As some of you know, I have been working on a novel called That’s Me in the Corner for a few years now, off and on (once this Random House book is finished I will dedicate myself to this more seriously, with the hope of finishing it this year).
The protagonist, based loosely on me, is called Brody Graham (his Facebook page can be found here — please Like and Share!). He is a young man who is in the process of outgrowing the evangelical expression of Christianity that he grew up with and has become an official spokesman for.
I have been wondering lately whether Brody’s story should span more than just one volume (I know, typical of a writer to start his next novel before finishing his current one). If the first book ends, as it does, with Brody “losing his religion,” the second would chronicle his inward and outward spiral into self-destruction. I don’t know much more than that at this point (least of all where Volume Three will find him), but I did come up with the opening line:
If there were an omni-malevolent and spiteful Being with enough malice and power to weave together an arrangement in which I could be as ruined as possible, as damaged as possible, and as duped as possible to think that redemption and reaping were real when they’re not, he wouldn’t be able to do a better job executing his twisted plan than by simply copying what the “good” God put me through these past few years. Indeed, “if at all God’s gaze upon us falls, it’s with a mischievous grin.”
This brings up an interesting issue, which is the thorny relationship between belief and trust, between knowing God is there and actually loving him (hell, even liking him a little).
What Brody endures in That’s Me in the Corner is enough to make him want to reject the God he has always believed in, but (un)fortunately he cannot bring himself to do so. But how sustainable is belief in a God you hate?