Biblical fiction is the genre I write in (mostly… I do have a book about living on oxygen 24/7 but that’s non-fiction.)
As well as writing Biblical Fiction, I like reading it, and I do have some favorite authors who write great stories. There are some others, and I mentioned in a blog a long time ago that some seem to take their research from the block-buster movies. Movies makers aim to have a successful movie, not stay accurately to facts, therefore is not a reliable research activity.
Here is a link to a blog I had permission from Angela Hunt to re-blog. She makes a good explanation for why we should be trustworthy in our storytelling.
Biblical fiction readers deserve the best
The best what?
Stories? Perhaps… but stories based on the best facts we can find.
A story, or a character in the Bible inspires you to write about them. Well, that’s the beginning of a treasure hunt.
Because not all the information is in one or two verses.
Take the book of Genesis for example. When I attended a Bible Training Centre one of the lecturers explained how there were thousands of years between Genesis 1:1 and Genesis 1:2.
Other teachers and pastors have reinforced that since. And there is the first clue… use more than one source. It’s a weak building with only one or two bricks.
Here’s how I have seen it explained.
Genesis 1:1: “In the beginning God created the heavens…”
The heavens first, then the angels. Now how do the teachers come to that? Their research, the Hebrew, and other parts of the Bible.
One of those other parts, believe it if you like, is the book of Job when God answers Job.
“Now gird up your loins like a man; for I will demand of you, and you shall answer Me. Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth? Declare it if you have understanding! Who has determined its measurements if you know? Or who has stretched the line upon it? On what are the foundations fastened to? Or who laid its cornerstone, when the morning stars sang together and all the sons of God shouted for joy?” Job 38: 3-7
(Morning stars and sons of God are a type of angels, as explained in other parts of the Bible.)
Biblical Fiction authors do a lot of research
I can attest to that… and it becomes addictive.
Check out the sources of your research. Some are ‘weighted’ to a particular belief system so can be a little skewed. Another reason to check several sources.
Found an interesting book that reinforces what you think? Well, pray and ask God to lead you by His Spirit, and on a practical level, check the author Bio. What does it say? What are the credentials? Now, a love of the truth is more important than how many university degrees, because some who write commentaries are not even Christian, they are scholars.
Download the free one-page PDF of other hints.
Hope these help you make the reader of Biblical Fiction a happy reader.
PS My pet hate in a Biblical Fiction book is modern Americanisms such as ‘scooted across.” I didn’t even know what it meant until I asked an American friend to explain.
According to dictionary.com the word was first used in 1750–60 AD not BC – and it’s the late Middle Ages at that.