GOOD BYE TO ALL THAT TRASH, said my editor. “ I want original nonfiction from you” 

I replied, “But, how can I write nonfiction that never happened nor (is) ikely to happen?” 

He said, “Think about you living in a parallel universe so what happens there is new to you and all your readers . Because it happened there it's non fiction.” 

I asked, “How can I write about something  I know absolutely  nothing about?"

“Why be different? Use your imagination,” he replied. "That’s what writers are supposed to do.” 

“But,” Mr.  Editor, “ I thought that line of reasoning applied only to novels.“

He replied, “Think differently. The wilder your imagination, the better your nonfiction. You’ll soon find out if you read enough nonfiction. Take an acorn of truth and make it a mighty oak of a story. Readers don’ t want boring facts; they want vivid stories of suspense and surprise. Come on, Jim, rewrite this and don’t submit until you come up with stories that sizzle.“

“Okay, I’ll do my best. I’m tired of boring people. That’s the bane of history writers. A date here, a date there, people portrayed as cold fish, no spark, no fire. I've been writing about GW the whole truth and nothing but the truth. I'll start telling lies about him."

Mr Ed asked, “How?” 

“You know he slept in 281 beds. I’ll just invent a companion lady of the evening for him each night. That’ll keep the pages turning. And besides maybe he did live in a parallel universe so who can accuse me of fabricating the truth?  It's done every day by our leaders in a town named after GW. They get away with it.  So can I."


James Hodges, Ph.D.
Author of "Beyond the Cherry Tree: the Leadership Wisdom of George Washington"

Leadership by George!

Member: National Speakers Association, American Society for Training and Development



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