November 29, 2013

Why I Wrote Cecile's Christmas Miracle - Ruth L. Snyder

People write fiction for many different reasons, several of which have been discussed already by other bloggers this month. As a Christian writer, I take my writing seriously. I believe that God has gifted me with an ability He expects me to hone and use to accurately reflect His image. This doesn't mean that what I write has to be heavy theology. In fact, I believe that God is just as delighted with me expressing His image through a creative, fun story (fiction) as He is with a thought-provoking devotional (non-fiction).

On December 5th, my novella, Cecile's Christmas Miracle, will be released in e-book format on Amazon, Kobo, and Barnes & Noble. (This is the 7th story in the Kathi Macias' 12 Days of Christmas series with Helping Hands Press.) There are several reasons I wrote this story:
  • To introduce people to the beautiful country and people of Botswana, where I spent several of my growing up years. Botswana is a land-locked country in southern Africa, most of which is part of the Kalahari Desert.
  • To force myself out of my comfort zone. I'm very comfortable writing short pieces and haven't written a novella or novel before. I like a challenge and this was an opportunity to write a longer piece.
  • To give people an enjoyable story that would make them think.
  • To show people in North America what it's like to spend Christmas overseas, where it is celebrated in the middle of summer with no snow, no turkey, and perhaps no family nearby
  • To remind people of the true essence of Christmas. In North America we often define Christmas by traditions (turkey and mistletoe), weather (snow), and shopping (gifts). People celebrating Christmas overseas are often stripped of these facades and forced to truly focus on the birth of Jesus Christ.
I found it enjoyable and challenging to write this story. It was fun because I was able to relive some childhood memories and share a treasured part of my life many of my friends know little about. It was also gratifying to rise to a challenge and conquer it. The challenge came in crafting a plot that was believable and entertaining, but also true to life and educational. When I did my research for the story, I was horrified to read about the resettlement of the San Bushmen. It was challenging to present that part of the plot in a way that didn't put anyone down, but at the same time showed the struggles that expatriates face in foreign countries.

What about you? Do you write fiction for any of the same reasons I do?

Ruth L. Snyder
Ruth L. Snyder was privileged to spend the first ten years of her life in southern Africa where her parents served as missionaries. Ruth now lives in north-eastern Alberta with her husband and five young children. She enjoys writing about her journey of faith, special needs, and adoption.


  1. Agree that when God gifts us with the ability to write, He expects us to hone it and use it for His glory. Relieved that it doesn't require 'heavy theology' or some of us would never write at all! :)

  2. Thanks Ruth, I now feel inspired to continue writing a fiction novel that I started a while back. Most of my writing has been non-fiction; it is exciting to have confirmation that we can do both. I am also thankful that we don’t need to write "heavy theology" in order to share the message of Christ. Creativity is a gift from God, so it makes perfect sense that we are to use it in our writing.

  3. Susan, you're right. Some of us would never write if we had to write heavy theology. Melanie, I'm glad you feel inspired :) I look forward to seeing some of your creativity in print!

  4. I really enjoyed reading the pre-published version and look forward to helping you promote once it releases. I would like to see a longer version!

  5. Congratulations, Ruth! Well done! Sounds fascinating :)

  6. Tracy, thanks for cheering me on. I appreciate your support and encouragement. Ramona, thanks for connecting and cheering me on too. I appreciate your writing and want to make more time to comment/encourage!


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