I am the first one to tell you I don’t want too much reality in my fiction. I want happy-ever-after endings and people getting along. That said, I like reality. I took a minor tangent this past month into secular fiction and found that I was enjoying it more than I thought I would. And then I realized the answer:realism. Oftentimes, I have found Christian fiction to not depict reality well. Example:
– Girl inherits fortune and instantly becomes depressed. Not reality.
– Caring more about others than self. Noble, but not reality.
– Lack of violence and blood in a supposedly violent and bloody book. Not reality.
– Everyone is nice. Not reality.
– Main character never throws a tantrum in face of bad situations. Not reality.
– Strong denial of attractive male for no good reason. Not reality
There is an author I love, but in her books, her characters are just about perfect. It could be that she is presenting a picture of how Christians should be. But there is something wrong when I can relate more to secular characters than Christian characters.
So how can an author garner reality and still have a happy ending? Stay true to the times. Make the men and women, people of their era. It makes a huge difference. If there is an exception, please tell us (the reader) why. Give characters human emotions. Let them be Godly people, but let us also see them work out their human emotions. Make every main character a developed, fully rounded person and they will always be a real character.
Anyone else agree? Disagree? Have something to add?