Jump to content

Should Christians write Fiction with Magical Protagonists?


Recommended Posts

First off, I have to say that I'm very much into fantasy and I'm (mostly) a fan of Harry Potter.  Although, full disclosure, I never read books 6 & 7 because I felt the series was turning too dark after the events in Order of the Phoenix.  I do know the general storylines of both books, but never read them.

 

In my own writing, I have definitely incorporated the Wizarding World of Harry Potter as part of my giant crossover-happy fanfiction series and many of my protagonists are wizards/witches themselves.

 

Now...with that intro...  I do draw a firm line between magic in the Real World and the magic of fantasy.  I know that the Bible has firm prohibitions against the use of witchcraft and other occult practices; I have no wish to ever cross that line in my life.

 

On the flip side, I've never seen a problem with having magical heroes in a story, whether Christian or secular - my view has been that if the Lord created a world where magic was common, then He would have the same Ten Commandments we have in the Bible, but would only single out the darkest, most demonic of magicks for His particular wrath.

 

However, I've recently come across some folks that view any magic - even fictional magic - with the greatest of suspicion.  They hold the opinion that even the 'good magic' in fiction is still evil and thus can entice readers/viewers into exploring the occult.  I otherwise respect the views that these individuals hold, so it triggered a debate in my mind as to what is right/moral for me, as a Christian writer, to include in my stories.  I did some hunting around on the Internet, searching specifically for the topic of Christians writing/reading fantasy, and I stumbled across an article about how C. S. Lewis and J. R. R. Tolkien handled magic in their books.

 

I hope I'm not breaking any rules (would hate to do that within a week of joining), but I don't think I can summarize the article and do it justice, so here's the link to it.  The Morals of Magic

 

Up until now, I have always seen my stories as something the Lord gifted to me.  The ideas and storylines may come from my mind, but I have always felt that He inspired them and delights in my meager efforts to lift these same stories back up to him as seed to be scattered.  As my fanfiction stories are (like Harry Potter) based in a fictional version of our world, I have, from time to time, tried to nail down how it might work if a Muggleborn wizard came from a Christian home.

 

I don't intend to stop writing, but I would like to get some input from fellow Christians on this debate.

 

My secondary question would be: If magical protagonists are acceptable in a Christian work of fiction, where would you draw the line of what is not acceptable?

 

For instance, I am still coming up with ideas, characters, and concepts for what might eventually be an original work of fiction, but I have been considering a character that would be styled after my World of Warcraft main avatar (for anyone familiar with that game, she's a Draenei Death Knight).

 

In brief, all Death Knights in WoW are heroes that fell in combat against a very powerful necromancer (the Lich King) and were involuntarily raised into his service.  While under his control, they do commit several atrocities, but eventually break free from his control and return to their respective factions as heroes once more.  However, they remain undead with very dark abilities and that's just in-game.

 

I did (and still do) like the storyline of the Death Knights - heroes who fell, only to return to the light, but would a Death Knight-type character cross the line of what's acceptable for a Christian writer?

 

My apologies for the very lengthy post, but if I don't get it all out now, I fear I may lose my nerve and not ask, even though these questions are part of why I chose to join this forum.

 

Thank you all for reading and I look forward to any replies.

 

Keep the Peace,

sunstarunicorn

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Personally (and this is just me), I'd be on the side of, "All witchcraft is bad no matter what label you give it." Whether it's black magic or white magic (if that's even a thing...might not be), I don't agree with it. I never was allowed to read Harry Potter growing up, and I only know of LOTR and Chronicles of Narnia from it being passed around so much in Christian circles. But I think that this is something you should really pray about. And I mean really pray about. If the Holy Spirit is convicting you a different direction than what I believe, then do so.

 

Hoping that made sense...getting late at night haha.

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'll take a stab at this with a few ideas to consider, this is only my opinion and it is meant for consideration not condemnation.

 

I've heard a few people tell me that as people who did not grow up in a Christian household and had no early influence of the Bible or Christianity have found hints of subtle Christian ideals in the Harry Potter books, but then the books do not claim to be Christian fiction.

