Right now, I’m trying to finish the first draft of a story that I’m hoping will be my first novel. As a result, I want to bring attention to the five books that inspired me as a writer.
I’m one of those people that can’t choose a favorite book; for me, choosing one favorite song/book/movie/TV show is like asking a parent to choose their favorite child. Also, I’m always reading other books so I might read a new book tomorrow that seriously inspires a story idea or influences my writing voice. As of right now, these are the five books that have inspired me the most as a writer:
- Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien. This is by far one of my favorite stories, and Tolkien takes worldbuilding to a whole new level with several created languages, an epic-novel-length backstory for just one of the cultures he wrote about (yes, I’m talking about The Silmarillion), and complex characters. Granted, it does read like a textbook, but Tolkien was a professor, so I realize his writing voice is not what I’m going for, but I do take inspiration from his worldbuilding.
- The Ruins of Gorlan by John Flanagan. The Ranger’s Apprentice series as a whole was a huge inspiration for how I write humor in my stories and different character developments. I also enjoy reading the books—they kept me sane in my last year of college—and I feel they have good lessons for real life.
- The Hellfire Chronicles: Blood in the Skies by G.D. Falksen. This was the first book that I read in the steampunk genre, and while this does not seem to be as popular as his series The Ouroboros Cycle, I’m still eagerly awaiting the sequel. This and Lord of the Rings showed me the importance of worldbuilding and got me inspired to write steampunk fiction in the future.
- The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald. I will admit, after listening to The History Chicks’ podcast episode about Zelda Fitzgerald, I have lost all respect for F. Scott Fitzgerald as a person, but I can’t deny that his writing style in The Great Gatsby was (and, to a lesser extent, still is) a big inspiration for my writing voice after reading it for my AP English Language class in high school.
- Twilight by Stephenie Meyer. Laugh and/or judge if you must, but I have to give credit where it’s due, because this is what got me writing the type of stories that I write now. I don’t know where I’d be as a writer if I didn’t read this and think about how I would write a vampire story as a result.
What books inspired you as a writer? Let me know in the comments! Thanks for reading!