On the Blog Chain: Influenced? Me?

Again we are back with another installment of the Blog Chain. Give a big round of applause to Christine, our hostess with the most-tess, for this round as she posed the following question:

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

I was giddy with excitement until I found out I would be toward the bottom of the list with my answer and I started reading everybody’s posts. A sinking feeling hit the pit of my stomach.

Everyone is mentioning my influences for the same reasons. Really, it was incredible. Almost all of them wrote about an author who I loved reading during my childhood and today . . . be it learning different writing techniques or simply inspiring the imagination, or just for the fun of reading these books. Here are those authors on my list of influences that my fellow Blog Chainers mentioned:

Christine: Shakespeare, Poe

Sarah: Neil Gaiman

B.J: Eddings

Kate: Mary Higgins Clark

Shaun: Terry Brooks

Abby: Tolkein

Shannon: John Steinbeck

Sandra: Mercedes Lackey

Eric: Piers Anthony, Stephen King

Although, a few of the Blog Chainers did post about authors I’ve never read before (but soon will) like these ones.

Margie: Norma Klein, Laurie Halse Anderson, Maeve Binchy

Laura: Anne Rice, Clive Barker, Somerset Maugham

Cole: Stephanie Meyer

Michelle M.: Suzanne Collins, Orson Scott Card

Amanda: Bernard Cornwell, J.K. Rowling, Patricia Briggs

And this is only a small sampling of the many authors everyone posted about (so go visit the links to see the others). I had a hard time thinking on whom to add, and for what reason they influenced me that hasn’t been mentioned. Then I delved far back into my memories of childhood. There is one who influenced me, not for the love of a genre, not for how they wrote a story, not for learning any type of techniques, but for the mere love of writing. They inspired me to sit down on my bedroom floor those many years ago and place ink on paper. They inspired me to research my heart out on those topics of which I knew very little. They gave me the courage and the tools to improve upon my writing and how to shape a story.

Funk & Wagnall’s New Encyclopedias

Yes, I’m crediting an influence to 29 encyclopedias that helped me from grade school into high school with every assignment paper I had to turn in. For if it wasn’t the ease of reading those entries, of developing a working knowledge of how to string paragraphs together into something not only educational, but entertaining, for my teachers to the point where every one of those educators suggested for me to take creative writing classes, I wouldn’t be where I am today. A writer.

Make sure you read Christine’s post who started the chain, and Eric’s post who came before mine. Heck, click on everyone who posted on this topic. I gave you the means. Get to reading! See you next time with a new question answered.


  1. Is yours the first nonfiction influence mentioned? How funny!

    Suzanne Collins' THE HUNGER GAMES is definitely a must-read, for world-building and pacing.

  2. I think this is the first nonfiction influence. I am such a geek with my encyclopedia reference. But it's true. I spent many a childhood poring through them learning about Greek mythology and Aztec civilizations and dragonfly mating rituals.

  3. YOU ARE BRILLIANT!!! An encyclopedia..PERFECT!

  4. LOL awesome influence :D I used to sit and read encyclopedias (still do actually, have the whole Funk and Wagner set!) :D

  5. Totally did not see that coming - LOL

  6. I love that you're influence is a set of encyclopedias. Getting lost in articles is such a great thing. It's one of the reasons I love Wikipedia. I can start out looking for the singer of a band, and end up reading about quantum theory. Great way to end the chain!

  7. Wow, great list. I completely agree with you about how everyone else before us covered so many great authors. I felt the same way myself. I like your inclusion of encyclopedias though. I liked reading them as a kid too. Heck, I still find them interesting, all that you can learn about.

  8. Wow! I'm amazed so many of you also enjoy reading encyclopedias. And now, with the advent of Wikipedia, I find myself surfing those pages for everything while getting sidetracked too many times with so much interesting information.

  9. I think I may have had that same set of encyclopedias when I was growing up. I should check to see if my parents still have them.

    I also had a huge one-volume encyclopedia from Random House, and I used to enjoy paging through it too.

  10. Anonymous9:18:00 PM

    Ooooh, nice linkage! It was great seeing all the highlights listed together--great idea! Nice post!

  11. Love this post - it just goes to show how great books can connect us all!


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