Do you write non-fiction books? Heck, do you write non-fiction BLOGS? Then you should write a novel.
What better way to demonstrate how your non-fiction topic works in someone’s life than, you know, actually demonstrating it someone’s life?
Depending on your topic, a common approach is to afflict your main character with the problem your topic corrects. Establish a mentor figure who coaches your main character in your topics step-by-step solutions to reveal how well your solution works.
Two such didactic (teaching) novels spring to mind. Eliyahu Goldratt’s The Goal, and my own novel Do Angels Still Fall?
In The Goal, the main character runs a failing manufacturing company. At home, he is also having problems with his marriage. An old college professor runs into the main character and ends up drive-by mentoring him in process improvement. The mentor isn’t always around, the hero has to fumble through his own discoveries and even begins to apply them also to his marriage. Who knew the Theory of Constraints could be so interesting?
In my novel, a Guardian Angel is given charge of a rambunctious young boy who is allowed to see and interact with his angel. This is new to the angel, as well, who makes a rash promise, prompting him to wonder if angels still fall. In his interactions with the boy, the angel corrects his misunderstanding of God, who is not the angry deity we too often believe he is. As a Sunday School teacher and father of three, I wrote this to introduce people to the God I know and love.
Another writer is writing a time travel novel so his main character can apply principles he learned late in life to his younger self.
There is no set formula, just write a compelling story that teaches (subtly or not) your principles. Readers who love your non-fiction books will not only buy this for themselves, they’ll buy it as a gift for those they love.
Go ahead, get started! And keep checking back here for writing hints.
4 thoughts on “Change Your Stripes – Part 2”
Definitely want to write a novel, but it will be far removed from my non-fiction work I think. Right now I want to write Fantasy or possibly dystopian future. Then again all dystopians stem from real life social issues, so maybe a factual article will become the basis for my novel!
Interesting idea. I’ll keep with my two projects, though.
I love how you always give us new thoughts to consider. Thank you! I’m hoping more people through this challenge will be able to benefit from your teaching gift as I have through the past 16 years. What a gift you have!
Ha! I’m going to write a non-fiction novel some day. Right now, I’m going to keep blogging so I can sharpen my writing skills. Needs work! LOL
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