Friday, August 9, 2019

Heather Montgomery - Breaking Boundaries: Novel Nonfiction for Today's Markets

Heather L. Montgomery wants to help you take your nonfiction from boring to breakthrough!

Heather thanks SCBWI for helping her be able to transition from educational publishing to trade to now her dream writing projects of unique nonfiction for children that are very much in her own voice.

She shares a variety of nonfiction books with the audience and asks them to describe the book with one word. It's these labels that together that make a reader's experience, but maybe even more helpful to a future nonfiction author is to study how industry professionals now label non-fiction. Look to see how someone like Melissa Stewart labels types of nonfiction, how an educator's labelling system differs from that, and finally how an editor is categorizing types of nonfiction and how your work might fit or should fit into such groupings.

Some books on standard topics that have a unique theme, lens, style, format, or approach that are indicative of what's being published in nonfiction today:

We'll share ONE of Heather's exercises, she's got many more, but I'm excited to do this one myself!

Play with sequencing for your story idea:

1. Write 10 facts about an apple, putting each on a separate sticky note.
2. Re-arrange the sentences in the most traditional, logical order for presenting the material.
3. Re-arrange again using a different logic.
4. Re-arrange again using an illogical order.
5. Re-arrange again using a narrative flow.

Heather's main request to prospective nonfiction writers is to PLAY PLAY PLAY.

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