 

So the question you ask is can Magic and God really mix, I would say that is like trying to mix oil and water. Initially they may look like they mix together, but eventually they will separate. If the protagonist started out with magic, but then lost the ability when they came to believe in God, that would be one thing, but for a protagonist to be using magic while in communion with God would be doing something under a power that is greater than themselves, but not of God and the only other power that can do that is in opposition to God.

 

The only way anyone in Communion with God could achieve anything beyond human capabilities is through the power of God and therefore any other magic would be considered sorcery regardless of how harmless or positive it might be. If you were to write a novel with Christian ideals, but not call it Christian Fiction, then who could complain, but any work written under the 'Christian'  banner would be expected to at least meet certain criteria and I have my doubts that people performing magic will ever be considered acceptable if the protagonist is supposed to be a believer or associated with God.. Ultimately, the question would be regardless of your intention and your reason for writing the story, people would probably see it as are you trying to persuade people that they can be a believer and still perform magic/witchcraft/sorcery. 

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

14 hours ago, sunstarunicorn said:

I never read books 6 & 7 because I felt the series was turning too dark after the events in Order of the Phoenix

Rowling went from writing middle-grade (MG) fiction to Young Adult (YA) in that series, so it did get darker and darker. But thank you for making me realize that the only reason I watch Order to the end is because I have grown to care about the characters deeply, and have to make sure they'll be okay, (although obviously they won't ever be the same again...if it were nonfiction.) I'm not against magic in fiction, because it's fiction. I don't like too-dark because I don't like too-dark. 

 

14 hours ago, sunstarunicorn said:

However, I've recently come across some folks that view any magic - even fictional magic - with the greatest of suspicion.  They hold the opinion that even the 'good magic' in fiction is still evil and thus can entice readers/viewers into exploring the occult. 

Just recently? Good for you. I've been hearing that argument directly related to Harry Potter since 2000, when The Onion, (Harvard's lampoon), joked about it, and way too many Christian bought it as if it was a serious article. It's still going on two decades later. My response to it? As soon as I can convince a broom to let me fly by saying Up, I'll start worrying about being drawn into witchcraft. (It hasn't worked yet, however, maybe because I store it sideways, instead of flat on the ground. 😊)

 

14 hours ago, sunstarunicorn said:

My secondary question would be: If magical protagonists are acceptable in a Christian work of fiction, where would you draw the line of what is not acceptable?

Has God ever given us permission to kind of sin versus fully sin? The line is simple. "Is it sin?" If the Bible doesn't talk about it as sin, then it's not sin. The Bible doesn't mention raspberries or chocolate, so neither is sin. Whereas you see the Ten Commandments, I see most of the rest of Exodus through Deuteronomy as test cases for those same Ten Commandments. It's not just that stealing is sin, so don't. It's also what you owe the person you sinned against. In great detail.

 

We just went through is writing fiction sin and agreed it wasn't. I bet if we asked if writing erotica was sin, we'd have consensus on the other side of that answer.

 

As for magic in stories? My story is about Philadelphia stuffed animals learning how to live on their own. If that's not magic, I don't know what is. And, if that's not enough, they also have clairvoyance and some of the ability to put others to sleep. Also has to be magic.

 

Should I not write it because it has magic in it? Be careful when you answer that, because if you say that's okay, there is no difference, according to God's word between that and writing fiction with wizards. Magic is magic and fiction is fiction. (Real magic bad. Fiction fun. Although fiction has the capability to be bad or good.)

 

I'm a legalist. I know that really means I don't trust God enough so I believe if I live just right... (Never did get the rest of that sentence, but I do get legalism is not trusting God enough.) Legalists are also the people who have decided that others should not act in a certain way that has nothing to do with the Bible, and everything to do with feeling puffed up because they don't sin in that one area. (Example: Don't write fiction about magic, because I would never do that. Granted, I would never do that for the same reason I wouldn't rob a bank. It's simply something not in me to do.)

 

So, go for it, and know the only line is don't write what is against God's Law. Not Man's Short List. (Short List is when we skip the Ten Commandments to create a list for everyone, because those are the things we wouldn't, or shouldn't do, so no one else should either. In this case the example is "Don't drink, because I struggle with alcoholism." That's a good reason the short lister shouldn't drink, but not something all people shouldn't do. Short listing is what Jesus had against the Pharisees.)

