Having Something More to Say Continued

Yesterday I said I had two things in mind, then elaborated on only one—the mistaken views of those who claim theme-less fiction glorifies God simply because it is artistic.

The second part of having something more to say deals with content. But let me back up.

When I first started writing full time, I joined the Christian Writer’s Guild. At that time, part of the membership package included a free critique of ten or so pages of a manuscript. Among the many things that critique showed me was how easily I’d slipped into using cliches.

Later I learned that not only words and phrases could be cliches, but so could characters and story premises. In other words, what I needed to develop as a writer was first a resistance to use the first thing that came to mind. I needed to spend a little more time and think—about words and characters and story ideas—so that my choices would move beyond just-what-you’d-expect.

Ultimately, I’ve come to believe the same is true about that something we writers want to say in our stories.

What is my vision of the world? The easy answer is, God is in control. Or Man stands in need of a Savior. But can I think more deeply on either subject or on my vision of the world?

Scripture calls this meditation. And the great thing about meditating on God and His word, besides the fact that He becomes more precious and changes my life inside out, is that He may refuel my what-I-want-to-say tank.

I know I started writing The Lore of Efrathah years ago thinking I wanted to say one particular truth. But as the project morphed from a stand-alone novel to an epic trilogy, then to a quatrain, what I wanted to say also changed or deepened. Undoubtedly redirecting the major theme in the work is a result of the things God has taught me about Himself through these ensuing years.

But I now understand, as I’ve worked on the premise for other stories, that meditating on God bears abundant fruit. The more I know of Him, the more I have to say about Him. And themes that say something more are born.

Published in: on September 10, 2009 at 9:39 am  Comments Off on Having Something More to Say Continued  
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