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Confessions: FACT or FICTION? Paperback – December 10, 2010


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 166 pages
  • Publisher: Chrysalis Publishing (December 10, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1609106091
  • ISBN-13: 978-1609106096
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 0.4 x 6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,490,001 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Janet Hulstrand on January 23, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Confessions is a wonderful collection of short stories, some fictional, some not, which came about as a creative response to editor Herta B. Feely's fascination with a literary scandal in which a work of fiction that had been rejected by a number of publishers was subsequently presented by the author as memoir, published, and became a bestseller.

Part of the fun of Confessions is its appeal as a literary puzzle: readers are invited to try to guess whether each story is fiction or nonfiction, and answers to the puzzle are provided at the back of the book, along with insightful comments by the authors on the complex and interwoven nature of fiction and nonfiction, and the often slippery boundaries between the two.

Because it directly addresses this relationship, this would make a wonderful textbook for either introductory literature or fiction-writing courses. It's also a delightful collection of fun-to-read stories that happen to have the additional interest provided by the premise of the book, a premise which leads the reader into thinking about the very nature of storytelling--whether fiction or nonfiction--itself.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Karen S of North Carolina on January 3, 2011
Format: Paperback
When we read fiction, we play a game: Can we decipher all the clues the author gives us? Can we put together all the puzzle pieces to make sense of the story? Can we find a solution to the mystery that lies at the heart of human behavior? This collection of short stories and memoir takes that game to a whole new level, because we first have to determine whether the piece is fiction or memoir. (Fortunately, the editors provide an answer key in the back of the book.) Not all the pieces are first-rate, but most are distinctively written and skillfully edited; authors and editors have done their jobs. Now it's up to the reader to guess what is fact, what is fiction. As one of the writers comments, "When I experience an event, I often think that I must write about it. I want to remember what I saw, what I felt. When writing fiction, I often find parts of my life blending in with imagined events and characters. In both kinds of writing, I invite the reader into my world" (Elizabeth Patton). Enter the world of pieces such as "Beatnik" and "John Greenwood" and "Sacrament" to see if you can distinguish what the writers actually experienced and what they imagined. Whether you win or lose, you'll have great fun.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Linda Joy Myers on January 23, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I got this book because I am doing research about the edges between fiction and memoir, and curious about why some writing ends up as memoir and some as fiction. Some of the stories grabbed me more than others, but I truly could not guess for most of them! The reason is that they all created a world through language, setting, scene, and characters that invited me in. The ones with the "I" narrator seemed most likely to be memoir, but some of them were of course fiction, though many were based on some kind of true event. I enjoyed Julia Park Tracey's a lot--because it had mystery to it, and really had me guessing. The best part are the explanations in the back by the authors about how they were inspired to write the story, and of course--the correct answers about which were fiction or memoir. Nice idea--but the "truth" is that if the story is well written, you won't be able to tell. Maybe that is the point.
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