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Fantasy Writers

Help! Story without message!

Viewing 5 posts - 1 through 5 (of 5 total)
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  • #112120
    Eitan
    @eitan

    In the last days I felt a sudden urge for writing, and after thinking I came up with an idea for a setting and some plot. It’s heavily inspired by ”The Lady of the Castle” by Lea Goldberg (we learn it at school):

     

    An ancient castle in the woods of eastern Europe, now functioning as a museum and owned by the government, inhabited by a single, elderly guard. A doctor for art history comes to the castle, in order to stay there a for a while and study the rich art there.

    But things go strange in the castle…

    • The scholar leaves his diary open, then goes to sleep or just isn’t in the room, and someone answers him.
    • He moves a chess piece, and tomorrow a piece of the opposite color will be moved in contrast.
    • While scrolling through the photos in his phone, he sees that someone photoed him while sleeping.
    • The scholar hears piano music, but when entering the music room, no one is there.
    • I’ll think about some more things 🙂

    He realizes that while such things happen, the guard is nowhere near, so the unlikely option that the 60th years old guard is playing with him is off the table.

    Now, I have no idea how to continue the plot, but at the end, the readers will realize that the ”ghost” is the guards bored 12th years old grandson (or granddaughter) that came to his grandpa for the vacation 😀

     

    So, the first problem isn’t that critical (I can think how to continue the plot), I have a more important problem:

    I have no theme or message for my story.

    Nothing. I can write a small cute story about a mischievous kid, or a horror story about a little kid that moves the poor scholar insane, but… As a Christian, my writing must glorify God, and therefore – have a theme, a message, whether I write for a Christian or secular audience*.

    Can you help me to come up with a theme and message for my story, so it will glorify God and not just be a small, cute exercise?

     

    * If writing for secular readers I will not preach the gospel of course – I just thought to create a blog or something to share my writing, so it will actually have influence, and not just sit in my drive folder 😉

    You don't need to see the wind itself in order to hear the rustling leaves.

    #112123
    Taylor Clogston
    @taylorclogston

    I fully disagree that a story requires a moral message to glorify God.

    1 Corinthians 10: 23-31 is the classic passage describing our freedom and responsibility as Christians. All things are permitted, if they’re not innately unholy. It is even permitted to eat meat sacrificed to idols, so long as we have no personal belief that it’s wrong.

    Expanding our definition of glorifying God is one of the fundamental steps in the growth of spiritual maturity. If we are to glorify God even in eating and drinking, then glorifying God in writing is clearly more than simply giving a moral message.

    “A small, cute exercise” is exactly what young writers need to undertake. Does a carpenter dedicate all the years of his apprenticeship to creating beautiful works of art that will go into a church, or does he make rough mistakes and learn from them, and hone his craft on small projects which delight him so that later, when it matters, he has the skill to create amazing things?

    All that aside, many, many writers don’t start out with a theme in mind, but find that theme creeps into their story nonetheless. It’s happened to me, and it happens to people in my writing group all the time. As you grow in skill, you’ll learn to look back through a story you’ve already written and to adjust things here and there to bring out the theme that was there all along.

    For advice on developing theme, I strongly suggest you read Invisible Ink by Brian McDonald. It explores theme in a way that’s fairly different to how most writers approach it, and which I think is far superior to the standard way.

    "...the one with whom he so sought to talk has already interceded for him." -The Master and Margarita

    #112124
    Eitan
    @eitan

    Aha. Thank you very much for opening my eyes! 😀

     

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 2 months ago by Eitan.

    You don't need to see the wind itself in order to hear the rustling leaves.

    #112202
    Kristianne
    @kristianne-hassman

    @eitan

    I agree that you don’t need a specifically Christian theme or message, per se. The theme could simply be about the loneliness of a child, about friendship, or about the dangers of lying and pretending (those are just some ideas). The story can still be enjoyable (and God-glorifying!) without a decidedly Christian message.

    Courage, dear heart.

    #112210
    Eitan
    @eitan

    Thank you very much for helping!

    You don't need to see the wind itself in order to hear the rustling leaves.

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