Okay, so, in 2007, when I was in Alberta, I discovered how amazing C. S. Lewis is. Don’t get me wrong, I had read the Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, but when I read the Screwtape Letters, it changed my outlook completely on writing.
What I found out when I got my own copy of the Screwtape Letters is that he hated writing that book. It’s one of his more popular, and he hated writing it. It blew me away till he explained why he never continued writing more letters, as everyone had been requesting.
“The world in which I had to project myself while I spoke through Screwtape was all dust, grit, thirst, and itch,” said Lewis. “Every trace of beauty, freshness, and geniality had to be excluded.”
However, he did return to the voice of Screwtape one more time in “Screwtape Proposes A Toast.” Again, beautifully written from the hands of a master. What I read before this essay caught my attention and stuck with me. C. S. Lewis said that the Screwtape Letters felt incomplete unless he could have written a book on angelic communications. Knowing that I spend a half hour every day immersed in scriptures, I felt I could write such a book.
Those ideas came back to me again this past week as I went about my work and sought changes in my own life as far as what I value and who I wish to be. The only foreseeable wall in writing this book is my own status as an author versus C. S. Lewis’. As far as literary figures go, he’s my hero. He went into the minds of his characters, even those he didn’t like. He built an entire world, not quite as vivid and complete as Tolkien, who was a contemporary and a friend to C. S. Lewis, but more so than much of literature.
I want to give this every effort once I finish writing Valence Drive. I bet I can write this.