Christian fiction for women is a prominent sub-genre and has been for decades. If you wonder if it’s a wise choice to attempt to break into this market, look at what Publishers Weekly says concerning publishers remaining faithful to fiction:
“Religion publishers say fiction sales are on the rise due to reader demand and a wider range of subgenres in the category today.” Let’s take a look at the various aspects of Christian fiction for women so you can get to writing!
Christian Fiction For Women: What’s Covered
- Christian Fiction For Women: Defined
- 11 Top Authors And Books
- What Makes This Sub-genre
- Why You Should Write Your Own
Christian Fiction For Women: Defined
Christian fiction for women focuses on Christian themes like redemption, overcoming difficulties such as forgiveness, and a plethora of other themes that are core to the Christian worldview.
A key aspect of Christian fiction for women often involves romantic relationships as a subplot (or main plot in Christian romance sub-genres). While Christian fiction can focus on faith-based themes, current fiction often uses a more nuanced form to communicate these same themes.
Bestselling Christian fiction author DiAnn Mills states that Christian novels are different in that the, “Faith aspect is not an engine additive. It rises from the writer’s deep rooted convictions.
With this in mind, who are the top authors who write Christian fiction for women in a way that stands out?
11 Top Authors And Books
Below is a list of authors and what they are known for. If you want to write Christian fiction for women, or learn how to write a book about your faith via fiction, you may want to spend some time reading their novels for inspiration for your own writing. Here are some of the best books in this genre.
1. Francine Rivers
Best known for her debut Christian fiction novel, Redeeming Love, Francine Rivers is a prolific writer of Christian fiction for women. Her stories often focus on biblical characters and use romance tropes in a fresh way.
2. DiAnn Mills
If you’re looking for a pulse-pounding read, DiAnn Mills’ books are filled with suspense and take you on a thrilling adventure. Her series, Call of Duty, won two Christy Awards. In addition, she is a writing coach and writes nonfiction on the writing craft.
3. Karen Kingsbury
Known for her heartfelt fiction, Karen Kingsbury is best recognized as the author of her series on the Baxter family.
4. Beverly Lewis
Lewis has authored over 100 titles and is a household name. Known for her Amish fiction, her Christian fiction for women has made a tremendous impact on her readers.
5. Dani Pettrey
With nearly 800,000 copies of her books sold, Dani Pettrey stands out among authors of Christian fiction for women. She is known for her series and well-rounded characters.
6. Terri Blackstock
Do you want an edge-of-your-seat, Christian fiction for women suspense novel? Terri Blackstock started her career under pseudonyms. Today, she’s known by her legal name and as the author of the thrilling If I Run series.
7. Lynette Eason
Inspirational romantic suspense keeps Eason writing. Wildly successful, Her Stolen Past was made into a feature film.
8. Lynn Austin
Lynn Austin’s novel, Hidden Places, was the launching pad for the Hallmark Channel film. She is known for winning the most Christy Awards, a stunning eight.
9. Tess Afshar
Afshar’s novel, Harvest of Gold, won a Christy Award. Her fiction focuses on female protagonists in biblical times, and she is well known as a major voice in Christian fiction for women.
10. Robin Lee Hatcher
Hatcher writes both contemporary novels as well as historical novels. She has over 45 titles to her name and has won numerous awards, including the Christy Award for Whispers of Yesterday.
11. Beth Vogt
While Vogt said she’d never write fiction, she is the Selah Award winning author of The Best We’ve Been. A key name in Christian fiction for women, her books are a must-read if you want to learn how to write this genre well.
What Makes This Sub-genre
Robin Lee Hatcher, who is known for her Christian fiction for women, shares how the Christy Awards website once defined Christian fiction:
“Christian fiction is a category of stories written by novelists whose Christian worldview is woven into the fabric of the plot and character development.”
Every genre has some form of worldview permeating the plot. Whether you write nonfiction, fiction, or an obscure sub-genre, the worldview of the author bleeds into the writing.
How authors create characters, what themes they focus on, and how the story ends largely depends on the worldview of the writer.
What makes Christian fiction for women unique among other sub-genres is the subtlety of positive themes threaded throughout the plot. For example, the iconic novel, Redeeming Love, is set in a gold mining town in 1850. The protagonist, Angel, lives in a brothel. Her backstory is dark and broken.
However, while Rivers does not shy away from the difficulties of Angel’s life or the demons of her past, she weaves the themes of hope and sacrificial love throughout the storyline.
To continue with the above example, Rivers builds her story around various plot points that reinforce the theme of her novel. While she could have easily spent time focusing on the weaknesses of her very human, flawed characters, she took her writing a step further.
Redeeming Love stands the test of time because the author reveals:
- The difficult aspects of her characters
- The time and effort it takes to overcome difficulty
- The scaring impact of others’ actions
- The redemption of love in the midst of brokenness
This adds a layer of added difficulty for the author, who must flesh out their characters in-depth. In doing so, Christian fiction for women brings an added layer of believability to characters.
Oftentimes, the best fictional characters pose both light and dark, whether they are the hero or the villain.
Why You Should Write Your Own
While there are many reasons to write your own Christian fiction book for women, three reasons in particular stand out.
Broaden Your Audience
Writing Christian fiction and specifically marketing to a new target audience can grow your readership. Marketing your work to various audiences can open you up to new writing opportunities while at the same time, growing your audience.
Stretch Your Writing Abilities
In addition, learning how to write complex, flawed characters while at the same time incorporating redemptive themes will strengthen you as a writer.
Inspire Hope In Readers
Writers often write for love of the craft and a desire to make an impact on their audiences. Christian fiction for women is known for its hopeful plots, despite tackling in-depth topics such as:
- Dark pasts
- Complicated relationships
Inspiring hope in your audience can renew your love for the craft. This can enable you to continue writing novel after novel.
Never underestimate the power of influencing just one reader with your work. As author Stephen Covey once said, “How you treat the one reveals how you regard the many, because everyone is ultimately a one.”
If you want to influence the masses, start by influencing the individual. Hone in on a specific audience. For you, this may mean writing Christian fiction for women. Access the resource below to get started!