Monday, June 19, 2006

SF/Fantasy Blog Tour Day1 - (But Aren't Dragons Evil?)

The next few days the posts will be in multiple parts. The first part, I will spotlight Donita K. Paul's new book DragonKnight for the Christian SF/Fantasy Blog tour. The second part, I plan to tie in some thoughts about dragons in Christian based Fantasy.

Part one: DragonKnight
Today I would like to focus on the cover. Ok, I hate to admit it, but I am a cover person. The cover that grabs my attention at the bookstore will probably win. A book should be readable and attention grabbing from 10 feet to 20 feet. This cover does a nice job. Exactly in the middle of the cover starts the bright blue wings that spread out and then contrast nicely against the yellow sky. I also like how the grass gradually changes into the white so Donita's name pops out better. The change and reason for the change is actually unnoticeable. These are things that most readers do not notice or pay attention to, but since I due my own cover design, it is something I like to examine from other author's books.


Part two: But aren't dragons evil?

First off, this is not a slam on having good dragons in Christian fantasy. It is actually the opposite. In my own series, book one has dragons show up shortly here and there, but the reader does not know if they are good or bad, or even what part they have to play in the story(a very large one actually). But book two will start to show there are good and bad dragons. If you ask an older conservative Christian to read a book about fantasy, not the easiest to achieve, but not impossible. Ask that same person to read a story about dragons? Well, that might get a tad bit harder. But why? Why do Christians dislike dragons? Although the King James Version refers to more dragons than the NIV version, I will stick with the main versuses in NIV.
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Revelation 12
7And there was war in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fought back. 8But he was not strong enough, and they lost their place in heaven. 9The great dragon was hurled down—that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray. He was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him.

and

17Then the dragon was enraged at the woman and went off to make war against the rest of her offspring—those who obey God's commandments and hold to the testimony of Jesus.
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Whoosh! From that, it is actually hard to see how there could be a good dragon. Dragons, snakes, and serpants are always potrayed as evil within the Bible. The one thing that a Christian author must not do is lead the readers astray. The way I look at it is that almost all things have a good and bad to them. Nuclear power was created for good, but can also be used to kill. A sword can defend, but it can also attack. There are good angels and bad angels. There are good humans and bad humans. One's actions or how an item is used determines whether they are good or bad. And so it could be that a fictional dragon's actions determine whether it is good or bad? Either way, I can guarantee, no matter how many authors write about good dragons, if a reader ever ran across one in the woods, they would not stick around to have a little chat and ponder whether it was good or bad. No, I am pretty sure I know what their conclusion would be :-)

Tomorrow: Lions and Dragons

Remember, check back in Friday, June 23rd after the tour is completed if you have ever been interested in checking out Faith of the Unforgotten. We have a lot to announce.

6 Comments:

Blogger Rebecca said...

Agreed on the cover. It is enthralling.

2:17 PM  
Blogger Donita K. Paul said...

Covers are an interesting subject. Originally, off to the right, there was a cliff. The hero of the story stood there with the sword. I loved that take, but he and the cliff got edged off the page and the sword got impaled in the sand.

Authors don't have much say in the covers. Unless, they take total control as Leathel has. BTW, nice cover on your book, Leathel.

6:53 PM  
Blogger Leathel Grody said...

Thanks Donita. ::blush:: I was actually more excited to see how the cover turned out when the books arrived.

I was guessing the white with your name was sand, but could not tell from the digital image. That makes it even neater then that they were able to work and highlight your name using background.

Until another publisher decides to pick up the series I must trudge on and keep learning. But the knowledge I have gained from the journey has been unbelievable.

8:24 PM  
Blogger Leathel Grody said...

I just watched the trailer and it shows the original cover at the end. I actually like the cliff in there. But the final cover is more brighter and eye catching.

9:59 PM  
Blogger Becky said...

Leathel,

Great post. I like your comments about dragons. I'm a big one on the good and bad of things. I tend to believe it is because all of creation was once good and all of creation suffers because of Man's sin. As a result we see good and evil sort of entwined, or imprinted on opposite sides of the same coin.

Looking forward to your comments tomorrow.

Becky

10:06 PM  
Blogger Beth Goddard said...

I'm so glad you brought this discussion up because it is completely relevant to the issue of fantasy. Whether not Christians want to read fantasy, dragons along with wizards and sorcerers will always be an issue.

Blessings!
Beth.

4:56 PM  

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