Who Was Your Greatest Influence and Why?

little me

I had to write on my Goodreads’ profile page who my greatest influence as a writer was and only one person owns that title—my 5th grade teacher, Mrs. Topitzes.

My family and I lived in Milwaukee, Wisconsin during that time and we moved away after my 6th grade year which was over thirty years ago.  I just texted my brother to verify the spelling of her last name and I floored him because he was just thinking about her last week!  Apparently she made an everlasting impression on the both of us.

Mrs. Topitzes told me that I was a great writer, and I owned her words throughout my life.  I was a shy, awkward kid, so her words gave me a purpose and direction and writing has been my best companion ever since.  Thank you, Mrs. Topitzes, for giving me my voice.

Our words have the power to change the course of a life.  Was it a teacher or someone else who changed yours and which direction did your compass point?

I would love to hear your comments and examples of how the power of words influenced your direction.

(Proverbs 12:14) “From the fruit of their lips people are filled with good things, and the work of their hands brings them reward.”



4 thoughts on “Who Was Your Greatest Influence and Why?

  1. I think C.S. Lewis and Viktor Frankl had the greatest influence on my life. I was angry at life and God. I was angry about suffering – my own and the millions of others.

    The book, “The Problem of Pain,” (Lewis), and “Man’s Search for Meaning,” (Frankl), helped me understand suffering.

    1. What a gift. It is impressive that in the midst of your anger, you still sought out wisdom to help you understand. Thank you for sharing these books. I haven’t heard of them, and they sound like a great resource! It’s been my greatest struggle to praise during the pain. I tend to hunker down in my cave and not come out until it passes. God has been tenderly teaching my a better way. I will check these out. Thank you so much!

  2. I think my writing instincts were verified when I took World Lit in High School. I can still feel the effect of all those stories from around the globe but mostly Europe, U.S. The Diary of Samuel Pepys (U.K.) stands out as after I read it I realized that was how I dealt with life, I felt such a kinship with his writing style, even enjoyed his personal observances. Writing memories are important. Thanks for sharing!

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