It’s interesting when we compare fiction to nonfiction. With fiction as a writer we many times will infuse a part of who we are into our stories, but the story itself is fiction. It comes from the recesses of our mind as we write down the story.
Nonfiction, however, is based on real life stuff. Take this quote:
“The writer of memoir makes a pact with her reader that what she writes is the truth as best she can tell it. But the original pact, the real deal, is with herself. Be honest, dig deep, or don’t bother.” —ABIGAIL THOMAS
I once read about a story that involved Beth Moore. Someone had sent her via mail either an autobiography or a memoir of the person who sent it. Because the person had taken the time to send it to her, Beth decided to read. The story was so compelling that Beth had to meet this person. I forget most of the rest of this story, but some time later Beth found out the book had absolutely no real events in it at all. It was a complete book of fiction. The writer had lied to everyone by calling it nonfiction. The sad part is the book may have made a good fictional book.
For me, when I go to finish writing Mari’s story, it will all be based on what happened those 16 days in the hospital and some of the days after. Do I remember every piece of dialogue said? No. However, I will always remember the words when Mari’s cerebral hemorrhage was happening when the nurse called out, “Get a crash cart. She’s coding.” Those words will forever be embedded in my mind. It’s like they’ve been tattooed there.
So Mari’s story will be based off the notes I took while she was alive and then what happened the days after. However, I won’t remember the little things like exact dialogue. But everything will be as accurate as I can get it so that Mari’s story can be written the way God intended it.