Day 13 of this respective 30 Day Book Challenge – we’re almost halfway through! It’s asking me my favorite writer(s) and I had a difficult time choosing one, so I’ll just list several that I really enjoy and have read multiple books from. When I think writer – I think of both prose and poetry, so there’s quite a spectrum to be had here. You can find my list, in random order, under the cut.
Melina Marchetta – The things this woman’s writing does to me. Love her books, I really do. I always appreciate the level of character detail, emotional resonance, and background that she gives in each of her works, especially in her contemporaries. “The Piper’s Son” and “On The Jellicoe Road” are two of my favorites from her, among several. She writes the level of coming of age stories that I really enjoy reading. I warmed to her fantasy novel starting with “Froi of the Exiles” – because that had a level of resonance that I didn’t expect it to have in comparison to “Finnikin of the Rock.” I’m looking forward to reading the last book in that trilogy, just haven’t gotten around to it. (Blame my massive reading/ARC stack.)
Dan Wells – I think Dan Wells really impressed and made an impact with me with all the novels I’ve been able to read from him so far – from the John Cleaver series to the Partials series as well. “The Hollow City” is one I have yet to pick up from him. Love his eye for worldbuilding, humor, and writing in general. He’s a fun person to follow too in terms of his contributions to the Writing Excuses podcast and his blog.
Billy Collins – I’m a poetry lover through and through, and this is the first poet of three that I’m featuring on this list. Billy Collins has such a sharp eye for life and charming humor that it’s hard not to love the contributions he makes in every collection he releases. I was introduced to his style in college and his poetic voice just jumped out at me from point one. I really enjoy reading his works and usually if anyone asks me what poets I was inspired by, he’s one of the ones I cite that shaped both my appreciation and love for the stylistic.
Langston Hughes – I think Langston Hughes is the first poet I named as a favorite from a long, long time (probably since I was a little girl), and he’s one of my primary influences. “A Dream Deferred,” “Greetings from the Waldorf-Austoria,” among many other poems jump to mind whenever I consider his work. His sharp eye, charming wit and critique, as well as strong imagery really come across in his respective collections of poetry, and I take much inspiration from him.
Carol Goodman – When I think of gothic mystery based stories penned in adult literature, I think of Carol Goodman. When she’s at her best, she pens works that are deeply evoking of their sense of place and subject matter. “The Seduction of Water”, “The Lake of Dead Languages” and “The Drowning Tree” are all books that really struck me the first time I read them, and especially “The Lake of Dead Languages” stayed with me as a favorite for its attention to place, atmosphere, and even classical languages.
Brandon Sanderson – It’s interesting I feature two authors who are from the Writing Excuses podcast on here, but I envy Brandon Sanderson’s ability to worldbuild. I really do. Something about his narratives always draw me into them, whether he’s evoking a sharp sense of humor or illustrating a unique magic system, or focusing an eye on the interactions between and development of characters. He’s one of the authors I can cite with confidence “I will read everything he writes.” His narratives stand out just that much to me.
Neil Gaiman – Another author on the list of writers where I will say “I will read everything he writes”. “American Gods,” “Stardust,” “The Graveyard Book”, “Coraline” – everything I’ve read from him thus far just brings a smile to my face because of how well he establishes his characters and environments. I take a lot of inspiration from him as well.
Joyce Sweeney – Because she shaped a lot of the coming of age novels I read in the past as a little girl. “The Spirit Window” and “The Guardian” are two of my favorites, but there are many others that she’s written that I love just as much.
J.K. Rowling – Love her as a person, love her as a writer. Enough said.
Ray Bradbury – I can’t think of a time when I haven’t had my imagination sparked by something that Ray Bradbury has written, and even if some of his novels struck me more than others he’d written, he just has an ability to draw me in without fail. It saddened me incredibly when he passed away. I looked up to him as a writer for the craft and for the strength of the narratives he contributed.
Other writers I haven’t mentioned in this post for feature, but love just as much (and influenced by): Naomi Shihab Nye (poetry), Maeve Binchy, Hannah Moskowitz, Linda Joy Singleton, Phillip Pullman, Jennifer Crusie, Lisa Kleypas, Nora Roberts, Virginia Hamilton, Sharon M. Draper, Stephen King, and William Gibson.
I’ve probably forgotten so many, but the answer to this question is that I don’t have “a” favorite writer – I have several. =P
Until next entry,