When I was writing Tales from Bethlehem, which contains the stories of people who might have been at the birth of Jesus and how it affected their lives, I was very conscious that I could easily offend people. People take the Bible seriously, and I think they should. Even if they don't believe in God, the fact a lot of people do means your disbelief should be expressed respectfully. Live and let live and so on, although, of course, that's easier said than done.
I approached the stories with three goals: one, to express the power and wonder of the night; two, to find humor and humanity among the people in the Tales, but particularly humor; and three, within the constraints imposed by the situation of the individual Tales, to respect the Bible's accounts while aiming for a historical slant as much as possible.
Admittedly, some of the Tales, such as "The Star's Tale" or "Tale of the Humble Donkey," are based on fantastic elements, The Star's Tale being science fiction or science fantasy. But even with these unrealistic concepts, I tried to stay true to the truth of the Nativity.
I think I succeeded. At least the reviews have good so far, and readers have seemed to respond, so much so that many ask for more Tales. I don't know if there will be any more. I think I've written about almost anyone who realistically and otherwise would have been there, but we'll see. You'll never know who might step forward and want their Tale told.
(This post is part of the 2013 Blogging From A to Z April Challenge. Learn more about the Challenge HERE.)