Interesting Article on Christians and Fantasy

An interesting article about the current difficulties of the efforts to write Christian Fantasy:

The real reason that Christians don’t read fantasy

There’s been an ongoing discussion in the Christian speculative-fiction community about why nobody can sell books. This discussion has gone on for years. “Look at our awesome fantasy!” authors cry. “Look at our amazing science fiction! Why doesn’t anybody want to read it?”

The Christians don’t want to read it, and the non-Christians don’t want to read it. So a lot of head-scratching goes on in the community. “What are we doing wrong?”

Read more…

  • Foxfier

    ….Stuff without needless sex, swearing and blood is “kid stuff”?

    Gee, can’t imagine why they’re not having success with that definition.

    I guess I’ll go read that totally violence free fantasy series about a cursed ring, some Hobbits and such. Which is totally full of heavy handed moralizing.

    /end droll

    Maybe the problem is that they don’t do a very good job of it? View explicit good and evil as ‘heavy handed moralizing’? Commit that literary sin that Lewis warned about where ‘adult’ is a term of approval, rather than a description?
    The Wizard in Rhyme series was explicitly Christian until beaten to death by the publisher in the last book, where it got kind of muddled; it was also fun, honest, sweet…..

  • Foxfier

    It’s relatively easy to have a message and wrap a story around it, forcing the story to say the message; it’s a lot harder to do like Lewis and Tolkien did, and make a world that carries the message.
    One’s bad story telling that a lot of folks, but especially those into fantasy and scifi (This week, in a Very Special Episode, we’re going to make the characters you like do stuff that violate their established characteristics, and the less popular the format of the show the more obvious it’s going to be…..) are going to be aware of and react unpleasantly to.

  • Fredösphere

    “[D]rop the Christian moniker and just write pure speculative fiction” sounds like what Tim Powers has been doing all along, quite successfully too. I thought it odd his name didn’t come up in that (otherwise spot-on) article.