f a i t h * i n * f i c t i o n: Day 5 of Lying Awake – Simple

f a i t h * i n * f i c t i o n

Friday, September 24, 2004

Day 5 of Lying Awake – Simple

It’s easy to look at this as simply another “crisis of faith” novels, but doing so misses the point, I think. Salzman is subtler and more elegant than that. Lying Awake is not about a woman on the knife’s edge of losing her faith—her faith seems not to be in jeopardy. Instead, she’s on the knife’s edge of having her understanding, and perhaps more importantly, her experience of God taken from her.

That a supposedly agnostic writer shifted to this position intrigues me but I think it makes some sense in looking at Salzman, the little I know about him. In his writings, the question is never, “Is faith real?” But, rather, “What is faith?” That’s the question I would love to be at the heart of my own writing. Not, “This is faith”—giving set answers. Or, “Is faith real?”—which is just as easily the fodder for nihilism. But, “What is faith?”

A million stories still wait to be told on that question alone.

Thanks for reading. I’ll come up with another book for early December perhaps. If you’ve suggestions, feel free to make them.