A Christian Worldview of God, Day 8—The Writer’s Perspective

When I first started voicing my views of writing in a public forum, more than two years ago at the Faith in Fiction Discussion Board, I felt suddenly vulnerable. Here I was, stating what I believed about the craft and how it ought to be done. Wouldn’t everything I wrote then be held up in that light?

Probably so. I mean, in all of life, if we say one thing and do another, our inconsistency is soon discovered.

But I don’t think the pressure of taking a stand is a bad thing—scary, but not bad. It actually works in the same way that accountability does.

So if I say, XYZ about writing and then feel under compunction to be sure I do XYZ in my own fiction because the whole world—well, the reading public that stops by here 😉 —knows I took that stand, that’s a good thing.

I feel the same way about these comments about God in the last series of posts.

So this week I was working on a short story for the Writer’s Digest short short story contest. The last one I wrote, I ended up selling, so even though I have little to no hope of winning the contest, it does teach me more about writing fiction and gives me a chance to experiment a little. Throw in the possibility of selling the story and I’m there. 🙂 I guess I need the deadline push that contests give.

Anyway, I got an idea for the story, had no trouble with the beginning (surprisingly), but I didn’t know how to show God. YIKES! Wasn’t that the very thing we’d been talking about?

After much prayer, I ended up writing something different than what I’d intended at the start. And how did I show God? Metaphorically. Nothing more, really. Well, I guess there is a justice factor, too, that obliquely shows His character.

Part of me wants to be disappointed because this is not the type of story the magazine which published last year’s contest entry will be interested in. And at the same time, a good many people that read it will miss the underlying reference to God. Which is to say, it is most definitely not allegorical.

But I can’t really feel disappointed, because God answered my prayers about what direction to take. My conculsion: writing about God is no different than writing about anything else when it comes to its impact. I need to trust that He will use it as He sees fit, as I relinquish it to Him.

Published in: on November 24, 2006 at 12:39 pm  Comments (5)  

5 Comments

  1. I’m sure He’ll honor you for that, Becky. And really when it’s all said and done, that’s all we should really care about;) Perhaps this story will do more than you’ll ever see, but in spiritual terms. You never know. Let us know how that goes:)

    Beth.

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  2. Becky,
    Off topic, but I wanted to point out a discussion from John C. Wright. Mir turned me on to him – a mainstream SF writer who was become a Christian (don’t know if you know him). I enjoyed reading his post “SFF is Everything Else”, and I thought you would enjoy reading it. Link is below.

    Had myself a very coherent, vivid, and unique fantasy dream the other night. I may oneday become a SFF writer at this rate!

    http://johncwright.livejournal.com/57689.html

    Jason

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  3. Jason, thanks for the link!

    Heh heh heh—I’lll keep working on you to come over to the light side. 😉 Fantasy is so fun, so true, so awe inspiring, when done well.

    Becky

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  4. Sounds like you’re becoming an SOTP writing Becky! haha. Actually, it’s exciting to see what God does when we give up control–don’t you think?

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  5. Hi, Julie. No, definitely not a SOTP writer! 😀 Jim Bell in Plot and Structure identifies “flashlight” writers, which best describes me. This is someone who has to see what’s right in front and a few step ahead (as well as the final destination). It works well for me because it allows for course corrections.

    So this story I was writing is about a missionary woman who had to come home because her support fell too low. A woman befriends her but only to set her up because she wanted out of her marriage. Origionally I had planned to have this missionary strugge with guilt at the divorce proceeding. Had she led the husband on? After all she was attracted to him? Sort of have the conflict be this internal struggle. I thought my theme would be “all have sinned.”

    But where was God? Because of this blog topic, I couldn’t help asking that question. What would readers see, another fallen (though only inwardly) religious figure? And how would that glorify God, though it would reveal the truth of our nature?

    That morning in my devotions I read in Jeremiah 3 the metaphor God used of Judah being a wayward wife and leaving her faithful Husbnd to be with her many lovers. My story was set up to use that same metaphor, so I moved the flashlight onto another path. Hahah!

    [MUCH more than you asked, I know] 😡

    Becky

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