My Influences – Authors

There are many authors that have inspired me in my writing over the years. Here’s a short list of some that come to mind in no particular order.

Isaac Asimov

I loved the I Robot short stories when I was a teen.

J. R. R. Tolkien

Lord of the Rings and the Hobbit are some of my favorites books for several reasons. I love the world-building, the characters, the good vs bad choices that characters have to face.

H. G. Wells

The Time Machine and War of the Worlds are timeless.

Orson Scott Card

I like Card’s work, like Ender’s Game, because it’s easy to follow and keeps my attention. What I like the most about Card though is his book How to Write Science Fiction and Fantasy. This book game me the tools I needed to build an entire world and fill it with characters.

Hannah C Brown

Hannah’s my daughter. She’s been a story-teller ever since she could talk and a writer ever since she first learned to use a keyboard. Her fairy tale retellings are hilarious and I can’t wait to see them in print. She’s very inspiring.

Robert Jordan

Jordan’s Wheel of Time series is epic. What’s really cool is that he was able to keep the epicness going for 10+ books. That’s inspiring. I like his settings.

R A Salvatore

Salvatore has the world settings that I like. I also like the monsters and creatures; and the characters.

Agatha Christy

She’s simply brilliant. I love the way she intermingles clues throughout the story and I still miss who done it. All of the clues are there, with no information held back.

Terry Brooks

I like the settings of the Shannara series.

Terry Goodkind

The Sword of Truth series has interesting characters and settings.

Jules Verne

Verne writes long journeys and the story is as much about the journey as it is the destination.

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

Sherlock Holmes and The Lost World are awesome.

Robert E. Howard

I like the settings in the Conan series.

The Bible

I can’t talk about writers and stories without talking about the ultimate writer and story. The Bible is filled with stories of struggles and war, trials and troubles, champions and overcomers, visions, dreams, prophecies, kings, peasants, slaves, archaeology, history, builders, creation, science, love, songs and wisdom, devotion and strength, and much, much more. The Bible is rich with ideas for characters and plot, and is great for all levels of story-building.


This is just a quick list. There are many others I could mention. I don’t necessarily like everything an author writes- I’m just focusing on influence. Who are your influences?

The Creative Penn

It can be difficult to get motivated to write. It can also be discouraging when you think about the odds of becoming a published author. To help me with these issues, I’ve been listening to the podcast at The Creative Penn ( The Creative Penn podcast is from Joanna Penn and available on her website Joanna interviews authors, publishers, editors, and just about anybody else in the publishing industry. She also gives many tips on writing, publishing, and marketing. Her site and her podcast are great for a boost of positive thinking and I find her tips invaluable. Thank you Joanna!

You can find her site here:

Homepage –

Blog –

Podcasts –

Using Bing for Inspiration

Writing can become stale if authors use the same tired locations and descriptions too many times. Readers like to be taken to new places, but it can sometimes be difficult to dream up new landscapes, cityscapes, animals, settings, etc. Rather than just looking at specific pictures online, which tends to propagate ‘sameness’, sometimes a writer needs to be inspired by something a little more random. One trick I’ve used for a fresh shot of inspiration is Bing shows a new photo every day. Sometimes there’s nothing there to spark the imagination, but sometimes you might find a real gem in a landscape, or animal, or even a tree. One thought can then lead to another… and you never know what it might turn into.

Check out today’s photo at