My favorite subjects - as far as writing is concerned - are Lord of the Rings and Thundercats (though I have no stories for the latter posted in this forum). And since Lord of the Rings is what you'll probably see beneath my profile, let me give you my opinion on it. I should probably start off by saying that my favorite characters are Aragorn, Legolas, and Gimli, so any story I write will probably have a healthy dose of them in it. Additionally, I write based on the books, not the movie. I have seen the movie numerous times and I thoroughly enjoy it, but I feel that in writing, I must remain loyal to the original source. As far as my personal opinion on LotR, I view it as the ultimate tale of friendship and loyalty, and I try to keep those themes evident in my stories. I also have a tendency to veer toward hurt/comfort stories, though I avoid focusing entirely on that theme. In my opinion, nothing brings out characters like harsh circumstances involving other characters.
Another thing I should probably mention is that I will occasionally draw heavily from the Silmarillion or Book of Lost Tales for references, but that these references are usually just for story enrichment. If you are unfamiliar with these fascinating works of literature (the Silmarillion, not my fics), you should still be able to read my stories. And if you have never read the original trilogy and wish to avoid spoilers, then I would avoid any of my post-Ring stories, because I try to keep them firmly within the canon and will refer back to events that happen in the books.
One final note before I sign off: I am not an entirely regular updater. I work on my stories obsessively and compulsively, but I do have a life outside the written world and I can't update as often as I'd like to. For this, I apologize in advance and hope you will be patient with me. I honestly try to update quickly, but sometimes it just doesn't work out that way.
Oh, and I saw something on Dwimordene's page that I just had to copy, so my apologies to her but it's a great idea. I thought I'd post some of MY favorite books and my favorite professional authors because it's a great way for me to pay tribute to them. In all honesty, most of them are my biggest inspiration for writing. So let's go.
Needless to say, J.R.R. Tolkien is at the top of this list along with LotR. Next up, I highly recommend Frank Herbert's "Dune." Great political stuff there. Also among my favorites is the Farseer Trilogy by Robin Hobb. Fantasy and political. What could be better? I also like Terry Goodkind's "Wizard's First Rule," Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman's original Dragonlance series as well as the Darksword Trilogy. If you're into Star Trek, I highly recommend Judith and Garfield Reeves-Stevens, particular their books "Federation" and "Prime Directive." Gordon Dickson has a great series starting with a book called "The Dragon and the George." Just about anything by R.A. Salvatore is good and there's also Piers Anthony's Xanth Chronicles. Isaac Asimov's Foundation series is also great. There's also Orson Scott Card and his "Ender's Game," which is a great book. And of course, no reading list would be complete without Douglas Adams and "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy."
Okay, I think that's it, so I'll end this. If you're still reading, you must be bored, so my thanks for your interest. Remember to leave a review if you feel so motivated and please enjoy!