Starter’s Guide to Writing: Truth in Fiction

An article written by: Lee Sonogan

Image result for truth in fiction

“Fiction reveals truth that reality obscures.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

One technique or method in writing is to use the power of truth to develop your world of characters and gives your overall story credibility. Twisting memorable lies while communicating true things is one of the central tools in literature. In order for a reader to sink into and enjoy a story, they must be able to accept that they are hearing a copy of reality. To be convincing and create willing suspension of disbelief there must be an appearance of being true or real.

It does not matter how outlandish or weird the world of your story is, it should feel real to the reader. Using the tools of methods or techniques based on truth, you can make yourself believe and many other people for many reasons. You can make up anything that doesn’t exist but if you don’t provide specific and appropriate sensory details, it won’t have a sense of reality. The experience in all aspects create realism and make the characters actions more believable.

Your hero could be fighting an impossible concept/s. A good story has conflicts so why not take advantage of that? You need to focus on emotions at all angles between characters and character as individuals. How you express emotion will determine the differences between characters, the motivations what make these characters interesting, conflicting emotions equals development in a plot. And maybe most importantly if you show the emotions which connect to what they are thinking then there is many opportunitys there your readers could potentially relate to.

Keeping your reader ground in things they recognise is important. But in comparing and contrasting you also equally need the familiar balanced with the unfamiliar. Introducing new elements to a story is a huge part in making a consistent flowing story that makes sense. If your story is about the real world, get your facts straight. If you have a made-up a fantasy world, you must follow the rules and laws of your creation.

If something is not right in your world then you need to let your characters notices them. Their emotional truths will convey more entertainment as you may help them through hard times. Make them think differently about the world, and much more ways. Ask these questions Are your descriptive details specific? Can you make them sensory? Is your character’s behaviour in line with their personality? Do their responses make sense for them? Can you fact-check anything? If so, do it now.

To conclude what truth does in fiction, it inspires you to keep reading while getting your attention with some sort of relatable nostalgia. To quote Mark Twain, “Truth is stranger than fiction because we don’t meet is as often,”. Fiction is bound to stick to the predictable possibilities of concepts to make sense. The stories truths have no limits because in real life people’s truths can make their own strange/normal choices regardless of facts, credibility or even be possible. Personal truths may have no limits but tell more of a believable story in regard to the identity of the characters or personalities.

“What you’re doing is lying, but you’re using the truth in order to make your lies convincing and true. You’re using them as seasoning. You’re using the truth as a condiment to make an otherwise unconvincing narrative absolutely credible.” – Neil Gaiman

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.