Friday, June 03, 2011

Christian Writer or Writer That's a Christian?

When I was a DJ over at a Christian radio station, I often met many music artists who identified themselves not as Christian music artists but music artists who are Christian. You may look at that and think that they're one in the same but actually that's not true. Each one distinguishes a different audience and also, to a lesser extent, what identity takes precedence.

I was thinking about this recently in my capacity as a writer. I'm a part of a forum at Christian The title of the site itself prompted me to think about how I was going to identify myself. Am I a Christian writer or writer that's a Christian? Then it hit me: I wouldn't use neither of these designations. I would simply say I'm a Christian that's a writer. The differences are subtle but there are differences.

The Christian Writer

The Christian writer is one who writes for a Christian audience exclusively. They may aspire to have their writing in Christian bookstores and publications. They are Christians writing for Christians.

The Writer That's a Christian

The writer that's a Christian puts their emphasis on writing. They think of themselves primarily as a writer and therefore may take on topics and assignments are questionable to some.

In my personal experience, out of the three, these are the most prone to compromise their faith for the sake of their craft because it's how they identify themselves chiefly. I saw this firsthand time and time again in the music industry and it never failed.

The Christian Who Is a Writer

This person identifies themselves as a Christian first. That is what taints everything that they do which includes their writing. Therefore, there are assignments they will not pursue and their writing may be Christian in how it is written and in content yet not necessarily be exclusively for Christians.

I sometimes crossover from a Christian writer to a Christian who is a writer, depending on the subject matter. But I'm never a writer that's a Christian. You may call it splitting hairs or being overly semantic but I beg to differ (obviously). The devil is in the details.

So...who are you (for those who this applies)? Inquiring minds want to know.


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