Looking for Beta Readers for a 66k Fantasy Romance
May 4, 2022 at 10:54 pm #150451
I know it’s fantasy, so I understand if it’s not your cup-o-tea, but this is also my first attempt at a romance novel… so I would love to hear your thoughts on it, if you are willing.
(pictures and descriptions in link)
Aefflaed’s Weakness: A Love Story
This touching story began as a short story and quickly evolved into an epic. (well, a short novel, but still an epic story….if I can toot my own horn a bit. )
In my previous WIP, The Adventures of the Last Aygiff, Abirami was my protagonist. An 18 year old orphan who fought to protect the ones he loved (his adopted family of orphans). Aefflaed’s Weakness is the story of how Abirami’s parents first met. But do not worry, if you haven’t read my previous work (not yet published. ), this short novel is a stand alone. And also, do not worry, this story is not a tragedy, either.
Aefflaed is a doctor and finds herself treating a mighty war general of a rare poison. She journeys with him to find an equally rare ingredient for the cure before the man who poisoned him catches up to them.
Aefflaed quickly finds her swept up in a phantom war long past won, as well as swept up by hidden emotions as she battles between tender attractions and self-loathing. Will her past continue to haunt her as the general’s past literally hunts him? Or will salvation and redemption be found?
It is a world where many of the races have essence abilities (my world’s version of magic), though they are limited in their applications depending upon the race they belong to. The website posted above also has sections where you can peruse the different races and read about their abilities should you be interested.
Please let me know if you are interested in reading my novel for me and also what the best format is for you – whether that be via email or google doc or pdf or some other means.
Christianity has not been tried and found wanting, it has been found difficult and left untried. ~ G.K.C.May 5, 2022 at 2:37 pm #150466
That’s an interesting plot, Jared!
However, I do not read books with protagonist-related supernatural content (biblical reasons). Does your book contain supernatural/magical elements? (I do not consider fantasy abilities magic/supernatural unless they are called magic/supernatural or treated as such)May 5, 2022 at 8:27 pm #150470
That is an interesting question and an intriguing way of separating it.
Okay. So, essence is more of an ability that the people of the world have. So in my mind it’s not treated like supernatural or magic. It’s far from witchery and it is not seen as breaking the of the rules of nature. However, it actually touches upon racism because each race has a different essence ability. Some races are then looked down upon or raised up because of how good or how poor their essence ability is (or how desirable the ability is).
That being said, there are blessings and curses. Which may need a more in-depth description, but the curses are not protagonist-related. Curses are evil and blessings are good, of course, and mirror the spiritual battle of the real world. This particular book doesn’t go into those very much. Curses are used in the final battle by the antagonist, and a blessing is used by the good king at the end of the battle, but neither are really explained.
Does that sufficiently answer your question?
Christianity has not been tried and found wanting, it has been found difficult and left untried. ~ G.K.C.May 5, 2022 at 9:00 pm #150472
and an intriguing way of separating it.
It is hard to make what I was saying clear in regard to the difference between fantasy and magic/supernatural. Perhaps this short guest blog post I wrote for Joelle (whom you know) will help make my beliefs clearer: https://thepeninspired.wordpress.com/2022/01/11/guest-post-magic-vs-fantasy/
it is not seen as breaking the of the rules of nature
Since the blog post goes into this, I won’t here, but suffice it to say, this is what I consider true fantasy and what I like fantasy for. Gods, angels, demons, magic, wizardry, etc..are things that break the laws of nature (rather those laws were created by you in a fantasy world or in the real world), and I not only dislike them, I also believe it is wrong to read or write them (with some very specific exceptions).
Anyways, your essence system sounds quite interesting, but if I could give a piece of advice: if you don’t intend for it to be supernatural, then please don’t call it magic or treat it as such. Treat it as if it is intrinsic to the amazing natural world you have created. Again, the blog post goes more into why I say this and my reasoning behind it.
That being said, there are blessings and curses.
