Saturday, April 21, 2007

Our Own Worst Critics

I've decided that I am my own worst critic when it comes to my writing. I doubt if I'm alone.

Sometimes we are right, of course, when we reject a piece of writing as trivial, badly worded, or whatever the problem is. We should look for grammar and spelling mistakes and do what we can to make our writing the best it can be. However, it is too easy to think that no one will ever want to read what we've written, and so we keep what might be some marvelous work to ourselves.

It helps to set writing aside for a few days, and then go back and read it with fresh eyes. It helps not to take too seriously other people's opinions on what good writing is. There are niches for all types of writing and if someone looks down his nose at, say, popular fiction, then that is his problem, not yours. Finding your own niche and voice and style will let you write your best work.

We all fight some insecurity, too, especially since writing is so personal in one way or another. That also makes it easy to keep our work to ourselves. We think it isn't good enough or it isn't finished enough or whatever. We (I) need to be braver about sharing our talent. Easier said than done, I know, but something to work toward.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

The Christian Guide to Fantasy

I have always enjoyed fantasy novels--you know, like The Lord of the Rings and the Harry Potter books. There are many others, of course. And fairy tales are windows into the world of fantasy that we have all experienced in our childhood, at least.

I have discovered an interesting site about fantasy writing from a Christian viewpoint. It is called The Christian Guide to Fantasy. It hasn't been updated for about 3 1/2 years, but there are still some interesting articles there. Visit the "Table of Contents" page to see what's there.

I was particularly interested in a paper called "The Definition, Development and Defense of Political Fantasy" in which Emily C. A. Snyder writes about using politics as a theme in a fantasy novel.

Another page you will enjoy is the "Glossary" which defines terms commonly used in referring to fantasy writing.

If you are interested in writing fantasy, you will find some useful material at this site.

Saturday, April 7, 2007



Edmund Spenser (1552–1599)

MOST glorious Lord of Lyfe! that, on this day,
Didst make Thy triumph over death and sin;
And, having harrowd hell, didst bring away
Captivity thence captive, us to win:
This joyous day, deare Lord, with joy begin;
And grant that we, for whom thou diddest dye,
Being with Thy deare blood clene washt from sin,
May live for ever in felicity!
And that Thy love we weighing worthily,
May likewise love Thee for the same againe;
And for Thy sake, that all lyke deare didst buy,
With love may one another entertayne!
So let us love, deare Love, lyke as we ought,
—Love is the lesson which the Lord us taught.