The difference between writing fiction and writing nonfiction? I liken it baking a cake. In fiction, I’m pretty much allowed to whip up whatever I like. I can choose ingredients, put together any combination of flavors to create a delicious dessert. With nonfiction, I’m also expected to whip up something yummy. But I’m expected to do this out of ingredients that someone else has already chosen for me. It’s my job to examine those ingredients, consider them in fresh combinations, and bake them in surprising ways. In-depth research provides the ingredients. But imagination makes the cake worth eating.