Hmm…from what power are these blessings and curses drawn? You seem to be saying that the book is ambivalent and ambiguous about it, which is usually not a good thing…May 5, 2022 at 9:42 pm #150473
Hmm…from what power are these blessings and curses drawn? You seem to be saying that the book is ambivalent and ambiguous about it, which is usually not a good thing…
it’s not meant to be ambivalent or ambiguous, it’s just that they are not known to the protagonist and thus aren’t delved into. The lore is complicated and would take a long time to explain while at the same time would not have anything to do with the novel I wrote, so to summarize in simplistic fashion, curses derive their power from satan, while blessings derive their power from God…
Christianity has not been tried and found wanting, it has been found difficult and left untried. ~ G.K.C.May 6, 2022 at 11:09 am #150475
so to summarize in simplistic fashion, curses derive their power from satan, while blessings derive their power from God…
Who uses the curses?
Who has the power to bless and how do they get it? (does God give that power to them? why?)May 6, 2022 at 6:15 pm #150488
The antagonist.May 6, 2022 at 6:45 pm #150489
Who uses the curses? Who has the power to bless and how do they get it? (does God give that power to them? why?)
the antagonist uses the curses.
the king uses the blessing. The king is of a race that is practically immortal, they live so long. They are known as a wise and righteous race and were chosen long ago as defenders of the truth. As such, they were gifted the ability to use blessings.
Curses/blessings are a VERY SMALL part of the story barely worth mentioning. This amount of scrutiny is FAR beyond the books purview.
I understand your conviction on this issue; however, in fear of becoming like the pharisees, please consider my book for its main points and not its sub-sub-sub-sub-minor-sub-points.
The books themes are about a woman who feels that her past life as a sex slave in the red district has blemished her soul beyond recognition. She was saved from that life and was taught to be a doctor. She pursues her work to the best of her ability, though she constantly struggles with self-loathing and self-doubt, because she feels that she can redeem herself somehow through good deeds. The man feels the same due to the lives he took during the war.
So not only is there the main plot of the man being poisoned and they have to go find the cure, but this is going on in the background. In the end, the wise king recognizes their folly in seeking redemption through works and speaks truth to them. Truth such as
– you cannot redeem one action with another
– you do not determine your worth, and it is priceless
– perfection is not something to be grasped but something to be sought (ie. it’s about the direction, not perfection)
– salvation is a gift; redemption comes from God
– you must turn from evil and seek good
– and although it’s not a perfect analogy without direct mention of Jesus Christ and his sacrifice, there is parallels made to needing a new life to replace the old sinful one.
That is the main plot line and the main themes, as well as the morals of the story.
Paul said food offered to idols is nothing. Even though idol worship is evil. He also said he would forgo eating meat altogether if it meant saving lives for Christ. I don’t know if my answers meets your high standards of whatever it is you are looking for in this. But all I am asking for is for beta readers. If you do not wish to read it, I understand and appreciate your candor. If so, I would love to hear your thoughts on my book. But I cannot answer any further inquiries into detailed minutiae on minuscule details of my book from what I have already explained.May 6, 2022 at 8:12 pm #150491
in fear of becoming like the pharisees, please consider my book for its main points and not its sub-sub-sub-sub-minor-sub-points.
I understand your point by that comment, but that is not an apt analogy in this context. Pharisees were concerned with following the letter of the law to gain power and glory in the eyes of men. I am concerned with what God, through his word, explicitly teaches is a sin, and I do not care how I appear in the eyes of men. For me to ignore a minor use of supernatural/magical/demonic power by the protagonists portrayed in a this-is-not-a-sin way because the other parts of a book are good, would be nearly equivalent to me ignoring a minor use of explicit sexual scenes.
Paul said food offered to idols is nothing. Even though idol worship is evil. He also said he would forgo eating meat altogether if it meant saving lives for Christ.
What do you mean by this?
I don’t know if my answers meets your high standards of whatever it is you are looking for in this.
For the record, I don’t have high standards, I have bible standards. Trust me, there are many fantasy books I really want to read, but that have clear use of gods and supernatural power.
But all I am asking for is for beta readers. If you do not wish to read it, I understand and appreciate your candor. If so, I would love to hear your thoughts on my book. But I cannot answer any further inquiries into detailed minutiae on minuscule details of my book from what I have already explained.
