Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Why We Write What We Write

I taught a workshop a few weeks back, and one of the ladies asked me why I write inspirational. I told her that my fiction reflects my world view and is an extension of who I am as a person.

Later, I thought a lot about that question. Why do I write what I write? The fact is, I've never considered writing my calling and I didn't set out to write Christian fiction. It just kind of happened while I was working on my first book. As I've mentioned before, I never set out to be a romantic suspense author, either. That just kind of happened to me, too.

But in life, things don't ever just happen, do they? They happen for a reason and are shaped by divine plan. If you're not a Christian and reading this, you may think I'm bonkers. However, my philosophy of life isn't just a Christian based idea. It stems from the soul of every human being. Even atheist want purpose in their lives. Without purpose, life has no meaning.

Which brings me back to the question of why I write Christian romantic suspense. I think the best answer I can give to that is - because it is what I'm good at, it is what I love, it is part of who I am. I write it because it allows me to create entertaining stories that offer a 'clean' alternative to mainstream romantic suspense. I write it because I will never have to feel embarrassed when my children read it. I write it because I could read a chapter of it in front of my church without embarrassment. I write it because the longer I've been writing, the more I've come to realize that what I do is being used as ministry in God's way and His time. I may not set out to touch hearts and minds, but somehow it has happened. I can not turn my back on that.

Purpose? Plan? Passion? What do you write and why?


Sabrina L. Fox said...

I know I could never write something that I wouldn't want my church to read. I'd feel so ashamed. And I've often thought if I could touch someone...if I could bring someone closer to God...that would be such a blessing to me.

Shirlee McCoy said...

I agree, Sabrina. And you'll get there!

I also have a heart to touch thouse who aren't Christians. It would be awesome to write books with faith based themes that go out to a wider audience. One of the things I've discovered is that when you're an inspirational author, you become an INSPIRATIONAL author. That automatically limits your audience to those who share the same world view. Think of the difference between Tracey Peterson and Debbie Macomber. One is a well known inspirational author. One is a well known author who is a Christian. I think God calls each of us to a different path. I've yet to decide which one I'm supposed to take!