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Showing posts from July, 2006

Two additions to the Christian Fandom tour ...

Cheryl Russell Rachel Marks Thanks to both of you!

Day 3--Christian Fandom . . . Needs YOU!

In her blog yesterday, Becky Miller wrote, First, I was troubled by the presentation of fantasy. Having read more of how Fandom came into being (the organization forming as a direct result of Star Trek conventions), I understand WHY the fantasy work is weak, but I still don’t like it. Weak? Yes. First, the list of fantasy titles is approximately half the number of Sci Fi titles. Secondly, the list is … somewhat outdated. Finally, although the inclusion of some secular fantasy is commendable, I don’t think the site does justice to Christian fantasy, especially not the work that’s been done in the last two years (which may be a reflection of the second point). That raises a very good point. The truth is ... those of us who are currently writing reviews (and there aren't many) have so many other things on our plate that ... this has gotten scooted aside. We're trying—we really are. Greg asked me to take over the Fantasy pages, and although I'm sorely tempted, I can't. I

Day 2—Christian Fandom

Okay, so … sometime around December 2003 I found myself snagged by this list where many (most? all?) of the participants were con-goers … and I was not. Many of them seemed to know each other quite well, and I felt rather like an outsider—but when I posted an introduction and mentioned that it was Stephen Bly’s books (Christian westerns) that pulled me back into the realm of Christian fiction after several years away (and thus back to my own writing), Greg Slade was quick to hop on that one and ask if I’d consider writing some reviews for the Fandom website and becoming the editor for the western genre pages (yet to come to existence, of course). Well, there’s nothing like involvement to flatter a new kid on the block, nor to secure her commitment to a particular cause. Naturally I said yes—to our knowledge there was no other resource on the Web specifically for Christian westerns, and I’m probably as big a fan of westerns as I am of fantasy. (Zane Grey and Louis L’Amour—oh, yeah! I

Take Three: Christian Sci-Fi & Fantasy Blog Tour--CHRISTIAN FANDOM

Three years ago, when I first came back to writing fiction again, I joined several email lists. Make that, a TON of email lists. Of special interest to me were those for Christian fans of science fiction and fantasy, and when I finally started unsubscribing to the ones that weren’t especially helpful, I stayed on two SF/F-specific lists. Christian Fandom was one of those. What is Christian Fandom? I’m glad you asked. Once upon a time, a group of Star Trek fans—the hardcore ones, who dress up in Federation uniforms and wear Vulcan ears and learn to speak Klingon—decided to start holding meetings. The movement grew. Soon, it wasn’t just ST fans who were attending these meetings, but fans of other sci-fi and fantasy, as well—Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings , Anne McCaffery’s Pern series, Frank Herbert’s Dune , just to name a few. Oh, and that weird film by someone named George Lucas became rather popular, too. (May the Force be with you!) Some of the people who attended these meetings—oh,

A new team blog

As if I didn't have enough to do (where's that yahoo emoticon with the rolling eyes and wibbling lips?), I agreed to post bi-weekly on a new team blog titled Speculative Faith . Check out my rather silly post (okay, it's late and I only got 5 hours of sleep last night, again--it is NOT my fault!) which was supposed to be dated Thursday but because I'm on the East Coast and Stuart who built the blog is not, says Wednesday. On a much more serious note, I ran across a link to this article by Peter Leithart, whose wife Noel hangs out with an online homeschooling community I've been part of for years. She's a neat lady, knowledgeable and gracious and a licensed midwife for a few years now. They have an even larger family than I, and at least one grandbaby. I'm a little overawed by the article (for those who think I run deep, you should check this out--I feel like a third grader next to this man), but I found some threads common to some of my other reading of

Jordan and Jenkins

First, some random blatherings ... I updated my links (yours works now, Mir) and added a few. More to come, when I remember and/or am not distracted. I was up till 3:30 am canning another wave of green beans--so late because I had trouble with one of the canners, but it goes much faster now because I'm working with two now--back up at 7:45 to take my eldest to a dance camp where he's helping out this week, then back home and to bed again till ... noon. I don't normally sleep in that late, even when I get to sleep in. *blushing* Anyway, because I have such a late start on the day, it would be a good time, I think for this pre-written entry ... ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Elliot questioned me a few weeks ago for referring to Robert Jordan and Jerry Jenkins as “luminaries.” Well—they are very well-known names in their respective writing circles. And not only do I have deep respect for both as writers, though I may not entirely care for what they write, through both of them I’v

Stuff

A couple of announcements. First of all, next Monday, July 24, kicks off the third Christian SF/F blog tour, this time led by yours truly, highlighting Christian Fandom . I'm thinking we'll do Monday-Wednesday-Friday that week, more or less depending as always on individual interest. Secondly, several of us who hang out on the SF/F forum at ACFW have started a corporate blog just for the purpose of discussing speculative fiction and faith issues, called--what else?-- Speculative Faith . I'll probably be a not-so-active poster, but it'll be lots more of what we do on the blog tours and what I've been doing here off and on. This week I hope to get posted a couple of entries I wrote while on vacation, one on SF and romance, in which Karen expressed an interest, and another explaining why I referred to Jerry Jenkins and Robert Jordan as "luminaries." :-)