Got it, sorry if I came off too curt. 🙂 I’ll let you know if I get the time to read your manuscript.May 7, 2022 at 2:03 pm #150505
I understand your interpretation and position on the issue, but I disagree with the severity and application of your position. Nor do I believe it is a matter of sin but of conviction. Just as it would be wrong for a baptist to claim that dancing or playing cards is a sin for any Christian to do (David danced in the streets and it is used multiple times as examples of praise to God in the Bible) and just as it would be wrong for a 7-day adventist to say it is a sin for all Christians to treat one day more special than the next – perfect examples of what Paul was saying about food offered to idols.
To say the pharisees were only concerned about power and how they were seen in the eyes of men is partly true but also a misreading of historic events. There were pharisees who were certainly not like that. Two of them showed loyalty to Jesus, one of which provided his own personal tomb to lay Jesus in. In today’s age, we call a pharisee a certain type of people, but back then, a pharisee was a teacher of the law. Paul, likewise, was a pharisee before he became a Christ follower.
After the book of Malachi, there was a long time period in which to the nation of Israel, it seemed that God was silent. During that time, after such a long history of cyclic falling away from God, getting punished and taken captive by foreign powers, turning to God, being set free then falling away from God again – over and over, the nation of Israel formed the sect called the Pharisees, a group to oversee that Israel doesn’t fall away from God again. They set stricter limitations in the hopes that Israel wouldn’t fall away again. It’s exactly what a lot of baptists do in relation to playing card games. the Bible warns against gambling, so many baptists ban all card games, even though many card games are not gambling games. In creating stricter rules, they hope to keep themselves from sinning.
So far from wanting just power and being seen as good in the eyes of men, the sect of pharisees were originally the more strict disciplinarians who desired to obey God so much that they went to extremes. That’s not to say that there weren’t those who were after power and to look good in the eyes of man, but the whole picture should be considered, not just the corruptive examples of the system.
I would say this does apply to this conversation. For, according to you, Christians are sinning when they go watch a Harry Potter movie or read one of those books – or any other similar ‘magical’ story. I strongly believe that is a matter of conviction, not morality. Idolatry is blatantly a sin, and many Christian pharisees of Pauls day claimed that it was a sin to eat any meat offered to idols because of multiple reasons – 1) the pagans believed that the meat offered to idols was therefore blessed by those false gods (2) by purchasing the meat, you are actually supporting that business, and if I remember correctly, that money would go to the temple of whatever idol it was offered to.
However, Paul argued that there was nothing behind it. The idols were false, and the meat was not blessed. The meat would not defile you for eating it, and meat offered to idols was actually cheaper than other meat in the market. Paul said if it does not conflict with your conviction, then it is not a sin to eat such meat. However, some people, their convictions keeps them from eating such meat. To do so would be a sin for them. Then Paul admonished us to not cause our brothers to sin in whatever we do, so if for someone, their conviction keeps them from eating meat offered to idols, don’t partake in such meat while with them. etc.
I have a conviction of bearing my head when I pray. If I am wearing a hat, I take it off, and I also take my glasses off. For me, it is a sign of respect. That doesn’t make it a sin if someone else does not do so.
As far as the biblical mandate. I can’t help but wonder if too much is being read into it, similar to the baptist position on gambling. Drinking is another example. Many Christians claim drinking is a sin – however, Jesus himself drank alcohol (in fact, he was falsely accused of being a drunkard!). Getting drunk is sinful, yes, but even though my personal conviction is that I will not drink, even if it is just one sip, that doesn’t mean I see it as sinful if someone else does.
So here are the very verses you refer to:
2 Chronicles 33:6 – He sacrificed his children in the fire in the Valley of Ben Hinnom, practiced divination and witchcraft, sought omens, and consulted mediums and spiritists. He did much evil in the eyes of the Lord, arousing his anger.
1 Samuel 15:23 – For rebellion is like the sin of divination, and arrogance like the evil of idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the Lord, he has rejected you as king.”
Galatians 5:19-21 – The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality,impurity and debauchery; 20 idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions 21 and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.
Leviticus 19:26 – Do not eat any meat with the blood still in it.“‘Do not practice divination or seek omens.
