Religion in lesfic #brokentaboos #amwriting #shortstory

I write lesfic, and I write religion, and the two do not often mix. There are some places that this works, but most likely, whatever I write with a women loving women bent and religion is not going to take off.

I know this, but still I write it. Why? Because lesbians are Christians and Christians are lesbians. I tend to stick in the Christianity realm (versus other faiths) because that is my area of expertise. There are a whole slew of LGBT et al folk in the Christian faith. The loudmouths like to let us believe otherwise, but it’s not true.

I’ve got a romance novel that’s sitting finished on my laptop. I finished it in July. And here it sits. I did submit it to one publisher, but I’m pretty sure it’ll be rejected because one of my main characters, my lesbian character, is a chaplain at a hospital. Now, to note, she may be a chaplain, but this is ironically one of the least religious books I have ever written. I think she prays twice in it.

My Spirit of Grace series and anything to do with Grace and Amya is religious. Grace is named for the grace of God. Can’t get much more connected than that. I’ve had people tell me the book series is preachy, but well, I’m a preacher during the day, so I disagree. If they want preachy, I can give them preachy. =P

But why is it that these two subjects can’t seem to go well together and sell. I can’t sell it on the Christian market because well, lesbians and women loving women and sex (sometimes). I can’t sell it on the lesfic market because apparently all Christians are assholes and don’t like the gays (not true).

I’m left with the conundrum. Do I keep writing it? Do I stop? Where do I put it out for others to read? And who the hell wants to read it other than me?

I’ve been literally working on a short story serial called Kansas Beatitudes for four years now. You should know where this is going. The Beatitudes are scripture. There are eight of them. For each Beatitude, I am planning on writing a short little romance story around the central theme. I’ve already written two. But the first Beatitude is Poor in Spirit, and I’m struggling beyond compare with it.

Two reasons: poor in Spirit is far more religious centered than mourning or being meek. Secondly, I really want it to be an open relationship, F/F/F, with a pastor as one of the F’s in there. So what happens if and when I write it? Hmmm? Because I can’t imagine a publisher who would be willing to publish it. Yes, there is self-pubbing, but the questions about marketing and production are the same. Who will read it? Who on earth is the market? Is the market big enough to warrant the story and the time and the effort? Do I write it anyway because it’s not about sales but about story itself?

It would be easy enough to change the story. To write something different. But I tend to go where the muse and the little green men in my computer tell me to go and write.

Why is this taboo so taboo? People come in all shapes and sizes and religions and faiths and colors. Why is it that religion and the LGBT et al combined is so hard to sell and so repulsed by every side of the reading spectrum?

I recently finished reading Nadia Bolz-Weber’s Shameless, and I’ve got to say, we need a sexual reformation in the church, but we also need a religious reformation in the world. I live in a world where I almost have to 100% keep everything separate from each other. I can’t talk about my lesfic writing in church; I can’t talk about my church in my lesfic writing.

Sex and religion have so often been at odds with each other. It’s time we stop fearing both. It’s time we open the table for discussion. It’s time we shut up and listen, truly listen, to what is being said and what is being felt.

If you haven’t read Nadia’s book. It’s worth it. Trust me. So worth it!

A new work in progress #Mourn #KansasBeatitude #WIPpet

It’s been a while since I’ve done WIPpet. It’s also been a while since I’ve written and posted on this blog. I’m attempting to get back on track with this writing stuff and back into the habit of writing everyday.

I’ve joined up with ROW80 this round in an attempted to basically write one short story every ten days. It’s not going well. I still only have 2500 words that I wrote the first day, but I’m going to share some of it today.

The idea for this series of short stories is romance shorts based on the beatitudes. There are eight beatitudes in total, and each short story will be a minimum of 15,000 words, totaling 120,000 words when I finish all eight. I have all but 3 planned with basic plots, and I’ve been working on the second beatitude since that plot came easiest for me. Each short story will take place in Kansas (where I’m currently stationed) thus making the theme complete.

I do hope I can finish them all so I can publish these. =P But it’s romance so maybe it was a bad idea to write romance to get me back into the game since it’s not my strongest genre. Oh well, only time will tell.

WIPpet Wednesday is a day where we post snippets from our Work In Progress. It’s got one very simple rule: your snippet must in some way relate to the date. For this WIPpet, I’ll be sharing from Mourn, Kansas Beatitude #2. These are the first 21 sentences of the piece, 20 for today’s date and one for good luck because I really need it. This is straight draft form, and I haven’t gone through it at all, so forgive the typos/grammar/spelling.

“Blessed are those who mourn: for they will be comforted.”

With her finger bent, she rapped her knuckle against the screen door. The wooden door was wide open, and the heat from the house, which was actually a business, rushed through the screen and barely touched her cheeks. Taking a  deep breath, Moira sturdied her shoulders and waited for someone to answer. The figure shown through the door in seconds, and she took a step back off the cement deck so the door could be opened.

“My sister called and said this is where I was supposed to meet you?” Moira said it like a question, but she knew exactly where she was. She’d only been there once before when she was a little kid and her grandmother had died, but she remembered the smell of the makeshift funeral home distinctly.

“Moira.” The voice was smooth and warm.

Moira finally raised her gaze, locking her eyes with the woman standing on the other side of the doorway, pity lacing her features. Moira gritted her teeth and tensed her shoulders. She had never expected that woman to be standing in front of her, had never expected to see her again, in fact, she had prayed every night for years that she wouldn’t have to look upon her beautiful face again.

“Get in here out of the cold.”

Without saying another word, Moira pushed her way through the screen door until she stood just inside. Shivering in the sudden warmth, she stripped off her winter jacket and twirled her scarf from around her neck. She was going to be there a while, whether she wanted to be or not. With her heart racing, Moira lifted her gaze once again, this time prepared.

“I didn’t think I’d ever see you again, Ashley.”

Ashely gave a wry smile and took Moira’s jacket, hanging it next to the door. “Me either. Thought you’d left never to return.”

Want to join in WIPpet? Check out the linkie here.