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26
May

Some Thoughts about Ireland’s Same Sex Marriage Referendum

As a ‘conservative’ Christian, I found Ireland’s recent Same-Sex Marriage Referendum very interesting.

Off the top of my head, then.

1. Agree or disagree with Same Sex Marriage, people have the right in Free Societies to choose, to vote, to engage in the social and political process. Disagreeing doesn’t invalidate the right. Not even God violates people’s free will. This is happening. Deal with it – intelligently.

2. NPR reported that rather than take an adversarial, combative stance, many Homosexuals and Same Sex Marriage supporters personally went to friends, family, co-workers, neighbors and said “This is who I am. This is important to me. Can you help?” One human being to another. There’s a thought, eh?

3. No one is opening a Big Box of Darkness in the world like Pandora. Darkness is the absence of light. Ground is lost by default. Now I agree that sexual immorality – homosexuality included – is dangerous both spiritually and physically; that is is indicative of broken, lost and defiant nature in need of redemption. But it’s time to stop pointing fingers and handing out Citations like God’s Traffic Cop. Fact is, we’re all in trouble and in desperate need of a Savior. What are we supposed to be doing again?

4. Time to reacquire a sense of proportion. There are LOTS of ugly, terrible things going on in the world. Compared to war, poverty, corruption, slavery, child-porn, and sex-trafficking (and half a dozen other things), this is way down on the list. Really.

To echo that Irish bishop, ‘It’s time for a Reality Check”. Yes, there will always be hostile contradiction, a reproach to genuine faith. I get that. But the simple Gospel is compelling, compassionate, and profound. However imperfect, it’s on us believers to reflect that accurately. As Christians, we’re Responsible TO people, not FOR them. Their response to Jesus is between them and Him. Don’t like what’s going on? I understand. The call then is to repent and return to being Salt and Light. To be God’s ambassadors, ministers of reconciliation. Jesus’ hands an feet.

Or to swipe from Gandhi, “Be the change in the world you wish to see.”

26
May

Free Story Time

Cover2For any interested parties, my short story SOZO is free ’til the end of the month.

Fair Warning: a quick read, it has mature themes and deals with a demobbed combat vet who finds himself in an ugly situation. Ending is good though.

On a related note, I’ve been told it has been accepted into the next Crossover Alliance anthology, due late this year. So that’s cool.

Thanks much and have a great day.

18
May

Will Mr. Mark Carver please stand up?

12"x 12" Foil wrap construction.

12″x 12″ Foil wrap construction.

After posting here, on FB and sending two email, it seems the winner for the Second Place Prize in The Barrow Lover Celtic Stained Glass Giveaway remains incommunicado. So the magic D20 has spoken again…

If so inclined, will Monsieur Carver contact me with his shipping details?

CCGLAZIER at GMAIL dot COM

Thank you.

8
May

One for my ‘concerned’ brethren

When I mention my fiction writing in a group of Christians, I often get suspicious glances/blank looks when I explain I don’t write ‘Christian’ books or target the Christian market. It probably doesn’t help that I use the word ‘explicit’ to describe my approach. What I mean by that is I try to write whatever I believe best conveys a credible portrayal of both Christian and non-Christian elements. Part of my devotion to God is faithfulness in my vocation. I have to be true to God and true to my work, which has to be true to itself. I won’t apologize for using mandatory conventions of fiction or genre. (‘show don’t tell’, war violence in Military Sci Fi, ghosts or magic in Horror/Supernatural…)

Now I make every effort to avoid the gratuitous and contrived, but the notion that including certain topics and realities somehow diminishes or cancels the Christian ‘witness’ is lazy logic. The strength of an idea is the test of real life – how it addresses and overcomes contradictory positions – not in cloistering it from any and every opposing viewpoint. To be “holy” is not sitting behind glass in a museum but employed for different work. Utensils in the Temple were honed for bloody use, washed after day in, day out use.

That said, this recent Two-Star Review had me smiling:

The Time I Accidentally Read a Christian Novel, May 5, 2015
 Verified Purchase
This review is from: Running Black (Eshu International Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
I was looking for some gritty cyberpunk novel and found this. The world that the novel creates is truly excellent, and the technology is uniquely cool. I wasn’t expecting the christian elements which seemed to start out as a minor irritant when I was already mostly invested, but unfortunately by the end the christian propaganda has become a central theme. It’s an easy read, but instead of the expected grittiness you get Jesus freaks. I’d recommend passing this one over unless you want your cyberpunk to have what according to Christians are christian values.
***
The Christian faith themes are very clear in the book description and a number of reviews, so the charge of ‘bait and switch’ doesn’t stick. He got it though. I’m sorry he responded negatively to the Christian elements, but there’s little doubt he understood them. (Same guy also gave ‘The Book of Eli’ movie one star. Big shock, that.)
So this definitely helped offset the pain from yesterday’s hernia repair surgery.
Have a good day.
***
When a book leaves your hands, it belongs to God. He may use it to save a few souls or to try a few others, but I think that for the writer to worry is to take over God’s business.

Flannery O’Connor
5
May

Celtic Stained Glass Giveaway Winners

Apologies for the delay. Here are the winners of The Barrow Lover Celtic Stained Glass Giveaway. Thank you to everyone who participated.

THIRD PLACE – Christi Mansfield

12

12″ x 12″ Foil wrap construction.
Picture taken form angle to catch etched pattern.

SECOND PLACE – Jessica Thomas

12

12″x 12″ Foil wrap construction.

