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Telling True Stories: A Nonfiction Writers’ Guide
from the Nieman Foundation at Harvard University

Mark Kramer and Wendy Call, co-editors
Plume / Penguin, 2007

Telling True Stories Bookcover

"...one of the best books available on narrative nonfiction writing."
—Michael McGregor, Poets and Writers, January 2009

"...a book I've found immensely useful is Telling True Stories: A Nonfiction Writers' Guide From the Nieman Foundation at Harvard University. Collecting insights on narrative journalism from writers like Nora Ephron, David Halberstam, Tom Wolfe, Susan Orlean, Tracy Kidder, Phillip Lopate, and Malcolm Gladwell, the book is an inspiring and informational read for anyone looking to deepen their nonfiction writing craft."
Rolf Potts, author of Marco Polo Didn't Go There: Stories and Revelations From One Decade as a Postmodern Travel Writer (Travelers' Tales, 2008)

Telling True Stories probably will be classified as a "writing" book on the store shelves, but it is actually something more....Tips spill from every chapter of the book… Every page — and I mean every page — contains important wisdom for every journalist. Telling True Stories is the relatively rare guide that offers value to veteran journalists, to novices, to investigative journalists and to beat reporters.”
Steve Weinberg, Director, National Book Critics Circle, Investigative Reporters and Editors Journal review,
July 2007

“…a virtuoso collection of essays by writers on writing non-fiction; these remarkable insights into the craft were collected at Harvard University and include selections from such notable veteran scribes as Tom Wolfe, Tracy Kidder, Susan Orlean, David Halberstam, Nora Ephron and Macolm Gladwell.”
Seattle Post-Intelligencer review, February 2, 2007

Telling True Stories “provides pointed but wide-ranging advice on writing — a good illustration of the creativity behind nonfiction and the individuality of the writing process. There is enough variety for almost any nonfiction writer to find inspiration and guidance. [H]ighly recommended for academic libraries that support writing programs.”
Library Journal review, December 2006

Interview with Wendy Call about Telling True Stories
Erika Dreifus
The Practicing Writer
February-March 2007

Telling Stories: A Review of Telling True Stories
Reading Archives
Richard J. Cox, February 9, 2007

Review of Telling True Stories in Harvard Review
Alison Bass, June 2008

Narrative Nonfiction 101
Telling True Stories favorite quotes from "Girl with Pen" blogger Deborah Siegel
December 26, 2007

Buy a copy of Telling True Stories at your favorite local bookstore or find an independent bookseller at the Booksense website.

 
"It's like attending a "who's who" conference on nonfiction writing, all for the price of a trade paperback. The book is helpfully divided into categories; you don't have to read the whole thing (although you'll be a better writer, guaranteed, if you do). This is a book you'll speed through and quote to your friends, read over and over, and find new insights on each pass through."
Joy Dickinson Tipping,
American Society of Journalists and Authors Monthly review, January 2008

 

 

Photo above: Teaching a Workshop, The Studios at Key West, 2011
Photo below: North Bennington, Vermont, 2007