These are the “most influential” writers of the year.

Emily Temple

April 18, 2024, 1:45pm

This week, TIME magazine published its annual list of the 100 Most Influential People of the year. Usually, when this list comes out, I complain (to the universe, I guess) that there aren’t enough novelists (“enough” meaning “more than one”) on it. Last year, though, there were four, which was a nice surprise. This year, we’ve regressed to two—along with a few more people who could be described as “literary-adjacent.” Below, you’ll find the most influential writers of the year, according to TIME, along with their citations. What do you think—did they get it right?


Lauren Groff

“Her novels would have been enough. The Vaster Wilds, Matrix, Fates and Furies—flights of imagination and dives into history that keep readers turning pages late into the night. Her collection Florida (my personal favorite) won the Story Prize. But Lauren Groff is more than a great writer, she’s also a great citizen, channeling her belief that everyone should be free to read the books they choose into The Lynx, her new bookstore in Gainesville, Fla. When I heard the news, I wanted to stop her. I wanted to praise her. I wanted to tell her there will be days that being both a writer and a bookstore owner will feel like one job too many. Just ask Louise Erdrich, Emma Straub, Judy Blume, Jeff Kinney. Ask me. But the joy of putting the right book into a customer’s hands will make up for everything. Once again, Lauren Groff is doing spectacular work.” –Ann Patchett

James McBride

As a kid, you dream about meeting a great novelist. You imagine them as kind, noble, wise, omniscient. When I met James McBride, I felt like I’d had coffee with a hysterically funny 21st century Leo Tolstoy.

James has all the qualities one would expect. With The Color of Water, The Good Lord Bird, Kill ’Em and Leave, Deacon King Kong, and now The Heaven & Earth Grocery Store, his excellence in the art of storytelling defies gravity. He writes about deep American wounds with love, rage, and a sense of wit that flies like a falcon in large leaping circles, riding the invisible winds of history.

In creating the limited series The Good Lord Bird, I learned that James is also the kind of friend you dream of making. When things get rough, he never loses his sense of humor, his wisdom, and his powerful ability to communicate.

If James is one of the most influential artists in America, then there is great hope for America. –Ethan Hawke


Dua Lipa, who may not be a writer, but is at least a big reader; Jenny Holzer, a text-based visual artist; Elliot Page, bestselling memoirist (among other things); Hayao Miyazaki, who started in manga; Professor Suzanne Simard, author of Finding the Mother Tree; Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Connie Walker.

Source link

About The Author

Scroll to Top