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Some Stuff About Me

Two-time seminary graduate turned... fantasy author? - You Bet!

Welcome to my site. I’m so glad to see you here!

If you’ve made it to this page, I assume it’s because you want to know a thing or two more about me. I made this video to say – well, not all of it… The most relevant parts, anyway.

First, the most important thing: I am a Christian storyteller. There, that pretty much says it all. I have been creating stories for literally as long as I can remember, and writing them down on paper (or computer hard drive) since I was twelve.

So that’s, let’s just say, more than two decades of writing experience at this point.

Check out the video for the rest. Or, if you just don’t like videos, it is written out below.

Who I am

My name is Shanna Terese Bude, and I am the author behind Shanna Terese Books – where faith grows in fiction.

I write dystopian science fiction and fantasy from the perspective of my own personal faith and from religious, spiritual experience in general.

My goal in all that I write is, simply, to tell my story, our collective story as Christians – that is, the Gospel story – in as unique and accessible and unconventional a way as possible.

Some random (or, actually, not so random) stuff about me –

In addition to writing, I have two separate Master’s Degrees in theology from the same seminary that my father attended some thirty years before I did. He graduated with the typical MDiv (Master’s of Divinity) and went on to a long and successful career as a Pastor from which he has recently retired with pension and benefits.

Garret Evangelical Theological Seminary

Garret Evangelical Theological Seminary – Where I studied, and the inspiration for the Vaulkery Tower in my book Secret Keepers

I graduated once with a Master’s in Christian Education and then a second time with a Master’s of Theological Studies concentrating on the History of the Early Church and have now gone on to write… fantasy… books…

Bear with me, there’s more of a correlation here than you might think…

The Languages

For both of my Master’s degrees and for my undergraduate degrees I have studied multiple languages, including Hebrew and Greek. This means that I can read the bible as it was originally written in it’s original languages.

It also means that I have a gift for languages, which has allowed me to make up several of my own languages. Since I write in the genres of sci-fi and fantasy, they helps me to make the words of my books feel real, and authentic, and to populate them with true-to-life characters.

I love how well thought out your worlds are.

~ Carrie Krause, my editor, who also wrote in a critique that “world-building” was my strength.

Regardless of the crazy, futuristic circumstances of their lives, my books are filled with realistic characters who face real problems and have to answer familiar questions – the same kind that we all find ourselves dealing with at some point in our lives.

And my undergraduate degree in history doesn’t hurt that goal, either.

For me, it’s always been about stories

The goal, for me, has always been to become a writer, and all of my education has been about telling better stories – stories that ring true, and stories that matter.

I have spent my entire academic career studying humans, and how humans think, and how those thought and opinions change or decline over time, and based on the societies and circumstances in which people live.

But why sci-fi?

There is a pervasive misconception out there that science fiction and fantasy stories are inherenly unrealistic. And I have observed that this misconception is particularly prevalent among religious people.

salvation is only the beginning | shanna terese books

Many religious people seem to see science fiction and fantasy as not only unrealistic, but somehow anti-religion – which is weird, honestly, because three of the best-loved sci-fi/fantasy authors of the last century were in fact practicing Christians, who did integrate their faith into their writing in powerful and also non-invasive ways.

Why do science fiction and faith go great together? Find out here.

C.S. Lewis, well respected as one of the most important theologians of the modern era, is best known for his series of children’s fantasy classics, The Chronicles of Narnia. He is also the author of a less known but equally impressive trilogy of adult science fiction books.

Madeleine L’Engle is best known for her supurb novel A Wrinkle in Time – recently done great justice by Diseny. A Wrinkle in Time is one of a several related science fiction novels. All, including her most famous work, are filled with religious/Christian imagery.

And of course, no discussion of the fantasy genre could be complete without mentioning J.R.R. Tolkien. His works are every bit as legendary as the world in which they are set – and also filled with illusions to his own devout faith.

The truth about science fiction

The truth is, all good sci-fi and fantasy is deeply rooted in reality. Those roots are exactly what make stories like Star Trek, Harry Potter, A Wrinkle in Time, and The Lord of the Rings so mesmerizing.

These genres exist to explore real, important questions about what it means to be human, the nature of right and wrong, and why such concepts even matter anyway.

Science fiction and fantasy stories are built on these fundamental questions. And one of the most important of these questions – no matter how you ultimately decide to answer it – is what we believe about God, and why, and how such beliefs do or should influence our live.

These are the important questions that humanity has to deal with.

There are questions that science fiction as a genre is uniquely positioned to explore in innovative and fascinating ways that many people find compelling. I am among those people.

The Gospel

The questions raised by science fiction and fantasy are, upon examination, the same questions that the Gospel seeks to answer in Christianity.

I write fiction because I need to. Because the consumption and writing of stories IS my prayer life.

I write fiction because I need to. Because the consumption and writing of stories IS my prayer life.

Questions of meaning, identity, good and evil, right and wrong, justice and injustice.

I think it is because there is such crossover between what science fiction explores and what the Gosepls explore that these were the stories that I loved growing up, and that I still love today. These are the stories I grew up with, the stories that help me make sense of the world, make sense of myself. They are the stories that help me even now, in my thirties.

And that is why I write them.

Oh, and I also just really like entertaining people!

Well, that’s it for now, I guess. Again, not everything, but the most important things.


Thank you for taking the time to stop by!