|Nicki Elson: author of Divine|
Just to show I'm not the only one who can stir some controversy, I've invited Nicki Elson to come stir things up and toss out some of her own. Nicki's got a book coming out on March 26th (hey! That's tomorrow for those reading this today). The opinions presented in this post are not necessarily those of the Tossing It Out management so if any rotten eggs are thrown, toss them in Nicki's direction. I know that my readers are nicer than that, but do let Nicki know what you think in the comment section.
I’m so excited—and yes, a bit nervous—about being invited over for Arlee’s Controversy Monday. He extended the invitation after I hinted about a controversy regarding my new novel, Divine Temptation (to release tomorrow!). I didn’t mean to write a controversial book. I’m just a Jesus-loving girl who also happens to like writing sexy books, and I didn’t think the two had to be mutually exclusive. I still don’t think they have to, but I’ve already come across those who beg to differ…and the book hasn’t even been released yet, so I can only imagine what I’m in for.
Now, I did fully expect to take some flak for including explicit sexual content in a novel that features a heavenly angel as one of the leading characters. On this point, I’ll refer you to my post Should I have faded to black? (written in response to an earlier novel, but it applies to this story as well), but what surprised me, and what I want to talk about today, is how unwelcome any ounce of faith is in a mainstream paranormal romance novel, even one about an angel.
I get that when reading a romance novel, no one wants a CCD lesson, so I appreciate the feedback that led me to pare back and even cut certain scenes. They weren’t plot essential, and now the story moves at a better pace, but what bruises my heart is to see that just the suggestion in the narrative that God is all-powerful or that Satan actually exists or that a person should feel guilty for their sins can set some people off.
I certainly don’t think that everyone in the world believes these things, but I also don’t understand why those who don’t believe choose to get irate instead of simply viewing my world as a fictional universe. The story is fiction, after all. I’m sure no one ever asked J.K. Rowling to qualify narrative statements to say “Harry had been taught to fear Voldemort.” In that universe, Voldemort does exist and he is evil. In mine, Satan does exist and he is evil. And God is all-powerful.
So why in a world that doesn’t flinch when fictional stories speak of Voldemorts or Aslans or Saurons as real beings, does flat-out stating core tenets of Christian faith in a work of mainstream fiction fluster certain people? Why is it more palatable when the characters are dressed up as lions and wizards?
Divine Temptation at Goodreads (the 25th will be the last day to enter to win a paperback copy)
Author page at Amazon (Divine Temptation will release on 3/26, but Amazon has been known to post Kindle versions early, so it might be available at post time)