 

  • Thanks 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I do.

 

In a fantasy setting, there is no limit to how God might have done things differently than how He did them in our universe. God has the authority over everything, so why is it odd to think that he might do things differently in some other universe?

 

The spirit behind the use of magic is really the question here. If one has been given the supernatural spiritual gift of tangible healing and uses it for the glory of God and to grow the Kingdom of God, how is it any different than a character in a fantasy setting using the "magic" of healing, if they do for the glory of God?
 

Using witchcraft or black magic to harm someone in our world is the same as it being done in a fantasy universe. It dishonors and wounds the heart of God; it is a sinful behavior. Witchcraft/ black magic are just uses of supernatural spiritual "gifts" - just not from the Spirit of God; it is harnessing the spirit of the enemy for his uses against God.

 

Bottom line: if you view all forms of "magic" as evil and sinful, then by no means should you include it in a positive way in your writing that is meant to honor God. But if you view "good magic" as supernatural spiritual gifts and then portray it in a way that glorifies God, then there is no reason that I can see why you should not use it.

  • Thanks 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

First off, thank you all for the feedback so far.

 

41 minutes ago, Spaulding said:

We just went through is writing fiction sin and agreed it wasn't. I bet if we asked if writing erotica was sin, we'd have consensus on the other side of that answer.

 

@Spaulding, I did see that thread (actually, that thread popped up in my Duckduckgo search and is how I found this site).  I did consider adding my questions to the thread, but finally decided to make a new thread because I didn't want to derail the 'Is Writing Fiction Sin?' thread.

 

I definitely agree that there are topics and genres that no Christian should get involved in and those areas (at least to me) seem clear.  Easy to see from a block away, so to speak.  Fantasy magic has always been one of my gray areas, perhaps because I've grown up enjoying it so much.

 

25 minutes ago, Joshua Benefiel said:

Witchcraft/ black magic are just uses of supernatural spiritual "gifts" - just not from the Spirit of God; it is harnessing the spirit of the enemy for his uses against God.

 

No arguments here on black magic - anyone who uses it is a villain at best and a demon/demon-possessed at worst.

 

1 hour ago, Amosathar said:

If you were to write a novel with Christian ideals, but not call it Christian Fiction, then who could complain, but any work written under the 'Christian'  banner would be expected to at least meet certain criteria and I have my doubts that people performing magic will ever be considered acceptable if the protagonist is supposed to be a believer or associated with God.

 

I suspect people can complain about anything if they look long enough and hard enough at it, but I understand your point.  On one hand, it seems a shame to me, but on the other, I can see the wisdom in erring on the side of caution.  And - if I ever get beyond my fanfiction series - maybe my writing could be a subtle witness to the world, much like C. S. Lewis and J. R. R. Tolkien.  I know I'm not as good as them and probably never will be, but that would be something to aspire to, right?

 

Anyway, thank you again everyone for giving me a lot of food for thought.  And if anyone else wants to chime in, please do.

 

Keep the Peace.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

12 hours ago, Ky_GirlatHeart said:

I never was allowed to read Harry Potter growing up

I wasn't allowed to read it either. My mother drew from

Deuteronomy 18: 10 - 14 "Let no one be found among you who sacrifices their son or daughter in the fire, who practices divination or sorcery, interprets omens, engages in witchcraft, or casts spells, or who is a medium or spiritist or who consults the dead. Anyone who does these things is detestable to the LORD; because of these same detestable practices the LORD your God will drive out those nations before you. You must be blameless before the LORD your God. The nations you will dispossess listen to those who practice sorcery or divination. But as for you, the LORD your God has not permitted you to do so."

