Authors at the Dinner Table

An MFRW Author Post – And check out the other blogs on the hop!

 

My family loves the game if you could have anyone to dinner, alive or dead, who would it be? Depending on my research or someone else’s current read or a favored television program, the answer often changes, and always leads to universal and specific questions like, what would Vladimir Nabokov like for dessert and would Vikings and Gothic Romantic poets get along?  

So, naturally, I have had plenty of time to imagine which authors I’d most want to sit down to a meal with, and what kind of souffle I would serve. As a writer, however, the list is constantly in flux so the answers I give today might not be the answers I would give tomorrow – and that’s okay! For now, these are the top five authors I’d most want to meet in my life.

Juliet Marillier

512ZS8FEVNL._SX287_BO1,204,203,200_I’ve written about Juliet in the past and I will continue to write about her in the future. She was and remains ones of the most influential voices in my own reading and writing past, and I have learned a great many lessons at her hand.

Her remarkable skill at weaving legend and original, unique voice is unparalleled. She was one of the first authors to teach me that the phrase strong female characters did a disservice to the great many crafters, weavers, domestics and other traditionally-feminine positions that can still be heroines, and damn good ones at that. I will recommend Juliet to anyone in search of adventure, truth, love or redemption and I often return to her tales in times of great sadness or happiness.

J.K. Rowling

There’s a bit of a drama unfolding where J.K. Rowling is concerned right now, but I’m not going to address that. Instead, I want to put blinders on to the second-generation and the prequels and the rest of it, and pay homage to one of my all-time most favorite stories. Harry Potter influenced me – and the world – at an age when I needed to know heroes could come in my size. It showed me that a thousand different traits can help you to save the day – loyalty, brilliance, perseverance, a knowledge of what is right, that going off on your own isn’t the answer, that family comes in all shapes and sizes. There are flaws with the Harry Potter series, yes, but the great good it did the world, and me, is undeniable.

Bram Stoker

Surely this one isn’t a surprise! Just last week, I waxed poetic about my unmitigated love for Dracula and the man who was able to leave me quaking in my boots on a sunny summer morning. Dracula has long influenced my writing, with the knowledge that books should make their readers feel something, something visceral and deep and universal – fear, sadness, joy, arousal, whatever that something may be. I owe so much to this first book and the man who wrote it.

Mary Shelley

151e6bc0e46e901de325c0038884346a--classic-books-romance-booksGod, this woman was a badass. You’ll forgive my overrepresentation of Gothic Romance novels because everything about Mary Shelley speaks deeply to my angry, creative feminist. Husband galavanting around with other women at the end of the earth? Start a new genre and become arguably better-known than him.

She forged a path for so many writers and women who came after her and at the age of 19, nonetheless. Instead of sitting around waiting for Lord Byron to put his you-know-what back into his britches, she staked claimed in the literary world and created a legacy still strong today. That’s something to aspire to.

Leonardo Da Vinci

leonardoI don’t know if this one counts, but it’s my post so I say it does! Da Vinci kept journals for many, many years, and to this day we still don’t know the half of what his notes and scribbles mean. He was so far ahead of his time – inventing scuba gear and flying devices and so much more – that if you were to tell me we had one time traveler in our midst, I’d have no doubt it was him.

He was brilliant, yes, but more so, he was curious – always looking at the next challenge of nature or of man, something to be unraveled, discovered, understood. I can only imagine what he might ask at a table in the modern day.

Who we worship says much about us, of course. I, personally, have no plans of losing my virginity on my mother’s grave – whoops – or dissecting a pregnant cadaver, but there is no denying that these stories, the people responsible for such forward thinking and progress, call to me and influence my writing day in and day out. What authors most call to you? Share your thoughts below!  ♦

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