Hi guys. Its Blog Chain time again and I was the lucky one to pick the topic! So here you go:

“Which author or authors have most influenced your writing and how?”

I have always been surrounded by books, reading everything from children’s writers (Dahl and Lewis to name a few), adult literature (Wolfe, Shakespeare, Poe, Bradbury and countless others). I am certain that my early reading experiences created the artistic canvas for my writing. Their influence was indirect.  But I don’t they directly influenced how I write NOW.

That came later…much later.

I started writing two years ago.  My first story, while an accomplishment in that I finished it, was…bad. No really, it was a truly spectacular suckfest!

But my next ones got better. And better…

Largely due to the authors I read. So here is my tribute to those authors –

Dan Brown and Robert North Patterson (the only adult fiction writer in this list) influenced the way in which I layer stories and my research. Both authors take a long time to create stories. The stories are well researched and deeply layered (especially Robert North Patterson).

Suzanne Collins changed how I write – completely. Especially when it comes to creating backstories and weaving them into the main plot.

Carrie Ryan has heavily influenced how I handle romance. She is masterful at creating anticipation in her writing.

I know that several other writers – Libba Bray, Cassandra Clare, Kathleen Duey – have had indirect influence on the way in which I craft stories.

I think one of the keys to good writing is reading – and tons of it. Cassandra Clare said in a booksigning I attended that writers need to be very well read – and not just in their genre. I think there is a lot of truth to that!

So what are you reading? And which authors have influenced you?

Hop over to Margie’s blog  tomorrow for more on this topic.


Have a great weekend!


28 thoughts on “Blog Chain: Under the Influence of Authors

  1. wow good list! Ummm trying hard to think. I’d say (with minimal morning coffee in me) Ann Tyler, because of how realistically she portrayed family life, Stephanie Meyers and JK Rowling for creating excitement in me about child/teens, and then a slew of YA authors, Like Lisa McMann.

  2. Ooooh! Christine–I LOVE this topic! Woohoo! Can’t wait to write this post. It’s funny how much reading influences writing. I love Dahl, BTW, I used to read the BFG to my daughter at night. I think we destroyed that book we read it so much.

  3. The one writer who has most influenced my craft as a writer and the way I think about writing is probably John Gardner, the one who has most influenced the kinds of stories I tell is Ursula LeGuin.

  4. Oh man, so many authors have influenced me and just about every new book I read teaches me something more. I pick up on voice easily, and begin writing in a similar voice, so when I plan to write something, I’ll generally try to read something similar to it before hand. Stephen King’s voice is one of the easiest for me to pick up on, so when I write the Rebecca Stories or anything a little grittier I go to him (and he’s got really great characters – even his minor characters have a lot of… well… character!). When I’m working on Fie Eoin I read The Light Bearer by Donna Gillespie (MY FAVORITE BOOK EVER). She is a beautiful writer, with beautiful descriptions weaved in that really leave you with a feeling of being right there in the book. Her characters are all very real, and every sentence seems to sing right off the page it is so full of life.

  5. Suzanne Collins influenced me for sure. I love every book she has written. This will sound funny, but Mary Pope Osborn influenced me as well. I read SO many of those Magic Treehouse books to my kids and she is really good with writing chapter endings that keep readers turning the pages. Seeing that over and over made me realize how important it is to heighten the suspense of the story.

  6. Dan Brown has been one of my favorites since I discovered his books. You only started writing two years ago? Wow – gives me hope then. Nora Roberts has been a big influence for me. If only I could half as well as she does, It is something to aspire to.

  7. You had me until you mentioned Dan Brown and research in the same sentence. I used to think he did alot of good research until I read his latest book where there were several severe mistakes IMHO.

    This is a good question though, and it’ll be interesting to see what everyone has to say.

  8. Great topic.
    There are so many writers who influence me.
    Jane Austen, her wit and observations always make me smile.
    Suzanne Collins. For the same reasons as you. She rocks.
    Laurie Halse Anderson.

  9. Great topic idea, Christine. Like the other links in the chain here, I’m looking forward to posting an answer. It’ll be interesting to see how our influences change throughout our careers.

  10. I love reading everyone’s answers…and yeah, influences definitely change throughout our career as writers. I am posting a tribute to my Mom on Sunday – and all of the books I grew up with that shaped the “canvas” of my writing!

  11. Wow. Love this question. Everything I read touchs me in some way. This blog’s going to be one that takes more than the usual amount of caffine…

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