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The world of King (1 Viewer)

enron1982

Senior Member
So, there have probably been like a million and one threads about stephen king on here, but i'm new so i'm going to add one more for discussion purposes. First off, this will probably catch some replies with "fuck stephen king" and "stephen king is a primadonna" and yada yada yada, that's to be expected. I must admit that in the last ten years, i've also been very disappointed with what he's come out with. Not all of it is terrible, I actually thought Lisey's Story was awesome. His writing has been different though. Why do you think that is? I can't put my finger on it, but what's actually different about it? Do you think he's softened? That could be it...Anyway, when i was 6 years old, i lived in Bangor not far from King, and my father took me trick or treating at his house (yes, stephen king hates halloween). He and his fam were sitting outside handing out candy and i got to shake his hand. This would've been circa 1987. I think that handshake may have changed my life. Being six, i didn't exactly know who i was shaking hands with, but i did know that it was stephen king, the writer, but i didn't KNOW. I was six. As i went through grammar school i read more than most kids, and by third grade (i lived in Massachusetts then), i picked up the book IT. I was obsessed by the magic that was King. I can remember picking up old, musty king books off of basement shelves and wondering what kind of treasures they held. He just opened up the world of writing to me, and no matter what he puts out now, he'll always hold a place in me. Naturally, i wanted to write like him. That handshake so long ago probably had more impact than most events in my life, and as i think about it, it's so funny how it didn't seem like a big deal at the time, and now i can look back and actually SEE. I don't really know the point of this thread, i just wanted to say that because i think it's pretty neat. If i were to become famous one day and they asked what first inspired me to write, the reply would simply be, "Stephen King." or maybe "trick-or-treating", i haven't quite worked that out yet. I'm now reading Something Wicked This Way Comes by Bradbury, and it's blowing me away. I haven't really read Bradbury too much for some reason, but it's really like rediscovering that magic that king held with me for so long. Over the past 5 years, i've read some really amazing books, but none of them have gained the attention of the magic that lies within. This is doing it, and it's really quite crazy to read, as i can see such the strong influence that his writing had on King. Reading Bradbury, it seems as though this was his strongest influence; the similarities are compelling (in the dead zone-seller of lightning rods, as in Something Wicked. Some would cry copy, i say homeage). I feel like he's my grandfather in a way. As i said, i just started reading his work, and it's almost eerie to see my roots, how i looked up to and admired king so much the whole time, yet at the same time, i was unknowingly admiring bradbury. It's neat how influences in reading/writing are passed down through generations, and we're all connected in a way. I'm sorry for the rambling, but i'm bored and felt the need. Reply in any way you like. I'll close with my top 3 king books and why.

1. It- I think i described why.
2 Bag of Bones-Not usually a favorite of the masses, but i though this was such a cool book.
3. The Shining-Such an original, inspiring piece of work.

I've also never gotten too much into anybodies short story works, including Kings. I do have Nightmares and Dreamscapes, Skeleton Crew and Everythings Eventual and have read a few stories out of each. What are your favorite recommendable shorts by him? I was thinking about picking up Night Shift, as i hear it's his best collection.

Well, sorry again for the rambling. I began this not knowing where it was going, and there it went. Thanks.
 

RonGreen

Member
His short story collection called (I believe) Everything's Eventual is really worth picking up. Some really worth-reading short stories in there.

I think (I'm assuming) that King hasn't been nearly as good as he use to be over the last decade is the accident. I think that might have played a role. I don't know really.

But I do enjoy his books quite a bit. Although, I have to say it: I enjoy Dean Kootnz a lot more. Intensity, The Husband, and other books are just so awesome.
 

enron1982

Senior Member
I read Intensity and liked the faced-paceness (haha) of it all. I also LOVED Life Expectancy. I started reading Midnight and put it down, as i have with some of his other books. He's a great writer, but it always seemed to me like his ideas are all more or less the same. I can't put my finger on what is the same about them, but as i read them, it's like i'm reading all the same story. I also think that he should take more time, he releases so many books per year (during certain years) that it's ridiculous. I don't know, he gets redundant but to each his own.
 

Rob

Senior Member
I must admit that in the last ten years, i've also been very disappointed with what he's come out with. Not all of it is terrible, I actually thought Lisey's Story was awesome. His writing has been different though. Why do you think that is? I can't put my finger on it, but what's actually different about it? Do you think he's softened? That could be it...
King's writing has changed, he's the first to acknowledge as much, and that's to be expected - he's been writing for a long time. He knows he's lost some fans along the way, and probably gained others. He discusses this in an interview in The Paris Review issue 178, Fall 2006.

