Wednesday, October 7, 2009


Every writer here has had influences and many of my friends can probably cite mine as I theirs. But I got to thinking the other night, there have been "other" significant influences in my writing life that made me first aware that this craft we all love can be much more than a hobby but a way of life and even a profession.

So I posted this challenge on my writing social network: I'd be curious for you to express not your overt writing influences (Poe, Hemingway, Fitzgerald, et al), but the scribes or even situations that made this passion rear its creative head. Was it a Richie Rich comic book? Was it a TV show that spoke to you? Was it something a parent read to you?

Here's one of my own moments...

I remember it was around 1977 and I had a stack of these thin blue hardcovers with dynamic '60s era paintings on the covers. They were all written by this guy - his name was Franklin W. Dixon - and it amazed me he was so prolific.

In one book I would be in a secret tower and another I'd be escaping a creepy lighthouse or chasing down a ancient Chinese barge. Man, I wanted to do what he did and take youngsters like me to places they'd never dare dream. But how? What's more, he made me wish I had a brother.

Imagine my dismay, years later, when I found out it was a pen name. Didn't matter, though, by then I'd filled up enough composition books with my own tales of daring-do and read them aloud to the rest of fourth grade.


  1. I've been inspired by both famous and not so famous writers, and recently, by many writers frequenting the network of blogs here, yourself included.

    But there was one passage I read once in high school, and for the life of me, I can't remember what book it was from, but it was about a soldier on lookout for enemy forces, who'd fallen asleep, and it spoke of some angel that whispered words in his ear to wake him from his dangerous nap. It was incredibly elegant to me at the time, and I reread it over and over, amazed at how someone could describe something so telling and artisically.

    I was also a Hardy Boys fan, Nancy Drew, Chronicles of Narnia, the First North American Series, and many more. I always loved to write imaginative stories when I was little, adventures spawned from the Incredible Shrinking Woman, but I never imagined myself being a writer. It wasn't until recently that I decided to write a book based on a crazy dream I had. The first time I sat down, I went through a time warp - four hours had completely disappeared, yet I had several pages of text on my screen. I knew then that I had something I wanted to pursue more.

  2. Erin ...

    I'd love to find out what that soldier story is...


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