We were briefly talking about what it would be like to have C.S. Lewis in your writing group and how that might explain a lot about why Tolkien had songs and histories of various grasses and chapters devoted to wandering around in circles, because Lewis would be all “Today, I have an essay on why there’s so much suffering and whether children deserve pain” and everyone else in the group would be all “Um, we’re still helping Tolkien get through this tricky part about… um…” They all look at Tolkien.
“This song about trees?” He shrugs.
But I was thinking about it on our walk this morning and, lord, could you imagine Lewis’s elevator pitches?
“Okay, it’s an allegory about Christ and the dangers of modern women set in a magical land with lions.”
“Okay it’s an allegory about Christ and the dangers of modern women set in space.”
“Okay, it’s a book of essays about Christ and the dangers of modern women.”
Can you imagine the time he was all “Okay, it’s a book about bureaucratic devils.”
All the other Inklings chime in “and the dangers of moder–wait, what? Just about bureaucratic devils?”
Tolkien’s all whispering to his neighbor “So, I don’t need this song about a sword to distract him?”
Lewis is confused. “Yes, just bureaucratic devils. Why? Do you think it needs some dangerous modern women in there? I could add some.”
“No, no, no. This is great. Much better than our idea.”