Tuesday, November 04, 2014

Stephen King

Ran across a couple of Stephen King interviews that I thought I would share.  He's one of my favorite writers, but I don't feel in the minority as he has many gentle readers.  The first thing I read by King was his Green Mile.  If you've been a fan of his for some time, you're probably thinking, you're late to the game, and you're right, but better late than never.  But if your a fan of his work, you'll also remember that the Green Mile first came out in little booklets, six in total (if my mind remembers correctly) that serialized the novel.  I think he did it that way as an experiment, I believe, going back to Charles Dickens or Conan Doyle, and the way some writers in the past used to publish books back in the day.  At least that's how I remember it, set of the Green Mile is packed away upstairs. 

But also during this, King was running a contest where he'd ask a question about something in the story, and whoever answered it correctly in so may words or less, would get a signed copy of the manuscript of the book.  At any rate, the book was just about the right size to sneak into my work grip bag (as we were not supposed to read while on duty, unless it was the rule book or something pertaining specifically about our job--a really dumb rule, in my opinion, but hey, I just worked there).  So during down time at work, and sometimes at home, I could read the slim volumes and it worked pretty well in that format.  At any rate, I'd also enter the contest just for grins because I thought it would be totally cool to get a signed manuscript too.  Small things in life are the best.  Well, I actually won one.  It was near the end of the series, I think around book five.  I had entered as the previous books were published, but it wasn't until later that I got a letter in the mail, saying I won.  It was one of those red letter days.

At any rate, I think I read The Girl That Love Tom Gordon next, and then, I got his non-fiction book, On Writing one Christmas.  I was pretty much a fan by then.  I started his The Dark Tower series, but haven't finished it.  A lot of people seem to think most of the movies made from his books are failures, but if you think about it, at some point in time, directors got better at making them.  I'd say, nearly half of them are done pretty well, depending on your taste. 

For me, the ones I've enjoyed have been:  Carrie, The Shining, Stand By Me, The Dead Zone, Cujo (that one gave me nightmares for some odd reason), The Green Mile,  Salem's Lot and The Stand  (TV series),  Misery, The Shawshank Redemption, Dolores Clairborne, Hearts in Atlantis, 1408, and The Mist.  There are a few others not quite as good, and are a bit cheesy around the edges, but I like them depending on my mood, like: Silver Bullet, Pet Cemetery, The Running Man, Graveyard Shift, Christine, Dreamcatcher, and a few others.

At any rate, I ran across these interviews, and thought I'd share.  The first is more recent from a Rolling Stone interview.   

The second is an interview conducted by another writer I like, Neil Gaiman interviews Stephen King.

The third is a podcast, which I heard last week from Fresh Air, wherein host Terry Gross interviews King.  It was a re-broadcast, but I was instantly pulled into the interview.  She interviewed him around the time he was releasing his pulpy novel, Joyland.  It was pretty insightful.

Well, Halloween has come and gone.  I enjoy that holiday.  Over the weekend I had a full blown allergy attack, probably from working outside, cleaning gutters, and blowing leaves with the leaf blower.  It seems during the fall I have the same problems with sneezing and a runny nose.  It's very much like a cold, but it's just allergies.  I load up on Claritin or Zyrtec, and do my NeilMed Sinus Rinse thingy, or some other over the counter remedy, and make due.  And so it goes.


At 5:33 AM, Blogger Richard Bellush said...

I'm not the biggest of Stephen King fans, but I do like some of his books including Carrie (when it first came out) and, more recently, Joyland and Under the Dome. I didn't watch the TV adaptation. You are right, though, that a few films and series did OK by the books.

One of King's favorite authors by the way, is horror author Jack Ketchum, who writes really disturbing stuff really well. King often writes blurbs for his books. He too has a spotty record of film adaptations. The Girl Next Door (not the comedy of the same title) is probably the most successful.

At 9:38 AM, Blogger El Vox said...

I haven't kept up with Under The Dome. Supposedly it was modeled after Lost from what I had read. King enjoyed that TV series, however, I didn't enough to keep up with it or to rent the DVDs.
It just seemed to keep unraveling mystery upon mystery, without enough payoff for me. I haven't read Under the Dome or Joyland either. Joyland appeals to me more, maybe it's the cover. Though I have to admit, I'm curious as to how King winds down the Dome storyline.

I saw The Girl Next Door and it was a bit too brutal for my taste. I think it entered the torture porn realm a bit to much for me. Which might seem odd as I did enjoy Hostel and Saw.

I miss the atmosphere, the suspense. I re-watched The Haunting over Halloween, now that had a pretty good wind-up. Heck, Night of the Demon is wonderful too. I re-watched Psycho too, now that's a good horror movie. I love stuff like that, but I appreciate your suggestion. I'd imagine his books are better and not to be judged by the films.


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