I’m telling you this now, at the start of our journey, because I know you are expecting such facts from nonfiction. But henceforth please do not consider these “nonfictions.” I want you preoccupied with art in this book, not with facts for the sake of facts. A fact come from the Latin word factum—literally, “a thing done”—a neuter past participle construction that suggest a fact is merely something upon which and action has happened. It’s not even a word that can do its own work. From the same Latin root for fact we get the words “artifice,” “counterfeit,” “deficient,” “façade,” “infect,” “misfeasance,” and “superficial.” “There are no facts,” Emerson once wrote, “only art.”
—John D’Agata, The Next American Essay