 

However, I was allowed to read chronicles of Narnia. 🤷🏼‍♀️ Seemed a bit contradicting if you ask me. I think the main focus would be where does the power come from? Do you explain that in your novel? Think about the apostles, Moses, all the prophets in the Bible. To a non-believer, that would be magic. Healing, parting the Red Sea, and for a lack of a better term: clairvoyance or prophecy as we like to call it. I believe, in fiction, that magic can be woven into a story that supports Biblical teachings. I believe supernatural powers, both demonic and angelic/Godly exist. In your writing how do you depict what is good and what is evil. Again this is fiction, but I am in of the opinion that if your a believer, you need to make sure your writing if based in Biblical principles. It doesn't have scream "I am a Christian." But I think you should really do what @Ky_GirlatHeart said, and pray and really listen to God. 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

    About ten years ago I wrote a vampire novella titled "Sangreville".  Due to much of the content and language, it's one writing I would not be posting here on christianwriters.com.  though I do consider chapter ten to be among my finest pieces of writing.  

    The story's about a vampire town, just outside a "Demon's Gateway".  In this town many of the vampires engage in biting and killing as an act of sacrifice to a demon Goddess named Vampirania. 

    Some of those who they'd bitten and become vampires, later became Born Again Christian Vampires, who only drink pigs blood.  They attend Sunday Night Worship at the First Presbyterian Church of Vampires.  They are among the good guys and gals, who decide to shut the demon's gateway, and shut out Vampirania. 

    Does this sound okay, theologically? 

     

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Same as Ky and Rachel, I was never allowed to read Harry Potter, and was never really interested in doing so.  However, I also was allowed to read Chronicles of Narnia, and have been slowly working my way through the series for a couple years.  I don't think my parents would have a problem with me reading Lord of the Rings either, I just haven't gotten around to it yet.  We all enjoyed the movies very much though!

 

I lean more toward the feelings of "witchcraft is evil because it is condemned in the Bible", mainly because that's how I was brought up.  I dunno, I'm really no good at answering these deep morality questions 😆 I try, but usually I end up just rambling.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

My current WIP has a "magical protagonist."  I just finished Chapter 19 today, and started in on Chapter 20.  It's a different work from the one I'm about to publish.

 

The answer is a qualified, "yes."   There are stipulations, and comes down to a matter of power.  Hence, why I say the reason is "qualified."

 

In the world I've created, power is granted from "On High," meaning that power is granted from God.  In fact, my protagonist is given such power, and it is an integral part of the story.  The other theme I'm incorporating is that such power comes with a large measure of responsibility.  The latter I define as an unspoken rule in both my current work The Revenant and the Tomb, as well as the current WIP.

 

In all cases, magic is power.  God hates the consolidation of power, and the Bible relates stories of how men with power are often corrupted by that power, going all the way back to the Tower of Babel, King Saul, King David, and so on.

 

Fantasy is a genre that allows us to talk about very concepts in a broad way, and that is a good thing, I think.  But you need to make sure that how you implement these concepts isn't simply a means to an end.  Things like "magic," needs to be integrated in a way that has a greater meaning to the mess age you're trying to convey.

 

 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 hours ago, William D'Andrea said:

Does this sound okay, theologically? 

I suspect it depends on who you ask. I also suspect you can guess my answer. Theologically? Considering you weren't writing it to steer others into a life of biting people and sucking out their blood, I see no theological problem with it.

 

From the girl who grew up on Dark Shadows, and then watched Buffy and Angel three times all the way through, oddly enough it is now too-dark for me. Too-dark is purely personal opinion. A matter of taste. (No pun intended.) But I absolutely love the idea of born-again vamps. Even better than Angel. (The TV series. Not the messengers from God.)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I should also note that any powers my protagonists receive means they are hereby subservient to the direct Will of God.  For example, my Halsedric character - who is risen by God (minor spoiler) - is also now a direct implement in following the dictates from "On High."  Meaning his life is no longer his to do as he wishes.  All his days are dedicated to God until such time his service ends.  

 

So, your life is no longer your own in any conceivable way.  That, I think, is something that is Biblically sound.  Just as Moses was dedicated entirely to the Children of Israel as they fled Egypt, and wandered for 40 years until they were allowed into the Promised Land.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 minutes ago, Spaulding said:

Off-topic:

@Grey_Skies YAY! Good to see you. No matter how you feel today, that you're on here responding means you'll be okay whether it is or isn't COVID. (Maybe still sicker than a dog, but it won't kill you.)

Thanks, @Spaulding!  Yes, feeling a bit better, still pretty tired though.  I'll probably read a little bit and take a nap.  Not going to kick the bucket just yet, praise the Lord.

