Sunday, August 24, 2008

No Trespassing

Interactive blog question for this lazy Sunday night:

What books most influenced you? Not the books you're "supposed" to read, the real ones. I'm working on my list and will have it next week. It's been a crazy few days, but tomorrow is another day and all will be well.

Michelle's Spell of the Day
"The most difficult thing in the world is to reveal yourself, to express what you have to." John Cassavetes

Cocktail Hour
Drinking movie suggestion: Broken English

Benedictions and Maledictions
Happy Sunday!


the walking man said...


chris said...

The real one will be the one you help me with,writing that is.
There seem to be a lot of people with funny stories who think it will be a best seller,still interested ?

Been out of town this whole week,dry,dry dry desert in Nevada.

Wastelander said...

Broken record time...But it was the first three Dune books when I was 13 or 14 that had the biggest influence in my thinking up to and beyond that point..politics, religion, social engendering, sand had it all...Oh, and Steven Kings IT...Just creepy with the two parts, first the kids and then the adults...Oh and All's Quiet on the western front..Yes, required reading..No, I actually liked it's grim and ruddy world of mud and blood and futility..I was a strange kid...Loved books though..

Anonymous said...

The Myth of the Eternal Return, by Mircea Eliade. This tome gives a whole new meaning to the power of Christianity.--Herman Northrop Frye

Rudy said...

Gates of Fire by Steven Pressfield, Pride of Carthage by David Anthony Durham and Long Knife by James Alexander Thom

Anonymous said...

John Cassavetes was great in the biker movies he did. He looked great in a motorcycle jacket. Just as good as Brando in "The Wild One."--Oscar Winner

Lana Gramlich said...

"The 21 Lessons of Merlyn" by Douglas Monroe changed my life...even though I later found out that most of it was fraudulent.

Charles Gramlich said...

TO Tame a Land by Louis L'Amour was one. The first few JOhn Carter books by ERB. All of Ray Bradbury's early work.

This is a great question and I'll have to give it some more thought.

Jason said...

Great question! In no particular order:

- Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal. The most hilariously blasphemous, and somehow devout, telling of those missing year's of Jesus' life.

- I can't remember the title, but there was a book I read in 7th grade about three teenagers that set out to create the perfect crime, and use blackmail to ruin their ball-busting science teacher. Its always stuck with me and I'd give anything to re-find it someday.

- Comic books. Any and all types of titles, but they are influential because they are such a profound source of morality plays and the influences that make men what they are. The Dark Knight film is just the tip of the iceberg of the quality tales you can find in comics. They look pretty too.

- Sphere. Michael Crichton can somehow turn scientists and theory into great characters and into great stories. This book challenged my mind and got me to think in ways no science teacher ever has.

- Edgar Allen Poe. I had a pocket sized Poe reader when I was kid, and i must have read the Tell-Tale Heart and the Cask of Amontillado a thousand times. Maybe that's why I'm so level headed-- I know the madness that can take people for revenge.

- Catcher in Rye. I hate this book and I've never finished it. It represents to me all of that cry baby bullshit the privileged upper-crust wants you to feel sorry for them for.

- Great Gatsby. He changed who he was. He took everything he was supposed to be, and tossed it out the window to create a new self and he's punished for it. I want my life to prove Fitzgerald wrong.

-Slaughter House 5. I read it recently and it gave me great perspective on the Iraq War.

- Asimov. Its dry, clinical reading, but damn if he doesn't make me think about things in another way. Try Foundation.

laughingwolf said...

stuff by joe campbell, bob heinlein, jim henson, ike asimov, ray bradbury, terry pratchett... among many others

Cheri said...

Stephen King stories, VC Andrews.

Anonymous said...

Stanley Elkin's The Magic Kingdom is the funniest, most heartbreaking, most pyrotechnically explosive novel I know, and I read it at a very impressionable age, my early twenties, when it could help my writing as much as it could fuck it up.

Albuquerque, NM

Laura said...

Hm. Some....

Atlas Shrugged, The Bible (particularly the Old Testament), The Robber Bride (Margaret Atwood), Laurie's Yellow Curtains (Hey, it had a character with my name--who knew it was possible?!) The Stand, Jane Eyre, The Women's Room, Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Sex (but were afraid to ask), some random drug encyclopedia my parents had that proved to be a useful reference guide, a paperback version of condensed (yes, you heard that right) Shakespeare plays, Beowulf (Heaney), collected Poe, The Way to Cook and Mastering the Art of French Cooking by Julia Child, et al, The Haunting of Hill House.

Not a terribly noble list for a writer, huh? xo

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