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Alpha Echo
11-19-2008, 07:49 AM
I am sure a thread like this is somewhere, buried deep within AW. But I'm starting a new one.

If you had to choose one author that is your idol, one author whose work you read and wish you could only be half as good, who would it be?

For me, at the moment at least, it would be Jodi Piccult.

I've read several of her books, and each time I read a new one, I am in awe of the beauty of her words. For me, at least, she has way of making a poetry out of the novel. And her understanding of the complexity and beauty of human relationships...amazing.

Who is your writing idol?

Barb D
11-19-2008, 08:04 AM
Connie Willis. Except that I would make my endings at least somewhat happier.

maxmordon
11-19-2008, 08:06 AM
Jorge Luis Borges

Marian Perera
11-19-2008, 08:09 AM
George R. R. Martin, except with less gore and more science.

dmytryp
11-19-2008, 01:03 PM
George R. R. Martin, except with less gore and more science.
Seconded with less time between installments

triceretops
11-19-2008, 01:24 PM
I have so many, but my main inspiration has been, and will probably always be, Poul Anderson, for his style and turn of phrase with either fantasy or science fiction.

Tri

aboyd
11-19-2008, 01:50 PM
Robert Wrigley.

caromora
11-19-2008, 02:11 PM
Neil Gaiman.

Clio
11-19-2008, 02:31 PM
Mary Renault.

Alpha Echo
11-19-2008, 04:00 PM
Wow, so cool. I've never even heard of some of these authors. I'm going to have to look them up.

Thanks!

whiterose
11-19-2008, 04:01 PM
C.S. Lewis.

crimsonnyx
11-19-2008, 04:21 PM
Definitely Christine Feehan. Go Weres and Vampyres! ( and yes I like spelling it like that...)

sheadakota
11-19-2008, 04:50 PM
Robert Crias, Robert Connelly, Rick Riordan

KTC
11-19-2008, 04:53 PM
Michael Chabon, JD Salinger.

vixey
11-19-2008, 04:57 PM
For poetic prose - Anita Shreve

Vincent
11-19-2008, 04:58 PM
Tad Williams or Stephen King.

scarletpeaches
11-19-2008, 05:00 PM
Wally Lamb, for the way he crosses gender and really gets inside a woman's head like no other male author I know. (Yes, I'm female, but I can still admire that. In fact, as a woman I'm probably in a better position to know how right he has it)!

Also Kazuo Ishiguro. His books are often short, but always elegant. So terribly, terribly British even though the author was born in Japan.

Alpha Echo
11-19-2008, 05:02 PM
Wally Lamb, for the way he crosses gender and really gets inside a woman's head like no other male author I know. (Yes, I'm female, but I can still admire that. In fact, as a woman I'm probably in a better position to know how right he has it)!



I have heard that he is really a great author. I just ordered his newest book.

scarletpeaches
11-19-2008, 05:09 PM
New Wally Lamb book! Oh, I hope it's out in the UK; I adore him.

selkn.asrai
11-19-2008, 05:39 PM
New Wally Lamb book! Oh, I hope it's out in the UK; I adore him.

Yeah, it's called The Hour I First Believed, and it's got a candle burning at both ends on the cover. I've never read his work, but I've talked to people who had him as a professor, and my mother loves his work, too. I want to check it out, though.

Anyway, my idols are F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ian McEwan and Charles Frazier. I'm always left aghast at the work they've done/they do. It's really difficult to pick one out of the three.

Alpha Echo
11-19-2008, 05:50 PM
Isn't it depressing sometimes, for those of us unagented and unpublished, to read such amazing work? It is for me anyway. I mean, I sit back in awe and wonder how I even ever thought I stand a chance. Compared to some of these authors....my writing is child's play. Worse, even.

scarletpeaches
11-19-2008, 06:12 PM
For a moment or two I feel depressed and then I do my best to feel inspired.

What's the alternative? Realising I'll never write like Wally Lamb and giving up?

Nah. I'd prefer to believe I could write as well as him some day and work towards that. The alternative - despair - is unthinkable.

I remember reading I Know This Much is True, turning the last page, tears streaming down my face and thinking, "Wow. Just...wow."

Then, "I wish I'd written that."

Then, "I could never write something like that."

Then, "But I'm gonna try, dammit."