  • Like 4
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

In my fantasy series, doing whatever separates you from a relationship with the Creator is taking you off the path (sin). Magic is manipulation of elements without a connection to the Creator.  

 

I love writing fantasy because worldbuilding can hightlight the social themes of your story. 

 

C.S Lewis, God in the Docks, Foust Publishing, i979 supported the mythopedic nature of creation stories as truth within a story that "the savage, the child, and poet,," can understand as well as " the moralist, the scholar, and the philosopher."

 

Christian Fantasy needs tio reveal Christian truth or it is not Christian Fantasy. 

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm loving the seriousness and politeness of this conversation. Good for you, @sunstarunicorn for wanting to submit your writing to God's kingdom even if it were to mean giving up a genre you love. 

The article you shared from Catholic Answers was insightful, but I found it missed some additional points. One of the marks of real world magic versus worlds like Harry's is the "occult" aspect.
 https://www.gotquestions.org/occult.html has some good things to watch for that we need to be wary of.

When I first risked reading Harry Potter as a YA, I got scared that what had seemed harmless would end up being too close to the real deal for comfort with his fortune telling class. But Rowling handled it far more like a blend of naturalistic charlatan trickery combined with the way God speaks involuntarily to his prophets. She even went out of her way to have Trelawny unaware she had ever given a real prediction, so she wasn't tempted by its power the way a shaman would be.

Harry uses spells, yes. But he uses them in the exact same way I use my keyboard shortcuts to get around Word or my key to start my car. They are word-based skills that use a tool to accomplish the same kinds of things we do in our "Muggle" world. Rowling goes out of her way to point this aspect of her world out: they don't have electricity, etc. because the magic does the same thing

Harry has an unusual gift. So do I. Most people aren't as good with words as I am--in fact, I find myself tempted to look down on others the same way many looked at Muggles. I'm terrible at hanging onto numbers in my head, the way a squib might be. Rowling's magic forms a fun shorthand for normal human experience. All the dark stuff is in the hands of those who are evil, and nothing she presents is worse than the real world produces.

 

Long story short. When I'm working with the supernatural, I would expect it to follow the laws of God.

And, may I be so bold as to say:

 

We Christians are all "magicians."

 

How? In this sense: Oxford Dictionaries, Magic: "the power of apparently influencing the course of events by using mysterious or supernatural forces" Our prayers are "magic." Our attitudes are "magic." Those led by the Holy Spirit are supernaturally controlled beings to do extraordinary things many deem impossible. 

 

If I choose to create a story that puts the responsibility, danger, and power of this kind of extra-worldly ability into the hands of my protagonist, it becomes a form of allegory. In fact, if I were to write my own fantasy someday (not likely, feel free to borrow), I would probably give the magical 'stuff'--ala "the Force" or "Kelar" (from Robin McKinley)--sentience, or at least its source, so the Source could receive his proper worship.

 

PS Yes, the 6th and 7th HP books are dark, but they are my favorites for the heroism, compassion, and relationships they highlight. Try them, you might like them, and you'll find out why Harry was such a jerk in the 5th.

Edited by Celebrianne
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think some of an answer to your question depends upon the circumstances. For example, much of what we consider technology today would seem like magic to people a couple hundred years ago, maybe less than that. Flying in a big piece of metal? Couldn't be done. Must be magic. Putting a severed finger back into a hand and letting it heal? Couldn't be done. Must be magic. Cooking meat without a fire? Talking to someone on the other side of the world? Walking on the moon? All that stuff must be magic.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I agree. In worldbuilding magic, often there is practical magic and elemental magic systems.   Practical magic is manitulating objects ( your examples) and elemental is transforming them beyond their innate properties.  

 

The Bible is full of passages refuting magic to demonstrate God's power.  Christian Fantasy has the same opportunity. In my books I have the distiction that "The Faithful" have spiritual gifts or inherited family traits that are used for the glory of God while the Wizards use it for their own a

gendas and self glorification.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi @sunstarunicorn. It's nice to meet you.

