Whose Brain Would You Pick If You Had the Chance?

Every week we ask the Confabulators to answer a question that will enlighten or illuminate the darker corners of their brains. We force them to think about things they might not otherwise and sometimes we get some really interesting answers. This week’s question is one that usually comes up over drinks or late in the evening at a party where a group of writers are hanging out. Read on for some insights.

Kevin Wohler

I nearly freeze up at the idea of getting advice from any of my writing idols. I like the idea of poking through someone’s brain for insights without the vulnerability of asking them to read my work. It’s the stalker in me, I suppose. While I would love to pick the brains of Stephen King or Ray Bradbury, I feel that I’ve done that to some extent, by reading their books (On Writing and Zen in The Art of Writing, respectively). But I would love to have access to the part of their brains where they keep story ideas so I could steal them.

Sara Lundberg:

Am I allowed to choose a fellow Confabulator? I’d have to pick R.L. Naquin for this one. Just give me five minutes in her brain, and I’d be set life with story ideas. I’d love to see the world from her perspective. She tells us it’s a scary place in there, and that we might not survive a minute, let alone five. Besides, if I am totally honest, I do plan on picking her brain quite thoroughly once I’m ready to query a novel; her success has been an inspiration to all of us!

Jack Campbell, Jr.:

Ray Bradbury. His book Zen in the Art of Writing was a huge influence on my love of writing. He is perhaps my favorite author, and is one of the living legends of letters. The guy is 91 and has been writing since age 12. I can only imagine the value of his insight.

Larry Jenkins:

I’d like to spend about a day hanging out with Christopher Moore.  I want to know if he is as goofy in person as he seems in his writing.  Is he funny in real life, or is he just an asshole?  There’s a fine line, and I’d like to know how well he walks it.  I’d also be curious to see if he’s as OCD about his writing process as other authors appear to be.

Jason Arnett:

I think I’d want to have a storyteller’s dinner party and invite the authors who have influenced me the most, who have affected me the most and then just listen to the conversation. Absorbing by osmosis their genius, their points of view and observe their interactions and reactions to one another. If I had to pick one person at the party to talk storytelling with, it might be China Mieville.

Ted Boone:

John Scalzi. He’s prolific, his stories are clever and funny and exciting, and he seems to know everyone that’s anyone in the industry.

Muriel Green:

I would love to hang out with Ursula K. LeGuinn. She has a chapter in How to Become a Famous Writer Before You’re Dead that stands head and shoulders above other ‘how to write’ articles I’ve read.

R.L. Naquin:

Piers Anthony. He’s prolific, helpful to writers, engages with his fans, and yet is a grumpy old ogre who lives deep in the woods on a private tree farm in Florida. He’s a strange mixture. I’d love to find out what he’s really like.

Cafe Management is run by the administration of The Confabulator Cafe. We keep things running smoothly, post stories by guest authors, and manage other boring back-end tasks.


  • R.L. Naquin says:

    Sara, that was really sweet. You’re welcome in here any time. It’s crowded, but I’ll kick somebody out to make room for you.

  • Ted Boone says:

    Sara picks Rachels’ brain instead of mine?!? That’s it, you’re off my Christmas card list, missy!

  • Haha, thanks Rachel! I’ll save up some vacation time :P And Ted, I got to pick your brain for, what, five years? Anyways, we could only choose one author. Who’s to say you weren’t a close second? :) I’d say all of my fellow Confabulators are tied for an extremely close second place. It’s so awesome to have the Cafe so I get the chance to see inside all of your brains!

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