Thursday, May 22, 2003

Literary News

Both personal and general.

On the homefront, I have started writing again regularly. Poetry and short fiction. The poetry's turning out better, but I'm slowly getting back into the groove with the prose. And I've started journaling again. But this time on a purely non-professional level. The reason is mainly therapeutic, which i think is okay. If you are in a funk you can't get out of, or are brave enough to admit your funk is a depression, start journaling. Just be completely honest. Since it's private there's little fear in that. But be honest, let your true feeling's out, and you'll not only start to feel better, but sometimes you'll stumble on a breakthrough. You'll read over the page, and think, "so that's what the real problem is, that's what I've been denying, or hiding, for so long." At least, that's what is starting to happen to me.

In more general news, I'm reading three or four books right now, and need to finish them all by a week from Saturday. I just finished the most amazing Christian book I've read in a long time. I stopped reading Christian non-fiction (some call it Christian self-help), devotional type books. Mainly because I think they're almost all full of crap. But my old roommate and biggest blessing recently told me about a book that was changing his life. It's Wild at Heart, by John Eldredge, the author of The Divine Romance... or the "Sacred" one... I always get them confused.

While my reading of the book has not transformed my life, it's definitely impacted it. In the book, Eldredge talks about what it means to be a Christian man. And in no uncertain terms, he censures modern Christianity and the modern church for more-or-less emasculating the idea of a Christian man. In the heart of every man, he writes, there is an inherent desire for a battle to fight, an adventure to live, and a beauty to rescue. This is evident in young boys at play. And this is how God created us and desires us to be. But society and the church have forced men to be satisfied with being "A Nice Guy." And that, at its heart, is sadly wrong. As you can see, the book is pretty powerful. Those of you who might be flinching at the thought of more male chest-beating need not worry, and should check out the book for yourselves. It also has a lot to say about the heart of a woman, and how it was designed. Pretty interesting.

As for other books on my shelf, I just started a book called "Christ and Creativity" by Michael Card. It focuses on Christ's creative nature, and is an encouragement of Christians who pursue the arts. On a more secular note, I am thirty pages from finishing "Nine Stories" by J.D. Salinger (which, I have to say, I like a whole lot better than "The Catcher in the Rye"). I'm also trying to finish "On the Road" by Kerouac and squeeze in one more Salinger before June. Why the June 1st deadline? Have you forgotten? My summer reading project: "The Lord of the Rings". And I will succeed.***

Anything else? I don't think so. I'll keep you posted though. And hey, while we're on the subject of writing, POST MORE. ALL OF YOU. I MEAN IT.

***Editor's Note: About halfway through that post, I started using quotation marks instead of italics when naming book titles. For those of you who were paying attention, you realized that this was, of course, incorrect. However, it just seemed to be entirely too much trouble to stop typing and scroll the mouse over to the Italics button, and there is no "hotkey" combo on Blogger for it. So, yes, it was laziness, pure and simple. So sue me.

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