Notes from An Alien

~ Explorations In Reading, Writing & Publishing ~

Tag Archives: Truth

How Much Truth Should Be In Fiction Stories?

“What I say next may or may not be believed but, either way, this story is true—true as fact or true in the way fiction can rise to heights unattainable by mere facts.”

That statement is from one of the characters in my most recent book—Notes from An Alien.

It’s fiction but, to the best of my ability, the story is True

The word history of “True”: Old English trēowe, trȳwe ‘steadfast, loyal’; related to Dutch getrouw, German treu, also to truce.

And, to create a meaning-circle, “Truce”: Middle English trewes, trues (plural), from Old English trēowa, plural of trēow ‘belief, trust’, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch trouw and German Treue, also to true.

So, basically, to be “True” means to have steadfastness, loyalty, belief, and trust

Four words that any “self-respecting” fiction story should attempt to live up to.

Ralph Waldo Emerson is credited with this saying: “Fiction reveals truth that reality obscures.”

Mark Twain: “Truth is stranger than fiction, but it is because Fiction is obliged to stick to possibilities; Truth isn’t.”

Stephen King: “Fiction is the truth inside the lie.”

Albert Camus: “Fiction is the lie through which we tell the truth.”


Many fiction writers expend great effort in their research to learn “facts” that will lend some “truth” to the “lies” they tell.

One particular genre (among many) where this can be important is Science Fiction.

What I say next can easily be applied to many other genres

Imagine a science fiction writer who wants to add science facts to their story.

They conduct research and, usually, adapt whatever they find that is given by “experts”.

One problem with this method:

“Experts” are not necessarily Experts.

Especially if that writer is using MainStream scientists—most of whom have lost the ability to use the Scientific Method and are sprinkling around a bunch of “farie dust”; Fictional Ad hoc Inventions Repeatedly Invoked in Efforts to Defend Untenable Scientific Theories. {credit to Donald Scott}

To avoid passing on false truths in fiction, Dig Deep—Look Far—Add “Controversy” To Your Google Search

To drive home the point about scientists who don’t do Science, I’ll share a two-part video of Rupert Sheldrake, author of The Presence of the Past: Morphic Resonance and the Memory of Nature, explaining how so many scientists are getting it wrong

I do hope a few authors of other genres (like Crime or Historical) will share their experience in the Comments of looking for the Truth to add Steadfastness, Loyalty, Belief, and Trust to their Fiction



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Collective Thinking ~ Does The Individual Get Lost?

Being fair, morally right, and rationally correct are highly suspect traits in the prevailing cultural climate—better to be shrewd, morally neutral, and politically correct.

But only better if you feel you need to conform to the norm

If you visit this blog because of its focus on Reading, Writing, and Publishing, never fear—I’m not going to go on a rant about sociological/psychological “musts”.

We all do collective and individual thinking. We all take account of the larger group’s needs and our own responsibilities.

Most readers make choices in books based on some mixture of what’s popular and what they like.

Many writers struggle to address social issues through individualistic characters.

Some publishers are working hard to stay true to their calling to provide books of substance while juggling the demands of a materialistic culture.

Humans can’t avoid thinking as individuals as well as using “collective” thinking.

I feel the critical differences show up in the balance between the two

Also important to consider is which collective’s ideas are used:

* The prevailing culture’s norms?

* The deeper human matrix of Principles?

* A sub-culture’s agenda?

* A traditional group’s ideas?

* A political party’s platform?

* A corporation’s intentions?

* The clergy’s interpretations of religious truth?

* The demands of an inner-city gang?

* Current mainstream science’s programs of funding?

* The nebulous bidding of purported ascended masters?

* The neighbors?

Which group or collective do you permit to shape the reading, writing, or publishing you do?

How do you balance your individually determined code of behavior with the demands of your chosen collective?

What do you think of the statement I started this post with?

Being fair, morally right, and rationally correct are highly suspect traits in the prevailing cultural climate—better to be shrewd, morally neutral, and politically correct.

Our Comment Link Is At The Top of The Post :-)
For Private Comments, Email: amzolt {at} gmail {dot} com

Can You Trust The “News”?

Readers of news, Writers who use it as prompts for stories, and Publishers or producers should all be concerned with Truth; otherwise, they’re being either hoodwinked, misdirected, or dishonest.

Yet, finding Truth in news can be tough.

My recently-published book, Notes from An Alien, is fiction created from the angst of living through the pressures from our very real World experiencing the death and rebirth of its Ordering Principles

News is critical to a complex and progressing society.

It’s a crying shame that so much is done to the bare facts before producers call it “news”—-political and/or corporate influences especially distorting the product.

Even some citizen-news, “straight” from phone cameras, can be prejudiced.

There may be better sources for learning to cut through the subterfuge but I’ve found Noam Chomsky a fascinating advocate for Truth in News.

There’s also a member-supported effort called The Real News that produces many eye-opening videos.

You might also want to check out or

Do you read or watch the news?

If not, is it because you’re too busy or because you wouldn’t believe it anyway?

Do you think creative writers should pay attention to the news–let it “influence” their writing?
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