Roseanna is guest blogging today for me about one of her favorite genres: Biblical Fiction! What a privilege and fun thing.
If you haven't read "A Stray Drop of Blood" yet, hurry--and I mean hurry--to order yours. It's a Biblical fiction that will touch the depths of your soul, stir your heart, and give your mind something to think about. As one of my friends said with tears in her eyes, and only part way into the book, "I couldn't sleep."
Every night as a child, my parents read my sister and me a Bible story. Adam and Eve, Noah and the Flood, Daniel in the Lion’s Den . . . accounts we’re all so familiar with now. We acted them out in Sunday School, we drew pictures to illustrate them. But my favorite retellings were always the ones that filled in the blanks with rich cultural detail and glimpses into the hearts of the people. Guess I’ve always had a propensity for fiction. =)
As a preteen, I remember my Junior Youth leader doing a a dramatic portrayal of a woman in the crowd at one of the New Testament events. I don’t even remember which one now, just that I was intrigued by the idea of an unnamed face that watched history unfold.
As a teenager, I read my first Biblical Fiction novels, quite a few all in a row. I loved them all, though they represented different sides of the genre. Some were retellings of familiar Bible stories, the characters fictionalized to fill in the blanks. Some were focused on characters that came entirely from the author’s imagination, but those characters interacted with figures we see in the Bible. And some took place during the time the Bible was written, dealt with its precepts, but had plots independent of Biblical accounts.
A Stray Drop of Blood”–a story about a woman in the crowd at Jesus’ trial and crucifixion. Six years later I finished the novel with the same title, the expanded story of that fictional woman.
I found that my heart and inspiration came in that middle-road of Bib-fic, where you get glimpses of familiar stories through new eyes. I loved the challenge of digging deep into the Gospels and finding those tidbits that I could work into my story. Establishing reactions, reasons that modern readers might not have considered. Brushing up against the miraculous, the epoch, and only sometimes recognizing it as such.
I was recently talking to a woman who said she wanted to read something that would bridge the gap between the novels she loves and the Bible she loves, so she picked up a Biblical Fiction. That, I think, is what much of its appeal boils down to. In some ways, Christians know the era very well . . . but in others it’s a mystery. We like a novel that can make it real for us and make us view the events our faith is founded on in new, deeper ways.
There’s a lot of great Bib-Fic out there, and I’m confident the list will keep growing–as long as people keep their Bibles and wondering, “What if . . .?”
Wonderful, Roseanna! What an inspiring way of looking at Biblical fiction. I loved your ept ability in phrasing your genre. Thanks so much for sharing.
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- CrossPurposes at: http://www.crosspurposesbooks.com/index.php?module=viewitem&item=705523
- And use coupon code BLOGGER for 20% off. Then shoot me an email at Roseanna@RoseannaWhite.com to get it personalized
- You can also get it from bookstores like Borders and B&N, though it would probably have to be ordered.
Blessings, dear readers!