Thursday, November 02, 2006
Stephen's Story


That was awesome.

Let me begin with a brief review of Lisey's Story, King's new book and presumably the point of his trip out to the west coast. I read it over the last few days so I could finish before the lecture. When I finished it, I really liked it. However, with more thought and deliberation, I decided I loved it. Definitely in my top 5 Stephen King novels. The first 100 pages or so were a little hard, as there's a code the main characters talk in, and I can be a little dense. However, I picked it up soon enough.

On to the lecture.

I shouldn't be surprised, but I'm not sure I could have believed that I could laugh that hard while someone was trying to scare the crap out of me! He spoke for some time about the background to his writing Lisey's Story, inspired from a stay in the hospital he had for pneumonia. He also spoke a little about The Cell and how it came from a hatred of cell phones. It was so interesting how his mind works. He sees a well-dressed woman in her 50's "yapping on her phone" and he immediately thinks "What if she goes crazy and rips out the doorman's throat?"

He read two short passages from Lisey's Story, one that illustrated the difficulty writers have balancing reality and fantasy (followed by a hilarious side story about using his son to research Gerald's Game). The second featured a very realistic, but awful, "Hallmark" card he wrote for the story.

The lecture was followed by a question and answer session. He only made it through maybe 5 questions or so, as he had a tendency to go off topic and let his mind wander (not that I minded, I found that far more interesting than answering some inane question about the writing process--he wrote a book on that too, maybe you just read it LOL).

We laughed throughout the whole thing, he even made the details of his near death experiences amusing. The best was when he looked up during the reading and said "Who writes this shit?" I feel so lucky to have been able to attend, even if we didn't spring for the special "Meet the Author" session afterwards.

The only low points were
a) The wireless mike didn't work very well, so he was "tied" to the podium for most of the talk. You could see he didn't like that very much.
b) I totally think big fans are cool. I think it's neat you've seen every movie, read every book 30 times etc. But I hate to tell you, every thing he said is not some secret shout-out or hidden reference. So stop squealing.
c) Also, laugh away, but try to control yourself. That screachy/howl laugh is a little overwhelming.

To top off the night, my favorite Seattle restaurant (Wild Ginger) was right across the street from the hall, and we stopped in after for a late dinner, and it was delicious as always. Awesome night!


Blogger MP said...

I have only heard great things about this novel..I think it's awesome that you saw him talk. I had been in a HUGE Stephen King kick..and read almost all of his novels..this was when I was in my teens and 20's. I think I'll need to hop back on the band wagon and get the latest one.

Blogger QofD said...

I hope your comments section isn't screwed up otherwise this comment is lost...

Thank you so much for sharing this experience! It's great to read about your thoughts on seeing King, since he is such a prolific writer. Especially the part about writers having difficulty separating reality from fantasy. My husband howled, said it sounds like me.

And, ahem, does Wild Ginger serve primarily ginger dishes? If so, then I am buying a one way ticket to Seattle and taking up residence at this restaurant, pronto!

Blogger Zow Zow said...

Wild Ginger is famous for it's housemade ginger vodka (and the martinis they make with it!) but the food is not exclusively ginger based. LOL

It is, however, fan-freaking-tastic. I'm free for dinner there, any time!

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