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Who are your main influences? (1 Viewer)


Senior Member
What authors do you feel have had the biggest impact on your writing and why?

The biggest influences for me are Jack Kerouac and Hunter Thompson, because of their free-flowing prose and use of odd descriptives, and Stephen Ambrose, because of his excellent narrative of historical events. And I can't forget about Ernie Pyle, who wrote about the everyday man in the foxholes of WWII.

What about all of you?
My influence list would read exactly like the Who's Who of sci-fi. You name 'em, I dig 'em. I've been reading science fiction since I knew what words were. The first books I read by myself were the Dune books by Frank Herbert. TOUGH READ, y0! I toned down to R.A.H. and Isaac Asimov -- stuff I could comprehend!

As far as poetry goes, I'd have to say I have no influence(s) ;). I play it by ear, let the ink flow or what have you.

I really enjoy the style and substance of William Burroughs; that dude had issues! I can relate, to a small degree.


Senior Member
Most probably, Edgar Allan Poe. It is hard for me to tell which style I incorporate from since after reading a book, I have this strange tendency to mimic the language of the author, and most frequently the author would be Shakespeare. I guess I'm just one of those people, the word escapes me now, who absorb from others.


Senior Member
Csira said:
I have this strange tendency to mimic the language of the author

Don't feel bad, I have that same inclination. It usually takes me a couple of drafts to filter out whatever I read last. But, I think it's a perfectly normal phenomenon. If you ever read Jack Kerouac's "The Town and the City," it reads just like a Thomas Wolfe book, who was one of Kerouac's greatest influences.


Senior Member
Hmm, good question! *thinks a moment*

As I write more poetry, more often than not, I'll reflect off them for now. I've always been strongly influenced by what you would call 'classical' poets; Edgar Allen Poe, Keats, Byron, and Shelley, Dante, and even Milton. Sometimes I think my poetry writing style is far too 'antiquated' for the 21rst century, belonging more around the Renaissance period or Baroque. (Either way I love to write for the sheer love of writing itself and enjoy sharing my works with others!)


I tend toward the minimalist-esque (a new word is born!) writers such as J.D. Salinger and Hemingway with an appreciation for not only the structure of language but also the sound. I write short stories about every day life and try to make them more real than reality. I suppose I have Salinger, Updike, Welty, Hemingway, and countless others to thank for that.

It's too bad my work doesn't even compare to these guys.

- amie -[/i]


Senior Member
Two parts King, one part Chandler and a straight shot.......

Two parts Stephen King, one part Raymond Chandler and a straight shot of Ernest Hemingway on top yields my influences......... sounds like a scary combination. It's highly likely my biggest influence I've yet to read, but in time.......... Keith

Fugi Origami

The author who made me want to write was and is Flannery O'Connor. There is something so real, so tragic and flawed about every character in her stories that you cant help but becomed entranced.

She wrote short stories, which is not usually a medium that i tend to explore, I do so for the best in southern Gothic literature. She, in my opinion, which of course is humble, is highly underated. She should rank up there with Steinbeck, Hemingway, and Faulkner as one of the great 20th century authors.

One of my personal favorites is her short story of a young writer who is sick and believes that he shall die. He sees himself as a tragic literary genius struck down in his prime, and is angry at the world. Yet as you examine the character you begin to understand that he doesn't hate the world, he hates himself for not truly being what he imagines himself to be. brilliant



I tend to sway towards interlocking the styles of H.G. Wells and Jules Verne. The reason is simple because they are my two favorite authors. Heck, pretty soon I'll be writing a story about a Time Machine that goes Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea.


My Influences are highly Stephen King and Richard Adams. The former for his ability to tell it like it is and still have meaning in his words and the latter for his smooth and tranquil descriptions. They're also my two favorite authors....


Senior Member
Oh boy, lets see....Edgar Allen Poe!!! Enoch the Prophet (true author is debatable), Life.., Anne Rice, President Lincoln, and Dr. Martin Luther King, and Einstien to name few. I tend to draw my inspiration from all sorts of strange places, as you can see. I am infulenced by my obsessive need to make sense of the world around me, then I try to put my newly accquired views and opinions into works of fiction and poetry. Did that make sense?



Senior Member
(short stories) - Somerset Maugham [The master in my opinion]
(fiction) - Jan de Hertog - Homer - Hugo - Nevil Shute
(non fiction) - Gerald Durrell - Pierre Burton
(poetry) - my mom - Dr. Suess - Rudyard Kipling
Noel Coward - Ogden Nash - William Blake - Leonard Cohen
Robert Service - John Lennon -Sarah MacLaughlin
(mind expansion)
my parents & Karl Jung
I like the Bible, I found it challenging yet satisfying.

Oh, Dostoyevsky is a fine author too.

Solzhenitsyn, lengthy, but good for dipping into.

Q Magazine 1986-1995

Bob Dylan


Anton Chekov (only lately)

Oscar Wilde, dandyism up for a come back? I hope so!


Ezra Pound, Sylvia Plath (her poem Lady Lazarus inspired me to write poems), Edith Södergran, Emily Dickinson, Walt W, the Bard to name a few of my favourite poets, but how can one choose like this? Eeep.

Let's just say that I like to experiment rather than conform ( :oops: ) and read poets with the same drive

SD :lol:


My greatest influences...Keats, because he died at twenty five and yet my teachers in high school and college managed to dredge up enough material that his writings were in my required readings for six straight years. When I think about Keats I have hope that someday I could be forced on students by a strangling school curriculum. (and I really honestly am touched by his work)
In general I find the Romantic poets the most inspiring, as writers, but as far as actual writing goes...I have a couple other random influences...Banana Yoshimoto, for writing two of the most beautiful novellas about ghosts I've ever read, Mark z. Danielewiski, for writing the most unique novel I've ever come across and giving me the taste for more... (in addition, he has a passion for words which I completely respect) Michael Chabon, for giving me a book that I seriously thought was agony to put down. I almost didn't think books really did that anymore...and I want to create dramas like that for myself, and in my own writing.
I only wish I could be half so talented... :)


Senior Member

Influences? Hmmm . . .

Don Delillo, Chuck Pahlahniuk, William S. Burroughs, James Joyce, Gary Jennings, Poe, Lewis Carroll, Graham Greene, Toni Morrison, Margaret Laurence, Franz Kafka, Fyodor Dostoevsky, John Paul Sartre, John Steinbeck -- and in my misspent youth: Stephen King, Anne Rice, and a plethora of comic book writers whose names I can't recall at the moment.

Lots, I guess -- and a motley crew!


Senior Member

Louisa May Alcott, Jane Austen, Anne Rice, Stephen King, Ann Marston, Jennifer Roberson, JKR, Isaac Asimov and all the authors in his Devils/Giants/Witches/Wishes/ etc.


Main influences

Spike Milligan, Charles Dickens, E.A. Poe, in fact, anybody who writes a story that makes me giggle, go pale, or turn the page until I finish.
Paul the bleary-eyed Ogg


Senior Member
Stephen King (for his attention to detail and wonderful ability to showcase what most of us overlook about small towns), Robert McCammon (Southern locales, great characterizations), SK Epperson (a damn good female mystery/horror writer who cusses as much as I do), Roald Dahl (weird, off-the-wall whimsy), Elmore Leonard (simplicity and straight-forwardness), and Shirley Jackson (writing style, although I'm not as vague as she sometimes got).