Which is a better book choice to write, non-fiction or fiction?

Jump to Last Post 1-18 of 18 discussions (31 posts)
  1. Glenn Raymond profile image60
    Glenn Raymondposted 13 years ago

    I am just wondering what would be the most interesting read right now, a non-fiction book on perhaps a how-to topic or a novel of say, the spooky variety?  I keep leaning toward non-fiction, but my wife and a few of my friends say the world is too depressing right now so they all want to read fiction.  If I were to write fiction I would have to go with spooky, a lot of twists and turns and at least two or three sub-plots.  I do prefer non-fiction though, because I love learning things.

    So which would you say, and why?

    1. profile image57
      alisa ioposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      sometimes writing is not for the readers, it is more meaningful if the work is a fruit of real passion

      1. Glenn Raymond profile image60
        Glenn Raymondposted 13 years agoin reply to this

        Thank you, I like the sounds of that.  I will be sure to remember this one.

    2. Erin Nicole profile image60
      Erin Nicoleposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      I really think that you can find a market for most anything these days, so I would suggest writing on what you are most passionate about and choosing a subject that falls into your area of expertise. I agree with Camlo--if you write from your heart, all else is secondary.

      My personal preference is for fiction (loosely based on true stories). Take for example, American Wife by Curtis Sittenfield. Rumor has it, it's based on Laura Bush's life and her relationship with George W. Sittenfield is able to keep the attitude/characteristics of the real life characters, in addition to major life events, and jazz it up with some fictitious details.  Based on an interview, she was still able to learn a lot and let her imagination run wild to take the story in surprising directions.

      1. Glenn Raymond profile image60
        Glenn Raymondposted 13 years agoin reply to this


        This is a most excellent idea.  Thank you for chiming in.  Now I am really getting pumped up to write.

    3. uncorrectedvision profile image60
      uncorrectedvisionposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      The best advice for finding a rewarding job is the same as writing a book.  Do what you love and the rest will fall into place.  Isaac Asimov wrote over 300 books of all kinds.  If you love what you are doing you will do it better than if it was a task you were performing for some other reason.  Writing for someone other than yourself, writing for money, etc... will not please you and if it does not please you it is far less likely to please others.

    4. MPG1 profile image61
      MPG1posted 13 years agoin reply to this

      Realistic Fiction based off of real things that happened but you just made better by using psychology in your writing to make what you wrote feel more real to the people reading it. And that way when the reader finds out it is fiction they will go "what the hell..... " be angry for a bit and then say (after thinking more) "Wait WOW that was AWESOME!!!"

      so yeah.

      Write some of that.

    5. profile image57
      Twifroposted 13 years agoin reply to this

                                  'TO BE'  I WAS TAUGHT BY MY TUTORS TO ONLY WRITE

  2. camlo profile image83
    camloposted 13 years ago

    If you feel you'd enjoy writing non-fiction more, then that's what I think you should write. The fun you have producing the book will shine through in your writing.

    1. Glenn Raymond profile image60
      Glenn Raymondposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      That is a great way to look at it.  Thank you very much for your valuable input.  I really do appreciate it.

  3. profile image0
    china manposted 13 years ago

    non-fiction is more about researching than writing, good fiction is a balance of the two.

    1. Glenn Raymond profile image60
      Glenn Raymondposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      china man,

      Now this is pretty much what my wife says, though not quite as eloquently.  Thank you.  You are all giving me much to consider on this topic and I truly am grateful.

    2. Uninvited Writer profile image80
      Uninvited Writerposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      I tend to disagree, I have read some amazingly written non-fiction. It takes as much skill as writing good fiction.

      1. uncorrectedvision profile image60
        uncorrectedvisionposted 13 years agoin reply to this

        I agree.  I have read compelling non-fiction as well as compelling fiction.

  4. sally.source profile image60
    sally.sourceposted 13 years ago

    agreed. write what you love and the rest will fall into place.

    1. Glenn Raymond profile image60
      Glenn Raymondposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      Thank you Sally.  You have all been very helpful.  Cheers to you.

      1. StevenPayne profile image59
        StevenPayneposted 13 years agoin reply to this

        The common reply seems to be write what you love but I am in the process of reading the book, On Writing by Stephen King. It is a memoir of really how he came to be, STEPHEN KING. When he was talking about how he wrote the story Carrie, one of his best works most will tell you, he stopped after three pages and threw it away.

        He said and I quote, "First the story didn't move me emotionally. Second and slightly more important was the fact that I didn't much like the lead character. Carrie White seemed thick and passive, a ready-made victim. The other girls were chucking tampons and sanitary napkins at her, chanting plug it up plug it up and I just didn't care. Third and more important still was not feeling at home with either the surroundings or my all-girl cast of supporting characters. I had landed on Planet Female, and one sortie into the girls'' locker room at Brunswick High School years before wasn't much help in the navigating there. For me writing has always been at best when it's intimate, as sexy as skin on skin. With Carrie I felt as if I were wearing a rubber wer-suit I couldn't pull off. Fourth and most important of all was the realization that the story wouldn't pay off unless it was pretty long."

