This past week I explained my foundation of belief so what does this have to do with my writing and my novels? I use this foundation, my life foundation, for all my stories and characters. I think all creative people use their values as a starting point for making art. The most authentic art comes from being true to oneself.
I write from love, humanity, respect, peace,and home with an under current of Christianity. I tackle the things that some Christian authors avoid. I address the gritty and ugly that comes with being a human. Then I show how these things in the light of love, respect, peace, and dignity. I have characters who live in such a way that the reader can see the person’s values.
The reason my novels are not classified as Christian Fiction despite the fact that I have Christian themes and strong characters is that I don’t force Christianity out through the words. I let it evolve in the lives of my characters just as it does in the lives of real people. The Perdido Key novels are full of people who learn and grow as they move through life’s chaos and deal with very real situations. My writings have something for everyone and are enjoyed by Christians and non Christians regardless of their beliefs.
Publishers and readers alike have difficulty placing Lori O’Gara’s novels in one genre. She is a Christian writer who writes about subjects that other Christian writers often avoid. She has no problem tackling drug addiction, sex or other subjects that are often thought of as taboo for Christian writers. “The thing is sex and addiction are real life things that even Christians have to deal with.” she says “Why should we Christian writers be scared to write about it?”
Lori continues by explaining that even though the subjects are often avoided by Christians she will continue to write about real life issues. “We shouldn’t go through life with blinders on. We should face life and deal with it.”
In her first novel, We Will Get There, she writes about alcoholism and pre-marital sex. She does so in such a way that is tasteful, but realistic. She offers two sides of both issues in the way different characters deal with them.
What do you think? Should Christian authors avoid writing about certain sinful subjects?
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I found this quote on social media. When I read it I shouted, “yes that is it.” That is why I can’t fit my novels and words in a nice neat genre box. It is a struggle that myself and other writers have to contend with every time we sit at the keys to write. We all have stories and words spinning in our souls that we must release in to the world. Often those stories do not line up perfectly with convention. Add to the mix the Christian or other moral values of the writer and the societal narrative can get thread bare and distorted. We, as writers and readers should not allow society to mandate how we reflect the world in writing or in how we choose what we read.
My hope is that with my writing I create a framework to flip reality on it’s head and force ideas that question conventional thought. Yes I am a Christian. My thinking is simple. Jesus was a radical and I believe I can be one too.