Everything I read affects me in some way. My “career” has been short but jam-packed. I’ve lived in nature stories, mysteries, historical fiction, sci-fi, light romances, biographies, etc. I’ve learned history, theology, witty quotes, and even British spelling. (You do realise they are different, right?) I’ve also learned some things that are not so good. Even good books can inadvertently teach subtle lies. Only through writing have I been able to identify some of the humdingers I’ve swallowed.
1. Adventures only happen away from home. As a Hobbit, I don’t actively seek quests; but I have often longed for something extraordinary to happen. An adventure outside of dishes, the driver’s manual, and tennis shoes, maybe? God has shown me what an incredible life I lead! I live in the best country ever with the best family ever. I have courageous comrades around me fighting the same battles, and a King who is there in my every need. I daily fight the dragon of pride and the giant of bitterness with His help.
2. Romance ends at the altar. I didn’t know I had fallen so hard for this one until I wrote my first “epic”. (At age eleven, no less.) I made the engagement ridiculously long because “happily ever after” was less interesting than the magical journey to get there. Boy, was I wrong! I’ve seen my parents steal a kiss in the kitchen or laugh together like old friends. The romance may be less “sparkly”, but it certainly grows sweeter with time!
3. Orphans have the most fun. I’ve never wanted to be an orphan—I love my parents. My stumbling preteen epic was about an orphaned protagonist because I couldn’t reconcile crazy adventure and parental involvement. Parents want to protect their children, and that’s always a hindrance to excitement. I’m moving my adventures towards a setting where the parents are the main influence in their children’s lives. Who wouldn’t love having your father put you in the care of a trusted knight when he is unable to protect you himself? (Well, Drewin wouldn’t…)
4. The first boy who smiles at you is your future husband. Heh, heh. I spent time anxiously wondering who liked me–reading the “obvious” signs or sighing over the absence of them. Silly me! My Father holds the future, and He is on the job! Phew. That makes me feel much better. 😉
5. Acts of kindness will ultimately change hearts. Hi, Pollyanna, it doesn’t work! I can love people so hard my eyes bug out but the decision to change is their own. All the heroines save the world with a smile, and I still can’t get the shy girl at church to come out of her shell. God has freed me to love and leave the rest to Him!
What are some literary lies you have believed? How have you discovered them? How are you loving the truth instead?