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My Two Cents on Christian Fiction

In the last post that I wrote on Christian fiction I mentioned that I had new topic ideas for stories in Christian fiction.
Link for my last post:
http://awell-wateredgarden.blogspot.com/2011/02/my-two-cents-on-christian-fiction.html

The main topic in Christian fiction seems to be boy meets girl or girl meets boy, they are attracted to each other, there is some kind of problem that keeps them apart for a while, but in the end they end up together (maybe not in book 1, but in book 2 or 3). Another common topic is a suspenseful type murder mystery, but there is still a romantic theme running through it. Occasionally a book will come out that does not have any romantic element in it, but it is rare. There are many historical fiction books on the American Revolution, Civil War, and World War II. I've seen only a couple on the current war in Afghanistan or Iraq. Of course there is the popular "Bonnet" stories---I think this is the nick name for the Amish stories, but their is still a romantic element running through the story with some kind of problem that tries to keep them apart. There is nothing wrong with any of these topics, but I would like to see more variety, more branching out, more depth.

Examples:
1. Kathi Macias wrote No Greater Love which is about a relationship between a bi-racial couple in South Africa. This was an awesome story, and one that had not yet been written before. I would like to see more books written on bi-racial couples and not just stories about the couple, but also from the viewpoint of their children. I would like to see more stories on other races and cultures: Hispanic, African American, Asian, and Native American communities. For example Native American Reservation's are in a crisis as far as crime rate, illiteracy, alcohol and drug addiction, and unmarried births. Links for further reading:
http://indian.senate.gov/news/pressreleases/2010-06-24.cfm
http://www.childtrendsdatabank.org/?q=node/196
2. Recently I read an article in the newspaper about the father of the man in Arizona that shot U. S. Representative Gifford and killed several others. Most fictional stories that are written are focused on the perpetrator or the victims, but what would it be like to be the family of the perpetrator.... I know it would be horrifying.
http://www.kansascity.com/2011/02/19/2667036/alleged-shooters-reclusive-father.html#storylink=rss
Carol Kent has written I believe 3 books on her son, these books are non-fiction. Do you remember the book and then movie on television Amish Grace, about the little Amish girls that were killed in their school room in Pennsylvania? The wife of the man that murdered these girls was written in to the story, but the main focus was still on one of the victims mothers. But I wanted to know more about the story of the wife of the accused murderer.
3. Illiteracy, in the United States from the map below is at 97% literacy (blue countries are at 97%).  
What it must be like for a person living in the United States working and surrounded by a majority of people that are literate, yet the person remains silent, probably out of embarrassment, because they cannot read. I've heard that those that are illiterate often go to great lengths in order to keep their secret.
Add to this the many people that have some kind of learning disability, they too by the time they are adults have learned some kind of coping way to deal with their disability.
4. There have been a trickle amount of books written about the current wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. The focus is on the love story of the couple, but little is written on adapting to civilian life, health problems, post traumatic stress disorder, financial problems that all can affect the couple. I have not as yet read a story about the parents or children of the person that was in the military. There desperately needs to be more books that are written from the eyes of the children and young adult children that's parent or parents have been deployed to war. As a parent of a child that was in combat I would like to see more stories about their views and feelings. I'm not advocating a bent on political feelings; but day to day living when your child, or parent is gone on the other side of the world and in harms way.
5. What would it be like to grow up believing that your parents are upstanding citizens, and then you find out they are not who you thought they were. No, not a switching at birth, or a secretive adoption, but your parents are criminals or spies and living in hiding. I'm thinking of the true story of the Russian spies that had been in America for a while. Now that's a story!
6. Their are 52 million caregivers in America.
http://www.caregiver.org/caregiver/jsp/content_node.jsp?nodeid=439
Countless stories could be written about this topic. How does a woman cope with caring for her parent or parents as well as husband and children. I say woman because usually it is the female that is the primary caregiver, but then again maybe a story should be written where the man is the primary caregiver to a parent.
It can be costly, both financially and to the caregivers health. Caregiving can lead to job problems and marriage problems. Sacrifices have to be made by the caregivers.
Caregiving is not always to an elderly parent, sometimes to a child with special needs. There are countless stories that could be written about that, what it is like to care for a child that will probably never leave home, that will always need someone to care for them or give them assistance.
Caregiving can also be a spouse that because of an accident or illness must care for their loved one. 
7. Many people over the course of the past few years have lost their jobs and then even their homes. Where do they live, with other family members? What if there is no family or place to go to except to live in their car, or in a shelter?

Christian fiction has the potential to blow the roof off of what we've done so far, we can be a beacon of hope and encouragement to not just the Christian community but the world itself. But....we've got to get out of the little safe box we've made for ourselves, actually we need to discard that box because we've outgrow it.
I'm not advocating that we preach or teach something that is not Biblical, but we can be a light, and aren't we supposed to let our light shine before men? Matthew 5: 14-16

Next post in My Two Cents on Christian Fiction will be on why read stories, why not just non-fiction?

Blissful Blogging!
Annette

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