Alpha Echo
11-19-2008, 06:15 PM
Yeah, you are right of course. And obviously, I haven't given up or I wouldn't still be writing. And in fact, there are times I am very confident that I WILL be published one day. I go back and forth. I'm just saying that sometimes, it's a bit discouraging.

Soccer Mom
11-19-2008, 06:25 PM
I want to be Elizabeth Peters/Barbara Micheals or Marian Chesney when I grow up.

Jenifer
11-19-2008, 06:39 PM
Michael Crichton and Stephen King.

Darzian
11-19-2008, 06:46 PM
George R. R. Martin, except with less gore and more science.

Definitely. MUCH less gore. But I must say that Book 4 left me quite disappointed.

Clio
11-19-2008, 07:40 PM
Also Kazuo Ishiguro. His books are often short, but always elegant. So terribly, terribly British even though the author was born in Japan.

He is incredible, isn't he? The Remains of the Day has got to be one of the greatest feats of purely 'English' writing I've ever had the pleasure to read.

mrockwell
11-19-2008, 10:09 PM
Guy Gavriel Kay. He's who I want to be when I grow up as a writer. ;)

-- Marcy

Polenth
11-19-2008, 10:14 PM
Dr. Seuss

williemeikle
11-19-2008, 10:16 PM
Stephen King for horror
Raymond Chandler or Dashiell Hammett for crime
Michael Moorcock for heroic fantasy
Alistair MacLean for Thrillers
Charlie Stross for SF
Tim Powers for general weirdness and zombie pirates

CaroGirl
11-19-2008, 10:18 PM
Carol Shields and Margaret Atwood. So very different, I know. One gentle and unpretentious--yet brilliant, the other an aggressive feminist who wears pretention like a comfortable overcoat--yet brilliant.

I also love Ishiguro and Seuss. Brilliant!

ascribe
11-19-2008, 11:26 PM
Sebastian Faulks

scarletpeaches
11-19-2008, 11:28 PM
Sebastian Faulks

He refuses to sign autographs in case people sell them.

"Why should I put money in your pocket?"

Uh...because we put money in yours, Sebastian, you arrogant c**k.

Memnon624
11-19-2008, 11:30 PM
Robert E. Howard, Harold Lamb, and Mary Renault.

ascribe
11-19-2008, 11:36 PM
He refuses to sign autographs in case people sell them.

"Why should I put money in your pocket?"

Uh...because we put money in yours, Sebastian, you arrogant c**k.


I'm only going on writing style. Don't know the man, never likely to, but I do like his style.

kristie911
11-19-2008, 11:37 PM
Stephen King.

Or, for sheer volume of stuff people love to read, Nora Roberts. :)

scarletpeaches
11-19-2008, 11:37 PM
I'm only going on writing style. Don't know the man, never likely to, but I do like his style.

True.

In fact I freely admit to loving Birdsong with a passion. Love it, love it, love it.

Shadow_Ferret
11-19-2008, 11:38 PM
My top two authors are Robert E. Howard and Edgar Rice Burroughs. Those are the two who's books influenced me to write. Prior to discovering them I had no interest in reading and certainly none in writing. After finishing a book by each (and I can't recall who I read first or second) I immediately started clacking away at the typewriter and wrote my first POS story. It's been followed by many POS stories since.

josephwise
11-19-2008, 11:42 PM
I fear Thomas Pynchon, above all others.

No matter how good I get at this, I'll never be able to match what he's been able to do.

Cybernaught
11-20-2008, 01:02 AM
The Almighty William Gibson. :Hail:

scope
11-20-2008, 01:34 AM
Not so much my idols, but of current authors I would like to be able to write like Frank McCourt, Mark Haddon, and Mitch Albom

Adam Hammonds
11-20-2008, 03:22 AM
Beckett in the fifties.
Calvino in his forties.
Saramago now.

ChaosTitan
11-20-2008, 05:22 AM
Joss Whedon. Only with novels, instead of TV shows. :D

MelodyO
11-20-2008, 05:39 AM
Isn't it depressing sometimes, for those of us unagented and unpublished, to read such amazing work? It is for me anyway. I mean, I sit back in awe and wonder how I even ever thought I stand a chance. Compared to some of these authors....my writing is child's play. Worse, even.

