Behind the Moments: My Influences

In honor of  the three months since A Moment’s Worth came out, for the month of October, I shall be doing a series where I reveal some background history of the novel each week.  I might include some content that may contain spoilers, so be careful when reading if you haven’t already read the book yet.  I hope you enjoy.

I have a style.  I’m very aware of that.  I’m also adept at coming up with original, creative ideas when it comes to storytelling.  I have not doubt about that.  However, like any creative person, I have my share of people whom I look to for inspiration and such; whose ideas I look into consideration and then develop it into something of my own.  For that matter, today I want to discuss who my three influences were when it came to writing A Moment’s Worth.

David Mitchell

I’ve mentioned this guy on a number of occasions throughout my blog, but haven’t really gone in depth as to who this man is.  David Mitchell is an English author whose work has been widely read and praised all over the world.  His books include Ghostwritten, number9dream, Cloud Atlas, Black Swan Green, The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet, and the recently released The Bone Clocks.

Mitchell has a unique style of switching up voices, settings, tones and circumstances more than once in his novels, and his characters constantly cross paths with each other, even if it’s not within the same novel and even if it’s not always as direct as need be.  For instance, SPOILERS for those who haven’t read his books at all/yet, there’s a main character in The Bones Clocks who works for the same magazine as a main character in Cloud Atlas.  There’s a certain magic to his novels that I like, and I was intrigued by that, along with the clever interconnections amongst the characters as I read his novels during the first few months of writing my novel.

I think that’s what especially intrigued me about his work, is that he has knack for his characters crossing paths with each other again and again.  I knew already that I was going to be writing a book that had a number of interconnections throughout it, but beforehand, I didn’t really know if such works existed aside from Thornton Wilder’s work.  Reading Mitchell’s work really put that into perspective for me, and I’m forever grateful for having read his books while writing A Moment’s Worth.

Here’s an interview with Mitchell regarding his novel, Cloud Atlas, being adapted for film:

Tim Kring

I don’t think I’ve mentioned this guy as nearly of enough times as Mitchell in the past on his blog, but I assure you that he’s equally as important.  Tim Kring is an American screenwriter and television producer.  For those of my generation, he’s most notably known for his popular sci-fi series, “Heroes.”

Let it be known that I never watched “Heroes” during its heyday.  In fact, the first time I watched “Heroes” was about a year ago.  How I first learned about Kring was through a short-lived series that air on FOX called “Touch;” a thriller series starring Kiefer Sutherland whose character’s mute son proves himself to predict future events through the aid of numbers.  A lot of what his son predicts are the interconnectivity amongst the human race, in ways the audience would never expect.

“Heroes” touched upon this theme too- what with its large ensemble cast- but this was the primary focus for “Touch.”  It was this series that got me inspired as to which direction I wanted to take my novel with.  However, when compared to both Kring’s television work and Mitchell’s novels, my scenarios are not at all like their stories.  As much as their thriller-esque inducing stories are addicting, it’s just not my style.  I wanted to create something completely different, but with plot maneuvers and structures that they’re adept to using.

This is the trailer for his show, “Touch”:

Wong Fu Productions

Last but not least are the nice guys of Wong Fu Productions; an American production company based in Los Angeles.  They – as in Wesley Chan, Phil Wang, and Ted Fu – are well known on the Internet for their short films, comedy sketches, and music videos they post onto YouTube.  They’ve been making videos together since meeting while attending UC San Diego, and are currently in post-production for their first feature-length film.

I’ve been watching their videos for almost four years now, and I believe I’m drawn to their content for similar reasons as other people are; for their diverse casts, for the stories that accurately portray what it’s like to be someone my age, their philosophical elements that are incorporated into some of their more deeper stories, their occasional yet clever head nods to pop culture, and more.  You can’t really get any of that from regular media nowadays.  I have a great deal of respect for all of that from them.

A lot of the chapters in my book are often centered around interactions between two characters at a time, and Wong Fu definitely served as a guide in making that believable and legit.  They were definitely handy when it came to me writing about relationships- which is something I’m normally not the best at.  Their “One Days: HK” series were also a helpful aid in creating “what if” circumstances, especially in the time and setting of an otherwise ordinary day.  I’m grateful for them for helping me develop my voice in that capacity.

This is the latest short in their “One Days: HK” series:

A Moment’s Worth would not be what it be had I not looked to these creative people for inspiration.  If any of them ever read this, I just hope they know how grateful I am to have them to look to, speaking as someone who’s constantly developing their voice.

A Moment’s Worth is now available through the following venues: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Smashwords, iTunesPlease leave a review if you can, for my goal is to get a total of at least 20 reviews on all venues (so far, I’ve gotten 5 reviews so I’m already a quarter of a way to my goal).

Check out its Goodreads page, which includes two trivia quizzes for all who’ve completed reading it already.



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