Tag: edgy Christian fiction (page 1 of 5)

Never Perfect

No matter how hard one tries, it seems there is always room for improvement. Take a book, for instance. You’ll be hard pressed to find one that doesn’t contain at least one small error.

When i republished CONSPIRACY OF BONES (formerly AND THE BEAT GOES ON) i thought it was pretty clean. Not so! Thanks to a kind reader who emailed me and pointed out a few mistakes, I decided to go back and edit one more time. I was expecting a couple of errors, some of which were the difference between American and British spelling. However, what I found was shocking! There were a lot of mistakes that had somehow been missed.

I’m glad to say it has been re-edited and should be closer to ‘perfection’ than it was, but I have no illusions that it is perfect… There may still be some mistakes that slipped by.

Editors are only human, after all.

Check it out – it’s FREE on most platforms (Amazon kindle, Kobo, etc.)

Five E’s for Expectation

This year, the year of EXPECTATION, I’m trying to be more intentional about my writing career. As part of that, I have been doing some analysis in order to become more focused. Unfortunately, (or fortunately – depending on how one looks at it), I am a bit of a chameleon when it comes to genre. Am I primarily a playwright or a novelist? What about my non-fiction? This can be somewhat of a quandary, especially when it comes to branding. However, I’ve decided not to stress over it too much.

Instead, I came up with five ways I want my writing to serve readers. (Okay, once i started I intentionally stuck to words beginning with ‘E’…)

  1. Entertain
  2. Encourage
  3. Enlighten
  4. Expand
  5. Evangelize

  1. Entertain – My primary purpose is to entertain and provide an escape for the reader.
  2. Encourage – I hope to encourage them in their Christian walk.
  3. Enlighten – I often bring a potentially difficult or controversial topic/issue to each book such as racism and prejudice; native spirituality and cults; pornography; addictions, abuse, intelligent design, evolutionary conspiracy theory – all topics that are relevant in the church and that Christians may struggle with, but which are not necessarily being talked about openly.
  4. Expand the reader’s viewpoint. This is tied to number three, since my purpose is not to offer a definitive answer (other than Jesus – period.) I try to stay away from a ‘hardline’ fundamentalist or legalist viewpoint and focus instead on grace. I intentionally try to leave some loose ends and unanswered questions for the reader to ponder, hopefully coming to their own conclusions or delving further into a topic.
  5. Evangelism is not my primary focus since my assumption is that my target audience is already Christian. However, the gospel message is usually included, so someone could come to Christ or rededicate their life.

Do any of these resonate with you, either as a reader or a writer? I would love to hear your comments. 

The World’s Worst Marketer? Or Just Busy…

Either I’m the world’s worst marketer, or I have other important things in my life. (I prefer the latter!) What with new babies and a visit from my sister who lives two provinces away, I forgot to mention that…

my two most recent releases are now available in paperback!

Yup, that’s right!

KEEPING UP WITH THE NEIGHBOURS – COMPLETE SERIES 2

and

CONSPIRACY OF BONES:AND THE BEAT GOES ON

can both be purchased as paperbacks at Amazon!

The Power of Fiction

While non-fiction is probably the most direct way of addressing issues of importance, my personal preference, for both reading and writing, uses fiction as the vehicle.

A few months ago I read a book called Then She Was Born, written by Cristiano Gentili and translated into English by Lori Hetherington. I am often asked to review books and in this case, I received an unsolicited copy. I don’t always have the time or desire to read the books I receive, but something inside nudged me to try this book. I’m glad I did for it impacted me profoundly. The book is about the plight of African albinos living and struggling to overcome deeply rooted superstitions, even in today’s ‘modern’ world. I had no idea. Although I’m sure I would have been sympathetic to the cause had I read an article in a magazine, hearing it from the point of view of a person going through it brought the issue up close and personal.

That’s what good fiction is supposed to do: transport us into the lives of the characters in such a way that we feel what they feel; experience what they experience. As a Christian writer, I see huge opportunities to spread the gospel in an unobtrusive way while highlighting some of the struggles common to both Christians and non-Christians. I don’t need to get on a soapbox to talk about drug and alcohol abuse, pornography, the occult, or sexual promiscuity. I just let my characters struggle with these issues. Hopefully, but not always, they come out on the other side with the help of the Lord and other caring individuals. Sometimes things don’t get wrapped up quite so neatly, however, but I think there are lessons to be learned no matter what the outcome.

I’ve heard it said that you should write what you know. I’m not sure I totally agree. I wouldn’t want to have to go through some of the abuse that my characters have had to and I don’t need to murder someone in order to be able to write about it authentically! I think this is where writing from a place of personal passion comes in. My goal is to expose the darkness and shine the light of Jesus on whatever situation my characters find themselves in. In the end, it is up to them how they choose to respond.

I’ve taken some criticism about the use of ‘edgy’ content in my work. My characters have pretty much done it all: drug and alcohol abuse, prostitution, pornography, dabbling in the occult, promiscuous sex – not to mention lying, cheating, stealing, greed, doubt… the list goes on. Some are believers while involved in these activities, some aren’t. For me, God’s grace and the redemptive power of the cross is everything – for those who don’t know Him and even more for those who do and mess up. While I do not feel comfortable writing graphic scenes (most of the aforementioned occurs ‘off camera’) I don’t try to hide the fact that it takes place. God’s power shines brightest against the darkness.

Perhaps part of my desire to write what I do stems from my own experiences. I came to the Lord as a young adult, having dabbled in some of the seedier side of life before crossing over to the light. My husband and I have also been in ministry for many years and we’ve seen some pretty dark things, even among believers. The truth is, all have fallen short of the glory of God. To pretend that hot button issues aren’t relevant in the church is to bury one’s head in the sand. All is not always as it seems.

The good news is, nobody is too far gone for God. Hallelujah! That’s why I will continue to write the kind of fiction that I feel called to write. God’s redemptive power can shine, even in fiction.

This post originally appeared on the Inscribe Professional Blog on June 29, 2017. 

 

Conspiracy of Bones – NEW! (Kind of)

I’ve broken all the rules (again) by not saying much about the re-release of my first published book under a new name. (Getting the flu and dealing with some other ‘life interruptions’ will do that sometimes…) BUT HERE IT IS!

CONSPIRACY OF BONES is out in all ebook formats and available everywhere ebooks are sold!

But it gets better…

It is FREE!

Yup. This is the recently revised and re-published version of my first published novel AND THE BEAT GOES ON.  (Only with a new name. No more ‘Sonny and Cher’ references!) I received the rights back to this book last year but have finally just gotten to getting it prepped and ready for re-publication. It’s the same gripping story, but with significant improvements. (At least in my mind.) I’ve learned a few things in the past eight years since it first released and I’ve grown as a writer, so I knew that when the time was right, I wanted to revise and re-release it.

For those who haven’t read the first version, here is the blurb:

 

Canadian born archaeologist Mark Graham unearths a remarkable discovery while at a dig in the mountains of Zimbabwe – pterodactyl remains and giant human bones buried together. Speculation leads to the possible existence of a mythical race known as ‘Nephilim’, a pre-flood people alleged to have descended from both gods and men. But skepticism and sabotage delay Mark and his team as the dig site is compromised, putting their discovery – as well as Mark’s very life – in grave danger. Deceived and framed by trusted friends and colleagues, Mark struggles to safeguard his findings and protect his reputation in order to unearth the mystery behind the bones.  

Download from:

KOBO

Smashwords

Amazon (still at 79 cents but will soon be free.)

Paperback coming soon!

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