Faith, for the Writers

Being an Author Makes You Pray

Being an author makes you pray. Because when you have become a god of your authorial universe, you suddenly wish you would hear more definitive input from your characters. Don’t they have the next plotpoint? Why is the protagonist obsessed with pursing her lips if she doesn’t have something to say? What is the antagonist’s next step, and what’s his motivation? Surely these people have some opinion they’d like to voice. And yet the silence of writer’s block persists.

And being an author, you certainly don’t want the God of your universe to have a case of writer’s block. That’s what causes snooze-worthy dialogue, worthless details observed, and heaven forbid a catastrophic turn of events that has no plot value whatsoever – if there’s some trial to go through, there better be some reason for the struggle by the last chapter.

So you begin to tell Him your opinions of things. Regardless of His existence or lack thereof, surely He would appreciate some input. Most people might think, “While You’re working on the big picture stuff, I sure would appreciate winning the lottery; oh, and I’ll take the closest parking spot.” But no, you as an author understand God now. “The secondary characters need more depth, the protagonist needs to be more empathetic and heroic, and the plot needs to be more straightforward. While you’re at it, make the mission more apparent. And draw out the action, cut out all those lousy chapters that have nothing to do with the concept and theme.” As an author, you know it would be nice to have everything down to the most minute detail. So you throw in, “Oh, and I’ll take the closest parking spot.”

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