The perils of writing interior monologues in narrative journalism

Matthew Ricketson

    Research output: A Conference proceeding or a Chapter in BookConference contribution

    Abstract

    The interior monologue is perhaps the most controversial element of what is variously called narrative journalism, literary journalism, creative non-fiction or narrative non-fiction. Many practitioners and critics argue it is impossible to accurately convey a person’s innermost thoughts and feelings while some say that it is possible, if difficult. A small minority are unconcerned by any issues that may arise in journalists and other non-fiction writers writing interior monologues for the subjects of their stories. There is certainly no consensus on the issue. This paper examines what it is about the interior monologue that makes it so contentious. It draws on a review of contemporary practice and criticism, including an analysis of views offered by 19 leading practitioners interviewed by American scholar Robert Boynton and on interviews conducted by this paper’s author with leading Australian practitioners: John Bryson, Helen Garner, Chloe Hooper, Malcolm Knox, David Marr and Margaret Simons, and on analysis of the work of another, Estelle Blackburn. This review of contemporary practice is presented as suggestive rather than conclusive. It finds only seven of the 26 practitioners have written interior monologues.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationThe Strange Bedfellows or Perfect Partners Papers: the refereed proceedings of the 15th conference of the Australasian Association of Writing Programs, 2010
    Place of PublicationAustralia
    PublisherThe Australiasian Association of Writing Programs (AAWP)
    Pages1-8
    Number of pages8
    ISBN (Print)9780980757330
    Publication statusPublished - 2010
    EventStrange Bedfellows or Perfect Partners: The role of literary studies in creative writing programs - Melbourne, Australia
    Duration: 25 Nov 201027 Nov 2010

    Conference

    ConferenceStrange Bedfellows or Perfect Partners: The role of literary studies in creative writing programs
    CountryAustralia
    CityMelbourne
    Period25/11/1027/11/10

    Fingerprint

    Interior Monologue
    Journalism
    Perils
    Non-fiction
    Criticism
    Journalists
    Minorities
    Creative Nonfiction
    Writer
    Person

    Cite this

    Ricketson, M. (2010). The perils of writing interior monologues in narrative journalism. In The Strange Bedfellows or Perfect Partners Papers: the refereed proceedings of the 15th conference of the Australasian Association of Writing Programs, 2010 (pp. 1-8). Australia: The Australiasian Association of Writing Programs (AAWP).
    Ricketson, Matthew. / The perils of writing interior monologues in narrative journalism. The Strange Bedfellows or Perfect Partners Papers: the refereed proceedings of the 15th conference of the Australasian Association of Writing Programs, 2010. Australia : The Australiasian Association of Writing Programs (AAWP), 2010. pp. 1-8
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    title = "The perils of writing interior monologues in narrative journalism",
    abstract = "The interior monologue is perhaps the most controversial element of what is variously called narrative journalism, literary journalism, creative non-fiction or narrative non-fiction. Many practitioners and critics argue it is impossible to accurately convey a person’s innermost thoughts and feelings while some say that it is possible, if difficult. A small minority are unconcerned by any issues that may arise in journalists and other non-fiction writers writing interior monologues for the subjects of their stories. There is certainly no consensus on the issue. This paper examines what it is about the interior monologue that makes it so contentious. It draws on a review of contemporary practice and criticism, including an analysis of views offered by 19 leading practitioners interviewed by American scholar Robert Boynton and on interviews conducted by this paper’s author with leading Australian practitioners: John Bryson, Helen Garner, Chloe Hooper, Malcolm Knox, David Marr and Margaret Simons, and on analysis of the work of another, Estelle Blackburn. This review of contemporary practice is presented as suggestive rather than conclusive. It finds only seven of the 26 practitioners have written interior monologues.",
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    Ricketson, M 2010, The perils of writing interior monologues in narrative journalism. in The Strange Bedfellows or Perfect Partners Papers: the refereed proceedings of the 15th conference of the Australasian Association of Writing Programs, 2010. The Australiasian Association of Writing Programs (AAWP), Australia, pp. 1-8, Strange Bedfellows or Perfect Partners: The role of literary studies in creative writing programs, Melbourne, Australia, 25/11/10.

    The perils of writing interior monologues in narrative journalism. / Ricketson, Matthew.

    The Strange Bedfellows or Perfect Partners Papers: the refereed proceedings of the 15th conference of the Australasian Association of Writing Programs, 2010. Australia : The Australiasian Association of Writing Programs (AAWP), 2010. p. 1-8.

    Research output: A Conference proceeding or a Chapter in BookConference contribution

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    Ricketson M. The perils of writing interior monologues in narrative journalism. In The Strange Bedfellows or Perfect Partners Papers: the refereed proceedings of the 15th conference of the Australasian Association of Writing Programs, 2010. Australia: The Australiasian Association of Writing Programs (AAWP). 2010. p. 1-8