 

On 11/13/2021 at 8:55 AM, sunstarunicorn said:

And - if I ever get beyond my fanfiction series - maybe my writing could be a subtle witness to the world, much like C. S. Lewis and J. R. R. Tolkien. 

 

As a former fanfiction writer myself, I urge you to pray about doing so. What I discovered with fanfiction, personally, was that I was using the gift of writing talent, which God gave me, for something that could never serve Him, since my writing was tied to secular work. And further tied to another person's, at that. Though your mileage and God's leading on your life will vary, of course!

 

In regards to magic, I think we can see from this discussion that there are a lot of opinions on the topic. It kinds of reminds me about the discussion in Romans 14, about which foods (including food that had been sacrificed to idols and then sold) was appropriate for Christians to eat. Paul's words basically boiled down to:

 

1) Do not sin against your conscience

2) Do not make a brother or sister in Christ uncomfortable or lead them into struggling with sinning against their conscience, because of what you eat in front of them

 

As I said above, everyone's personal walk will vary. Some Christians may be comfortable with a a certain amount of magic in their stories and some may not be. What is important is that we seek God's will in what we use to entertain us and do not sin against our consciences or against His commands and promptings.

 

Personally, I have stayed away from HP and embraced Narnia and LOTR. What it boils down to for me is the author's intent.

 

Lewis (Narnia) was writing Biblical allegory. Tolkien (LOTR) was writing a alternate mythological history of earth that still fits within a Christian worldview. While he does not write direct allegory, his discussion of good and evil, the nature of humanity as sinful, and his ideas of divine providence are all distinctly Christian. He even brings up the necessity of a sinless messiah to save the fallen world. Rowling (HP) on the other hand, was just writing a story about kid wizards growing up and saving the world from the dark lord.

 

"Saving the world from the dark [person]" shows up in parts of Narnia and Middle-Earth as well, but that's not all there is. There's more there. More there that purposely points to God and the necessity of Jesus' sacrifice. That's the difference for me.

Edited by PenName
  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

https://lorehaven.com/magazines/winter-2019/how-do-we-discern-good-and-bad-magic/

This article popped up this morning! Just in time! 

 

On 11/12/2021 at 5:58 PM, sunstarunicorn said:

My apologies for the very lengthy post, but if I don't get it all out now, I fear I may lose my nerve and not ask, even though these questions are part of why I chose to join this forum.

I forgive you for not knowing us very well. Stick around and you'll see that we love a good debate, try very hard to be respectful, and have loving moderators who warn us when we are getting unruly. You have given us a rip-roaring question and we are grateful! I hope your nerve keeps getting an airing!

On 11/13/2021 at 8:39 AM, Amosathar said:

the question would be regardless of your intention and your reason for writing the story

 

17 hours ago, PenName said:

What it boils down to for me is the author's intent.

Thank you Amosathar and PenName for raising this point. With the caveat that we can intend such lovely things that turn out to be very unhealthy. You, Sunstarunicorn, are doing a good thing by engaging with the community, praying diligently and watching for God's fingerprints. Wash your intent through the Word and through community. Be open to contradiction and growth. Iron sharpens Iron.

For myself, I chose not to include any magic in my SciFi Fantasy Leoshine. Humans are complicated enough, subtle enough without embellishment. Suspensewriter will explain to you why it is a combination of SciFi AND Fantasy. (He is much cleverer than me.)

I do write about dragons, fairies, wind and fire sprites on Medium. They are God's creatures and the good ones acknowledge Him as their Master, Father. They are Types, examples of humans doing story in a colourful disguise. Examples of God's creative imagination. Examples of a world we will see when the veil of sin is removed from our eyes.

Edited by Nicola
Forgot to explain the link
  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think one thing needs to be considered when having this discussion, and that is if magic really exists.

 

I'm of the opinion that magic, curses, the Evil Eye is all hokum - it doesn't exist.  The occult (as we know it), dark rites and all that are as much fantasy as the stories I write.  This is separate from things like seances and trying to contact the dead, which has been written about in the Bible, and where anecdotal evidence shows that there may be some merit to this existing.

