I have recently submitted my last book (The Other Side of Silence), to a publishing house. As it turns out, they’re a subsidy publishing house, so I will probably not sign with them. Nonetheless, it soothes a very non-picky part of my soul to hear that someone, anyone, is interested in my work.
This particular publisher is a Christian one, and specified multiple times on their website that they do not accept gratuitous sex, violence, and curse words. You’ve heard what I have to say on censorship (and if you haven’t, skip a couple of entries down), so it shouldn’t be surprising that I do in fact have curse words in my books. However, I don’t consider the curse words in my book to be gratuitous. Furthermore, this book has very little violence, and no sex at all. So really, I shouldn’t have to be too worried about objectionable content in this case.
What is far more concerning than the curse words, is the presence of a major character who is not strictly heterosexual. As I was reading through the manuscript myself (which I am doing mostly to clear my head before I plunge back into my human trafficking book), I realized that even if the acquisition department made it all the way through my alcoholic construction worker (who shockingly uses curse words), there is no way on earth they are going to be okay with my criticism on how the church treats even the mere consideration that one may not be entirely heterosexual. Ironic, since that character is also the most unapologetic Christian in the book.
But here’s what I’m hoping. Aside from getting published without an initial monetary investment and going on to fame and fortune. I’m hoping that whoever reads my book, or whatever part of it they’re going to read, will see a God they recognize in its pages. I hope, even if they absolutely will not consider publishing it, that they will feel sympathy for the character and be glad when God shows up for him. I hope the book will do its job. I hope it will inspire a little bit of awe for the creator of the universe and the savior of our souls.