A page of a birth register for Jews from 1859
A page of a birth register for Jews from 1859

A narrative, story or tale is any account of a series of related events or experiences, whether nonfictional (memoir, biography, news report, documentary, travelogue, etc.) or fictional (fairy tale, fable, legend, thriller, novel, etc.).

- Narrative

Nonfiction is one of the fundamental divisions of narrative writing (specifically, prose) — in contrast to fiction, largely populated by imaginary characters and events, though sometimes ambiguous regarding its basis in reality.

- Nonfiction
A page of a birth register for Jews from 1859

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Title page of Henry Thoreau's memoir, Walden (1854)

Memoir

Title page of Henry Thoreau's memoir, Walden (1854)
An excerpt from the manuscript "Memoires on Napoleon's campaigns, experienced as a soldier of the second regiment", written by Joseph Abbeel, 1805-1815.

A memoir is any nonfiction narrative writing based in the author's personal memories.

A conversation in American Sign Language

Rhetorical modes

A conversation in American Sign Language

The rhetorical modes (also known as modes of discourse) are a long-standing attempt to broadly classify the major kinds of language-based communication, particularly writing and speaking, into narration, description, exposition, and argumentation.

In other nonfiction contexts (such as technical communication), the purpose is to teach and inform.

An illustration from Lewis Carroll's 1865 novel Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, depicting the fictional protagonist, Alice, playing a fantastical game of croquet.

Fiction

An illustration from Lewis Carroll's 1865 novel Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, depicting the fictional protagonist, Alice, playing a fantastical game of croquet.

Fiction is any creative work, chiefly any narrative work, portraying individuals, events, or places in ways that are imaginary or inconsistent with history, fact, or plausibility.

In contrast to fiction, creators of non-fiction works assume responsibility for presenting only the historical and factual truth.