Are you one of those writers who transitions from fiction to non-fiction on a regular basis? Are you facing problems when transitioning from one form of writing to another? Don’t worry, it is normal! The two very distinct forms of writing require two very different approaches, and there are bound to be difficulties in switching between the two. Here are a few tips to show you how to make the switch from nonfiction to fiction writing.
Take a Break
If you have just finished with a piece of fiction and you want to work on a nonfiction story next, the first thing you need to do is, take a break. Before you start your next piece of work, it is important that you take time off writing, say for a day. Go out, take a walk, watch TV, or listen to music. Do whatever relaxes you. This will help clear your mind off your previous work, and then you can get into the mind-set of writing a different style, which is the most important thing while transitioning between the two styles of writing.
Make Note of the Differences
You should first and foremost, be aware of the differences between fiction and nonfiction styles of writing. Make sure you read a few books from the genres, and make note of the differences in writing style. The important thing to consider here is the difference in mind-set. Note that in fiction, the motive of the author is to entertain the reader, by fabricating characters and stories. In non-fiction, however, the motive changes to presenting facts to the reader, in the way they exist, without any fabrication. It commonly follows a more straight-forward and easy to understand theme, presenting facts to the reader.
Don’t Try Too Hard
Sometimes, it can be near impossible to switch between the two styles of writing in the same day. Don’t try too hard to attempt both in the same 24 hour time frame. Alternate between writing fiction and nonfiction in a way where you have more time and space to change your attitude. Take a day or two to write fiction, then switch to non-fiction the next day, and so on. This will help you write more smoothly and easily, and will make the transition easier.
Make Note of Your Tone
Remember, the tone that you write in, is the most important thing while transitioning from fiction to nonfiction. Fiction is characterized by a more informal tone; while nonfiction is characterised by a more serious and formal tone. If you find that your nonfiction writing has an informal tone to it, take a break, or perhaps, head back to writing fiction for a while. You could also read some of your earlier nonfiction work to get a feel of the genre. The same rules apply while working on fiction. Making a note of your tone, and realising the type of tone required for your work at hand, will help in switching between styles efficiently.
Every writer has a preference when it comes to choosing between fiction and nonfiction. Identify your favourite out of the two styles, and start with the lesser favourite style first. This will help ease the transition, as you can get the least favourite one out of the way first, while looking forward to working on your favourite style. The excitement of working on your favourite style will also help in completing your lesser favourite style, and you will be able to keep going, in the excitement that you have for your favourite style.
Image credit: John Lambert Pearson on flickr and reproduced under Creative Commons 2.0[author] [author_image timthumb=’on’]https://writingtipsoasis.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/03/Pranay.jpg[/author_image] [author_info]Pranay Kanagat is a freelance writer who has a love for writing on various subjects. In particular, he enjoys creative writing. He is also studying for an Engineering degree.[/author_info] [/author]