Leviticus 19:31 – Do not turn to mediums or seek out spiritists, for you will be defiled by them. I am the Lord your God.
Divination, witchcraft, omens, mediums, and spiritists – we see their power as coming from the demonic realm. Plus, sacrificing children is an abomination until the Lord and one of the most despicable things you could do… So yes, he did much evil in the eyes of the Lord, arousing his anger. Let me use Harry Potter as an example, just because it is one of the more popular examples. Magic in Harry Potter does not stem from the demonic realm.
And as far as spiritual powers, God grants his children spiritual powers all the time, many times we don’t think about it. Prophecy = divination but from God, not demonic. Miracles =witchcraft, but from God, not demonic. Samson had a superpower given by God with the stipulation that three rules be adhered. When all three were broken, Samson’s power was taken away. It is not a sin to read such a story from the Bible, even though the protagonist uses spiritual/supernatural powers that are contrary to the natural laws and cannot be classified as a natural inborn talent.
The ONLY thing the Bible CLEARLY says is a sin is to practice or turn to divination, witchcraft, mediums, or spiritists. And I think it is very interesting and revealing that after saying do not turn or practice these things, the Bible says, “I am the Lord your God” – as in, turning to those things are trying to find answers out side God. It is, therefore, a form of idolatry – turning to something besides God or placing something before God in your life.
To read about magic, witchcraft, or other such things – true, it could easily lead toward sin. Just as playing cards can lead to gambling, drinking alcohol can lead to being drunk, and eating meat offered to idols can lead to people being led astray. But that does not mean it is a SIN in and of itself.
THE issue with the pharisees was NOT that they wanted power and to be seen as good in front of people. THE issue with the pharisees was that they missed the point. They wanted to make sure NO ONE sinned, so they made their rules super strict and it became a burden on the people. This verse says it best, I think, even though it is from the Old Testament – Hosea 6:6 – For I desire mercy, not sacrifice, and acknowledgment of God rather than burnt offerings. Even though sacrifice and burnt offerings was the way to get right with God, God desires relationship more than he does following rote rules. Yes, he wants us to obey his rules, but if we just follow rules to the point of rigidity, we become pharisees and we miss the point.
Jesus ate with drunkards and sinners. He hung out with prostitutes and tax-collectors. Things that many well-meaning Christians today would balk at and find fault with him for.
The bottom line, to kind of tie things together, is that most magic systems within fantasy worlds are not demonic and are not attempting to pull us away from God. We are not defiling ourselves by exposing ourselves to it. Another perfect example would be – – I am not sinning by reading C. S. Lewis’ Chronicles of Narnia, even though the first book has Santa Clause in it, even though Santa Claus is clearly a good character that uses magic – and other protagonists in the series uses magic for good.
Please DO NOT hear me wrong here.
I am not saying you are wrong in your beliefs. What I am saying is it is a conviction, and to force your interpretation and conviction on others by saying it is a sin to write or read such materials is putting a heavy burden on others that God never meant to be there.
You can feel free to disagree with me, and you probably will. But please do not impugn my moral standing before the Lord due to my interpretation and conviction.
(On a side note, my novel does not have any
use of supernatural/magical/demonic power by the protagonists portrayed in a this-is-not-a-sin way
at all. So although we disagree, there should be no conflict with the novel I have written. For it does not have anything of that sort.)May 7, 2022 at 2:31 pm #150506
I apologize. That last part came across a lot more strongly than I intended.
I know you aren’t purposefully impugning my moral standing or anything of the sort and that you mean well.
Its just the way you word things…
I applaud you for your position and your conviction, and I do not want to take that away from you. Far from it. Hold firm.
But please be careful not to use vernacular or insinuate that others are sinning if they don’t agree with your interpretation or conviction.May 7, 2022 at 7:55 pm #150508
Before I give a brief reply, I’d like to say a couple things.
First, using the phrase ‘taking in magical content is a sin’ is such a broad phrase that it was not wise for me to say it. So my apologies.
Secondly, let me just say, Jared, that I have never seen this argument for why magic is okay before (it’s usually vernacular and definition silliness xD), so I appreciated reading your defense.
