Saturday, November 16, 2013

A Newly Discovered Love Of Nonfiction

I, myself, am a lover of the classics: Hemingway, Joyce Carol Oates, Charles Dickens, etc. BUT I was introduced to something new--new to me anyway. Being close to finishing Capote's In Cold Blood, I had revelation; Nonfiction can be good. Really good. Now, this seems to be just a little different than most nonfiction stories. It builds up the characters, makes you relate to them like any fiction novel requires. Then it shocks you, when you step away from the pages, that these events took place in reality. I do not know about anyone else, but that seems way more scary then baby dolls being possessed by serial killers or sticks standing up by themselves in the middle of the woods as a result of some witch named Blaire.

So, I took it upon myself to see if I could find any other books like this mash-up of creative writing and almost journalism, (Which is what I think my double major should be...) and I found just a few.



1) Zodiac by Robert Graysmith
Being disgusting fascination with serial killers, this seems like something that I could get into. The Zodiac Killer claimed 37 victims, by means that are better left unsaid, during the 60s and 70s in Northern California. Sounds like a pretty nasty dude, right? He has yet to be convicted... Scary stuff...




2) Helter Skelter by Vincent Bugliosi with Curt Gentry
The novel covers the murders of the followers of Charles Manson that occurred in 1969; with Bugliosi being the prosecuting attorney in the trial, I feel like this is the best way to educate yourself on the subject. I hope it's as good as I want it to be...



3) The Stranger Beside Me by Ann Rule
Bundy. Bundy. Bundy. This is about Ted's life before and after his homicidal acts. He had at lest 36 victims; they could not prove that he, intact, killed the others... He was sentenced to death in 1989. I HAVE to read this; which means HalfPriceBooks will be receiving a call soon. Very soon. 

All these novels are descriptions of true events. Real terror. Real people lost their lives. Real people had to investigate the real crimes that these real people committed. Now that's something. I love horror and suspenseful books; books with bloodshed and revenge and creatures that go bump in the night. But they're just not the same. Nothing is scarier than the truth.


7 comments:

Lexi Loopsy said...

You really do have a fascination with serial killers. :) It amuses me! I don't think I could ever stomach reading about actual serial killers, but I do love biographies and memoirs. The tone that is set within them is so very different from the tone in fiction.

Hugs <3 <3 <3

Jordan Dane said...

God, your bookshelves must look like mine. I went through a period of true crime books, too. Glad you discovered Ann Rule. There really is a gift to sifting through all the facts to devise a story line that reads like a movie, with pace. Find a book on John Wayne Gacy to curl your hair.

I'm writing my first serial killer book, fiction, and have been researching FBI profiling and serial killers. Even with all your imagination, your mind just can't comprehend how sadistic and monstrous a depraved mind can be.

Joyce Carol Oats wrote a short little book about a serial killer. Frightening to be in his mind. I'll look for the title and post it.

Jordan Dane said...

The Oats book is called Zombie and I believe I read that Bundy inspired her to write it, but it reads like the weirdness of Jeffrey Dahmer, another guy you should read about. The way portrayed this young killer's unraveling mind, especially how he objectified his victims as if they were things, will stay with you. It's a great bit of fiction that will go along with your latest interest in true crime. Oats did a remarkable job. It would be unbearable to write in the head of that guy for long, probably why it's a short one.

Sechin Tower said...

Truth can be more horrifying than fiction because... it's true. You can't make this stuff up, but it sure can lay the groundwork for a good story.

Jordan Dane said...

Dang. Misspelled Oates. Too many years feeding horses.

Sechin Tower said...

@Jordan: blame it on autocorrect. That's what I always do 😇

Ilsa said...

Love this list. As a writer, I don't know where I'd be without all those great nonfiction books out there to guide research (and give me ideas).