Daybook · On Creativity - Art, Jewelry, Writing

The Fantasy of the Truth

Manzanita, Oregon

Great read here on Janet Malcolm’s new collection, which I will add to my reading list. Iphigenia in Forest Hills is still one of my all time favorites, as is The Journalist and The Murderer. But mostly I like this review because I appreciate any nonfiction writer who calls bullshit on the idea that there is some objective thing as “the truth.”

To wit:

“…the fantasy that there are such things as facts that speak for themselves.”

and

 “If, when we speak “for the material”, we are only ever speaking for ourselves, well then we might as well just speak for ourselves.

Lately I have taken this idea one step further — a step I have long resisted — and have decided to start writing fiction. Mostly this is because I’ve come to realize that the kind of facts that can be fact checked are of limited use for anything beyond the most quotidian.

“Journalism aims at accuracy, but fiction’s aim is truth. The writer distorts reality in the interest of a larger truth.”  – John L’Heureux

Previous dwellings on this subject: Big Emotions, Small Stream: Why I’m Not a Journalist Anymore.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s