Have you ever loved a book or TV series as a child, re-watched it as an adult, and realized how terrible it actually is? Several stories fall into this category for me—many of which are Christian and contain heavy-handed messages. But Adventures in Odyssey is one of those rare Christian stories that stands up to the test of time. Here’s how it does it.
Story Embers Editor-in-Chief
Josiah DeGraaf is a high school English teacher and literature nerd who fell in love with stories when he was young and hasn’t fallen out of love ever since.
He co-founded Story Embers in April 2018 and leads the site as editor-in-chief, where he sets visions and goals, reviews submissions, handles web design & marketing, and oversees site initiatives.
Someday Josiah hopes to write fantasy novels with worlds as imaginative as Brandon Sanderson’s, characters as complex as Orson Scott Card’s, character arcs as dynamic as Jane Austen’s, themes as deep as Fyodor Dostoyevsky’s, and stories as entertaining as Wayne Thomas Batson’s. In the meantime, you can find him teaching writers at Ink Slinger Academy or writing short stories on his website as he works toward achieving these goals.
In a world where the gods of sexual pleasure pose strong opposition to Christianity, we need Christian storytellers who are ready to write about sexuality appropriately and biblically. In this article, I outline seven principles to consider when incorporating sex into our stories.
Many Christian storytellers desire to set themselves apart from the secular world by writing clean stories. Clean fiction can have a purpose, especially if the target audience expects it. But if all Christian fiction is clean, I’d contend that we’ve lost something. Here’s why.
Christian storytelling is facing a crisis. Though good intentions abound, many Christian stories in the 21st century are cheesy, unrealistic, and artistically bland. Publishers struggle to find a market for Christian stories. And readers are leaving the genre. That’s why we wrote a Manifesto to explain what Christian storytelling needs to look like.
What are our goals here at Story Embers? I was at a writing conference a couple weeks ago and people asked me this question a lot. That’s why at our first annual staff retreat this summer, we created a video explaining what Story Embers is and how we want to help Christian writers grow.
“Do I need an editor?” I’ve seen this question countless times on blogs, forums, and Facebook posts. I understand why authors feel doubtful. The price tag can be steep, and you may be unsure whether the results are worth the cost. Many writers have misconceptions, though, about what professional editing actually is. Here
are three truths you may not realize about the practice.
Emiel is just your average day shapeshifter doing classic hero work and foiling tyrants. Until, that is, he accidentally impersonates an innocent man while stealing from one of those tyrants. As the tyrant’s men try to find the thief, will Emiel be able to save both the innocent man’s life and his own?
Storytelling is hard. Being a Christian storyteller can seem even harder. If we’re striving to live for God’s glory, that needs to include our storytelling. But how explicitly Christian must our writing be to honor God? In this inaugural article, Josiah evaluates the strengths of two approaches to Christian fiction.