Thursday, March 17, 2011

Don't Be Too Cool - Arends

A Word to Those Who Create Stories:

There is a tremendous fascination with the anti-hero in literature and media these days, to the point that noble characters are often dismissed outright as one-dimensionally nostalgic. A word to all you writers out there: Do not grow weary in creating good, or at least in creating protagonists who are capable of redemptive choices. Here is some encouragement from the brilliant novelist Mark Helprin:

A lot of people hate heroes. I was criticized for portraying people who are brave, honest, loving, intelligent. That was called weak and sentimental. People who dismiss all real emotion as sentimentality are cowards. They’re afraid to commit themselves, and so they remain ‘cool’ for the rest of their lives, until they’re dead—then they’re really cool.

Be truthful about the ruinious effects of Original Sin, by all means. But don't be so cool you miss chances to infuse your work with the shimmering realities of Original Grace. 

May God bless the work of your hands,
Carolyn Arends


Peter Black said...

I heartily agree with your point re the current fascination with the anti-hero.
Bravo! to Mark Helprin for his stance regarding genuine emotion and his insistance on developing protagonists "capable of redemptive choices."

Lesley-Anne Evans said...

Wow, Carolyn, I didn't know this… but it makes sense now that I read about it. Is it any wonder our kids are confused about their identities when they don't see a noble idealism held up as something worth aspiring to? Instead, there's this message to be mediocre, to blend in and assimilate. Yikes!

Thank God for youth leaders and teachers and parents who draw out and affirm strength of character in our kids. And thank God for his word that, over and over again, confirms his desire for mighty men and women of God to stand up and stand out and make a difference.

Thanks for sharing,


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