The topic of this blog chain was chosen by Christine Fonseca who has asked:
“Which author or authors have most influenced your writing and how?”
Questions like these are always so hard for me to answer because it seems like I take something away from every author that I read and don’t want to exclude any one piece of inspiration.
I have been writing in some form for many years, but have been working on my YA novel in earnest since late last year. Being a reader while trying to be a writer is a strange thing; my awareness of style, method, and the frame of the story is acute.
When I think of inspiration and influence, here are some authors who have left something behind for me:
Ken Follett’s Pillars of the Earth is one of my favorite books. Aside from my love of the well told epic story, I love the ways he has drawn every character, given them so many layers and meaningful depth. All while keeping his sentences simple and spare. His books are a reminder to me that you don’t have to get flowery to get to the awesome.
Diana Gabaldon. Outlander. Greatness.
When I think about the enigma that is “voice”, I think of Stephen King and his ability to breathe life into the most believable and authentic characters, regardless of the setting. Of course, J.K. Rowling is a master when it comes to voice, and for those of you who have not yet read the Odd Thomas YA series – Dean Koontz has created first-person narration perfection (IMHO).
Writers whose work haunts me for their ability to leave me thinking for days simply about their word choice are Anita Shreve, Sena Jeter Naslund, and Caleb Carr. For the awesome movement of the narration: Dan Brown, Harlan Coben, and James Patterson.
I am constantly influenced by whatever I am reading. Some of my recently read or re-read: the WAKE series by Lisa McMann *whoa*, Bleak House by Dickens (amazing), Under the Dome by Stephen King (talk about voice), Love in the Present Tense, by Catherine Ryan Hyde (forever love), and Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, Fablehaven by Brandon Mull, Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte (I am Heathcliff!), The Language of Bees by Laurie R. King, Hold Tight by Harlen Coben.
TBR: Maximum Ride by James Patterson, Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater, The Body Finder by Kimberly Derting… any more for me? Do tell.
Hop over and read what author Michelle McLean had to say about what influenced her.