Lego Sets Versus Literary Classes

Someone asked me if I wanted my novels to be taught in literary classes. I responded with a laugh, “No, I want them to become Lego sets.”
This came from a conversation with another writer. Obviously, they gave a puzzled stare at my comment.

I explained with these points:

*First, the only stories that are Lego sets have CRAZY exposure in the realm of pop culture. Two cases in point: Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings. These books, written by J.K. Rowling and J.R.R. Tolkien, are from the minds of Christians. They are not Christian Fiction (how I hate that term!). Rather, these books are stories told by Christians who let their worldview seep into their work.

-Second, these books aren’t just best sellers. These works have a pop culture influence rating that is unchartable. Don’t believe me? Just Google both. You’ll get the idea.

-Third, these books have prompted generations to read. Not only read, but also inspired adults and kids. Both books have delved deep into the themes of self sacrifice, bravery, trust, friendship, and community. This is why they are Lego sets. Millions upon millions have been touched by their influence. You see, at our heart, we’re all Geeks. We all talk about what we love. We want to wear the t-shirt, play with the toy and tell others about the world that holds our hearts. I don’t see that happening with Sommerset Maugham any time soon.

-Fourth, and finally, these books will be around for centuries. Need proof? Shakespeare’s plays were actually pop culture entertainment for their day. Iliad and Odyssey? A blockbuster popcorn  flick, if you will. I think you see my point.

Side note, it’s amazing how many monsters, superheroes, gods, witches and spells play a large part in Shakespeare’s plays and Homer’s epic. In our time, these type of books are called with mildly disguised contempt, “genre fiction”.

So, now the mystery is explained. Lego sets over literary class. I WANT the masses to read my work, love the stories and be inspired to think about Creation, Fall, Redemption and Restoration. I want people to geek out. When they geek out, they start thinking. When they geek out, it means they deeply feel the themes I’m addressing in my stories.

What say you? Lego sets or literary classes? Or is this a false dichotomy? Maybe it’s both? Interact below…

About Jonathan Ryan

Jonathan Ryan is a novelist, blogger and columnist. His novel, 3 Gates of the Dead, published by Open Road Media, is in bookstores everywhere. The sequel, Dark Bride, will be out early next year along with a powerful new Young Adult Trilogy, Revolution of the Wolf and a moving middle grade series, Ghost Bear.

  • Marcus Goodyear

    Interesting. The thing about becoming a Lego set is that the story becomes something real, interactive in a physical way. My daughter’s Harry Potter castle becomes the scene in a horror film about a blob-like monster. ( Voldemort vs. The Blob. You can imagine who wins that battle in my geek daughter’s bedroom.

    When stories become Legos, they are set free. That’s what you’re talking about. A story, a world, so powerful, that it captures the imagination and becomes a living breathing entity. There’s something very gospel about that desire, I think.

  • Jonathan Ryan

    Marcus, you nailed the point. I have to say, I’m intrigued by Voldermort versus the Blob. In my house, its Star Wars versus Harry Potter. Use the wand, Luke…..