Thursday, 14 August 2014

The unimportance of liking oranges (or not).

Today, I read this article in the Independent about Vicky Beeching, a prominent Christian singer/songwriter for churches.

Firstly, this isn’t a post about religion. This is a post about how we live and how we act towards others. (Some might say that’s what religion is supposed to be about…)

I can’t understand how people claiming to be ‘Christians’ can treat a person, such as Vicky Beeching, in this manner. To claim someone is ill, or possessed, just because they are gay is like persecuting someone for liking oranges. It’s nonsense.

Everyone is different. We all have different talents, likes and dislikes, and we all have different struggles to face in life. Some have health issues, others abusive parents, or financial difficulties; life is hard enough. Why make it more difficult for anyone? *

Instead, let’s focus on and celebrate the things we can do to improve the world: creating, caring, encouraging, looking after the environment, to list only a few, all hopefully with some good fun and humour along the way. 

Do your best, live well, and help (or at least let!) those around you do the same. I think the world would be a better place if we lived like this.

(And I think Jesus would agree.)

*Just to clarify: I’m not saying that being gay is a difficulty in life to be overcome like those listed (although, sadly, it seems it is such a difficulty in some circles). I’m saying that, regardless of anyone’s likes, dislikes, talents, beliefs – or indeed sexuality – there are enough problems to deal with in life without making things harder.

Friday, 1 August 2014

What if...?

One of the key questions an author asks when writing a story is: ‘What if…?’ What if our hero met someone in a bar? What if they got lost on the way home? What if they found a treasure? Or, if we’re particularly short of ideas, what if ninjas burst through the wall?

In life, I ask the same question and, having finished my novel, I’ve been considering it from both sides: what if I am successful in my quest to find an agent/publisher? And, what if I’m not?

One time, I wrote a song, just after I’d finished recording an album:

Welcome by Martin Flett

Basically, I was tired, and on the way down from the completing-a-project buzz. I had no new material left and the last thing I wanted to do was to face writing a whole new album, to start from scratch, when I hadn’t been that successful with my previous effort.

But, I wrote the song, and my next album, Becoming Human, was born which, incidentally, remains my best musical work so far.

It is difficult facing the ‘what if not…’ question: the answer can seem to be that we’d have to give up on whatever ultimate ambition we have. For me, it might mean I can never earn my living as an author and will have to settle for writing for fun, alongside whatever average admin job I can find.

But, if we pick up the tools again and make the first step towards our next project, then the dream isn’t lost. It may merely be over the next mountain. If your dream is really worth it, then you’ll make that climb.

And, you never know: what if the second one is the best…?