Posted in Books, Real Life

An introduction

Welcome! You made it!

I started this blog as a “portfolio” for “serious writing” (per some professional advice that would have better suited someone else.)

Over the years, Narrative Paradise morphed into a book blog…of sorts.

I don’t write book reviews (very often) or participate in reading challenges.

I DO post book tags and gush about my favorite series.

I occasionally publish posts about faith, politics, and/or mental health.

Oh, and I MAY have turned this site into an unofficial Maggie Stiefvater fan blog.

Ahem…

More accurately, Narrative Paradise operates as an unofficial Ronan Lynch blog.

I’m not kidding.

Anyway.

Read. Comment. Explore.

Enjoy.

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Posted in Books

Extended hiatus + April awards

My schedule the past few weeks has been nothing short of crazy.

The minute I devote myself to a new creative project, things get busy.

Oh, and I’ve spent the last few months contemplating quitting improv.

DAMN YOU, IMPROV. Continue reading “Extended hiatus + April awards”

Posted in Real Life

Alone at Christmas

I upped my meds this week.

I’m amazed at how much better I feel.

I made it to Saturday Morning yoga for the first time in two months. I wrapped all my Christmas presents. I joined friends for karaoke, even though it was past my bedtime.

Additionally, a whole host of dark thoughts about singleness disappeared. I no longer spend nights crying in my bath tub.

One extra pill was enough to banish weeks’ worth of depression and despair regarding my relationship status.

Now, instead of clogging my brain at every moment, the thoughts sit waiting for an opportunity.

I don’t have to reach very far to find them. Continue reading “Alone at Christmas”

Posted in Books, Real Life

The Truth About Sex After Marriage

The church I grew up in taught a lot about sex.

The intent was to help (I think.) Sex is a big deal and the church SHOULD be talking about it.

By “talk,” though, I mean “dialogue,” and no such conversation existed at the time.

Adults told teens “DON’T HAVE SEX” without telling them how or why. They squeamishly avoided listing potential consequences of unprotected intercourse, making high school Sex Ed look competent by comparison.

More embarrassing was a series on married sex taught by the three senior pastors. They lauded their bravery for talking “openly” about the subject without using medical terminology or addressing the “how” of how to improve your sex life. They discussed sexual pleasure with extreme discomfort, transmitting their shame to the rest of the congregation.

I learned that porn is a fantasy without learning about the reality of sex.

I heard over and over the gender myth that men like sex and women don’t.

College proved worse; Christians shut down honest conversation with red faces and whispers of “inappropriate.”

Finding Debra Fileta’s website in 2014 came as a huge relief.

You mean to tell me Christians can honestly discuss sex?

Debra posted an excerpt from her newest book about why we save sex for marriage. I find it helpful having a reason aside from “JUST DON’T” or “WOMEN DON’T LIKE IT.” It helps, too, that she’s honest, ratcheting down the expectation of the Super Awesome Pinnacle of Experiences many Millennials were promised in youth group.

I so appreciate an author willing to tackle lies and point to Scripture instead of bolstering false teachings.

Debra Fileta’s new book drops today at Amazon or your favorite book seller.

Buy it. Borrow it. Learn. Dialogue. Enjoy.