You may have noticed a bit of a running theme this week here on NAF. Posts leading to other posts on our blog, and linking to posts on other blogs that discuss similar ideas. I’ve also been made aware of even more posts that dealt with “my” topic of the dissension between Christian writers—all “coincidentally” going up around the same time.
Even yesterday, Robynn brought in a different topic—that of reading your Bible if you’re going to be writing Christian fiction. I read her post right after reading Mike Duran’s post from the same day, “When is Fiction False Doctrine.” Another coincidence.
I don’t believe in coincidence, though.
Topics like these seem to come through in waves. I’m on a couple of Yahoo loops for writers, including that for The Lost Genre Guild. Someone recently brought up the topic of cursing in Christian fiction. Another member replied by saying that the cursing discussion makes its rounds about once a year and never gets resolved. Same goes for magic in Christian fiction, sexual situations, violence, etc. Those topics seem to get discussed in several places at once.
Now sure, some of it can be blamed on one person posting, then someone else seeing it and posting on their own blog, and so on. But the topic always hits when people are hot to discuss it. That is more than coincidence.
It’s happening on a bigger scale, too. There have been handfuls of speculative novels/authors over the past few decades that could be considered “Christian”—but it has only been in the past few years that it’s coming into being as a genre all its own. That happened because Christian writers all over the globe are writing it, all of us starting into it at around the same time.
C.S. Lakin touched on this when she did a guest blog post here on NAF. I love, love, love how she puts it: “…I saw how many writers were starting to also write fantasy for the Christian market. It was if we all had gotten the memo and were doing what we were told, although there were no ‘signs’ that anyone would buy what we wrote.”
Combine that with the fact that several small presses have sprung to life in the past few years—presses solely focused on Christian speculative fiction. The two main ones that I know of are Splashdown Books and Marcher Lord Press. Others like Written World Communications and Port Yonder Press are giving a good share of their focus to Christian or Christian-friendly spec-fic. There are other small ones out there as well, springing up here and there.
There’s more to this story, too, folks. It’s not just this stuff starting like little seeds all over. That’s a cool thing, but the miracle is in the finding of the seeds. Writers of this genre are finding each other, despite physical distance and differing lifestyles. It’s almost like we’re tiny magnetic chips that have been scattered about, all drawn to each other.
NAF is a good example of that. Despite the fact that Keven started with the idea of making it solely for the MLP Premise contestants, we’ve all somehow shown up in places on the web where we’ve come into contact with each other and clicked. For me, it has been less about actively searching for places to meet fellow Christian spec-fic writers and more about simply searching for places for writers in general—and then I’m immediately led to groups centered around my genre. I’ve mentioned this to several of my writer friends and they have all agreed with me….
The whole thing feels…orchestrated.