If you're on Facebook, you've probably seen the "List 10 Influential Books" meme going around. The official "Rules" of the meme are to list 10 books that have stuck with you or influenced you, without taking a whole lot of time to think about it or worry about them being the "right" books. These aren't supposed to be the 10 best works of lit-ruh-chur ever put to paper. They're the ones that have profoundly affected the listmaker individually.
Like Jason Sizemore, I thought this deserved more than a Facebook status, so here goes (alpha by author):
A Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
To Each Their Darkness by Gary A. Braunbeck
A Pocket Guide to Correct Punctuation by Robert Brittain
Pebbles and Bamm-Bamm: Who Put the Witch on Our Roof by Horace J. Elias
Uncle John’s Bathroom Reader by John Javna
Island of the Blue Dolphins by Scott O’Dell
The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint Exupéry
Possessing the Secret of Joy by Alice Walker
Plow the Bones by Douglas F. Warrick
Daddy Long Legs by Jean Webster
Honorable Mention goes to the 1991 edition of the World Book Encyclopedia
I was going to make this list out with a blanket “No books by people I know” rule, but any list of books that have stuck with me would not be complete without To Each Their Darkness. And as awkward as putting a book by a friend on the list is, having a book I've worked on is even more awkward, but equally necessary for the truth of the meme.
I was also going to explain why each of these books is in my Top 10, but I prefer leaving a little mystery.