Now that I’ve got those out of the way, let me try to make what the bible says I bit clearer in response (I sometimes make a hash of what I’m trying to present). The first thing that I need to deal with is our definition of pharisee. I obviously did not present what I was trying to say well, but to elucidate, what I meant by ‘letter of the law followers’ essentially encapsulates everything you said pharisees were. And you are correct, legalism, in its most precise definition, entails claiming that one’s convictions that fall under christian liberty, are actually explicitly taught by the bible. However, I find that the bible does explicitly teach against this matter of magic/supernatural in entertainment, and thus, I do not believe that it is legalism to claim that these things are wrong. I will explain why shortly.
Before I cover your main point, I must remark on this:
Magic in Harry Potter does not stem from the demonic realm.
Then where it is from? Let me explain by covering what I believe to be your main point (correct me if I’m wrong):
It is not a sin to read such a story from the Bible, even though the protagonist uses spiritual/supernatural powers that are contrary to the natural laws and cannot be classified as a natural inborn talent.
This statement–which I believe is your central point–I agree with. My personal taste in literature makes me think that having the God/Creator of a world give a person special powers is rather cheesy and trite, but that is beside the point (and I do read books with this in it). However, when you extrapolated from this example, I believe you missed one vital point. In every single example you gave, it was God who gave Samson and the prophets power. So, if you as a writer want to write a book where the God of that world gives your character power, I believe you are within Christian liberty to do so. However, most fantasy books that contain supernatural power do not do this whatsoever. Since you used Harry Potter as the example, I will continue on with it. Harry attends a school of divinations, spells, and dark arts, to learn them. Emphasis on learn. God does not give him powers, he acquires them through this learning. There is not getting around it: this is witchcraft personified.
This leads me back to your point that Harry’s powers do not come from the demonic realm, and my questioning you as to where it comes from. Here was the reason for my question: if God is not the one giving the power, then that power is not coming from God, and thus, it is a form of witchcraft and the power is coming from some supernatural realm that is not God. If God grants something, there is not Harry Potter style meddling and learning evolved. Frankly, Harry Potter is the purest form of what witchcraft was throughout the middle ages and before (in the instances it was real anyway). It doesn’t get much clear than the way Rowling presents it.
Now, let me cover what I believe to be your other main point–again, correct me if I am wrong in the way I construed your words.
You stated: Convictions vs Bible Teaching (actual moral law) are like:
Playing cards (within christian liberty) vs gambling (not within christian liberty–which some would claim it is by the way)
Drinking wine vs Getting Drunk
And finally: Magic in literature vs Magic in real life. I hope I cleared up the difference between God giving a character power, and Harry Potter style power. I would like to discuss these examples in regard to Harry Potter style power (aka, magic).
Unfortunately for me (because there are several books I really want to read right now but I can’t xD), these analogies are not applicable. Put simply, here’s why: Drinking wine and playing cards are activities that people associate with sins, but they have nothing to do with the actual sin. On the other hand, if I was a writer was to create a character that attains and uses supernatural powers not given to them by God (like Harry Potter does) to win the day and as a cool ‘this is fantasy’ ability, then I am, no matter what I intend, showing readers that I think meddling with supernatural abilities and meddling in the sub-natural realms, is okay. Think of it like this:
Character is sent on a quest
Character learns how to commit mass murder
Character commits mass murder to defeat the villain
Book ends with character living happily ever after in a happy world despite all the mass murders of innocents
My point is, we as authors like to pretend that supernatural power in the Harry Potter style is okay because it’s not real, it’s just in a book, so it doesn’t really matter, it’s all christian liberty, right? Unfortunately, no. Even if the murder was just in the book, it is showing the readers that committing such an act is perfectly okay. Of course, readers now days would be shocked by that murder example but be perfectly fine with the most extreme forms of witchcraft. This is because people no longer understand the true depravity of witchcraft, and that things like Harry Potter reflect that depravity but present it as if it is a perfectly fine thing to do.
I hope that made sense.