There's nothing quite like a steak dinner...but people love hamburgers, too. No matter what we write, there's an audience hungering for it, and that's what makes the bookstore so interesting. :0)

WittyWordsmith
11-20-2008, 08:27 AM
Frank E Peretti, Flannery O'Connor, and I must agree with the votes for Wally Lamb (I made my husband read She's Come Undone) and Jodi Picoult.

JennaGlatzer
11-20-2008, 08:50 AM
Haggis.

Snowstorm
11-20-2008, 09:03 AM
C. J. Box. He has the most potent first line in his novels, and he "goes there" when you'd swear, nah, he wouldn't go there. When I'm done, I'm worn out from the tension. His Joe Pickett series makes me hyperventilate when the book ends until the next book comes out.

rugcat
11-20-2008, 09:47 AM
Christopher Isherwood, literary, John D. MacDonald, genre.

katiemac
11-20-2008, 12:12 PM
Joss Whedon gets another vote. ;)

I know mentioning Rowling is cliche, but I love her ability reveal details piece by piece in the most minute, unoffensive way. Maybe she isn't the greatest writer, but she knows how to tell her story. It's like one big puzzle.

Now for writing style alone, another vote for Michael Chabon.

Exir
11-20-2008, 01:30 PM
JK Rowling. Harry Potter is a nightmare for writers -- all those character relationships and plot points and details and clues and tangled plot points (did I mention that?) to keep track of.... yet she was able to do it.

Markus Zusak. His The Book Thief is one of the very best books I have read.

Alpha Echo
11-20-2008, 03:43 PM
JK Rowling. Harry Potter is a nightmare for writers -- all those character relationships and plot points and details and clues and tangled plot points (did I mention that?) to keep track of.... yet she was able to do it.



I still haven't read Harry Potter, but only because I'm just not in to that genre. I've tried reading one or two books like that, kinda scifi, and I just can't get past the first two pages. I don't know. I read a lot of other stuff...just not that stuff. But I can appreciate all the things you mentioned that JK Rowling does in those books, just as I appreciate the sheer imagination for those that are successful with scifi. Creating an entire world out of nothing...awesome.

tehuti88
11-20-2008, 06:52 PM
It's weird...I didn't answer this the other day as I wished to mull it over, but I honestly think I don't have a writing idol. :/ There are people whose work I admire, but more often it's for the subject matter or the way they told the story themselves...it doesn't mean I want to write like them. More like, I wish I could write something that would inspire somebody the way their works inspired me.

In the latter case, Basil Johnston's work really inspired me a lot to write what I currently write. His style isn't terribly eloquent or fantastic or anything; in fact, in his most recent book I found some atrocious errors/typos. But he really inspired me in terms of subject matter and keeping old stories alive, and I would love to do that for somebody else.

There are other books/writers I enjoy but the reason is the same--it isn't that I want to write in their style, I just want to awe others the way they awed me.

Alpha Echo
11-20-2008, 06:59 PM
I get what you're saying tehuti. It isn't like I want to sound like Jodi Piccult when I write. I don't want people to read my work and say "wow, this sounds like Jodi Piccult." But I think the way she manipulates the English launguage is beautiful, even when she's writing about something horrible. I want to do that too.

Tasmin21
11-20-2008, 07:02 PM
I want to be Jim Butcher when I grow up.

AceTachyon
11-20-2008, 10:32 PM
Can it be a mishmash?

Jim Butcher/Greg Rucka/Joss Whedon/Lawrence Block/Robert B. Parker/Elizabeth Moon

Alpha Echo
11-20-2008, 11:00 PM
Can it be a mishmash?



Of course. :)

Word Jedi
11-21-2008, 03:47 AM
It's amazing sometimes how such a simple question can provoke so much thought.

I'd have to say Dean Koontz.

Ardellis
11-23-2008, 10:24 PM
Elizabeth Bear. Especially her fantasy novels. She creates wonderfully broken people and puts them into mindbogglingly vivid worlds, and she's not afraid to use the occasional big word if it truly is the right one for the job.

Bernard Cornwell. I've learned more about the early 19th century reading his Sharpe books than I ever wanted to know, but it's never been anything other than fascinating. Plus, his characters are just plain fun.

