A recent blog post posed the challenge; Write a statement about the purpose of your book. I didn’t take long to respond with; Doing what I was told couldn’t be done. I like a challenge and I like science fiction. What I don’t like are stories that have to use vulgar language and sex, simply to sell more copies. Don’t get me wrong; I do live on planet Earth and I do live in the real world. But, can we talk, am I the only one who thinks a story should stand on its own?
As a Christian, I was told that I wouldn’t be able to write Science fiction. Really?! So, I set out to write a story about a local mystery of a lost Indian civilization (the Mississippian culture) who built massive earthen mounds in the prairies of Illinois just east of St. Louis. I took a real life event from the past, and twisted the truth a bit (okay…A LOT) to create Hill of Great Darkness. I have always loved to tell stories, in fact, in grade school I would write a short story and sell it for the three pennies it took to get an extra milk (chocolate, of course) at lunch (I know, I’m dating myself here).
I like to write stories that I would want to read. Here’s what I mean;
See spaceship. See spaceship fly. Fly, spaceship, fly… Okay, so that’s a little too simple. But truth be told, I have never enjoyed a story when I am so busy trying to figure out the meaning of the allegory behind the story that I can’t simply enjoy the story itself. I just want a story that will draw me into the world (or worlds) that the author is painting for me. To like the good guys, and hate what the bad guys are doing. To escape reality, if for only a short time, and possibly think about things that I may not have ever thought about before. That is the power of the written word…is it not?
As a writer, as a Christian writer, I have no desire to use the same tools of writing that the world (or culture) says are good to use. Language and sex are a BIG issue to me. Representing my Savior is what my writing is about and His approval is of paramount importance to me. I know I am not writing to the masses. In fact, Christian Science Fiction (or Chri-fi as I affectionately call it) is a very small genre. I just want to write, and I am blessed to have been able to afford self-publication for this first venture.
So, write! Don’t worry about what the critics say. Let your heart pour out upon the pages, as water through a broken dam (ahem…I AM NOT cussing here…), through the sword of the pen.
Write! Let your words touch others lives. Dream big, and write even larger!
Henry C. Martin/H.C.Beckerr