"A Candle Loses Nothing By Lighting Another Candle" - Father James Keller

Wednesday, November 9, 2011


Sources of Inspiration: Authors or No Authors?  (Comments Wanted) 
By Chris Lindberg 

A pretty common question for a writer is “what authors have inspired you?”  It’s actually a great question, since all writers’ styles and works are somehow related to one another: inspiration is what ties us all together. 

However, I am probably the odd person out here, but I’d have to say the majority of my inspiration doesn’t come from other authors at all.  Now, before you dismiss this crazy notion and close your browser window on me, please allow me just one more paragraph to make some sense here. 

Sure, I get inspired by good writing: Franzen, McCarthy, and others.  But reading the works of the best authors makes you want to continue to develop your prose, and take your writing to another level.  Will most of us get there?  No, not even close.  But it’s something to aspire to, and that pushes us along as writers.  Now on the flip side, I’m also inspired by not-so-good writing (I won’t name names here, since good vs bad writing is clearly subjective): it gives me confidence to think that if some authors can make a living putting out that stuff, maybe my work just needs to catch the right set of eyes, and I’ll get a lucky break, too.  But really, what inspires me more than any other authors’ works, is the stuff I see and hear on an every day basis. 

What stuff, you ask?  It could be anything, really.  A conversation you overhear.  Someone wearing an odd-looking shirt, walking by on the street.  A pair of dogs playing in a field.  A cloud pattern in the sky.  See?  Anything, really.  It just has to resonate with me: capture my attention for a split-second, and start a train of thought in my mind that turns into a scene, storyline, or character interaction.  And something I see or hear will likely only inspire me, not another writer; just like what another author sees may put a thought in his or her head that would never occur to me. 

And that’s what really inspires me as a writer, more than anything else.  What about you, is your main source of inspiration other authors, or something entirely different too? 

Chris Lindberg’s first novel, Code of Darkness, was released in August.  You can find out more by visiting www.codeofdarkness.com, or visiting Facebook and searching on “code of darkness.” 

To purchase Code of Darkness in paperback or e-book edition, please check out: http://www.lulu.com/browse/search.php?fListingClass=0&fSearch=code+of+darkness
Or search “code of darkness” on Amazon or BN.com. 

You can also email him at chris@codeofdarkness.com – he’d love to hear from you. 

Chris Lindberg would like to offer an e-book for a giveaway here on ABA today. Please comment below to enter leaving your email so if chosen as the winner the author can contact you. Also there is a grand prize giveaway for a $50 visa gift card going one person who comments at every stop and follows the entire tour. This winner will be chosen at the end of his tour.


In accordance with the new FTC Guidelines for blogging and endorsements, Kiki Howell of An Author's Musings, would like to advise that in addition to purchasing my own books to review, I also receive books, and/or promotional materials, free of charge in return for an honest review, as do any guest reviewers.