65. Why Do Homeschool Families Love Christian-Made Fantastical Fiction?
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Thousands of people from hundreds of families attended the Florida Parent-Educators Association conference in Orlando on Memorial Day Weekend. Our cohost E. Stephen Burnett was there as an author and Lorehaven publisher. He joined the Realm Makers Bookstore to share novels of fantasy, sci-fi, and beyond, all from Christian authors. In March, he also joined the bookstore for events in Nashville and St. Louis.
Why do homeschool families love Christian-made fantastical fiction?
Creators who featured at the Realm Makers Bookstore included:
- Fantasy novelist Julie Hall
- Fantasy/suspense novelist and DragonRaid game owner James Hannibal
- Audio drama writer Darby Kern
- Adventures in Odyssey voice actor Keith Leigh
- Adventures in Odyssey founding father Phil Lollar
- Fantasy novelist Matt Mikalatos
- Realm Makers co-founder and fantasy novelist Rebecca P. Minor
- Realm Makers co-founder Scott Minor
- Sci-fi and fantasy novelist Steve Rzasa
We can learn from homeschool conferences
- What kind of books are families looking for?
- Which books can they find at the Realm Makers Bookstore?
- What fantastic conversations do we enjoy at the bookstore appearances?
- BONUS: How can Christian authors meet these readers’ needs?
Brielle from Australia wrote about episode 63:
I found this a very interesting episode. I’m in the category of loosely holding the belief that there isn’t life on other plants. It’s not impossible biblically, but i see no reason to expect it.
Regarding the connection between aliens and demons and the fact that there’s certainly a physical component for some of the phenomena, I would mention that angels can definitely interact with the physical world and even have what seems to be a physical body. (Lot’s escape from Sodom comes to mind and well as the angels who ate with Abraham). So I wouldn’t entirely rule out demons doing something physical.
Interestingly the question of how the fall and redemption would affect aliens actually can be asked of fantasy races too. Does God become incarnate as a man, an elf, or whatever other sentient species you’ve come up with? I don’t know if I’ve seen a fantasy novel that takes that question into account. (though I know Tolkien wrote a bit about incarnate and the mending of the world, so I suppose it can work if the problem is that the world was broken, not a specific man sinned.)
The idea that it’s inconsistent for the curse and the sin nature brought by Adam’ sin to spread to all sentient beings, but for the redemption of Christ to only be open to humans was one I hadn’t thought of before and find interesting. I still don’t think their aliens out there, but there’s plenty of room for people to explore possibilities in books.
Caleb C. also wrote about episode 63:
Just listened to your episode on Aliens. I checked your website to see if Lorehaven has reviewed but only found a a brief [description] for The Dream Thief by Stephen R. Lawhead. I read this in [the] 80s and remember that the last survivor of an ancient Martian civilization who guards the archives of the salvation story of the Christ who became a Martian and died a sacrificial death to save them. I only thought it deserved a mention in the larger discussion. Thanks for your podcast!
Kevin R. wrote about episode 64:
When I read the title of this latest episode on masks and the virus I couldn’t have rolled my eyes any harder. I have to confess, I almost skipped this one out of sheer fatigue on the subject, but alas, I pushed through and found gold! You guys really have a way of presenting things that keeps me hooked and I found myself Amening you when you mentioned how this analogy you guys were using would PREACH!! As a pastor, I found myself very much thinking the same thing and now feel like I may have to incorporate some of your analogy elements into a future sermon. What a great idea to use the vaccine/mask dialogue to model Grace vs Works. And so I went from a mentality of “skip this one” to “preach this one!” Thanks again for thoughtful and grounded discussion and bringing the usual balanced blend of theology and imagination through the tool of speculation. Bravo!
Next on Fantastical Truth
What if dancing could control your world, and your world was a floating island, and you had just escaped from a legalistic Order that had ruled the island? That may sound familiar, because we visited this world in one of our first episodes, about the novel Hidden Current. This time, author Sharon Hinck joins us to explore grace and true heroism versus legalism and false leadership in her recently concluded fantasy trilogy, The Dancing Realms series.
Explore the best Christian-made fantasy, sci-fi, and beyond, and apply these stories' meanings in the real world Jesus calls us to serve.
What say you?