 

But black magic, spells, curses, love potions, and Nostradamus gazing for hours in his bowl of water is nothing more than words and actions, and bad beliefs.  Hence, the reason why God warns against their practice.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  

On 11/13/2021 at 10:20 PM, Celebrianne said:

I'm loving the seriousness and politeness of this conversation. Good for you, @sunstarunicorn for wanting to submit your writing to God's kingdom even if it were to mean giving up a genre you love.

 

I wish I were as noble as you're portraying me, @Celebrianne.   😆

 

It definitely is my goal to write for the benefit of the Lord's kingdom, but also for my own enjoyment.  But speaking honestly, if I had to give up writing Fantasy, then I really wouldn't have anything to write at all.  And since I grew up reading Narnia, Lord of the Rings, and Harry Potter (and lots of fanfiction from all of the above), I don't know if I could write fantasy without incorporating elements of magic - and if there's magic, my nature is such that it's almost inevitable that the protagonist will have some magic.

 

This is how I ended up writing a whole big series centered around a totally non-magical cop drama and, well...  They all ended up with some form of magic, to varying degrees.  Didn't even originally plan on it, but that's how the series 'wanted' to go.

 

16 hours ago, PenName said:

As a former fanfiction writer myself, I urge you to pray about doing so. What I discovered with fanfiction, personally, was that I was using the gift of writing talent, which God gave me, for something that could never serve Him, since my writing was tied to secular work. And further tied to another person's, at that.

 

I hear you, @PenName; fanfiction by its nature is attached to another person's work and typically very secular.  And you may be right that it's difficult/impossible to truly serve Him by writing fanfiction.

 

I don't intend to write fanfiction forever.  I do, very much, want to eventually write Original Fiction.  However, when I first started seriously writing, I lacked the ability to really world-build; it was easier for me to take existing fandoms and play in those established sandboxes with existing characters that I already knew (and loved).

 

If nothing else, writing fanfiction provided me with the opportunity to gain experience, develop new skills, and begin coming up with my own story ideas.  When I started, I was good at coming up with twists to existing storylines (what would change if this character hadn't gotten shot in the season finale, for instance), but my own unique stories were fairly short, simple, and sometimes based on other fanfiction stories I'd read.  The longer I write, the more my original stories take center stage; there's a world of difference between the stories I wrote for Season 1 and the stories I'm now writing for Season 5 (and I praise the Lord for all of these stories).

 

I will leave aside the question of whether my stories serve the Lord - I've dedicated them to Him and I believe they do, even as fanfiction, but I'm naturally very biased as the author.

 

2 minutes ago, Nicola said:

https://lorehaven.com/magazines/winter-2019/how-do-we-discern-good-and-bad-magic/

This article popped up this morning! Just in time! 

 

Thank you for the article, @Nicola; I haven't had a chance to read it yet, but I have it open in a new tab for when I have time to give it the attention it deserves.

 

4 minutes ago, Nicola said:

I forgive you for not knowing us very well. Stick around and you'll see that we love a good debate, try very hard to be respectful, and have loving moderators who warn us when we are getting unruly. You have given us a rip-roaring question and we are grateful! I hope your nerve keeps getting an airing!

 

Thank you for your ready pardon; even in the most friendly, welcoming of environments, I am naturally very shy and prone to stick to the nearest wall like glue.  It takes time (or a very pressing question on my heart) to pry me away from my safe vantage and into any sort of conversation.

 

6 minutes ago, Nicola said:
On 11/13/2021 at 9:39 AM, Amosathar said:

the question would be regardless of your intention and your reason for writing the story

 

17 hours ago, PenName said:

What it boils down to for me is the author's intent.

Thank you Amosathar and PenName for raising this point. With the caveat that we can intend such lovely things that turn out to be very unhealthy.

 

Copy that - the road to hell is often paved with good intentions.  I hope and pray that my writing won't fall into that trap, but I always know that 'there but for the grace of God go I'.

 

My intention is for my writing and my stories to bring glory to God, magic, wizards, witches, and all.  Fanfiction and Original.  Is that possible?  I think it is, though it's hard for me to be completely sure.

 

Thank you again to everyone who's provided input and helped me sharpen my writing iron.  For those coming along behind this post, if you'd rather make my post a comma instead of a period, please feel free to chime in.

 

Keep the Peace, ya'll.  🤠

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.