“We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.”
-Winston Churchill

Welcome to the fourth part of my #PayItForward series. If you’re a new reader to this series, these are writers who I look up to in some shape or fashion and try to learn from. If you’ve been following this series or any of my writings on this site, I express the warmest gratitude to all of you.

Megha Sood: One of the things that I admire and dare I say envy about Megha’s writing is her astute sense of emotions and psychology and then integrating those observations in the most evocative cocktails of words. Whether her words conjure up euphoria or poignancy, (and sometimes an amalgam), they’re always redolent of something. One of my weaknesses as a writer has always been marrying my conception with appropriate projection. What I think I want to say doesn’t always come out in the same manner. Megha’s writing has mastered that art and I try to soak it up as often as I can. Follow Megha on Twitter @MeghaSood16 and on http://meghasworldsite.wordpress.com.

DeRicki Johnson: Very early on in my writing career, I was asking a fellow writer how to improve my writing. He looked at my tweet, saw that DeRicki had liked and commented on it and told me, “You’re almost there.” He went on to explain that there was a category of select writers on Twitter who hold a certain standard of writing and if anyone of them like or compliment your writing, take it as a sign that the potential is already there. DeRicki falls in that category. One of the things I’ve always loved about DeRicki’s poetry is that it always makes you do a double take and think deep and hard. When reading it, I’ve always found myself reading and re-reading and then having intimate discussions about it with my thoughts. Follow on DeRicki on Twitter @derickijohnson and on http://derickijohnson.wordpress.com.

Roz Levens: Puns, humor, drama, support, etc. If I started listing all of Roz’s strengths both as a writer and as a person, I’d need to write a separate article just on her There are some who excel in in a particular endeavor and you notice them right away. When a person excels in several categories, sometimes it takes a moment before you realize just how good they are because your attention is divided. That’s the case with Roz. She was one of the earliest writers I connected with when I first became a part of the online writing community but it was only when I looked at an accumulation of her writing that her excellence donned on me. An element I’ve learned from Roz is how to take the most exquisite thoughts and express them with such simplicity that resonates with every reader no matter what they’re preferred style of reading is. Follow Roz on Twitter @RozLevens.

Thomas J. Torrington: In the previous three installments of this article, I’ve mentioned some writers that I look at and think, that’s who I want to be like. Thomas falls in that list as well. I felt a kinship with his writing very early on when I read a couple of his pieces and they expressed ideas that I was writing about as well. The difference of course, was that he was doing a far better job of it than I was. That’s when I started treating his writing as a learning tree. One of his greatest strengths, to me, has always been his setting and imagery. The way Thomas sets up a location and his characters is so gripping that once you start reading, you can’t stop. Besides short stories and flash fiction, Thomas also has number of books to his credit, all available on Amazon. Follow Thomas on Twitter @tjtorrington and on http://thomasjtorrington.com.

Barlow Adams: There’s the art of writing literature, (poetry, fiction, creative non-fiction, etc) and writing words of interaction (tweeting, email, DMing, etc). It doesn’t happen very often that the same level of perspicacity crosses over into both areas. There was always a greatness in Barlow’s writing poetry and fiction pieces. What’s amazing is that same wit and same level of intelligence carries over into anything he tweets. Barlow is not just someone who I admire as a writer but as a person too. Both of us have had similar struggles with health issues, both mental and physical. And in spite of all that, there are times when Barlow puts out the wittiest and funniest tweets that I smile at and think, how does he do it? Early on, he was the first writer I interacted with on Twitter that made me think, if nobody else understands my inner struggle, Barlow will. His talent as a writer and courage as a person is a milestone that I can only hope to cross someday. Follow Barlow on Twitter @BarlowAdams.

Is there a writer or an artist in the independent writing community that inspires you? What element of there’s do you admire and why? Is there a writer you think is under the radar and deserves more attention? Share your thoughts and experiences by commenting below on our secure servers.

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