There are many Stephen King fans out there in the world, and I am but one. He is my hero, my idol, my secret fantasy (well ok, not so secret), and if I ever met him, I would probably die from happiness at his feet. Since this month is National Novel Writing Month, my inner fangirl decided it was the perfect reason to gush over Mr. King.
I’m not going to bore you by discussing King’s vast library of published works–novels, novellas, short stories, nonfiction, screenplays, etcetera. And I won’t go on and on about the millions upon millions of copies sold. Instead, I’m going to talk about some works of his involving authors having a horrorful time.
King penned a number of novels with the protagonist as an author. Like King, some of these authors suffered from addiction to drugs and alcohol. Some had outside forces, supernatural and otherwise, giving them some major drama to deal with that usually fucked them up for quite awhile.
I have a few particular favorites…
Misery – A sweet tale of successful author Paul Sheldon who goes and crashes his car. Luckily–or perhaps unfortunately–Annie Wilkes, an adoring fan of Sheldon’s, rescues him. Annie has issues; she’s a bit of a psycho, and she terrorizes poor Sheldon. Will he survive this crazy woman’s ways?? Read the book.
The Shining - Ahhhh, The Shining. I popped my SK cherry on this novel. Good ole’ alcoholic (ahem, recovering alcoholic) writer Jack Torrence moves to Colorado with his family to take care of the Overlook Hotel. The Hotel is like, super creepy with ghosts and stuff. This particular Hotel has a hankering for a little psychic kid though, who just so happens to be Jack’s son. It prays on Jack’s issues and eventually forces him to get all violent and attack his family. Well, most likely you already know the ending, but I’m not going to spoil it anyway.
Bag of Bones - Author Mike Noonan is suffering from some severe writer’s block after the sudden death of his wife Jo. He packs up his shit and goes out to their old vacation spot to try to work through his writing and his grief. Turns out the place is haunted, but it’s all good because it totally gets rid of that damn block. Noonan has a mystery to solve, but will it drive him insane first? Guess you should read it and find out.
Everything’s Eventual – In “1408,” Mike Enslin has some issues after the death of his brother. He writes books about haunted places that he’s not proud of but it pays and stumbles across the Dolphin Hotel. This Hotel has some serious bad mojo in room 1408 and Enslin just has to stay there. This short story really deeply affected me in so many ways. The crooked picture frames, that terrible color. The movie is great, but really you should check out the short story. Hell, this collection is one of my favorites!
Full Dark, No Stars – And finally, we have “Big Driver.” Tess is a mystery writer on her way back from a reading. She takes a different way home than normal and is abducted, raped, and left for dead. Instead of going to the authorities, she decides to get revenge herself. So no ghosties to torture this author, just a real live human being (well as real as you get in a work of fiction).
Celebrate NaNoWriMo by reading a good book.