Cheers,
Rob
 

Johnnyelvis

Senior Member
I've been one of those fans who has lost his way with King - more so with the end of The Dark Tower than with any of his other later works. Well apart from 'Cell' that one truly did blow monkey chunks.

But hey, he's written loads of books I really do love, he was with me through my rather icky teenage years and he's the reason why I try and write. And you can't say fairer than that.
 
I have only read one of his books, It, and that was.. wow. Scared me half to death.

I'm sure his other books are just as good, but I just haven't had the time/desire to really get into his books.
 
T

Truth-Teller

Because they have no meaning. You find no meaning after your done with his books.
He does not write literature. Even he acknowledges it.
 
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wmd

Senior Member
You read IT in the third grade?

I love King. It goes without saying that he does not write literature.. to continue to make that argument is a waste of breath. Not everything written and enjoyed has to be "literature".

I have found King inspiring as well, and his memoir "On Writing" inspires me each time I read it. I have read it about 5 times.

As said "Everythings Eventual" has some good stuff in it. I liked "Cell" a lot even though others say they didnt find it up to par with his earlier work. I have "Lisey's Story" sitting on my shelf but have not got around to reading it yet. Soon though.

ps... format your posts into paragraphs.. you're killing my eyes. ;)
 

SFeigley

Senior Member
I enjoy his work. If there was one knock I would lay on him it is that I feel sometimes the vulgarity is done in excess and not necessarily warranted. Whether it be in the language or the extremes of some of the actions. This is a minor complaint and I will say has never deterred me from enjoying his work overall.

My favorite three by him would probably be:
It
The Stand
Salems Lot

As far as short stories go, I remember he had one and I believe it was in the "Bachman Books" called the Long Walk. I havent read it in some time, but I remember when I was younger I really enjoyed it.

I only listed 3 above, but I have to at least give honorable mention to the Dark Tower series... it was one of the best series that I have gotten to read.

I'm about to start "On Writing" now for the first time, I truly am looking forward to it.

Anyway, thanks for listening.
 

enron1982

Senior Member
I enjoy his work. If there was one knock I would lay on him it is that I feel sometimes the vulgarity is done in excess and not necessarily warranted. Whether it be in the language or the extremes of some of the actions. This is a minor complaint and I will say has never deterred me from enjoying his work overall.

My favorite three by him would probably be:
It
The Stand
Salems Lot

As far as short stories go, I remember he had one and I believe it was in the "Bachman Books" called the Long Walk. I havent read it in some time, but I remember when I was younger I really enjoyed it.

I only listed 3 above, but I have to at least give honorable mention to the Dark Tower series... it was one of the best series that I have gotten to read.

I'm about to start "On Writing" now for the first time, I truly am looking forward to it.

Anyway, thanks for listening.

The Long Walk can be bought in paperback, freestanding. The Bachman Books have actually been banned because of a story by the name of Rage, which i thought was actually a really good story. I stopped reading the dark tower at the wolves of the calla, i read about 150 pages of it and put it down. what did you think of it? Was it worth the time to finish the series. I was honestly bored with it....
On Writing is amazing, though some would disagree. i highly recommend it, and i just got it on audio too; it's read by stephen king. I actually think that king has softened in the past years, and that he needs to be just as vulgar as he was. its part of what made him so good; it helped with his overall dark tone that he's since lost.
 

SFeigley

Senior Member
The Long Walk can be bought in paperback, freestanding. The Bachman Books have actually been banned because of a story by the name of Rage, which i thought was actually a really good story. I stopped reading the dark tower at the wolves of the calla, i read about 150 pages of it and put it down. what did you think of it? Was it worth the time to finish the series. I was honestly bored with it....
On Writing is amazing, though some would disagree. i highly recommend it, and i just got it on audio too; it's read by stephen king. I actually think that king has softened in the past years, and that he needs to be just as vulgar as he was. its part of what made him so good; it helped with his overall dark tone that he's since lost.

Wow, I didnt know that the Bachman Books had been banned. I'm glad the Long Walk is still available though. It makes me want to go back and read my copy of Rage.

