Monday, February 02, 2009

Twenty-Five Writers Who Have Most Influenced Me

Pooh and Friends reading.
In no special order...(Hat tip to Lee Goldberg)
1. Anne Tyler
2. Richard Yates
3. Russell Banks
4. Alice Munro
5. Raymond Carver
6. Richard Russo
7. Margaret Millar
8. Patricia Highsmith
9. Scott Fitzgerald
10. Sinclair Lewis
11. John D. MacDonald
12. Ross MacDonald
13. Sjowall and Wahloo
14. Nicholas Freeling
15. John Updike
16. Paul Auster
17. Jane Austen
18. Margaret Laurence
19. John Irving
20. William Trevor
21. Josephine Tey
22. Carol Shields
23. Edgar Allan Poe
24. Val Mc Dermid
25. Charles Willeford
Ask me tomorrow and the list might change, of course.
And how about you?


Cullen Gallagher said...

Great idea for a post. Carver has always been a big fav of mine. I read my first Margaret Millar a couple months ago, VANISH IN AN INSTANT, and loved it! I just picked up THE FIEND but haven't started it yet.

I'll work on one of these for my site and let you know once it is up.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Please do. I'd love to see it.
I got the idea from Lee Goldberg btw.

Paul D Brazill said...

Carver and Highsmith are faves of mine.THIS SWEET SICKNESS has been lurking in the corners of my mind for about 20 years. I'll have a go too!

Iren said...

I tired it... but I started to note that there are as many lyricists as novelists who have influenced me....

Paul D Brazill said...

Good point Iren. Johnny Mercer is creeping through my stuff....

pattinase (abbott) said...

Now I love music and listen to it all the time, but I don't think it influences my writing. I do think it influences my state of mind though.

Jacob Weaver said...

Wow, that's a great list. I've never even heard of some of them so I'll definitely have to check them out.

I haven't been writing that long so I don't have much of a list. I can say I just finished The Last Good Kiss and Crumley's style has already influenced me. I could be entertained just reading the man's grocery list.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Jacob-A lot of them are primarily short story writers or literary novelists. That's where I came from.
And twenty years from now, you'll put me to shame.

Cormac Brown said...

Wha? No Detroit love for Elmore?

pattinase (abbott) said...

I like some of Elmore but he really doesn't influence the way I write. Or at least I don't think so.

Iren said...

I understand what you are saying about music. However, I listen to a lot of music that is more pulp story oriented and more than a few times I have found a line from a song or an idea was a perfect jumping off point for short stories...

pattinase (abbott) said...

Only with the older music do I much notice lyrics. Maybe my hearing is going. Now a soundtrack in a movie can really transport me--but I'm not sure I carry it into my writing. It's worth an experiment though.

Todd Mason said...

The only one I believe I haven't read at all is Margaret Laurence. Shall have to take a look.

Scott D. Parker said...

Not sure I can name 25 but here are a few (in no particular order): Pelecanos; Lehane; Ardai; Chandler; David McCullough; Dickens; King; Cain; Dan Simmons; Doyle; Hemingway; Bruen; Chabon; and others that I discover along the way

Cullen Gallagher said...

Here's my list:

Wasn't easy narrowing it down, but a lot of fun, and nice to reflect on what books have meant the most to me over the years.

Anonymous said...

Great and eclectic list, Patti!

pattinase (abbott) said...

Scott-some interesting choices here. Dickens stands out particularly. And he did show how to portray evil and darkness early on.

Charles Gramlich said...

My list would be far more loaded with genre writers, and would include Robert E. Howard, Louis L'Amour, Edgar Rice Burroughs, Ken Bulmer, Poul Anderson, C. L. Moore and John D. MacDonald. Among more literary writers, Hemingway and Jack London both influenced me quite a bit. And Peter Matthiessen.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Fun to see how different readers/writers come up with different lists. Charles-you have a couple I've never heard of--and I probably have some you have not.

Barbara Martin said...

Twenty-five was hard to come up with, but I managed after thinking deeply into the past: Malcolm Saville, Edgar Rice Burroughs, Jonathan Swift, E.B. White, C.S. Lewis, Walter Farley, Anna Sewell, Carolyn Keene, Mary Norton, Robert Louis Stevenson, Charles Dickens, George MacDonald, Enid Bagnold, Robert Heinlein, Arthur C Clarke, Isaac Asimov, Fred Gipson, James H. Street, Harold Robbins, Harper Lee, Jules Verne, Leslie Charteris, Ian Fleming, Richard Adamas and Jean Auel and there are others more recent to influence but that would far exceed the 25.