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Writing the Darkness

Guest article by author Laura Brewer

I’m currently writing a fantasy series, Chronicles of Asgard, inspired by an amazing six week long series of dreams my husband had over two years ago. This series has been a joy, but also a gut-wrenching trial to write – and they still are. There was an event in those dreams that I tried to exclude. My main characters are a married couple in the fight for the Light, but Hel (Satan) was trying to break them. It was horrific, controversial; surely God didn’t want me to write it that way! He did.

I was forced to dig deep into the anguish and pain in my own life, though quite different in nature, to fuel my character’s responses and make them real. I had to dredge up those times ‘I’ had fought against things that happened that were out of my control and I didn’t like the path God set before my feet. I won’t go into the details of what happened in the story, it’s a serious spoiler, but trials they face because of this tore at the very foundation of who they are and facing the need to accept the Creator’s solution was even worse. They wanted things back the way they were! (Oh, how many times we do that!) In the process, it shows just how much commitment and faith can be tried in a marriage and the growth that comes from it when you surrender to God’s plan.  I kept writing, but was frequently seized with bouts of panic and certain that this was going to make Everybody angry! I can’t count the sleepless nights.

 We have a good supporting church, but none of our members read SciFi or Fantasy. I was even afraid to really open up and discuss this with my fellow Christian fantasy writers. God was patient with me and I eventually realized that every time I’d have doubts dragging me down, our pastor would get up and preach on something that left me with the command to “stay in the fight”. I can’t remember the details of those numerous sermons, but the command to keep in the fight, stay the course, walk in faith and let God settle it out – continued to crop up every single time I really needed it. In spite of what happens to them, Winds of Chaos upholds the sanctity of marriage and the need to walk in faith and accept God’s plans, rather than their own wishes.

Another big struggle for me happened last spring. I was working on Silver Fire, the second book in that series. It wasn’t quite as personal, for me or the characters, but it was agonizing. I had been glad I was able to avoid writing my MC actually entering that dungeon, seconds too late to save an infant and just wrote the aftermath. That would be enough. The readers didn’t need those details. There was a nudge that I was missing something important, but I pushed it aside. I already knew what was in there, I knew what happened, but if I went in, I’d have to see it. I get mental images of what I’m writing and I really didn’t want the nightmares if I actually looked. It happened to be on the weekend of a special meeting where we had a lot of preaching going on. I had, not just one, but four different preachers calling me out that weekend. They had no idea they were calling me out. Every one of them, in different ways and with different examples, told me I needed to repent and face the battle I was called to fight, however insignificant it might seem.

After that, I changed the way I was praying about it. Instead of asking God to let this cup pass, I asked him to help me do it right, to say what He wanted it to say. The words flowed after that. I managed not to see, or write, too many details and Silver Fire was published in December.

Writing with the awareness that God is looking over your shoulder, can be difficult, but also exhilarating. We’re all prone to rebellion, but I try to keep in mind what happened to Jonah and pray for the grace to stay focused on His plan. I really don’t know where all this will take me in the end. There are some amazingly inspiring things that will come out in later books (if I live that long). I may or may not ever have much of a following, but as long as God’s in the matter and I get the work done, the ones who need to see it – will.

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