola was the latter. He tapped her with his paw. He chased her into a corner. She fought back, pecked his snout; her cawing were coarse and violent as the harshest cures words. It frightened the bulldog;…” This sentence revels some of the intermingling of fiction and non-fiction that Capote utilizes within the account. He is actually giving human characteristics to these animals where the dog “decides” and the bird begins to “swear”. Capote does not actually know what these animals are thinking so this is a perfect example of fiction controlling the tempo throughout a non-fiction writing.

The structure of “Lola” relates strongly to the structure of a fiction story. It includes an introduction, middle, climax, and ending. Similar to ficti...

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...ases. The reader does not know if Danny Deever is a real person or just some made up fictional character. The poem actually describes Danny and his death to the reader. “For they’re done with Danny Deever, you can hear the quickstep play. The regiment’s in column, and they’re marching us away.” These Sentences show how the poem rhymes and yet confuses the reader in the fiction or non-fiction account of the poem. The reader does never really discover what the poem is and this is the exact reason why the author made it this way. To keep the reader guessing and to hold the attention.

Blurring these boundaries between Fiction and Non-Fiction has always been a great way for authors to make their points, yield their arguments, and to keep interest. If authors did not utilize this particular technique, most non-fiction accounts would become boring and uninteresting to a reader who did not want to learn about the particular. It is completely acceptable as long as the readers are told of the fictional aspect of the work. This is not one of the easiest techniques to use but if written correctly, creating a fictional account cannot be considered anything but excellent writing.
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