Tag Archives: mystery

Christian Writers Talk to Contemporary Readers

This month, I welcome to this blog three Christian writers who are launching some interesting and surprising novels. Today’s guest is Barbara Derksen, author of Shadow Stalker, available today at http://amzn.to/13pABhFI along with some great premiums to celebrate the occasion. Yahoo photo 250

Why do you think being a Christian is important enough to write about it? 

I believe that the Great Commission is an all inclusive directive from The Lord. No matter what we do as Christians, our mandate is to tell others about Jesus. The only treasure we can take with us to heaven are people who also, because of Jesus, get to go to heaven when they enter eternity.  

You write Christian fiction. Why do you call it Christian? How is it different from any other fiction? 

I call it Christian to give people a heads up that they will read the gospel in the pages of my book. It also means that I do not adhere to the world’s view as far as abusive verbiage and in depth descriptives In tense scenes. I leave a lot to the reader’s imagination. 

Do you think of your writing as a ministry? 

I do. God has given me a message and he wants others to read it. Otherwise he would not have gifted me with this form of communication.  

When you write, what do you want your book to do for your reader? 

i want my reader to be entertained and yet not feel as if they need to wash their minds out afterwards. I want them to picture people who love The Lord, living life that’s not always perfect, making mistakes, meeting bad people, getting into trouble, and yet knowing where they can find answers. I want my readers to say, “I can do that too.” 

Contemporary culture in the US is rife with conflicts over Christianity, secularism, and New Age ideas. Why do you think a person should be a Christian instead of adopting any of the other options?  

Our God is our Creator. Who could know us better than the one who designed and created us In the first place. Jesus has answers, not just rules. He loves us unconditionally and doesn’t demand that we do this or that to earn His love. He is alive, not just a prophet or some idol that a man created.  

In your book, what do you share with the reader that will help the reader live a Christian life in the midst of cultural conflict? 

My characters set the example of how to live life admidst the turmoil surrounding us. I show ordinary people walking with God, some closely, others a little more distant but they learn to draw nearer as they story unfolds. 

What is the difference between your central character(s) and a successful secular thinker? 

My characters know where to go for answers. they do not rely simply on their own devices. They seek Godly counsel and wait for God to show them the direction they should go. 

What does your book do for Christian readers who are looking either for entertainment or inspiration in a fictional story? 

My mysteries provide both. They entertain, although some may lose precious sleep because they want to know what happens next. But they also inspire toward a closer walk with God, and show that it’s possible all the time and in all circumstances. 

Does your book have anything to say to people who believe that the world is limited to our time/space experience? 

My characters mostly deal with the here and now. I may allude to angels but I don’t take too much time there. 

In what way does your book serve as your testimony of faith in Christ? 

i wouldn’t be able to write about the characters, giving them a faith life, if I didn’t have one myself. 

Currently in the United States there is a major conflict between people of faith who operate their businesses according to the principles of their faith and the US government, which states that religious liberty does not apply to a business enterprise. Do you consider your business as a writer to be subject to the principles of your faith? 

I do. Walking as a Christian is a full-time job. It permeates every part of my life whether I want it to or not. it’s just who I am. So the writing reflects that as well. 

Secular thinkers often say to Christians, “I don’t think you should push your religion on people who believe something different.” What is your response? 

If I didn’t care about them, I would agree. But God asks us to care so we must be concerned about their eternal destiny. 

What do you believe to be the lasting value of your work to the contemporary culture? 

The work could burn up in a house fire but if the person who read a book, begins to understand his need for a Savior, then I will have accomplished what I set out to do. 

What else would you like to say about your personal values, your Christian faith, or your call to be a Christian writer? 

There are many ways to communicate the Gospel to people all around the world. God has asked me to communicate this way and He supplies the story line. The rest is in His hands. All he asks is that I be obedient to His call on my life. 

Interested readers can learn more about you and get to know you better at your website www.barbaraannderksen.com . Tell us a little about the book you are launching today.

An ominous shadow hangs over her, as Christine Finder, alias Melissa Rompart, visits the brutal slaying of her parents most nights in a dream. The threat of discovery propels her to search for the whereabouts of the killer to see the man brought to justice. In the meantime, the killer stalks her mind while she operates Finder’s Keepers, an agency that searches for the people her clients hire her to find. Nathan Brent is only four years old and missing. Will she find him in time or will the killer find him first?

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You can purchase Shadow Stalker today at http://amzn.to/13pABhFI

Welcome Kevin Mark Smith

Today it is my privilege to introduce you to a talented fellow writer, Kevin Mark Smith, author of Flashback, a book whose thesis will demand your attention. In his day job, he is a lawyer, but his gift for professional legalese has not paralyzed his creative talent. Today he posts about the reason you need to read Flashback. You will quickly recognize how this story addresses the pressure of secular thinking in our culture, and portrays the tension of living a life of faith under the stress of this pressure.

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The inner struggle that plagues us all

All great stories begin with inner conflict. For Christian novels this is especially true. The protagonist needs something to move him away from worldly appetites and toward Christ. This is how the idea for Flashback came to me as I sat in a Freddy’s Steakburger restaurant in Derby, Kansas, sometime in January 2012. Specifically, a question occurred to me. What if the image people see of us indicates success? Yet, the image is an illusion, a mask to cover something deeper—a long lost desire to be a better person and not just strive for monetary success. With that Kenneth Cartwright, rich entrepreneur and lawyer, was born.

We are all guilty of wanting more things in our lives. New cars, boats, jewelry, clothes, whatever. It’s the product of a consumption-based economy. The TV bombards us with images of success, images we want to be part of. We want to be that buff model standing on the bow of the yacht with long, flowing hair blowing behind us. But what if the better part of our souls speak loud enough for us to hear it? What if it poses the questions, “Are you really happier with all those expensive toys? Wouldn’t life be better if you sought true success, the kind that lasts forever?” In Flashback I take these nagging truths to another level. What if we had the chance to live that better life but turned our backs on it, only to realize later how much the choice cost us. Kenneth sees that life in parallel when he sleeps. He sees the wife and daughters that complete his dream life then awakens each morning to the same old drudgery that the world tells him is success.

Ouch. God reminding you every night how stupid you were being smart. How humbling is that? God’s grace is always enough. In Flashback, God’s grace is first manifest in the angelic Stacy who listens to Kenneth as he tells her about his disturbing dreams. But is Kenneth’s meeting Stacy just some sick joke, a further reminder of how dumb he was to take the left fork in the road, the one away from God and family and toward wealth and success? She is too good for him, so what’s the point in developing a friendship with her? God’s grace also gives him a case and client to remind him how vain it is to seek after fleeting things. The client dies under suspicious circumstances and Kenneth scrambles to discover the truth behind his death, a truth that threatens his own life and those closest to him.

Conspiracies, drug lords, assassins, and a shocking end. Will it be enough to open Kenneth’s eyes to the truth? Will he finally realize what it is God is trying to tell him, that choosing success over God and family was the wrong choice, perhaps a fatal one? Buy Flashback now to find out. $.99 for Kindle for a limited time.





Twitter: @kevinmarksmith 

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