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Writing Violence: the legal, moral and aesthetic Implications of creative non-fiction.

Joyce, Laura Ellen


Laura Ellen Joyce


This essay began as a hybrid critical/creative paper that was presented as part of an all-female panel discussing the intersections between writing and extreme violence. My own paper was on the relationship between my creative nonfiction novel The Museum of Atheism and the real life murder of six-year-old beauty queen, JonBenet Ramsey. This essay is an attempt to represent the writing process of the creative nonfiction author, and to consider the ways in which critical theory can be used to highlight, or conversely obscure, fictional writing. In addition to considering the effect of using a real story, a true crime, as the basis for a semi-fictional work, this essay will also consider the relationship I had as a writer to my publisher, editor and agent, and their interventions in the writing process to ensure that facts were deliberately skewed or warped in order to avoid litigation. Finally, I will consider my own relationship to the material, and the impact that this had on the writing process.


Joyce, L. E. (2014). Writing Violence: the legal, moral and aesthetic Implications of creative non-fiction. International Journal for the Practice and Theory of Creative Writing, 11, 202-207.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Mar 5, 2014
Online Publication Date Apr 14, 2014
Publication Date Apr 14, 2014
Deposit Date May 31, 2016
Print ISSN 1479-0726
Electronic ISSN 1943-3107
Publisher Routledge
Peer Reviewed Not Peer Reviewed
Volume 11
Pages 202-207
Keywords Creative writing in literature courses, critical theory, experimentation,
gender, fiction, nonfiction
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