Fantasy and a Christian Worldview, Part 7

I admit it. I got totally distracted and almost forgot to post on the blog today. YIKES!

So what was the distraction? I was actually working. I, along with the other finalists in the ACFW Genesis contest, must put together a proposal for the story we entered. I had made the decision to wait until the announcement of the first round results before working on this. My first priority has always been to complete The Chronicles of Efrathah. But now that I’m moving on to the next round, I have this deadline.

So I’ll let you voice an opinion if you care to. Here is my proposal intro, the overview of my story, horribly named The Only:

What happens when an orphan becomes king? Novo, a poor yeoman in the king’s service, wants to restore his people’s worship of their ancient God. When he comes of age and exhibits the sign of the true king, his guardian puts in motion events that bring Novo to the throne. Now he must decide to keep the illegitimate wealth he obtains, in order to accomplish his goal, or to restore it to its rightful owner, losing his chance to achieve his life’s work. Through symbolism The Only portrays a Christian’s spiritual struggle to do what is right, sometimes in the midst of success.

Thoughts? Does it bore you? Is it in need of tightening? What’s missing?

Back to our discussion of magic and especially my proclamation that we should not outgrow pretend. Remember, I believe that our imagination is part of the creative equipment God gave us when He made us in His image. So to me, saying I will outgrow pretendis like saying I’ll outgrow the ability to love.

Unfortunately, as adults we get so focused on the stuff of our physical world—things like making a living and raising a family—we kill off our imagination, or at least allow it to lie dormant so long it is pretty weak when we try to exercise it.

Fantasy allows us to exercise our imagination in a useful way, a spiritually engaging way.

But there’s another reason Christians should care about fantasy. We’ll look at that next time.

Published in: on May 23, 2006 at 2:00 pm  Comments (9)  

9 Comments

  1. I’d move the final sentence of the intro to somewhere later in the proposal. The outright statement of theme distracts from rather than enhances the premise. It kills the suspense of the decision outlined in the previous sentence.

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  2. Thanks, Katie. I appreciate your input.

    Becky

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  3. Sounds a little like the story of Josiah?

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  4. Re: imagination.

    I think imagination is vital for Christians because we are called upon to imagine what God’s Kingdom is like and shape ourselves accordingly. And so many biblical images of the Kingdom come to us in stories and parables. I mused a bit about that here, in relation to SF: http://clawoftheconciliator.blogspot.com/2006/04/camassia-high-castle.html

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  5. Becky,

    You’re writing is beautiful, exceptional. No worries on your “blurb”. . .I think you will be a finalist for certain.

    Your comment: “Unfortunately, as adults we get so focused on the stuff of our physical world—things like making a living and raising a family—we kill off our imagination, or at least allow it to lie dormant so long it is pretty weak when we try to exercise it” reminds me of the movie HOOK in which Peter Pan has done exaclty that. . .gone to the adult world to make a living and provide for his family. He entirely forgets the lost boys and his life as a simple, but magical boy.

    Beth

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  6. I agree with Katie (# 1).

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  7. I kind of liked the last line because I thought you were giving a little twist there with the “doing what is right in the midst of success” bit.

    When we are successful we forget our mission.

    I think the bit before might need to be tweaked to fit with this, though, if I’m reading you right. Does he risk losing his goal if he restores the ill-gotten wealth or has he already achieved the goal and is he then refusing just because he’s king and he can?

    I’m not sure I’m reading this right.

    All that aside, this sounds very interesting to me. I’d read the first chapter if I saw this on the back cover.

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  8. Imagination is freedom to the mind. In today’s intrusive world, imagination is our escape into ourselves and into greater powers beyond conscious awareness. It takes imagination to have faith. Those without imagination are prone to become materialists who dwell only on visual perceptions. Our world is at a lack of constructive imagination. A constructive imagination is one that causes the experiencer to see and feel a greater existence beyond today’s tangible reality.

    “Let the children of God come to me, and do not stop them, for the Kingdom of God belongs to such as these” – Mark 10:14

    Children are imaginative beings. We must all be like children, so as not to give up imagination for rationality.

    To see a blog that is fueled by imagination and spiritual inspiration, visit http://www.serenaid.wordpress.com.

    Steve.

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  9. Thanks for all these great comments. I especially appreciate the feedback on my novel intro.

    Beth, thank you for your kind words. I chuckled when you mentioned Peter Pan. When I was a kid, I sided with him and decided I would opt for never growing up. 🙂 So maybe that plays a part in my love of fantasy.

    But I am convinced there are other factors besides personality that draw people to the genre.

    I disagree with you, Steve, that imagination and rationality are somehow not compatible. You didn’t say it that way, but implied we had room for one or the other, not both. I don’t see it that way. I also don’t think there is such a thing as “those without imagination,” but these are all topics for upcoming posts.

    Becky

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