It should be my day today (Catriona), but I'm handing over the blog to my friend and fellow writer, Lori Rader Day, as she celebrates the publication of her third novel THE DAY I DIED, the follow-up to the Mary Higgins Clark winning LITTLE PRETTY THINGS. I was lucky enough to read TDID early on, and it's absolutely fandabbydozy.
So, without further ado, over to Lori.
What authors inspire you? Do you read them when you are working on a book?
Which writers inspire me? This is not sucking up. I will read anything Catriona McPherson cares to write. Her grocery list? Bring it.
But since she is my host today, I should probably think of other writers who inspire me.
My first mystery/suspense inspirations were Lois Duncan, Agatha Christie, and Mary Higgins Clark. Imagine the 12-year-old me carrying my Mary Higgins Clark library copy of A Cry in the Night onto the school bus to seventh grade to share with my friends. Yeah. That really happened.
Today I’m still inspired by the careers of those three women and by those who follow in their footsteps: Tana French (The Likeness is my favorite) Megan Abbott (The Fever), Lisa Lutz (Heads You Lose with David Hayward is a book more people should read), and Ann Cleeves (I love Vera!). I also read male authors, of course. Favorites include Charles Todd (I’m cheating there, I know) and William Kent Krueger.
I do read fiction when I’m writing, or I wouldn’t read fiction at all. But let’s be honest: I do sometimes put off reading books that I think might influence me too much in what I’m writing. Instead, I might read a novel that is so different from my style that I’m unlikely to borrow. (M.C. Beaton’s Hamish Macbeth series is great for this, or Alexander McCall Smith’s Number One Ladies’ Detective Agency.) Confession: I have not yet read Lou Berney’s award-winning The Long and Faraway Gone because I’m pretty sure it’s going to give me a severe case of Why Botherism.
I don’t have time to feel more insecure than I already do. Thanks anyway, Berney.
What I read most when I’m trying to get my head out of my own work-in-progress for a while is nonfiction. The best kind of nonfiction is work that may spark ideas for my own project, but that’s hard to predict. The best examples I’ve had of this are the Jon Curran Agatha Christie notebook books and a recent read that blew me away, Shirley Jackson: A Rather Haunted Life by Ruth Franklin.
Catriona again: Over to you all, Criminal Minds readers - who inspires you?