Favorite Authors

Favorite Authors Study List

Below is a list of my favorite authors. I often read and study their work with a red, blue, or green pen while I read. This practice is good for my writing and can benefit yours also.

The seal of The Grammatic Artist.

Not long ago I found this quote: “Don’t read the book, read the author.”  This practice influences what I read.

Check out my Reading List. Creative writer Heather Sellers recommends reading at least 101 books to hone your craft.  Often this points me to other books by an author. Over the past five years, my consumption level has reached 150 books. The quantity does not affect my list.

What matters is what I learn from these authors and their writing quality.

Anyone can get on Goodreads and claim, “I’m going to read 25, 50, or 100 books this year! Whoo-hoo, me!” This matters almost as little as those on Twitter who shout, “I wrote _____-thousand words today! Yea me! I’m awesome!” (Really, if you are one to do this, please stop. Or come to realize it means you wrote several pages of a draft.) As Ernest Hemingway said, “The first draft of anything is shit.” Considering you are not Papa, odds are you do not write as well as he does.

The accumulation of words in one day does not predict the likelihood of writing the next great American novel. To say so may be a motivating factor to keep going. But remember what Stephen King also says, “Close the door when you write. Open it when you are editing.”

I have put my favorite authors in alphabetical order to avoid arguments about which one was/is the best. Such a discussion is draining and keeps you from writing or reading.

Good writing can happen anywhere. The dynamics of writing differ between eras.

The Authors

Cameron, Julia

Dickens, Charles

Fitzgerald, F. Scott

Hanks, Tom

Hannah, Kristin

Hemingway, Ernest

McEwan, Ian

Moshfegh, Ottessa

Patchett, Ann

Powers, Tom

Sellers, Heather

Shakespeare, William

Towles, Amor

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