To restate my point one more time: I believe you are correct about it being fine to have a character who is given power by God–the single Creator of the world (at the very least, this is definitely within Christian liberty). However, books like Harry Potter are not given their power by God. They attain it and learn it which means, without a doubt, that power is not coming from God. To say it is coming from God is an incredibly dangerous, and unfounded belief. Finally, having characters who use magic/non-God-given-supernatural abilities who use those abilities to win the day is telling readers that magic and supernatural powers (dark magic, white magic, same thing) are okay–even if only subconsciously. Books reflect life, there is no getting around it. I believe that entertainment problems such as these are much bigger deals and erode the Church much more than people think.
I know conversations like these are really not great to have over the internet since its hard to change minds and we can come off too strongly by accident, but I do appreciate your replies.
One side question: I think supernatural content in the bad way clearly includes gods (not counting the Creator), demons, angels, etc, I assume you agree from what your unique reasoning, but do you?May 7, 2022 at 10:40 pm #150511
One side question: I think supernatural content in the bad way clearly includes gods (not counting the Creator), demons, angels, etc, I assume you agree from what your unique reasoning, but do you?
If I am understanding your question, yes I think so.
Thank you so much for going more in depth into your concepts and beliefs on the subject. It has cleared up some confusion on my part and some pre-conceived assumptions. And thank you so much for being so gracious with your response. You are correct that over the internet tone of voice can easily be misconstrued, and I was truly worried that I had overstepped or been a bit too aggressive in my response.
(It’s been a rough week for touchy subjects. As a teacher, I’ve been dealing with students calling their friends racial slurs, then got in trouble when I elucidated what words they were not supposed to say – because I am a white person. Even if I was telling them what not to say, I was the one who got in trouble and had to officially apologize. ugg…. anyway. neither here nor there….)
Although we see the issue differently, there are a lot of points we do see eye to eye on. In fact, I would argue that in all the major, important parts of the debate, we agree. We only disagree on the minutiae or minor applications – which are important and can make big differences, for they are matters of application, but… well, lol. I hope that makes sense…
I won’t belabor the point, but with the question of where does magic come from in the Harry Potter books, (and it is a common trope for fantasy magic) it’s treated as part of the world. (awww… just wrote a bunch, then had it accidentally get deleted… will try to recreate it…) This can be evidenced in that before Harry Potter even goes to the magic school, he uses magic reflexively but doesn’t know how to control it. If you search it, Rowlings created the fantasy world in such a way that the magic is within certain people, and only certain people. Yes, those people have to learn how to use and control it, but the same could be said of any talent or ability. Yes, she used the vernacular of witches and magic and sorcery and divination and all that; however, the magic stems from inside the person. Each person has different strength abilities for different magics and can hone their skills with practice, etc. Those without magical blood cannot produce or do magic, even if they have the right incantations or wand movements or potion ingredients. Very different, in my mind, from real world demonic power. But that may just be my opinion of the differences making the distinction.
Another, more perfect example, would be C. S. Lewis’ Narnia, which is full of magic. Some of the magic is good, and some is bad. If I remember correctly, for Narnia, magic is in the land as well as all who inhabit the lands of Narnia. Some use it for good, while others use it for evil – though you could also argue that it was God (or the God figure of Aslan) who created and allowed the magic to inhabit the land and people as it did… (though at the same time, you could also similarly argue that those fantasy stories that don’t specifically innumerate where the magic comes from – as in those that typically stem from within the person – you could argue in those systems, that God created those people with the magic within them… and thus gifted them with the powers they have….. but, that does get rather close to playing with semantics, as you said…)
I guess a lot of the debate really does come down to vernacular and how things are defined. But at the same time, it is difficult, if not impossible, to alter the general definitions of common place words based upon issues within debates such as these.
(I had similar issues this week, in fact, with the racism issue. One student flat out told me to my face that she didn’t know one could be racist to a white person. This came up when I explained why calling a white person a cracker is wrong. They also argued that it was perfectly fine for a black person to call a black person the ‘n’ word because you can’t be racist to someone of the same race. I tried arguing that you can, but even a fellow teacher thought the same thing, which boggles my mind. She said racism was based on power struggle, and two black people are of equal power. I had trouble understanding where her definition came from, and I disagreed with her, but it left me dumbstruck that such different definitions were in common use in the public schools. … anyway, this too is neither here nor there… just venting a bit. lol. but still, a good example of the power of the difference of definitions….)
whelp…. yeah…… I was only going to write a short response of thanks and just a smidge of clarification…. yeah… oops. lol.
