While cruising the library I noticed the little tags taped to the edges of most books: African American, mystery,fantasy,faith, etc… It’s that last one that got me. I tend to like my religious books in the nonfiction section. Mainly because Christian fiction tends to be saccharine romance and I don’t do romance. Although, A Killer Among us by Lynette Eason, kept me on the edge of my seat. The exception to that is Christmas novellas, but that’s another post. Photo by Nadeeshx Jayawardana
Sorry, I lost track of my point. Here it is: What makes a book fall into the the Faith/Inspirational fiction genre?
According to Wikipedia, it is a book that…”celebrates God’s presence in out lives… and where God plays a significant roll in the outcome.” Ok, that makes since.
Reason: My WIP is a cozy mystery that has a protagonist that is a Christian and therefore has a positive view of church and does bring up the Bible and or God in a positive light, but only on occasion. My goal wasn’t to write a “Faith” book, it was to write a mystery set in a small town, one that reflected life in a small Southern town. I have had the WIP read in a critique (not CC), a complaint was the reader felt the Christian references weren’t needed.
I know you can’t please everyone, nor do I want to. I understand not reading something because you have an aversion to a particular topic, keeping with this topic, I don’t read books with an anti-Christian agenda. It tends to make me cranky, but if the story is good I have no problem reading a book where the protagonist is not a Christian. I’d say most books are written with no religious identity at all. That’s fine. The flip side is, I don’t like “preachy” Christian fiction. Have I confused you yet.
My problem is: Do I change it or keep it? I’m looking at the WIP with an eye toward publication, after I edit the crap out of it with a machete. Publishing is hard. Like all writer’s I want to be published. Yet, being the independent type, part of me says to heck with those who shy away from Christian books. Be true to the book and the character. I don’t want to remove imagery from the book that is relevant to showing life in small Southern towns. It’s just the way it is. Nor do I want to add a message that’s not there to make it a true, “faith” book.
It’s really early this morning, and I am probably over thinking the issue. I need more caffeine.
What’s your thought on the issue.