Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Writing is writing, right?
By Angela Henry

“You’re a writer. So you should be able to help me write my research paper, right?” Researching the paper topic, yes. Writing it, no way. I get asked this a lot from the students and staff at the college where I work. Everyone seems to think that because I write, I know how to write everything. We’ll I’m here to tell you that not all writing is the same. I write fiction. Fiction. In other words, I make stuff up. I put a lot of thought and planning into what I make up. But it’s made up none-the-less.

I graduated from college in the late eighties, which means I haven’t had to write a research paper for more than twenty years. And writing papers was my least favorite thing to do. My papers tended to be a lot of BS strung together with a works cited page tacked onto the end. Plus, my grammar sucks. Other writers may disagree. But for me writing fiction is a whole lot easier than writing non fiction. Yet, when I try and explain this to people, they listen politely and then proceed to ask, “But you can still help me, right. I mean you’re a writer."

What about you? If you're a writer what do you write: fiction or non-fiction? And why?


Ahmed said...

A GREAT true story here.

As it was in the Anthony Proviano Case - Belmont County Ohio I believe a “Suicide” is really a MURDER.

Paul Edward Ault’s ‘ruled suicide’ on Wednesday, June 17th, 2009 in Bellaire, Belmont County could well have been a murder.

Landlord Ault
[Don’t expect the “Official” records to show Ault as the owner – it could be MEA Properties or Rivertowne Lim. Inc. and if so – just try and find these companies ANYWHERE in the world]
[917 Main St., Wheeling, WV (The Mary Elizabeth Apartments – most of the top two floors)]
to members of a terrorist religious cult whose doctrines promote the ‘…elimination, of those that are not completely cooperative, DURING VIOLENT STORMS’
and Mr. Ault died during a horrible thunderstorm not long after telling members of the cult that he was not interested in selling them the 917 property.
The cult uses, by becoming members, established religious organizations as shields for their varied illegalities.

If any responsible parties care to investigate this matter, be forewarned – you will not find a more entrenched Good Old Boys (Dining well in the Tenderloin District) network than that in the Wheeling/Belmont County area. Expect nothing but indifference, at best, and interference from the ‘local’ authorities.

That is all I know and suspect in this matter.

However I have little doubt that this will go into the ‘Got away with murder’ category because if Mr. Proviano’s parents had not been
well-connected, in the Pittsburgh area, with plenty of money and a desire to fight for justice for their son’s murderer NOTHING would have been done.

Here’s another twist – the 917 property was formerly owned by cult leader Stanley Klos owner of Wheeling’s Victoria Theater.

Rhonda McKnight said...


It's almost funny to me at this point that everyone thinks writing is writing. I don't get it. Just today I was talking to a coworker about the summaries we do for our reports. She attended a meeting I missed and had received a new abbreviated summary that was bullet points. In the meantime I've been writing this narrative. I said "I wonder why our manager hadn't said anything to me about not switching to the new format." She says "Well you're a writer, your summaries are probably really good and she likes them." I HATE, hate, hate doing those dang summaries. So glad to be released to bullet points.

I'm a little closer to the non-fiction paper writing having just finished my masters in 2007, but it's all work. Non-fiction is no harder than fiction. Creating that tension and building that intensity is work, work, work. But it's more fun and it's what we like to do.

Funny post, so funny because it's so true. Let me leave you with my favorite one - can you do my resume? Oh yeah, let me boot up my computer and write that up for you.

angela henry said...

Rhonda, I know what you mean! I've somehow become my family's official resume writer. I've got everyone's resume on my flash drive!!!!!

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