Wednesday, December 31, 2008

CSFF Tour - The Lost Genre Guild

Time for one last Christian Sci-fi and Fantasy Blog Tour for 2008. (Wow, I'm only caught up to like, May of '08. Do we have to rush into '09 so soon?)


The Lost Genre Guild is a site devoted to promoting speculative fiction that follows a Christian worldview. They have the simplest formula I've seen for describing what speculative fiction is:

Entertainment + scriptural framework

It was started by some of the members of the CSFF tour to raise awareness and respect for Christian spec fic according to their "About" page. These folks haven't just endeavored to write about other works, they are also actively producing their own to try and self-fulfill their mission. The site and group is open for new members to join as well.

Their most ambitious product to date is the self-produced anthology "Light at the Edge of Darkness". Check out more about it at the link.

My only critique is that they don't have reviews or apparant support (that I can find on their site) for spec fic produced by mainstream CBA publishers (such as the Dominion trilogy by Robin Parrish through Bethany House Publishers). I admit that I didn't get to do an exhaustive search of Lost Genre Guild, so maybe I missed something.

It is impressive to find people to see a need and do something about it. I am interested to discover more about their group and works. If you're a fan of sci-fi, fantasy, and horror and are looking for alternatives, then check out the Lost Genre Guild.

Also see my fellow tourmates below, and we'll see you on the other side (in 2009, if everyone is in such a rush to get there...)

Brandon Barr
Justin Boyer
Keanan Brand
Kathy Brasby
Grace Bridges
Valerie Comer
Frank Creed
Amy Cruson
CSFF Blog Tour
Stacey Dale
D. G. D. Davidson
Janey DeMeo
Jeff Draper
April Erwin
Karina Fabian
Andrea Graham
Todd Michael Greene
Katie Hart
Timothy Hicks
Joleen Howell
Jason Isbell
Cris Jesse
Carol Keen
Lost Genre Guild
Mike Lynch
Rachel Marks
Rebecca LuElla Miller
John W. Otte
Steve Rice
Crista Richey
Hanna Sandvig
James Somers
Robert Treskillard
Steve Trower
Speculative Faith
Jason Waguespac
Phyllis Wheeler
Timothy Wise


  1. Jason, I think you've hit on a key issue. I'm a member of the Lost Genre Guild, but I also support the speculative fiction coming out of the traditional Christian publishers. I don't think we have to choose one or the other. I've had hopes that somehow all fans and writers of the genre could come together.

    I think I may have to blog on this! I still have a slot over at Spec Faith, so I guess that's where I'll go.


  2. Jason,

    If you check the bookshelves you will see fiction by members of the guild who are published by "traditional" Christian publishers, e.g. Bryan Davis, Sharon Hinck, and Donita Paul. So, no we don't discriminate -- in fact we take great care not to.

    It is one of the beefs the greater portion of the guild's authors have with "the system." Unless one is published by a traditional house then they seemingly are deemed unworthy to participate in many promotional efforts.

    For instance, the large book blog tours, many review sites, print media will not feature a book/ author UNLESS it is published by one of the traditional houses. There are some who will contemplate the idea but the book has to go through an intense screening or the author/ publisher has to be involved in a lengthy discussion to try and convince an organization or site to consider the novel.

    However, as Frank Creed has stated time and time again, the LGG supports all authors no matter their publishers' affliation. It doesn't mean we like what we see happen to the greater number of our members, but we won't fall into an elitist trap.

    It is true that the Guild Review focuses on novels written by independent or small or self-published writers -- it is the mission of the group to give priority to these books, our attempt, you could say, to level the playing field. I was the one who pushed for this as I saw the success and respectability of the Midwest Book Review that works by the same rules.

    Another related point to your concern is that the LGG has also seen a big void in ECPA publishers' output:
    First, the speculative fiction coming from these publishers is, for the most part, directed at the young adult market. We want to see novels written for adults as well, and apparently the market for spec-fic in the ECPA houses indicates that adult fiction is not popular with their demographic. (If this is indeed true or not remains to be seen!)

    Second, as Frank and others have written about, there is virtually no sci-fi or horror coming from the traditional houses (again, market demographics). At the LGG we know there is a market--perhaps only a small one, but a market nonetheless--for well-written sci-fi and horror that is respectful of Christian values. Our group supports and attempts to get the word out about these sub-genres.

    So, yes, one could easily come to the conclusion that we are an exclusive group and this needs to be addressed on the website. Thank you so much for pointing this out! I'll hop on it . . . soon :)


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  4. Another point I'd like to raise about the Guild Review is that it is a recent addition, so the number of reviews is small right now. It also isn't intended for the personal types of reviews most of us write most of the time, but another level of review. That in itself cuts down on the number of reviews. Please be patient with us. This section will be growing soon, continuously.

  5. Me back again . . .

    My only critique is that they don't have reviews or apparant support (that I can find on their site) for spec fic produced by mainstream CBA publishers (such as the Dominion trilogy by Robin Parrish through Bethany House Publishers).

    One of the guild members reminded me that back in July '07, the LGG blog did feature Robin Parrish's book for the CFBA tour.

    Yes, it would be difficult to find unless one went on a tedious journey through blog archives!

  6. That's true, the LGG blog used to regularly participate in both this tour and CFBA. We tend to attract those who've been burned by traditional christian houses, and in some cases, it shows, but the Guild itself promotes all quality Christian Speculative Fiction.

  7. I've been reading some of the other posts for the LGG tour and realized that I accidentally contributed to a little controversy suggesting that the LGG didn't support CBA/ECPA fiction. I definitely didn't mean that.

    All I was suggesting is that it wasn't easily apparant with some clicking and exploring. I will confess that I didn't go real in-depth due to being busy for the holidays (I was writing the blog post while cooking Chicken Satay for a party).

    I think the LGG is a good fan and writer based site that is moving in a good direction and has a lot of potential. I also understand that there are new features that are still being implemented. It will be good to see those come online.

    So, apologies for not being super thorough, but I hope the discussion was overall positive.