As I've been exploring the content of my WIP, and thinking about the best way to write my characters' story, I've considered the hard stuff. You know, emotion. Contention. Stuff even, perhaps, of controversy.
Once upon a manuscript I wouldn't touch any of it, wouldn't go so deep. I thought I had to stick to light, fluffy, superficial. I thought I had to write about what's right, about what characters should do, how they should be.
But first of all, how cramped-in-a-box is that word right? And who am I to manipulate my characters? They live their own lives, individual of mine.
I'll be honest, this back-and-forth in my head is because I'm a Christian. I have a particular set of beliefs, and they shape who I am, personally. It's worth saying that extends to my writing. But I once believed it meant I had to stick to a certain kind of content; the heartwarming, the redemptive. Safe.
While there are some lines I won't cross, there are others I've discovered I'm willing to throw myself past. Why? Because writing doesn't have to be safe to be good, or filled with meaning, invoking. Stories are about what people - all of us - go through. The challenges, the uncertainty, the disappointment, loss, struggle. Little of it's pretty.
And is life?
It's from out of all that mess that the most feeling, the most redemption comes. It's when you feel most rooted to your beliefs, perhaps more heavily convicted.
That's what I've found, and it's what propels my writing.
Tell me, do you agree or disagree? And how about you, do you write safe? If you're not a writer, do you read safe?
For my initial look at this line of thinking, view a previous post, Christians Who Write.