Still with me? Thought so. 🙂
In light of the whole Miley Cyrus fiasco, along with the casting pics for 50 Shades of Gray that have just been released, I’ve decided to let you all know that, yes, my book has sex in it. Actually, both of them do. But if you’re looking for pages of extremely graphic description that leaves absolutely nothing to the imagination, you won’t find that in Yesterday’s Tomorrow or Hidden in the Heart. What you will find is a dose of reality. A story of what can happen when real people like you and I refuse to listen to God and make their own way in the world, rather than believing He has a plan for them.
But why the sex? Why include it at all? Don’t you write *gasp* Christian fiction?
Okay, to be fair, you really have to read the book or I’ll give the story away. In Yesterday’s Tomorrow, it was an important part of my characters’ journey and had to be included. But I am told it was so subtly done that a couple people missed it altogether and had to go back and re-read. 🙂 In Hidden in the Heart, the incident had already occurred, but without it, there would be no story. And yes, I do write fiction from a Christian worldview. By the way, Christians do have sex. Sadly, some of them also have sex outside of the sanctity of marriage. Which leads me to my next point.
If we believe that sex was created by God, to be given as a gift to one another when a man and a woman marry, then it becomes a beautiful thing. But the world has taken this once treasured and never talked about experience, and turned it into something base, vile and commonplace. These days, if you’re a high school kid and you aren’t having sex, something must be wrong with you. It has become a recreational activity. Something to do when you’re bored. Something to do to prove you are a man or woman. We have fifteen year-old girls running around with babies! Dear God, where did we go wrong?
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. If we’re not willing to discuss the sin, how in the world can we point people to the cross?
Yes, I said the S word. SIN. This is what makes people uncomfortable. Makes them squirm in their seats. Keeps them away from churches. Who wants to hear that they’re a sinner? I mean, really? Sin has become the dirty word and sex the acceptable moniker for just about everything.
It’s not my job to judge. But it is my job to write books that carry a meaningful message. If I believe I am accountable to the God who made me, then I must present nothing less than my best. But aside from that, I have to believe that there are readers out there who want to read good fiction without having to worry about what they’re going to find within the pages of that book they just spent money on. Sure, my writing may not meet everyone’s standard of what they think “Christian” fiction should be. I’m okay with that. But I can promise you this, I won’t compromise my morals or what I believe to produce a book that sells. And in saying that, I’ve narrowed my market considerably. I’m okay with that too.
The longer this publishing journey takes, the more I’ve come to rely on God for whatever direction my career will go. Right now, it seems like I’m just spinning my wheels. Waiting, waiting, waiting. And nothing is happening. But I know that’s not true. That’s the beauty of being in relationship with God. Something is always happening. It may not be a tangible thing, like a new contract, but behind the scenes plans are being laid out. Specifically for me. And for you. Doesn’t that just give you chills?
So what happens in the meantime? I continue to write. I pray for Him to provide the right people to come alongside me and encourage me on this journey. I look for avenues where my writing might find a soft landing place. I trust my agent and know that she is also praying for the same things. And I don’t give up.
Because I refuse to let books like 50 Shades become the norm. As long as I have breath and am able to hit these keys, I will offer something different. Something better. Something I can be proud of. I will write stories that my friends can read and pass along to their friends. I will write real and maybe sometimes I will cross a line or two for some people, but I will not litter the playgrounds of the mind with garbage.
We can change what’s happening in the world. We can bring something different to the table. It will take work, we will be ridiculed, but we can do it.
I hope you’ll join me.
Aren’t you tired of the trash?