What’s in a Label?

Mike Duran has a thought-provoking post on Novel Rocket today. The comment I left is probably inane, but this is a subject dear to my heart. I’ve talked about here but also felt compelled to babble a little further. And since the whole thing is a muddled mess anyway, what’s a little more mud?

For some, the label Christian Fiction denotes a safe haven. For others, weak sugar water. Still others consider it to be evil, believing no fiction can glorify God or edify believers.

I understand the various nuances of the question and, I think, the arguments on all sides. Oddly, I both agree and disagree with all of them. I’m not usually so wishy-washy! It makes me wonder what I’m doing here.

At the moment, what I’m doing here is inviting you to enter into the discussion. Thoughts?


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3 thoughts on “What’s in a Label?

  1. I hope to challenge and inspire Christians with my writing. I’d like to see someone break free from a prejudice or preconceived notion that has nothing to do with the Bible. I too have shunned, what I see as fluffy Christian romance. I love romance, but I want a story to challenge me. I want to see characters struggle and come out better for it. I enjoy fantasy and imagery as well. Christian fiction has come a long way. Many people still enjoy reading simple Christian romance, so there are still plenty of those and that’s okay. But I’m grateful that the options are much more plentiful in Christian fiction now.

  2. Thanks for stopping by to visit, Terri, and for weighing in. I agree, it’s good there are more options in Christian fiction now. But I think the question is, should something be identified as “Christian?” As you point out, there are multiple genres in the Christian fiction category (fantasy, sci-fi, thriller, etc., along with the ever-popular romance). Is it necessary to label it Christian? Couldn’t it just be put on the fantasy shelf, or historical mystery, or whatever it is? I don’t know if there’s a right or wrong answer; just asking the question.

  3. I heard part of a discussion of this topic on the Christian radio station recently. It seems this is a national concern. After their discussion, I am still divided over the issue. I see that could be considered false advertising if we do not label our works Christian, then proceed to share the Gospel in the pages. Some readers will be offended by the “religious” content. Still, some readers will not choose to buy or borrow a book that is not labeled Christian because they do not want to be offended by harsh, even vulgar or graphic language and depictions of scenes. So, I think I come down on the side of labeling it as Christian if it was written by a Christian and has Christian content. If a Christian does not want that label, s/he should not put any religious content in the book. my humble opinion…

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