Anonymous asked: Hey, Write World, I love your blog! I have a question: I’m an atheist who grew up in a family of atheists, and I find it difficult to write religious characters. For example, one of my main characters is fervently religious, but when friends read the scenes she’s in, they tell me that there is a condescending tone surrounding her. This is unintentional, but I don’t know how to stop. Any tips?
I feel really strongly about this, so before I give my opinion, does anyone have any tips for the anon?
- Anonymous asked: For the anon with trouble writing religious characters - it’s hard to help when we can’t see for ourselves. Could be numerous things. Maybe the condescending tone even works for your character. I suggest sharing it in workshops to get other eyes on the piece and hear their suggestions :) There are lots of free online styled workshops available online!
- al-kalimat-jameel asked: Hey, I might be able to help the Atheist anon. As an Atheist who grew up in a family if fervorous Christians, I can say the difference between me speaking about religion and them is really big. Different words, tones, even emotions are expressed differently. So my advise would be to talk to religious people or watch videos when they talk about the subject and pay attention to their voice, words and movements.
- sidjaymarkinson asked: I guess even between theists there are different kinds. Some links their believe to very positive things (believing in a loving God) and some take religion very strict (stern God). Plus, of course, there are multiple religions, who all are different. I am a baptist christian, believe strongly, but do not really believe in church and rules. I believe in a very good God and my believe has helped me a lot through very dark times. If interested, I am here for any questions.
- claravoyant asked: Writing religious characters as an atheist requires deep exploration of religions in general. I’m an atheist, but I generally do not criticize religious people—it’s the institution, the societal norms that make some religious people do silly things. Look at what religious people write about their faith rather than what atheists write about religions. Especially when it comes to cultures you aren’t familiar with—stereotypes are dangerous. Remember that religious people are not a monolith.
- the-best-medicine said: for the writer writing a religious character:It really depends on the character and how much God (or gods if they’re polytheists) factors into their daily lives. You can have a fervently religious character that does not openly express their convictions because they do not feel the need to tell other people how religious they are. There are also people who fervently express their religious views verbally in order to sound more religious, when they themselves are feeling doubtful. Treat it as any other belief or system to follow. Being muslim in America, for example, I rarely discuss my religion outside of my family and close friends.I am very anxious and afraid of rejection, so that affects how I express my views. I do however try to act within my religion on a daily basis, from praying for people to helping when I am able.Religion is a system, not a character trait in of itself.Use the character’s personality points to bring out their beliefs, otherwise the written actions wont jive with the character.
Can you help?