John Farley
11-25-2008, 12:07 AM
as a wannabe journalist and self-proclaimed functional alcoholic, i'd have to say that hunter s. thompson ranks up there as my biggest influence. certainly his mythic lifestyle is alluring, but his features were just spot on, solid journalism. he could get into the seedy underbelly of society and sniff out injustice, and he had fun with it.

blacbird
11-25-2008, 12:41 AM
Anyone who can get anything published is light-years ahead of me, and immensely admired.

caw

Manny
11-25-2008, 02:51 AM
Perhaps odd choices, and maybe relatively unknown as writers outside the UK: Jeremy Clarkson and AA Gill get my vote!

Ken
11-25-2008, 03:04 AM
...several members on this site.
Nice folk, too :-)

MatchmakerJane
11-25-2008, 06:15 PM
It's funny I believed that no one wrote the way I did until a friend called me and said "I just read this book and this chick sounds just like you!"

Now I am deeply obsessed with Jen Lancaster. Our styles are similar but there are enough differences. I just respect her willingness to make herself look bad in order to be funny. I can only hope that readers find my books half as funny as hers.

Dave.C.Robinson
11-26-2008, 03:31 AM
Robert E. Howard for storytelling, Pat Conroy for language.

moderan
11-26-2008, 03:52 AM
Roger Zelazny. If I could write something half as good as "A Rose For Ecclesiastes" I could die happy.

jessicaorr
11-26-2008, 04:06 AM
I love so many writers, it's hard to chose an idol. I love Anne Fadiman's style, Gaiman's plots, Atwood's descriptions and everything about F. Scot Fitzgerald.

dgiharris
11-26-2008, 04:10 AM
Well, I'd have to say the Masters: Assimov, Clark, Heinlein...

In terms of some more modern writers:

Anne Rice. Her ability to dive into the soul of a character and her scene descriptions were such that images beamed from the book, lanced into my eyeball, and seered themselves onto my brain.

C.S. Friedman. Her characterization and storyline in her coldfire trilogy is something I wish to emulate.

King. This may sound really arrogant on my part, but I don't consider King to be the best of the best. However, there is somethign about his writing that is incredibly 'readable'. It is effortless, some kind a magical spell he weaves that can make hours just pass by as if they were seconds. And god damn it I don't know why. Can't place my finger on just exactly how he does what he does. When I sit back and look at his words, they strike me as good but not 'wow'. And then, 4 hours flies by, I look at my clock, and it is 1am and i have to go to work in the morning. (of course, he is worlds above my ability)

Mel...

Judg
11-26-2008, 04:36 AM
No way I can stick to just one.

Chaim Potok
John LeCarré
Ursula LeGuin
Guy Gavriel Kay
Tracy Groot

That will do for starters. But I could name a few more.

triceretops
11-26-2008, 07:56 AM
King. This may sound really arrogant on my part, but I don't consider King to be the best of the best. However, there is somethign about his writing that is incredibly 'readable'. It is effortless, some kind a magical spell he weaves that can make hours just pass by as if they were seconds. And god damn it I don't know why. Can't place my finger on just exactly how he does what he does. When I sit back and look at his words, they strike me as good but not 'wow'. And then, 4 hours flies by, I look at my clock, and it is 1am and i have to go to work in the morning. (of course, he is worlds above my ability)

I noticed this too, Mel. There is something so identifiable about his characters sometimes that just hooks me -- they are diverse and unique, with qualms and mannerisms that are humanly acceptible. He can write the ordinary man/woman and make me care. He'll write three pages of narrative, when a paragraph might have done the trick, but damned if I won't follow it to the end.

Tri

Inkyhoof
11-26-2008, 09:01 PM
I get what you're saying tehuti. It isn't like I want to sound like Jodi Piccult when I write. I don't want people to read my work and say "wow, this sounds like Jodi Piccult." But I think the way she manipulates the English launguage is beautiful, even when she's writing about something horrible. I want to do that too.

I totally agree with this opinion on Jodi Picoult, she's phenomenal.

But yeah, same here, I wouldn't want to sound exactly like her, or any other author, for that matter. But I'd love to be able to explore human emotions and minds in as much depth and as realistically as Picoult does.

Apart from her... well, I guess there'd be J.K Rowling; her imagination and ability to intertwine so many plots and sublots is really amazing.

jessicaorr
11-28-2008, 06:58 PM
I love so many writers, it's hard to chose an idol. I love Anne Fadiman's style, Gaiman's plots, Atwood's descriptions and everything about F. Scot Fitzgerald.

