Thursday, July 24, 2008

Confusion, double-mindedness

Inheritance is one of the two novels I am currently writing. And there are a whole lotta real people in it. And I find myself asking myself at each juncture: Am I a carnal Christian writing about sex issues? Or am I a perfectly well-behaved and sanctified Christian writing about carnal Christians? It's hard to decide. I don't want the book to be stiff. I want the book to touch my soul. I want the book to share my soul. So how do I handle it? Sex and attraction are everywhere in this story...and I really have to figure out what my characters would do. What would I do if I were in that position? What should I do if I were that character? What kind of Christian am i writing to? And how should I write to the folks I am writing to? Very stressing.

I like to walk the borderlands. I like bringing weird things together in one novel. A CBA-published Christian book about a depressed widow and an alienated young man would have them dance around sex. I dunno. I know life...and I know how loneliness and depression can make a person end up in bed with the wrong person. Hey, I go to Black Christian churches and tons of those folks are unwed mothers. So these good people are at least doing something and falling into sin occasionally, right?

Oh, I know... Some Christian is going to say that the reason I'm confused is because I'm double-minded. Watching VH1 reality shows and reading my Bible at the same time. Probably true. And yet -- vain self-righteous comment here-- I honestly think that I am so desperate to grow in God and to get my son healed that I read more religious stuff and listen to more sermons every day than the average Christian does in a week. Christian romance is so dishonest sometimes...because it aims for purity and only gives us piousness. It holds its heroine and its hero to a higher standard. But it forgets that that standard is pretty hard to hold to in our times. Oh, what to do? what to do?

I want a story that is very passionate and very real and very erotic. Doesn't mean I charaters have to end up in bed with anyone. But it means they have to feel the tug and the reader has to feel the tug. And it might mean that -- forgetting that I must write stories that teach morals-- that they might tumble into bed. But will they end up moaning in self-loathing after the sexual sin? Lord knows. The Christians I know don't really take a long time to forgive themselves of some sin. Who knows?

Anyway, will see. Am thinking my female character is gonna end up in bed with someone. And wondering if I should even go there.

Just after posting this I went over to an ebuddy's blog Fantasy Debut and saw a great post on sex in novels. It really reminded me about how important sexual choice is. And that one has to be careful -- even in modern times-- about the occasional sexual romp. What a blessing that I looked at the blog today. She posted it yesterday...but it really is helping me with how to work out this story. Thanks, Tia.
-C
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