Though I saw it all around
Never thought I could be affected
Thought that we'd be the last to go
It is so strange the way things turn

Monday, September 21, 2009

The Danse Macabre

Happy birthday Stephen King. I was thinking lately that I should relisten to On Writing as sort of a pep talk. I'll also relisten to "Building Bridges" his acceptance speech in 2003 for the National Book Award.

(and here is my yearly plea, Dear Universe, if Mr. King is a hack, please make me just as much a hack as he is; popular, successful, generous, scribbler of stories talked about long after their publication date - there surely are worse things to be in life).

4 comments:

Merrie Haskell said...

Hear, hear.

I think, by and large, people are figuring out that he's not a hack at all. And if they aren't, then it's their loss.

Steve Buchheit said...

Mer, my senior advisor for my creative writing minor did one of the first literary reviews of his work. I make fun of books stores for calling their horror section the "Honorary Stephen King Library", but you should have seen this prof's wall of King novels and stories. It was truly awesome. We spent two hours discussing how King was a very modern version of Victorian Gothic.

And the "hack" label is just a "literature" snide on "popular." I think, as one of the few benefits of the Rise of the MBA(tm), people are beginning to accept that popular does not equal bad.

jonathandanz said...

Love the man. I was just telling a friend a couple of days ago how stories of King's that I read 20+ years ago still resonate after only one read. I would love to be able to achieve that.

Steve Buchheit said...

Jonathan, I still remember some of his story stories in Graveyard Shift and that's been about two and a half decades. It was also before I thought about "being a writer" and started paying attention and memorizing story details.

I also still recall a passage from Hearts in Atlantis that when I first read it I had the same reaction as reading Neil Gaiman's American Gods. It was the "holy crap, you can do that?!"