Sunday, April 18, 2010

The Logjam is Almost Broken

Taxes are done--except for my mother-in-law's. She still hasn't given me all her documents, so I just filed an extension for her. I'll look into it in a month or so.

Sara, Richard and Ephraim have gone back to Oklahoma City. They were here Wednesday through yesterday. Thus after the taxes were done I had Ephraim to play with and read to, Richard to discuss theology and church polity/ministry with, and Sara to discuss business. I wasn't about to write much during that time. I enjoy them being here, but there's something to be said for a quiet house and the ability to be anti-social without guilt.

Yesterday was also our busy grocery and errands day. We arrived home to the quiet house and I had to finish reading a missions book to take back to church today, and read in the Shack and prepare a lesson in case I had to teach. I also found time to read one article from Poets and Writers magazine before dead-tiredness drove me to bed last night.

Today was a wonderful day at church, a missions service and pledges for missions giving for the coming year. Life group was great (I didn't have to teach). The church dinner was great. The missionary's talk was informative and inspiring. On the way home Lynda and I stopped at a trail and walked a mile and a half. Then I read another article in Poets and Writers, dozing as I did. Then I came to the dungeon, and for the last two hours have caught up on some writing forums and written two sets of passage notes for my harmony of the gospels.

I have much reading to do this evening, including an article on labyrinth weirs that I hope to finish and be able to do some calculations on tomorrow. I have some work time to make up due to using work time last week for our church parking lot project. Work looks to be very busy for a couple of weeks, between my regular CEI business and the pro-bono stuff for the church. So I won't say the logjam that prevents me from writing is fully broken--but I can see clear water ahead.


Gary said...

Dave, what's your opinion of The Shack?

David A. Todd said...


I like The Shack, as far as I've read in it, through Chapter 12. I like how it stresses relationships. The initial shock of the book having God manifest himself as a woman was difficult, but I understand what the author is doing.

As we study it in life group, I keep reminding the class that this isnt' scripture. It's fiction. As fiction it's good. As guidance for relationships it's good. For doctrine it's not good.

Gary said...

I found the initial chapters poorly written with too much detail about the geography. Gradually it improved toward the middle with the imaginary experiences and was tightest at the end when the protagonist leads the authorities back to the scene of the crime. I take your point about relationships and doctrine.

David A. Todd said...

I agree that the writing is not stellar. I think it's good, but I find in it a number of things that are spoken against in every writing conference, every workshop I attend. The worst are the speakers using each other's names. No, let me rephrase. Mack seldom uses the names of God when he is speaking to any of the three members of the godhead. But they say his name many times in every conversation. It becomes annoying with time. People simply don't talk that way. I don't know if the author thinks this is a way to make God's speech different from the rest of the characters, or if he has some other intention.

I hesitated to say anything about writing quality because, when a writer finds fault with a book that is wildly successful, it comes across as sour grapes.

Oh, and I didn't mind the geography description too much. Yes, it was perhaps a little more detailed than needed, but I followed it pretty good, especially when re-reading the chapters to prepare for life group. I haven't read the whole book, but I did do something I don't normally do: I looked ahead to the last three pages. I also notices how tight the writing is at that point.