Unlikely Inspirations/Heroes (Wile E. Coyote)


Well-Known Member
Jan 14, 2017
Staffordshire, UK
Does anyone have any unlikely inspirations or heroes?

I was reading an old interview with some authors, and Eyre Price was asked why he has a photo of a Wile E. Coyote mug on his website. I enjoyed his response, and it makes complete sense:

E. Price: I’ve always associated with Wile E. Coyote because the Acme safe drops on his head and the Acme rocket skates malfunction, and the son of a bitch just keeps going, and he’s gonna get that roadrunner. And that’s what writing is, right? [Laughter]

Wilson: He probably has insomnia, too. [Laughter]

E. Price: He does! Because all he wants is that roadrunner. I mean, I’m sure there are other options for him. You don’t see other coyotes after that bird. There are plenty of other things to do, but if you want that roadrunner, you’re just gonna keep seeing what Acme has. To me, that’s just an inspiration. You pull yourself out from under the safe and you walk like a spring for a couple yards, and then you magically reform yourself and start over again.

Source: Important Writing Lessons From First-Time Novelists | WritersDigest.com
My novel Muezzinland was inspired in theme by what the royal family was doing to Princess Diana in the mid '90s.
That sounds like a good idea to me. I hadn't thought about doing anything like that until recently - when I read an article by Steven Pressfield about The Legend of Bagger Vance. He took the story and characters from an old Hindu story, and transferred it to the modern world. A charioteer became a golf caddy, and even the name Baggar Vance is from Bhagavan, which is Hindi for Lord.
Ronald Searle, the cartoonist and inventor of St Trinians. Partly because his cartoons are very funny and I like his style of drawing. The films do him a bit of a disservice, I think: he was more like a British Charles Addams that the sort of Sid James character you might expect. I grew up reading his "molesworth" books as a child, and it's only now that I fully appreciate how clever they were. Also, in WW2, he was captured by the Japanese and thrown into a slave labour camp. He secretly drew pictures of conditions in the camp, even though he would have been murdered if they were found. When the camp was liberated, he was found nearly-dead, surrounded by his work. He went on to become one of the great cartoonists. A "triumph of the human spirit" is a bit overused, but I think that qualifies.