|Fairytale billboard, Orlando.|
I focused on this issue after reading about stealth Christian novels, which were irking rational readers who bought the books without realizing they were actually missals. The article related the experience of readers who were enjoying a good suspense story when suddenly jeebus entered the plot--to solve everything, of course. Good old jeebus. Ugh.
Normal people were angry about this because it wasn't a one-time thing. There are apparently a ton of these books out there: it's an epidemic. The problem, of course, is that you can't tell these religious tracts from normal books. There are no hints that the book is only for idiots. That's what irked rational readers.
Reading about this, I couldn't help but wonder if I was doing the same thing in the opposite direction--and I am. I make fun of religion throughout Xmas Carol. In fact, the whole novel is a slap in the face of the Catholic church. Not only that, but Xmas Carol is the first installment of the (suddenly real) "war on Christmas". And there are no indications of this on the cover or in the blurb.
But you know what? I don't care. Lately I've been noticing how every goddamn thing on my TV turns into a faith story. You can't go five minutes without some blithering idiot praising jeebus. And if I hear about one more murder victim who was a "good, church-going, god-fearing man", I'm going to throw up. So the hell with them. I've decided this world needs a few stealth atheist novels.
Religion is everywhere. This is the nauseating truth. Every time we normal folks go out for a walk, we can't avoid bumping into churches, temples, nuns, priests and twits wearing 10-inch crosses around their necks. We live in a stealth Christian world.
I no longer feel guilty about writing a stealth atheist novel. In fact, I'm pleased as pitch that I wrote one. So there.