Again, I wanted to thank you for the graciousness of how you handled this conversation/debate. And for putting up with my long rant…May 8, 2022 at 8:18 am #150514
If I am understanding your question, yes I think so.
Okay, I’m glad to hear it (it seems pretty obvious to me that gods and demons etc.. are not things the bible is okay with us reading, but many Christians claim Sanderson’s Mistborn and Stormlight are fine, despite the fact that Mistborn is full of gods, and Stormlight literally has a god of hate who resurrects one of the main characters–at least I think he does–and serves as a central villain–very anti biblical, especially Stormlight’s example)
I’ll just make a couple quick comments.
I see no grounds for why Harry Potter’s powers being inborn changes anything much at all (their still at wizard school, dabbling in witchcraft and black art, there is no getting around that). But, for the sake of your argument, let me pretend for a moment that I do see grounds for that reasoning. Even holding that position, I would still not touch Harry Potter for the simple fact that Christians are not supposed to get as close to the proverbial line as possible (like readying Harry Potter), they’re suppose to flee it. Many young people ask questions about just how touchy or intimate (alone together, intimate dancing) they can before marriage. Those are the wrong questions. Instead, one should be eschewing the line altogether–same with magic. Yes, there is gray area, but Harry Potter, and god filled stuff like Stormlight and Riordan’s books, are at the least getting close to that line (wrong mindset), and in my opinion, well past the line. The mindset of seeing how close to the line one can get is flawed in itself.
Also, as I’ve told many people before regarding definitions, even if some people use the word magic differently today, the majority of the time it still means what it meant in bible and medieval times–sinful witchcraft and the harnessing of power not bestowed by God. As a side note, inborn abilities that allow one to harness power from a supernatural realm is a very different thing than God directly bestowing it.
As for Narnia, I personally am not a huge fan of the books. Some of them I think are okay for the most part (far better than H Potter), but the first one in the series, for instance, is a big no.
Oh, and I feel ya when it comes to all that racism stuff. The world is a mess right now–not that it hasn’t always been. xD
Again, I wanted to thank you for the graciousness of how you handled this conversation/debate. And for putting up with my long rant…
Thanks, I appreciate your attitude as well.May 11, 2022 at 4:25 pm #150553K. A. Grey@k-a-grey
@jared-williams Hello! Soo, I’m not much of a romance reader… or a fantasy reader for that matter (unless The Chronicles of Narnia and Nadine Brandes’ Fawkes count 😅). Yes, I joined the group Romance Writers just so I could join the conversation (don’t hate on me please). But anywaayyy…. I’ve been
stalkingfollowing this conversation because it was highly interesting, but I didn’t want to get involved right away because it was getting kinda intense 🤣. But there were points made that I agree with from both sides about the use of “magic” in Christian fiction. Personally, I don’t care what it’s called as long as it’s portrayed in a way that doesn’t resemble the occult. The magic of Narnia, the deep magic ruling the kingdom, is far different from the magic of Harry Potter. The reason I have a problem with Harry Potter is that it resembles our world too closely. They use cars, modern technology, etc. (Also, I haven’t actually read any of the books, so this is all from my superficial research xD). I think Rowling also writes out her spells? whereas C.S. Lewis said something like, nothing will induce me to tell you what [the spell] is. Narnia is not our world, and magic is an inherent part of it. So my issue is with portrayal of the system not necessarily what you call it.
ANyway, with that being said, Mr. Williams, your story sounds very intriguing and I’d be interested in reading it! From what I saw on your website, I think I don’t have a problem with the “essence abilities” that your characters have, as it’s a natural part of their world.
I would prefer working on google docs, as it’s easy to leave comments that way. Also, what kind of feedback are you looking for? I’m not sure how far I’ll get, but at least you can start getting some thoughts on what newbies to fantasy (me) might think! 😆
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