Oh and John Gardner too. I loved Grendel. Great monologue, description, setting, layered meaning... great everything!

inkkognito
11-28-2008, 08:19 PM
Ray Bradbury is my idol. I admire his work. I admire the man.

I'll agree with the others about King tho'. Not high literary writing by any means, but it draws me in and I don't want it to end. Not with ALL his books, just some (hate to say it, but I think he did some of his best work while in the throes of his addictions...sorta like Robin Williams being at his best when on coke).

CoriSCapnSkip
03-14-2009, 12:53 PM
Absolutely Ray Bradbury. If I could only emulate his attitude, let alone his talent!

Huaka
03-14-2009, 01:08 PM
Vladimir Nabokov. His prose is just so beautiful. If I could write a quarter as well as he did, man I'd be set for life.

Wayne K
03-14-2009, 05:22 PM
At this point I'm going to go with Brittany Spears. If being a slut and wasting everything you've been given gets you a 14 million dollar publishing deal, I'm rich!!!!

SAhodges
03-14-2009, 05:43 PM
At the risk of sounding cliche, it's JK Rowling for me. Have you guys ever heard or read her Harvard speech?

http://harvardmagazine.com/commencement/the-fringe-benefits-failure-the-importance-imagination

It's very inspirational. I just love her.

Lyra Jean
03-14-2009, 05:46 PM
Ray Bradbury
S.M. Stirling
Laura Ingalls Wilder

MetalDog
03-14-2009, 05:52 PM
Stephen King and Joe Abercrombie for characterisation and general dialogue
Ray Bradbury and Mervyn Peake for description
Raymond Chandler for hilarious similies and snappy one-liners =)

AnonymousWriter
03-15-2009, 12:45 AM
Khaled Hosseini. I adore "The Kite Runner". Not only the storyline, but also the writing style.

tailstrike
03-15-2009, 01:14 AM
Wilbur Smith for me...I have read him since i was 9 and i still cant get enough...Oh and Christian Jacq...

dancingandflying
03-15-2009, 01:25 AM
Markus Zusak.
J.D. Salinger.
Roald Dahl.

d&f.

Kaylee
03-15-2009, 01:43 AM
Laura Ingalls Wilder she was first published when she was 65.

Life is what happens, while you're busy making othere plans. -- John Lennon

C.M.C.
03-15-2009, 01:48 AM
I don't have one.

scarletpeaches
03-15-2009, 01:50 AM
thethinker42. She writes prawn and gets paid for it. (Or at least will do, when PWF is published). :D

Ken
03-15-2009, 01:51 AM
Nikolai Gogol at present.

cherubsmummy
03-15-2009, 03:10 AM
Kate Grenville, without a doubt.

Millicent M'Lady
03-15-2009, 03:26 AM
George Orwell (whose Down and Out in Paris and London gives me hope that I won't always be a skint writer!) and Oscar Wilde, especially his children's stories. If you have children (or even if you don't) and you haven't read his children's stories, do yourself a favour and read them thoroughly. They are incredibly moving.

Also Chuck Palahniuk but I'm finding his books increasingly lacklustre and strangely predictable lately.

CheshireCat
03-15-2009, 04:10 AM
Another vote for Joss.

Also King and Koontz. Alistair MacLean for adventure (though he couldn't write female characters to save his life).

Mix all that together with whatever I've got on my own, and I'd be ...pretty damned happy with the results.

Or very, very confused.

Dirtpoor
03-15-2009, 01:46 PM
I enjoy everything Jackie French (Hitlers Daughter, etc) writes.

Started reading her permaculture articles in the 90's then progressed to self-sufficency books, through childrens/YA and adult fiction: she is a story-telling natural.

Some of her writing advice was (something like): make your writing fat and then put it on a strict diet.

triceretops
03-15-2009, 02:02 PM
I'll add Crichton, Foster and Peter Benchley

Virector
03-15-2009, 11:52 PM
J. K. Rowling. I love the Harry Potter books for their outstanding characters, great character development and at its heart, it's a really, really great story; if I ever turn *that idea* of mine into a book, I would love for it to play out like the Harry Potter series! My other writing idol is Alan Moore-- the man is a genius and the comics he writes are kick-ass!!! He inspires me, and after watching his documentary The Mindscape Of Alan Moore, I realized we share a lot of strikingly similar ideas about art and creativity, so I can relate to him! I have other writers I deeply adore too, but those two stand out in my mind and they are right off the top of my head. :)

