Okay, first thing’s first: as a Christian, I don’t believe anything is secular. I feel God and have vibed out on evil in the past and wholly and fully understand both can be felt when you least expect it – even when it comes to literature.
So “secular” fiction is a bit of a misnomer for me. But alas, it’s still a thing, and to keep confusion at bay, I’ll be calling it as such throughout this post.
Secondly, I really don’t think anyone SHOULD do anything, so if you read this post and think, “No thanks,” then it’s all good in the hood, and I’ll still share my Cheetos with you.
Now, let’s get down to brass tax.
Before I became a Christian, writing was easy peasy. I just fired up my inner demons, threw the words they inspired on the page and called it art.
After becoming a Christian, I started to take issue with this process, namely the inner demons part because I suddenly (and luckily) found that I no longer had any. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still human, but the the little thoughts that used to badger me and tear me down were gone, and frankly, I had made those bad boys my friends.
So what’s a Christian gal to do? Keep on keeping on.
Listen, I know I can still write. And I know there’s a fire burning in my belly. But now it’s a matter of using that fire to bring others into the light instead of letting it devour my soul in smoke.
Really, when you think about it, it’s not a bad trade off.
It’s also why I choose to write secular fiction over Christian fiction.
There is a whole audience out there struggling, my friends. There’s a whole segment of our human population that needs someone to send them down a little miracle and make the shitty existence of every day living worth SOMETHING. As a Christian and an author, I intend to do just that.
The way I figure it, you can’t heal a broken heart with rainbows and unicorns. You can’t go up to someone who’s hurting, actually decomposing from the inside out and say, “Isn’t the world such a beautifully golden and God-filled place,” and then start twirling on a hillside a la Maria from the Sound of Music.
People generally don’t like that.
And I mean you may feel like twirling until your wooden clogs go flying off your feet, but remember when you didn’t feel that way? Remember when the only thing you thought about was the exact temperature you needed to set the oven before sticking your head in?
Look, I’m not trying to be graphic here. I’m trying to be real. There’s nothing wrong with truth even when the truth is a dark and ugly thing. Because truth gives birth to light.
And fortunately, we all have the ultimate guide when it comes to writing this way. It’s called the Bible.
The Bible doesn’t sugar coat the reality of this world. The Bible is up front and in your face when it comes to sin and how it can slowly and methodically deteriorate everything in its path. And I appreciate the Bible for its honesty.
If it wasn’t so darn honest, I wouldn’t believe a lick of it.
So this is why I’m a Christian and write secular fiction. I want to be honest, transparent, and let the world know – the hurting, crying, miserable segment of it that feels like the sun is a burnt out star – that hope flickers through my words, through my waterfall of pages.
It is a light I’ve been given from God, and I love you to the point of setting your heart on fire.
*Inspiration for this post: The Dilemma of Being a Christian Who Writes Fiction