The Problem with Great Influences

Over the last ten years – and for many years before that, but in this context, ten years – I’ve always dreamed of being a writer.  I’ve done odds and sods along the way, but there’s never been anything big, no matter how much I want it to be there.  It’ll happen, it just hasn’t happened yet.

But also over the last ten years I’ve been influenced by some great writers – and in this case, I’ve been influenced by Aaron Sorkin, the writer of (among others) West Wing, one of my favourite series ever. I’ve also been catching up on his latest series, The Newsroom.

I think Sorkin is one of the best writers in the world, certainly for film/TV drama. He’s been an influence on me for a decade, and I’m still in awe of the way he writes.

But at the same time, I don’t know, he’s an inspiration to me, but I always see myself as being inferior to him. In my head I guess I don’t want to be any old writer, I want to be at Sorkin’s level. And deep inside, I know I likely never will be.

I think I need to get inside my head that I don’t have to be as good as Aaron Sorkin, I just have to be my best. Not the best, my best.

I’m hoping that’ll sink in. We’ll see.

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