This was an amazing read, for me as a Christian author. It refreshed some things I knew and taught me some things I didn't know. To start off with, Mr. Gerke focused on the spiritual backbone of writing. I found this section very refreshing. Who are you writing for? What is your motive? Who do you hope to reach?
From there, he covered many aspects from the approach to the craft of writing. One point that helped me was: how to think of yourself as a writer (you're more of a filmmaker than a campfire storyteller). As I was reading the book, I kept thinking of different writer friends (in different points of their writing knowledge) that I know would benefit from the book.
There were, of course, many examples given to portray what Mr. Gerke was teaching. One in particular did not appeal to me (he was explaining how to portray a vile character without using language, and I found the example defiling). Because of this, the conservative teen might want to beware.
"...Good fiction represents how God works with mankind."
"Don't mention something about a character that you don't come back to later."
About the Book
Let's face it: Christian fiction is fun. Even if you're writing a serious-minded study of man's inhumanity to man, there is something exhilarating about story; about creating people and worlds and events; about telling a tale that keeps readers enraptured and maybe - just maybe - leaves them fortified in their walk with Jesus.
But for all of the fun, it's also hard work. There is skill involved in writing excellent Christian fiction. There is craftsmanship to be learned. And there are the long hours pounding away on a manuscript that, by the time you're done with it, has you convinced it's the worst piece of garbage ever penned by man.
That's not even talking about trying to get your book published. It's a wonder anyone would choose such a way to spend otherwise useful time.
So maybe you put your novel away for awhile. You've tried to do more sensible things with your spare moments. You've attempted to be engaged with workaday matters, laundry, and bills.
But one day, a new story idea will pop into your head or you won't be able to stop hearing the voice of a character demanding to be written about. On that day, you'll be right back where you were, counting the cost of writing Christian fiction — and loving it like nothing else.
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What good books on writing have you read?