What stuff influences your writing?

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What stuff influences your writing?

Post by iamaparagon on Thu Apr 28, 2016 4:02 pm

One Thursday a couple of weeks ago, I brought up the question of whether the Western literary canon shapes the way we write. For me, the books that having staying power, the books that have been selected (whether or not they have been selected fairly) to inform a collective Western literary culture do shape the way I write. I don't agree with the idea of a canon at all - it's ridiculous that some people have been almost arbitrarily chosen as the keepers of culture - but I would be lying if I said I never thought of Charles Dickens, of Virginia Woolf, or William Shakespeare, when I was trying to string together a story.

But this isn't the case for everyone. So my question for this week is: What influences your writing? What stuff inspires you, what stuff makes you hesitate as, what stuff makes something in you feel like you are doing something worth doing? Or what stuff makes you feel like you could be doing something better? I want to know about any and all the things that impact how you write. It could be location, it could be music, it could be your dog or your cat or memories of melting ice cream. Do you pick apart your favourite books to learn about what you love about them, do you make notes about dialogue when watching movies, do you ask your family for their opinions on everything you write or do you desperately never want them to read a word of it? I want to know. Because the more we think about how and why we write, the better we can be at writing.

If you're not sure what I'm talking about, here's a link to a NY Times article with two published writers answering (almost) the exact same question. http://www.nytimes.com/2014/11/09/books/review/as-a-writer-what-influences-you-other-than-books.html?_r=0


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