I just read a book which held me in a fast grip. The skill, the craftsmanship, the delicate techniques—I have great respect for the author.
I was so caught up in the story, at times I was unkind and impatient with the people close to me. I don’t blame that writer for this. I am responsible for my own actions. But I was gripped.
I’m not going to tell you the name of the author, or the name of the book.
Because, it was disturbing. It wasn’t fun.
I want my reading and my writing to be fun. And even though I believe there can be benefit in a book being disturbing, I believe it should be balanced with hope.
The ending of the book held some satisfaction, I suppose. But not the kind of hope that could have been left with the reader if it was written from a Godly perspective.
There is much horror and dread and evil and ugliness in the world. That’s true, and as a Christian, I don’t think that should be ignored.
But, with the grace and tender mercy that God can bring into our lives, through the life of his son Jesus, I believe none of us needs to stay in the dirt and pain the world can give us.
I believe we can rise from those ugly places. Still scarred, yes, but with the love and healing from a Father that will help us stand. And with the ability to move on to real hope, with the chance to find joy and beauty in our future.
That’s how I want to leave my readers.
Another reason I’m not telling the name of the author or the book I read is that I don’t want to bad-mouth him personally. He has amazing talent.
So the lesson I want to learn from this other author is to sharpen my skill as a writer. I want to learn how to describe the deep insides of people. I want to hone every technique, and dig deep for just the right words to grip readers, yes, but to plant in them God’s hope.