FIRST PLACE – Susan Shelton

Foil-wrap construction, the panel measures 20.25

Foil-wrap construction, the panel measures 20.25″ x 20.25″

Each of the winners has one week to contact me via email (ccglazier AT gmail DOT com) with their shipping specifics. If I don’t hear anything by May 12th, another winner will be determined for that particular prize.

Once again, a thousand thanks to everyone who participated, sent encouraging emails, threw FB Likes my way, all that jazz. Your support for my work means more than I can express.

*How were the names determined? I sorted the Amazon reviews by most recent, rolled a D20 (of course I did. I’m a gamer) and counted back to the appropriate review. Simple.

4
May

Back Online

TheBarrowLover 2 eyes

Apologies. Been offline since last Thurs morning. While DSL Extreme and Verizon squabbled over who was at fault, Comcast got my business.

Celtic Stained Glass Winners announced tomorrow.

Thanks.

28
Apr

Down to Two

TheBarrowLover 2 eyesTwo Days remaining for a chance to win one of three Celtic Stained Glass Panels. The Fine Print is HERE, but the simple version is leave a review  for my Celtic-flavored ghost story The Barrow Lover at Amazon.com before midnight 30 April, EST, and you’ll be entered to win. One entry per person please.

A thousand thanks.

Foil-wrap construction, the panel measures 20.25" x 20.25"

Foil-wrap construction, the panel measures 20.25″ x 20.25″

12"x 12" Foil wrap construction.

12″x 12″ Foil wrap construction.

12" x 12" with 18" chain for hanging.

12″ x 12″ with 18″ chain for hanging.

21
Apr

And then there were Nine

Days left for the Celtic Stained Glass Giveaway.

Foil-wrap construction, the panel measures 20.25" x 20.25"

Foil-wrap construction, the panel measures 20.25″ x 20.25″

To Enter, simply leave a review of The Barrow Lover at Amazon.com before 30 April and you will be eligible to win one of three Celtic-theme stained glass panels. No sock puppets please. One entry per review.

On May 1, I will draw three names from the list of reviewers and post them here at the blog. Winners then have seven days to contact me with their mailing specifics. Failure to do so by 7 May will result in their entry being void and another name selected for the prize.

Any questions? Ask.

Thanks,
patrick t.

TheBarrowLover 2 eyes

17
Apr

Guest Post: David Alderman

Official BannerDave Alderman and the Crossover Alliance authors represent a shift in biblical-based spec-fiction, one that resonates with me. Seeing as the Crossover Alliance Kickstarter is in full gear, I figured it was appropriate for Mr. Alderman to do a guest post here at HSSJ

***

The Crossover Alliance and Kickstarter Campaign
A shift has been slowly occurring in the Christian fiction market. In years past, the definition of Christian fiction did not allow for content that extended beyond a PG rating, and anything considered ‘edgy’ or otherwise offensive was rejected by publishers. These publishers weren’t merely the gatekeepers barring entry to the possibilities of becoming a published author, but they were also the gatekeepers barring entry into genres that fell outside the norm of the traditional fare.
Then the self-publishing movement occurred, and Christian authors realized they didn’t have to follow the rules anymore. A genre known as edgy Christian fiction arose. Authors began crafting Christ-centered fiction that fell within the lines of science fiction, fantasy and romance. But there was still a strange stigma regarding the content that was allowed in these pieces of fiction. Swearing, sexual content, and even violence were still trapped behind an invisible fence that authors built around their fiction for fear of being ostracized by the Christian community altogether.

I wasn’t content to have this fence around my fiction, and in 2009 I self-published Black Earth: End of the Innocence, the first novel in my Black Earth series. End of the Innocence broke all of the rules of Christian fiction by portraying edgy content and tough spiritual themes. Not sure how to market my work, I eventually came up with the term edgy Christian speculative fiction. I even started an online community called The Crossover Alliance to try and pull authors and readers of this type of fiction together to help market it to the world.

Years later, I am in the process of turning The Crossover Alliance – http://www.thecrossoveralliance.com – into an online publishing company specializing in edgy Christian speculative fiction. The demand for this type of fiction – Christ-centered speculative fiction filled with real-world content – is growing. The big name publishing companies no longer have a say in what type of fiction can make it through the iron gates. Many authors are looking to specialize in this genre, while numerous readers are looking for more stories that cross the lines between secular and Christian fiction.

To this end, I just recently launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise funds for the first year of The Crossover Alliance’s publishing costs – https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/2054728317/the-crossover-alliance-first-year-fiction-catalog. This includes professional editing, cover design, and other various business expenses. If you want to support this type of fiction, please consider pledging to our Kickstarter campaign. Our goal is to raise $10,000 by May 9th, and we’re already 14% of the way there. You can score some awesome Kickstarter rewards, including subscriptions to our publishing catalog, unique bookmarks, and other goodies. Not to mention, you’ll also be responsible for changing the very face of publishing.

IMG_0101David N. Alderman is an indie author of two speculative fiction series—Black Earth and Expired Reality. You can find all of David’s work at http://www.davidnalderman.com. He is also the founder of The Crossover Alliance (www.thecrossoveralliance.com), a publishing company specializing in edgy Christian speculative fiction. He participates in National Novel Writing Month (www.nanowrimo.org) each year. When he’s not writing or spending time with family, you can find David gaming on any number of different consoles.

Cool YouTube video below!

11
Apr

New Deus Ex? Yes, please.

It isn’t the end of the world, but you can see it from here.

 

 

My otaku is raging. Deus Ex: one of the slickest, coolest FPS/RPG game franchises ever made, and IMO, the latest iteration of cyberpunk. Makes me want to buy a new pair of mirrorshades.

Can’t come soon enough.

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