I was reading Julia Spencer-Fleming's interviews this morning, and one of her questions is to what extent the authors' faiths influence or come into their writing. On the flip side, among several of the noir writing members, is atheism.
Which is it for you? Do you find your faith - or lack thereof - a strong influence on your writing/outlook/storytelling, or just marginal? When it comes to characters, would you want to write them with a faith (or lack thereof), or not even mention it? Would you ever write someone with opposite beliefs from yours, who was not an archetype?
I would say I probably couldn't write "inspirational" fiction to save my life. I don't believe that having faith makes everything better. In fact, it often makes things worse. Religion has done a lot of damage to a lot of people in a lot of ways - whether it insulates them too much, or doesn't support them enough, or encourages them to do bad things to other people. That said, I can't get away from my own prayer/faith experiences. I think most of my characters are probably agnostic, and if I ever wrote an atheist, I'd have to have an atheist read my work to make sure I got it right - atheism is not something I can easily comprehend, along with how some people are really good at math.
How about the rest of you?