Q&A: Dineen Miller
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO WRITE THE SOUL SAVER?
My inspiration came from my own life and all the Lexies out there. I’m part of a ministry for the spiritually mismatched (www.SprituallyUnequalMarriage.com) and spiritual warfare is a daily part of these types of marriage. I wanted to write a book to show this struggle and to bring to light that both equally and unequally matched marriages have a very real and common enemy determined to destroy something God designed to bring us closer to Him.
And I loved how the book The Love Dare and the movie Fireproof worked together to bring the same message through two avenues. The Soul Saver is the story form of our book Winning Him Without Words. To hear from readers how God used one or both books to save, heal or restore their marriage continues to amaze and blow me away. God never stops surprising me. You really can't out-give God. The more I give to Him in whatever way, He returns it in immeasurable amounts.
WHAT ARE THE CHALLENGES OF WRITING "SUSPENSE" -- DANGER, MURDER, MAYHEM -- FOR A CHRISTIAN AUTHOR?
I think that varies for every author, but for me personally, my challenge is to write from a place of love and to serve others. The Soul Saver has some tough issues and situations in it—temptation (adultery), a demon, grief over the loss of a child—but this is the reality many of us are facing. As believers, we have the opportunity to bring hope and healing to a broken world. That is a mission we all share and God gives us so many ways to do that! I believe fiction is one of those ways. For me, I take that very seriously.
HOW MUCH DO YOU WORRY ABOUT RESEARCH AND DETAILS VERSUS JUST TELLING A RIVETING STORY?
I think the depth of our research and details are part of what makes a story riveting. It ads depth and strength to a story, but also needs to be accurate and believable. One story I wrote deals with the issue of genetically modified crops. I had to do tons of research for this to be believable and compelling! I think readers really appreciate it when authors do the extra legwork for a story that warrants more detail. I know as a reader, I appreciate that. So how can I offer readers anything less than I would want in my own choices in reading material?
WHAT AUTHORS OF LIFE EXPERIENCES HAVE INFLUENCED THE KINDS OF FICTION THAT YOU WRITE?
Some great authors who have inspired and influence me are Tosca Lee, Ted Dekker, Ronie Kendig, Robin Caroll, James L. Rubart and Gina Holmes. They tackle deep issues and meet the challenge to bring them into their stories with unashamed boldness and depth. I love that!
As far as my own life experiences, my marriage and my daughter's fight with cancer (she won!) played key parts in writing The Soul Saver. I didn't plan it that way, but God did. And I love that we can co-labor with God in anything we do to impact the lives of others.
IN WHAT SPECIFIC WAYS DOES YOUR FAITH IMPACT HOW YOU WRITE FICTION?
Whatever God is teaching me seems to wind up in what I write. Especially for our SpirituallyUnequalMarriage.com ministry. A story I'm working on now (and hope to see published one day) is woven around the theme that there is purpose in our pain. Like Joseph told his brothers, what they intended for evil, God in intended for good. That's the promise of Romans 8:28 right in the Old Testament. Nothing we walk through in life is pointless. God has a plan for all of it. It's up to us to choose to walk through it with Him or on our own. I'd much rather walk with Him because God's love never fails and He is always faithful. He takes that pain and turns it into blessings over and over again. That's what I want to share with others, whether it's through a story, a Bible study, or on a blog. I want my faith to impact how I write because then it can impact the lives of other for good. That's the Holy Spirit working through us and it just doesn't get better than that!