There seems to be a misconception that Christian writers should not be “dabbling” in fantasy and/or science fiction writing. This is evident when you notice the ever so slight raising of eyebrows when you tell other Christians that your current project is a fantasy for young adults. Disapproval. Not spoken aloud, but the thoughts are definitely there. And you can just imagine what’s being said behind your back. Do these people not know that the authors of two of the greatest fantasy series of our time (C.S. Lewis of Chronicles of Narnia fame and J.R.R. Tolkien, author of Lord of the Rings) were fine upstanding Christian men?
I have always been drawn to this particular genre. I read The Wizard of Oz and The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe three times each when I was in fourth grade. I was hooked. But for many years I steered clear of anything that even remotely sniffed of magic or time travel or space cadets. Because good Christians didn’t do such things.
And my creativity was stifled in a huge way.
So I prayed about it. To my relief, God did not smite me for my “sinful” thoughts. Instead, He gave me the complete storyline for a rather brilliant fantasy. He’s walking right alongside me in the writing of it, adjusting where adjustment is needed, and popping new ideas into my head to add to the mix. It’s so fun!
One of my favorite Christian writers, Karen Hancock, shares this article about why she writes fantasy. She says it far better than I ever could. And you really ought to read her books. She’s quite amazing!
Today I checked out the new releases page on several Christian bookseller websites. When I clicked on the fantasy/science fiction category, I admit that I was kind of shocked to see that a good number of those “new” releases were simply reprints of old books. Disappointment. Discouragement. Despair. Yeah, I felt all of those.
Calling all Christian fantasy writers! Your time has come.
Let the Lord of the Universe direct you.
9 responses to “The Misconception”
Thanks so much for writing on this topic. As a Christian writer, the first novel I am working on is also a YA fantasy. Some of my favourite books and movies are fantasy and science fiction. I love both the Chronicles of Narnia and the Lord of the Rings, and think we need more good Christian fantasy – and science fiction – out there. So in response to your call, I will arise, my time has come! And may the Lord raise up more great Christian fantasy and science fiction writers to capture the imagination of a new generation of readers…
Amen and amen!
Oooh.. just had an inspiration for what could have made a great title for this post… “Myth-conceptions!” 🙂
Oh man, wish I would have thought of that one!
As it was said in a fine film of our day (Thor), science fiction is merely a precursor to science fact. If people all over were afraid to “dabble” in what appears to be far out theories and ideas, most of what we now know to be fact would still be far out theories and ideas that got people mocked and ridiculed and banned from the Church. How do we know that God isn’t planting these ideas in the people who are brave enough to voice them? Who’s to say that all we now know is science fiction won’t some day be simple science fact?
This is so true!
Such a vital probe into Christian fear and mediocrity. Thank you.
You may want to have a look at my latest novel BLACK FOX IN THIN PLACES to be released by Emby Press before Christmas 2013. My design in writing was to continue the Tolkien and Lewis legacy, but I won’t know if I have come near that goal until I have readers with voices.
Scathe meic Beorh
Thanks for your comment! Where can I get an advance copy (or ebook) of your BLACK FOX IN THIN PLACES? I’ve read the synopsis and I like what I see.
Hello! Thanks for your kind reply! I believe an e-book will be available soon, from Emby press and/or Amazon. if the publisher is doing advanced copies, they will need your physical mailing address, which you can give to me here or through firstname.lastname@example.org and I will forward it.
I really hope you enjoy the story!