Held

I ran across Tricia Goyer's blog this morning and watched the video she had posted there. The lyrics are so relevant to where I've been the last several days, that I had to share ... Two months is too little. They let him go. They had no sudden healing. To think that providence would Take a child from his mother while she prays Is appalling. Who told us we’d be rescued? What has changed and why should we be saved from nightmares? We’re asking why this happens To us who have died to live? It’s unfair. Chorus: This is what it means to be held. How it feels when the sacred is torn from your life And you survive. This is what it is to be loved. And to know that the promise was When everything fell we’d be held. This hand is bitterness. We want to taste it, let the hatred numb our sorrow. The wise hands opens slowly to lilies of the valley and tomorrow. (Chorus) This is what it means to be held. How it feels when the sacred is torn from your life And you survive. This is what

A Grief Revisited

Yesterday was the seventh anniversary of the day our sixth baby, Duncan, “flew away home” to Heaven. Oddly enough, his birthday on July 2 hit me harder than yesterday did. I thought it must be that one end of the “anniversary weeks” is more difficult than the other, if that makes sense—but then this morning was Bible study, complete with one of the recorded sections from Beth Moore, which almost invariably means the Lord touching me very deeply somewhere I don’t really want to be touched. This section was taken from Genesis 45, where Judah begs Joseph—not knowing who he is, of course—not to send them all home without Benjamin, to take him instead, because losing another favored son would surely kill his father. You have to carefully read the previous chapters to get the full import of this … Judah was the one who argued for selling Joseph into slavery instead of killing him, and then was apparently so affected by Jacob’s intense, relentless grief over Joseph’s loss that he moved away

“Imminent Pre-Millennium Eschatology” and Science Fiction

Yes, the above phrase refers to the common (and mostly American, I should add) interpretation of those Scriptures referring to the Second Coming of Christ, perhaps made most familiar by the Left Behind series by Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins. But I believe it wasn’t LaHaye’s and Jenkins’ writings on end times and prophecy ( Left Behind and before) that started it all, but Hal Lindsey’s The Late Great Planet Earth . This view is pre-Tribulational , meaning a belief that Christ will return for His people at an event called “the Rapture” (“we shall be caught up together to meet Him in the clouds”), before the seven-year outpouring of God’s judgment, referred to as “the Tribulation.” Pre-millennial refers to the belief that the seven-year Tribulation must be completed before the actual return of Christ to the earth (as opposed to the “in the air” return referred to in Thessalonians), when He deals at last with the forces of wickedness advancing on Jerusalem, and ushers in a thousand yea

Quote du Jour

I'm really tired tonight. I was invited to attend a meeting as a "seasoned homeschooling mom" (ha, ha!) for a local group called the Holistic Moms Network. It felt just like La Leche League all over again, only this time I didn't have my nursing toddler in tow, and I could smile at the younger moms and assure them that those littles grow up astonishingly fast. I had a very good time, except for not getting my info straight on which end of town the meeting was being held, and feeling very foolish about walking in late ... but even that worked out. Anyway, a few days ago I picked up my copy of Walking on Water: Reflections on Faith & Art by Madeleine L'Engle (author of A Wrinkle in Time and other wonderful speculative fiction stories not just for children) and started working my way through it again. I came across this and just had to share: What if? What if--the basis of all story. The small child asks all the what ifs. All of life is story, story unrave

Congratulations, Karen!

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For anyone who hasn't yet heard, the Christy awards were given out Saturday night in Denver, Colorado, and Karen Hancock took her fourth-in-a-row award for the Visionary category with Shadow Over Kiriath ! I'm so thrilled for her. (And congratulations to the other winners, listed at Dave Long's blog, Faith*in*Fiction . Dale Cramer and Deanne Gist are both wonderful writers, too.) And just for Mir: the gooseberry , courtesy of Wikipedia. They grow wild in the Midwest (the domesticated version is bigger, about the diameter of your thumbnail or so), and my husband greatly favors the green berries, in a pie or cobbler.

Home Again

We just returned Friday evening from a two-week visit to family in Missouri. Actually, my husband was away on reserve duty at Scott AFB, Illinois, for two weeks before that, and I drove out on the Thursday before he was finished, with all the kids, to meet him, then we went on to MO to visit our families. After all the canning and packing and getting ready, I could actually feel the stress slipping away as I drove (I’d had Toby Mac’s “ Getaway Car ” going through my head the last 24 hours or so...and my apologies for not finding a link to lyrics without typos). The drive back was longer and more grueling—we were pulling a trailer loaded with my piano (which I finally get to “bring home” after all these years), a couple of cabinets, half the canning jars in Sullivan County, Missouri, a huge sack of new clothes for the kids, most of my mom’s castoff Tupperware and kitchen stuff, and our luggage. We were blessed to find a nice enclosed trailer to buy rather than pouring $400 down the dra