I enjoyed the Dark Tower series. I liked the Wolves of the Calla, but I think it was mostly because it had a huge tie in with one of my favorite novels by him, Salems Lot. I did not care for book 6 all that much, but thought book 7 was done fairly well. Even the ending which most people hated.

I'm exciting to start On Writing, thanks for getting me even more pumped about it!

I havent read much of his recent work, so I cant really make an educated comment about the differences between his old work and his new work. Me personally, I thought the vulgarity was ok when it was within the context of the story. Sometimes you needed it to illustrate how evil a character was, or how bad the situation etc... However, I also thought that occasionally he seemed to just add stuff in there for "color" and I didnt care much for that.

A side note, anyone have any idea what the connection is for him and the name Nick? I have read a lot of his work and I have noticed that countless times, when he has a character named Nick they turn out to be very heroic and end up giving their lives to save others. It may just be conincidence, but I always figured there must have been a person named Nick in his life who had done something very monumental in his eyes.

Never found an answer to that though.
 
K

Kody Boye

Anybody who can't touch on King's meanings in his books aren't paying close enough attention or not looking at the book as a whole. All books have some sort of meaning, it's just that some people don't look at the book as a whole.

I'll post a few examples through the movie forms that probably everybody has seen, just to point it out; it's the same in the books.

Carrie- Don't bully others, because they're always better than you.
Pet Semetary 1 & 2- You can't always live forever, take what you have for granted.
It- Friendship is forever.
Misery- Writing changes some people.
Christine- Greed is bad.

I can't remember if I've watched any others, but the same goes for Carrie and Pet Semetary in the books. Haven't read It, Misery or Christine yet though.

King is one of the author's you have to pay attention to to catch the meanings in the writing.
 

boongee

Senior Member
I've only read three of his books, but I still found what I've read pretty entertaining.

My first was From a Buick 8 - a newer one - and I didn't like it that much. This was back when I first just started to read... only a couple of years ago. The book wasn't that interesting or creepy.

Then about a year ago I picked up Pet Sematary, my favorite of his. It was pretty exciting. I saw the movie relatively recently, which was neat and followed the book quite closely.

Then I went all out and read The Stand. It was decent but for a book that long I don't think it was worth reading. The end was a disaster; completely disappointing.

Oh yeah, when I was like thirteen I was obsessed with the movie IT. I didn't think it was scary, though. Just funny.

and enron, because of your Red Sox avatar, I couldn't help but notice you live pretty closeby
 

SFeigley

Senior Member
The book version of It is infinitely better than the movie version.

To be honest, i'm not sure that infinitely even describes the amount fairly.
 

enron1982

Senior Member
I've only read three of his books, but I still found what I've read pretty entertaining.

My first was From a Buick 8 - a newer one - and I didn't like it that much. This was back when I first just started to read... only a couple of years ago. The book wasn't that interesting or creepy.

Then about a year ago I picked up Pet Sematary, my favorite of his. It was pretty exciting. I saw the movie relatively recently, which was neat and followed the book quite closely.

Then I went all out and read The Stand. It was decent but for a book that long I don't think it was worth reading. The end was a disaster; completely disappointing.

Oh yeah, when I was like thirteen I was obsessed with the movie IT. I didn't think it was scary, though. Just funny.

and enron, because of your Red Sox avatar, I couldn't help but notice you live pretty closeby

Oh yeah? Where abouts in New Hampshire?
 

Raging_Hopeful

Senior Member
I like King's older stuff but haven't even tried to read his newer stuff. My favorites?

It
Misery
Dreamcatcher
Cujo

So excellent. :)
 

enron1982

Senior Member
^^Those def. kick ass. I forgot to add Pet Sematary, which i always forget about, but is probably my favorite next to It. It's weird, because if you go around Bangor, Maine, the street names and the land is exactly the same as in Derry. It's wicked cool. I like Cujo a lot because there's no chapters and it begins with Once upon a time. <That's probably one of the best openings ever if you ask me.....
 

ClancyBoy

Senior Member
The Tommyknockers is the only book I ever went without sleep to finish. I think I read the whole thing in eight hours.
 

enron1982

Senior Member
The Tommyknockers is the only book I ever went without sleep to finish. I think I read the whole thing in eight hours.


Really? haha, that was one of the few King books i never finished. Actually, i only read like 150 pgs of it or something. Maybe i should pick it back up.....
 
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