ETA: Frank Miller as well!!! Goodness me, I don't know how I forgot to mention him amongst my writing idols-- the man's got style! I'm such a junkie for comic books and graphic novels, and I appreciate that it takes a really special kind of skill to write 'em! ;)

unicornjam
03-17-2009, 03:43 AM
Vladimir Nabokov, William Trevor, Toni Morrison.

soitgoes
03-17-2009, 07:37 PM
Jodi Picoult, Elizabeth Berg
Margaret Laurence, Margaret Atwood, Alice Munro
(last three are Canadian women of letters to which I hope to add my name one day before or after I die, but before would be better)

Toothpaste
03-17-2009, 07:54 PM
Douglas Adams and Shakespeare.

Adam
03-17-2009, 08:24 PM
Joss Whedon. Love that guy! :)

As for novelists, Terry Pratchett and RA Salvatore.

Alpha Echo
03-17-2009, 08:29 PM
I have a new one even though I'd never write his genre - Cody McFadyn.

Wow. Awesome.

Norman D Gutter
03-17-2009, 08:42 PM
For prose, it's Charles Lamb. His writing is of a different era, and so may not measure up to today's standards, but I love his humourous essays of Elia, and his letters are literary gems. I like him most for overcoming the adversities of life and persevering enough to have some things published and make a literary name for himself.

For poetry, my idol is Robert Frost. He makes rhyme and meter, metaphor and imagery appear as effortless as a west-running brook.

Sunnyside
03-17-2009, 09:49 PM
I'm a non-fiction writer, so I feel like I'm being unfaithful to the League if I don't name a great non-fiction writer/biographer . . . but I'm going to breach protocol anyway.

John Steinbeck.

He's got the best ear EVER for how people really talk, and he's always just so goddamned interesting, no matter what he's writing about.

James81
03-17-2009, 10:18 PM
Stephen King has always been my writing idol. But lately I'm starting to realize how "hit or miss" he is. Not everything he churns out is top quality stuff. But he's had a lot of really fantastic books.

My newest writing idol is Wally Lamb. That man knows how to write a 1000 page novel that will keep you glued to it until you are done. And he knows how to turn a phrase too.

semilargeintestine
03-17-2009, 11:09 PM
I love the Harry Potter series, but Rowling isn't one of my idols. I just enjoy the books. I'm not even sure if I have an idol. I love Camus, Tolstoy, Dickens, Chuck Palahniuk, Bret Easton Ellis, and many others. I just read The Anatomist by Bill Hayes, so right now I'm all about him. He's a great non-fiction writer.

Also, I enjoy some of Stephen King's work, some of it I love; however, I think I'm more of a fan of his based on the comments he makes and what he writes in his articles. He's hilarious.

dreamsofnever
03-17-2009, 11:59 PM
In comics, Gail Simone is my idol. First and foremost because her dialogue is excellent, her stories are well-told and her characters are three dimensional. Also, because she saw some things wrong with the depiction of women in comics (via her Women in Refrigerators list) and then later got the chance to write in an industry that was fairly male-dominated and has written some strong, character-driven stories for many of the female superheroes.

And she's just cool.

Porphry
03-18-2009, 05:18 PM
Writing idols, and those that I tend to learn new nifty tricks are not necessarily the same thing. (It also doesn't help that I often tend to just write, and the genre just sort of meanders.)

Idols:

(Prose)
Harlan Ellison
Shirley Jackson
Somerset Maugham
John Hershey

(Poetry)
George Gordon
Ogden Nash
Jack Kerouac

I write dor write like any of them, and I do not try to write like them. (I think the mix would not come out very nicely anyways.) I mean, if you mixed Nash and Kerouac... (okay, I think I heard something alike that might be in a bar once, but the new nonsensical terms didn't rhyme... with any word in the English language for the most part, but that is another story) I am not sure as you can mix Byron with anyone... well, not his verse leastwise.

Jackson with Ellison... could happen I suspect, just not sure how vaguely angry at the world, in a small town full of creepy people, and martians might pen out. I am not even going to fathom a Hershey/Maugham mix, but a Hershey/Ellison mix might come across something like Anthony Burgess or Aldous Huxley.

(okay, I'll stop.)

Po