“A common statement, I know, but the best stimulant for writing is reading. When it’s prose, I’ll turn to rich sentences from Nabokov or F. Scott Fitzgerald. If poetry, I start with the Eastern Europeans (especially Zbigniew Herbert).
In this online exclusive we ask authors to share books, art, music, writing prompts, films—anything and everything—that has inspired them in their writing. We see this as a place for writers to turn to for ideas that will help feed their creative process.
“I am inspired by love, which sounds simplistic and dreamy, but in my case is brutally real. My son, Ronan, is nearly two years old and has Tay-Sachs, a disease that is always fatal and results in a slow regression
“When I’m stuck, I daydream my way back to a place that still holds a great deal of emotion for me, and a ritual that used to take place there, lingering on the objects that vibrate and glow with some hidden, deeper meaning
“Whenever I finish writing a novel, I feel bereft of the characters. I also believe I’ve expended everything I know
“Usually when I need to work something out in a poem or a piece of fiction, I go on a walk.
“This is going to sound pretty awful, but I’m inspired by humiliation. My own, mostly, but also what I see in the world at large.
“I am currently surrounded by diapers, squeaky toys, and crayons scattered at my feet. This is the life of a working writer/mother.
“Inspiration? A sleepless night helps, when my mind has nothing to do but wander.
“I’d like to recommend the great and criminally undersung novelist Wright Morris.
“I’m obsessed with windows. How they organize the world by cutting away most of it. Then let some in.