        Sometimes it's the difficult ones that we give up on that turn us into the success we really are. I don't know if you write for hobby or money but either way, writing the hard stuff seems to be the pay off. The only reason he continued with Carrie by the way was that his wife, Tabby, found it crumpled in the trash and made him finish it. It was the launching pad of his career. By all means write what you love and have a passion for but sometimes writing what we hate can shape us as well.
        Happy scribblings! smile

  5. mylife=adventure profile image59
    mylife=adventureposted 13 years ago

    Personally I love to read fiction books they are the best way to show your real creative side by creating a whole group of characters, settings and a different universe if you wanted. So, if you want to have more of a free range effect than i would go with fiction. But if you want to have maybe a more guidelined kind of writing where you can take information and fill in the pieces with your own knowledge than i would say go that way. Whatever you do write i hope you post a small bit of it on the hub so i can check it out. =]

  6. AdeleCosgroveBray profile image88
    AdeleCosgroveBrayposted 13 years ago

    As others here have already written, your choice between writing fiction and non-fiction is...well, your choice.

    First, what's your subject?  You might begin by asking yourself if your subject is fictional or not - in which case, the answer could make your choice for you.

    Then you could also approach the issue simply by deciding which you prefer to write.

    Or you could simply start writing and see what happens.  The main thing with any MS is not just to start writing it, but to finish it.

  7. kookoo88 profile image60
    kookoo88posted 13 years ago

    You really have to write what interests you in my opinion.  Writing, espesically if you're not getting paid for it right away, is a labor of love.  If you love researching then writing about a subject, go for non-fiction.

    Personally, I hate research.  I'm good at it when necessary, but my fun comes from making up new things. I like using my imagination to explore new worlds. 

    The first question you need to answer is:  Will I have fun writing this?

  8. 2uesday profile image65
    2uesdayposted 13 years ago

    If I had to write something the length of a novel rather than a short article or story I would find it difficult to write to please someone else's expectations of what I should write. It is like sending an artist in to a room with a commission to work on they will still produce a work of art but the painting that 'flows from their heart' to the canvas will be the stronger image.

    Just my personal opinion, it does not mean that there are not some fine writers who are writing for a set purpose.

  9. Maria Cecilia profile image82
    Maria Ceciliaposted 13 years ago

    I think depends on the writers interest or fancy at the moment. Voracious readers almost read anything that arouse their interest, I am one good example

  10. FloBe profile image66
    FloBeposted 13 years ago

    I've always liked history but I need to learn it in a creative, storytelling sort of way. While self-help books can be helpful when you're on a quest for self-improvement, I find them too "one shoe fits all." However, a humorous drama can bring out personalities in a way we can all relate to and gives a positive opportunity for introspection. Using words in a creative way can bring across a deeper issue in a very effective way. So, deal with a real-life issue in a non-fiction way and you cover both parts brilliantly.

  11. Jaggedfrost profile image59
    Jaggedfrostposted 13 years ago

    It really depends on which market you want to write to and the demand for books is roughly the same.  You have to change a few things about your style either way but whatever trips your trigger.

  12. nlthomas profile image60
    nlthomasposted 13 years ago

    Before picking a plot you need to have the right mindset. Write for yourself first. I've been writing for over 15 years and there are some projects I abandoned to maybe, possibly get in on the going trends and "what might sell." I regret ever doing that. Why? I have no passion for what I did write, it did not sell and I'm left wondering "what if."

    I've written both fiction and non-fiction and both have their challenges. I actually just finished working on a memoir which I thought would be easier. You figure, when writing a memoir we know the plot points and how to go from beginning to end. However, sitting down to work on it, emotions get in the way.

    Fiction can present writer's block and various plot holes. However, I find they're easier to fill (make something up).

    Write what you want to write. If you find you cannot do it, try something else.

  13. Sue Bond profile image66
    Sue Bondposted 13 years ago

    Depends on your end goal. 

    People tend to look for solutions to challenges they're having, which can often be found in a non-fiction ebook/book.  If you want to sell your creation online, this may be a route to consider (after seeing if a market exists etc.).  Plus you can bring any flair for fiction writing to a non-fiction book.

    Caveat:  Since I've never written fiction, I have no idea what level of difficulty is involved in selling a self-published fiction book online vs getting a book contract. 

    I would think Elizabeth Gilbert's 'Eat, Pray, Love' is considered non-fiction.  (Yet it had the flow and beauty of a well written fiction book.)

    As Twifro said... write what you know or are passionate about... or at least what you're interested in learning more about.

  14. MehreenM profile image60
    MehreenMposted 13 years ago

    Fiction is definitely fascinating for people but these days non-fiction is also gaining a lot of momentum in terms of popularity. 

    I'd agree with everyone who advocated pursuing one's passion as there is nothing sweeter than the labour of love.  However if you are writing to purely monetize your outcome, I'd suggest doing your research and going for genres that are more popular and can get you a greater target market.

  15. Zaiden Jace profile image64
    Zaiden Jaceposted 13 years ago

    Nonfiction books don't keep my attention as much as fiction though there are a few exceptions to that. Also, fiction can be easier to write unless you have something really amazing that happened to write about.

  16. lxxy profile image61
    lxxyposted 13 years ago

    Generally, I think either medium would do well as long as it touched upon topics identifiable to the reader. So--choose wisely, and decide how niche you want it to be.

    I'm assuming money is the issue here, but if you'd rather pursue your passion I'd say write in that which feels most comfortable to you and venture out as you are tempted.

  17. leslie_espinola profile image60
    leslie_espinolaposted 13 years ago

    Fiction requires some learning because you need to create a word and make its varying elements seem plausible.  I like non-fiction to an extent, but I'm big on fiction.  Do whatever you're feeling.

  18. princess g profile image60
    princess gposted 13 years ago

    I would say go with whichever you want to do more. Easy. You could maybe even write both at the same time, why not?


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://corp.maven.io/privacy-policy

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)