When last we met, dear readers, I was lamenting the state of Christian literature and how most of it that I have run across is complete rubbish. Alas.
So today I shall discuss: What I do about it.
Nothing, mostly. That was easy, wasn't it? I don't want to contribute to the purchasing of the rubbish (thus encouraging more rubbish, to my way of thinking), so I don't buy it. Sometimes I pick up one in the library or the bookstore, read a chapter to confirm that crappiness is still ruling the day, and put it back again.
So. My response. I've kind of thought for most of my life that I would write Christian books one day; after all, I tend to get exasperated at the likes of Christian singers who produce a few non-offensive songs then decide the only way to hit the big time is to fill their songs with sex and swearing. (Unfortunately, they may be right.) I don't want to be that person. But I also don't want to be all sweetness and light, because that's not real life, either. (Even worse than the never-ending Bible study plots are the ones wherein the main character has a perfect life until she stops going to church. Her life suddenly gets terrible, but then gets better again after she sits and cries one Saturday night about how terrible she's been and then goes to church the next morning, swearing to never miss a Sunday again. Blech.)
In the run-up to NaNoWriMo, as I've considered characters and plot, I've had a real struggle with whether or not my characters should have a lifestyle that I don't agree with. Right now, my main character (a woman) lives with an assortment of housemates, some of whom are men. I've gone back-and-forth on whether one of these men will end up being a love interest, and haven't reached a conclusion yet. A love interest could be interesting, but can I write about a live-in boyfriend?
The writer part of me says, "No dilemma. She's fictional. Just write it." But the whole of me, who loves Jesus, says, "No dilemma. The world has enough questionable behaviour in it without me helping." And I don't know which line of logic will reach my fingers first a week from now.
I would love to be that rare breed, a Christian writer who produces interesting novels. (I don't even know yet whether I can produce interesting novels at all, of course, so this may all be a moot point.) But there is a big part of me that has a serious aversion to the Christian market, because it is flooded with poor-to-mediocre books. So, the answer to the question, What will I do? is this: I don't know.
I kind of expect responses to this post, if any, will be varied and interesting and probably helpful. And it's possible that someone is doubting my Christianity if I would even consider writing for any other market. So, let's hear it!