It’s been a few days since I last posted, due to a combination of general busyness and lack of incidents compelling enough to justify an epistle. Looking over the past week, there’s been a smattering of small stuff worthy of at least a brief comment, so here goes:
Post-Pageant Depression - If you’ve been following my Twitter/Facebook, you’re aware that we spent the past weekend in Wichita, where the Darling Daughter (DD) was a finalist in the Kansas National American Miss pageant. Now, some cynical killjoys might say that such events, in the words of C.M. Kornbluth, are where parents enter with their daughters, their money, and their wits, and exit with their daughters only. Untrue! Although she didn’t leave with a tiara, DD had a great time, displayed an astounding level of poise and confidence under pressure, and made some new friends. She also gained some valuable experience with interviews and public speaking–very important as she approaches college.
A Diligent Editor Doeth Good Like a Medicine - I had a nice editorial exchange with Ms. Sharon Dodge of Reflection’s Edge this week, regarding my short story, “Rubes,” which will appear in the August issue. Authors often complain about editors taking a meat cleaver to their cherished creations, but I was once again reminded how a good editor can really make a story shine. Ms. Dodge recognized some spots in my story that needed a little trimming here and a different turn of phrase there, and I like it even better now than when I submitted it. Thanks, Sharon.
I’d Be a Christian if the Church Wasn’t Full of Hypocrites - Vampire Queen Emeritus Anne Rice announced a couple of days ago that, although she’s still “committed to Christ,” she’s quitting Christianity. It’s a common sentiment. People are frequently discouraged by inconsistencies between the Christian faith and the lives of those who claim to practice it. Unfortunately, Ms. Rice doesn’t understand that Christians are broken people saved by God’s mercy, not their own merit. The Church, as the ancient fathers of the faith (and Dear Abby) were wont to observe, is like a hospital. All the diseases we encounter outside it are also found inside. The difference is that we’re under treatment. It’s certainly not an excuse for bad behavior by Christians, but it’s a little silly to say you like the Physician, but are leaving His hospital because you don’t agree with His prescriptions–and the other patients are jerks.
I’ve recently shared some space with Ms. Rice in a collection of Christian author interviews. She seems like a nice lady, and I pray she’ll work out her difficulties reconciling Christ with His Church. They’re a package deal–you don’t get one without the other.
Coming Soon to an E-Reader Near You - The Muse! Yes, my little novel of inspiration divine and diabolical is soon to be released in electronic format from Splashdown Books. More details as they emerge. In the meantime, you can sneak a peek at the first chapter here, or go all-in and buy the old-school paperback book at Barnes & Noble.com, Amazon.com, or via the Splashdown Books bookshop.