I didn’t start out writing Christian fiction. My first bumbling efforts at writing novels were filled with all the things I now proudly tell people are NOT in my books–bad language and explicit sex scenes. Anyway, I can tell you I am so thankful I wasn’t published until I made the switch to writing Christian Fiction.
So what exactly is Christian Fiction? The answer to that question is as varied as the books you’ll find when you search the genre Christian Fiction. A few years ago a preacher I was listening to gave this definition for a parable:
It’s an earthly story with a heavenly message.
As soon as I heard that definition, it resonated with me. That’s the way I view Christian fiction–an earthly story with a heavenly message. Or in the case of science fiction it might be an-out-of-this-world story but it still has that heavenly message!
So, what’s the heavenly message? Again, there are lots of choices. Most of my stories seem to focus on God’s love; forgiving others; and living out the Golden rule. I don’t limit myself to those themes, it just seems to work out that way most of the time.
I’m not much for following rules, but I do have a few as I write. First absolutely NO bad language, NO explicit sex scenes; and NO premarital sex (though a character make reference to it but always as a regret or a mistake.) Most of my characters are Christians at various stages on their walk with God. Some may not be actively following their faith at the beginning of the story, but as the story progresses, so does their faith.
So, I’m not just a writer, I’m a Christian writer. And I’m not just a Christian writer, I’m a Christian Fiction writer, and for me that means something. Just as the title Christian means something. Taking the title of Christian Fiction writer means I will write in such a way as to be God’s ambassador to my readers.
Sounds a bit lofty and even arrogant, doesn’t it?
As someone said (I think it was JFK) we’re either part of the problem or part of the solution. I choose to be part of the solution with the stories I write. There’s so much darkness in this world, I want to add some light. So even though I write mysteries and suspense stories, they have a message of faith, hope and love.
And that’s how I derived my tagline: Lillian Duncan…stories of faith mingled with murder & mayhem!