I’m taking a short break from writing. We’re moving in a few weeks and between repairs to our current home that need to be done, and packing, time isn’t all on my side. So I actually may be blogging a lot more over the next few weeks. (Don’t ask how I have time to blog but not write fiction: I may punch you)
Last week I had someone message me after reading my novella “My Friend Louie” with the question- How can Christian’s write horror…? Interesting question- and one that has been explored by a number of folks. But first let me explain…
My Friend Louie is the story of a young boy who has just witnessed his mother leaving him and his father, who has very few friends, and is trying to survive a bully down the street. Through out the course of the story he finds a Baseball bat, who he named Louie, and who he believes is alive and able to speak to him, through his sub-conscious.
It’s Louie who convinces him to use Louie (the bat) on his father and smack him on the head, it’s Louie who tells him to use (Louie the bat) on the bully down the street and go beat that crap out of him.
Told in a raw memoir style, I can say it’s not my best writing by any stretch. There are several that like it and other that don’t. And that’s okay… But that got me thinking about the question asked to me- Why do you write horror?
It’s weird, because I don’t think I do, and I certainly don’t set out to write horror. That’s not my end goal. And I certainly don’t believe I write horrifying things. But I do admit, I may write Dark Things.
Why…? Because I think it’s necessary. I think it’s honest.
Let’s get real. Life doesn’t always end in a happy ending. Bad things happen to good people.
G.K. Chesterton has been quoted dozens of times for having said that- “Fairy tales are more than true… Not because they tell us dragons exist, but because they tell us dragons can be beaten.”
This is so true- But yet not entirely true. Because the reality of the world we live in is this-
Sometimes the dragon wins…
That’s is a difficult truth to live with. But it’s reality all the same. Evil exist- Evil wins.
But for those of us who know Christ, we know there is hope.
We live in a broken, dark, dying world, that is full of sin. That’s reality. And there are so many in life that don’t see any sort of light or hope at the end. It’s just an empty void.
You see: My life is a life that has been spent living in the darkness of the shadows. I know what it feels like to not have hope. I know what it feels like to not see a way out. I understand the pain of brokenness and despair. I’ve lived that life.
Today I live free. Oh I still live in the shadows, only now I live in the shadow of the cross. It covers me and provides me with the hope I need.
I write not to explore the monsters, but to expose the fact that there are monsters everywhere, and we have to face them. Win, lose, draw… Life isn’t easy. Sometimes the story isn’t about defeating the dragon, but surviving and holding on to the light in the aftermath of the dragon winning a small battle.
I would be lying if I didn’t say that a part of me is the young boy in that story. I would be also lying to you if I didn’t say that a part of me is Louie as well.
So my stories from time to time may be a bit dark with some horrifying elements. They may not end in a happy ending. They may not even be all that Christian in the Christian sense because, there won’t be a solid redemptive story. But I promise you this…
They will be personal. And they will end with hope. And sometimes hope is all we need to get us through to the end.