Tuesday, October 3, 2017

The Kings in Milwaukee part 2 #writing #horror

By Christine Verstraete

This is part two on Saturday's event in Milwaukee featuring Stephen King and his son, Owen King, who are touring to promote their newly released collaboration,  Sleeping Beauties.  * Read the first part of the story and some of their comments here.

(Photo: Justin Hamelin)

Sleeping Beauties is a huge 700+ word book. The premise is that women all over the world are disappearing, going to sleep, shrouded in a cocoon.

Here are some of their comments on writing:

How they became writers:

Owen King: "As a kid, we had books all over the house. Both my parents were writers, so I had the idea it was easy to be a writer. (Laughter in crowd.) We could read whatever we wanted. My childhood job was I read books for him (his father).  I started at 7 or 8, and the fist book I read was The Watchers by Dean Koontz. (It was) part of my big education as a writer."

(Photo: Dawn Napier)

What to do to become a writer?

Stephen King: "Read all the time. My mother was a single mom, we didn't have a TV for a long time." His mother was reading paperbacks, so early on, "I got to meet Miss Marple."

"When I was very young, I wanted to read Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, so she read it to me." When it came to the part about hearing "the bones snapping," I said, 'I want that."

So, what are they reading now?

OK: "Get Shorty  (Elmore Leonard)."

SK: "Y is for Yesterday by Sue Grafton (Kinsey Millhone series #25)"

Their favorite books?

SK: "Great Expectations."

On writing:

OK: "I think I learned a lot of writing lessons from my father over the years. It's scary and inspiring to be part of a collaboration. You constantly feel you have to raise your level. If the story runs into a bit of a narrative roadblock, he always has a solution for it that feels organic. That wizardry is not something you can teach."

What's coming up:

SK: An adaptation of the story, 1922, from Full Dark, No Stars, airs next month on Netflix: "I like what they did with it, frankly."

SK: A new book, The Outsider, comes out next June. "I like this one a lot. It's one of those stories I don't want to say a lot. Even the opening is a spoiler. "

On collaborating with his wife, author Tabitha King:

SK: "I would love to collaborate with my wife. ... Marriage is a collaboration. We've been married like 45 years. She tells me what to do and I do it."

Would father and son collaborate again?

OK: "We might. We had a great experience. I think people are always disappointed (to hear) how great it was. No drama." 

SK: Called writing with his son "a gift." See story, part one. 

 * Best way to judge a book: *  

SK: "... To my mind, the ultimate success or failure of a book can be decided on how it sounds when it's read aloud. It's like the extreme close-up in a movie almost. All the blemishes show. I can't listen to James Patterson without laughing wildly to myself." 


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