Tom Griffin has been with Athanatos since 2017.
Q1: Why do you write?
Most of my writing now is Christian-oriented. It’s a combination of the way I best express my thoughts and the influence of the Holy Spirit I believe. Over the years I wrote many articles, letters and proposals for business, designed a writing system that created thousands of automated email messages for clients, and wrote quite a bit of poetry. Decades ago I paid a publishing company to evaluate my work and they said I had considerable talent. But until I became a Christian I never really put it to use for God’s purposes. The poetry seemed to initiate from periods of extreme emotion. Once I became a Christian, those extremes have disappeared and I have not written poetry again in decades. I was also driven to write a historical fiction novel about my parents’ romance during the depression years when we found a series of lost love letters from my father to my mother a few years ago. Recently, I wrote a book to my son to let him know how much he means to me and also to provide guidance for his life. Last year I produced a scripture and apologetics curriculum for 5th – 8th graders based on my 13 years experience teaching those youth at our church.
Q2: How would you describe your writing ‘method’?
Due to the age group I teach, my writing method is very straightforward and earthy but logical, ordered and condensed. For my fictional writing I would say it is more provocative and involves an interesting relevant real-life plot and circumstances.
Q3: How would you respond to the classic question, “Is there Christian art, or artists who are Christians?”
I’m not familiar with that topic actually. I suppose the answer is both. I never really thought of myself as an artist but certainly creative writing does seem to fit that category. In my case then I would say I was an artist with the spiritual gifts to create art but until I became a Christian it was underdeveloped and underutilized.
Q4: Do you have any words of wisdom for aspiring authors?
Always pray for guidance before, during and after any writing session or contemplation about topics and ideas. If God supports your writing, then it will flow automatically.
Q5: Which of your creations has brought you the most joy?
The goal is not to bring joy to myself but rather to others and to glorify God. However, on a personal meaning level, the book I wrote to my son about how I feel about him, guidance and life lessons had the most value for me emotionally.
Q6: Which has brought you the most heartache?
The historical fiction romance novel between my mother and father from the depression years really yanked at my heartstrings. When I read the letters my dad wrote it helped me understand him better and made me realize how much I did not know him. It motivated me to write the book to my son so there would be no regrets later about what was not said. This novel was incredibly satisfying to immerse myself into my dad’s character and mind and heart based on his letters. I was actually able to feel who he was and it helped me somehow become closer to him and know him better even though he passed away over 40 years ago. I always worried whether he was saved and believed in God and reading his letters and writing the novel from knowledge of him gave me renewed hope for his salvation.
Q7: Is there anything you’d like to say?
I thank God for the gifts, guidance and opportunities in all things that I do to glorify His holy name. I hope that my writing reaches the right people and impacts their minds and hearts for Christ and influences them to pursue holy activities themselves.
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