Feminist, Fictionista, Foodie, Francophile

Thursday, April 10, 2014

K is for King, Stephen

There are people (usually people who haven't read much of his work) who get snarky about Stephen King. They like to pigeon-hole him in genre categories (because they think people who write horror or any other genre fiction aren't really very good writers).  These people are missing out. 

I believe that King is the Charles Dickens of our time and I especially admire him for his amazing characters. I could list dozens of memorable characters but I think anyone who wants to understand the art of making an unsympathetic character sympathetic should read Green Mile. If you know the story, you know that one of the characters is a child murderer (and worse). And yet by the time he suffers his terrible fate, I was crying. Yes, Stephen King made me cry.

I'm glad I started reading him when I did because his body of work is now so large that I'm not sure I could ever catch up. And when he announced his retirement a few years back, I was one of those who raised a chorus of "OH NO!!"  He really is the hardest working man in fiction. And speaking of, his book about writing (On Writing) is a must-have, but the notes he writes in his short-story collections are really fascinating.

Silly as it is, I always kind of liked the idea that his birthday (September 21) was like mine, only backwards (September 12).

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