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100 Authors Every Writer Should Know – Part 1 of 4


  1. All those guys that wrote the Bible, especially the New Testament. There’s some amazing writing in there.
  2. Shakespeare – well we’re still talking about him after 400 years for a reason
  3. Zora Neale Hurston – she made ugly words sound beautiful.
  4. James Baldwin – he gave angst a new level
  5. Stephen King – yeah, I know a hack right? When was the last time someone read one of your books cover to cover in one night?
  6. Barbara Kingslover – wow, she’s simply amazing.
  7. Sherman Alexie – write culturally without being insular.
  8. Wole Soyinka – dense and intense this Nigerian writer changed my life with his beautiful and haunting tales
  9. Charles Dickens – capturing the every day and making it brilliant.
  10. Rohinton Mistry – his book a Fine Balance is worth the entry.
  11. Isaac Asimov – in addition to predicting the future, his intellectual allegories are sublime.
  12. James Madison – specifically Federalist Paper #10, this man convinced a country full of individuals to form a unified government got to give it him for that.
  13. Chinua Achebe – it wasn’t until I went to Africa in 2007 that I realized the brilliant truth of this book about life in Africa.
  14. Bessie Head – her lyrical stylings will suck you in and make you love this South African firecracker fighter for women’s rights.
  15. Leo Tolstoy – yes he writes what may be consider tele-novella but he does it so beautifully. Read him if you want to learn the importance of metaphors.
  16. Eldridge Cleaver – OK I found his book “Soul on Ice,” in the basement of a church in Utah. Go figure. This original prisoner turned activist story shocks and titillates.
  17. Alex Haley – Roots changed my life and made me made as hell. I couldn’t talk to white people for a week after I read it. I’ve forgiven, haven’t forgotten though.
  18. James Michener – while other 13 year-olds were reading comic books I was reading historical fiction at its best.
  19. Phyllis Wheatley – all her life she marveled at how the majority class loved her work but still enslaved her.
  20. Homer – um not the Fox television guy. The Iliad will forever define war stories for me, nothing is bloodier.
  21. Plato – his Republic stretched my intellect and imagination
  22. Arthur Miller – is there anyone who does the trappings of Americana better than he?
  23. Tennessee Williams – I stand corrected.
  24. Ralph Ellison – Invisible Man – Please read it. I don’t have time to explain what it’s like to be black in America.
  25. Danielle Steele – if the classics taught me how to think then Danielle taught me how to feel. I can’t believe I read her when I was 14.

Tomorrow the 2nd 25 out of 100

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Discussion

2 thoughts on “100 Authors Every Writer Should Know – Part 1 of 4

  1. You make me fall in love with reading all over again!

    Posted by angela | May 29, 2010, 12:29 am
  2. I know isn’t it a sweet feeling to remember all we had to read at Maria?

    Posted by writingprincess | May 29, 2010, 7:41 pm

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