A while back (I’ll not be more specific as I don’t want to date myself) there was a little fill-in-the-blank floating around Facebook that had to do with favorite/influential authors. I remember filling it out without much thought (as per the instructions) and tagging my nerdy friends in the hopes of starting a conversation and, maybe, finding some writer in common. That was, sadly, the end of it until this week when I rediscovered my list. As I looked through the names again I was proud of myself because, not only were there a few obscure authors thrown in there, that list is the same one I would write today.
That kind of permanence got me thinking about why these authors were so influential and what it was about their writing styles that stuck with me. There are a myriad of reasons that I may like a book, but an author – that’s talking about a much larger and deeper scope of influence worth exploring. The original Facebook post wanted your top 15 authors but didn’t bother to ask why, but I want to talk about why. It is, after all, my favorite question. The trouble is tackling 15 authors in a single post seems, at the very least, daunting. I want to be able to give each of them the time and attention they deserve so I’ve decided to spread them out over the next few posts. I’ll be sharing my history with the authors, how they’ve influenced me, favorite quotes, etc. I hope you’ll enjoy a glimpse of them through a different lens and maybe share a few of your own favorite moments spent in their company.
To start us off, and topping my list at #1 is none other than brilliant Irish novelist and poet, James Joyce.