Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Do Christians Write Vampire Stories? We Certainly Do!

I love paranormal stories. The fact that vampires happen to be my favourite supernatural creature doesn't stop me from enjoying reading about 'ghosties and ghoulies and things that go bump in the night.' They're such fertile fields for the mind to run barefoot in! And being a Christian doesn't mean I stop using my imagination, exploring the unknown and even writing about it. I believe God gifted us with a minuscule share of His unlimited creativity and imagination - after all wasn't the creation of humanity like the beginnings of a book? We were in His mind before we were in reality. The Lord planned and plotted our world before he formed and filled it.

Some of the greatest writers of this millennium were Christians who left us a wonderful literary legacy. I'm happy to name giants such as, Paul Bunyan, Milton, the Bronte sisters, C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien. Their works abound with creatures from mythology and the supernatural. For example, Bunyan's, Pilgrim's Progress probably wouldn't have enjoyed such success if he hadn't used well-known fairytale creatures of his day.  It's a true allegorical fantasy. His imagination worked together with his Christian faith to produce a best seller.

The same can be said of Milton. Who would've ever thought to make the so-called Prince of Darkness, an anti-hero and spawn the current spate of angelic/demonic literature popular today?
Need I say anything about the Bronte's - Charlotte, Emily and Anne - who although devout Christians, gave us not only the dark, brooding heroes in Heathcliffe and Rochester,  but hauntings and references to elves, fairies, sprites and witches?

And what about those literary demi-gods - C.S. Lewis and Tolkien? Their works stand alone. Where would we be without Narnia and its fauns, centaurs, the White Witch, talking beavers, minotaurs and noble lions such as Aslan?
Could any of us, now conceive a world without Tolkien? The Lord of the Rings is peopled by evil and good wizards, elves, orcs, hobbits, dwarves and unseen angelic beings and has even recently been named, Book of the Millenium!

I know this is just a cursory glance, but it serves the purpose - Christians do write fantasy and the  paranormal, and yes, there's often romance, too. Even though I haven't specifically addressed the issue of vampires, they also come under that wide umbrella.What better way to see the dark side of human nature than a creature who is condemned to exist by living off the lifeblood of others?
Do they succumb to the darkness or spend their life fighting the urge to kill? Is there redemption possible for such a creature?
(I'm almost tempted to say something about politicians, real-estate salespeople and bank mangers here!)

So, the next time someone asks me why I write about urban paranormal romance, I'll simply rattle off a few names.

I'd love to know what others think. If you have an opinion on this, please feel free to comment - politely.


T. Drecker said...

I think as long as a writer remembers to hold on to the Christian values, fantasy is totally okay! Now, if you start driving to the blood bank and making yourself steaming cups for breakfast... or start boiling your own brews for witchcraft, I might start to protest ;)

Tima Maria said...

Lol! That's true. Fantasy is a wonderful way to explore a variety of experiences, as well as the darker side of human nature. But, I also believe that any story carries the image of its author - their values are embedded in their writing, either consciously or subconsciously.

fjf said...

What better way to see the dark side of human nature than a creature who is condemned to exist by living off the lifeblood of others? (I'm almost tempted to say something about politicians, real-estate salespeople and bank mangers here!)

You wouldn't be the first. The word vampyre entered the English language in 1732 as a political tool, and Voltaire had this to say:

We never heard a word of vampires in London, nor even at Paris. I confess that in both these cities there were stock-jobbers, brokers, and men of business, who sucked the blood of the people in broad daylight; but they were not dead, though corrupted. These true suckers lived not in cemeteries, but in very agreeable palaces.

Tima Maria said...

Hi fjf,

Your comment made me laugh! I didn't realise Voltaire had written that, but it just goes to show that some things don't change. One doesn't need to be a dark-dwelling fiend to suck the lifeblood out of others. I'll have to read Voltaire more closely from now on!

Diane said...

For Christians, Jews, Callathumpians or whatever, life must always contain good and bad, black and white, right and wrong. One of the eccentricities of life is that it is built on opposites.

Tima Maria said...

Hi Diane, It's what the world is - a two-edged sword. But it's best to present to right edge.