January is Author Appreciation Month! (Not officially. Just go with it.) Last month, I announced I would spend this AAM on Stephen King.
I hear a lot of things about Mr. King from my friends (and others), and a lot of it comes in dismissive, contemptuous tones. “Oh, well, Stephen King.” Now, I reserve my author judgement for people I’ve actually read unless the person in question is notoriously bad. (I won’t name names. I won’t name names.) When you come away from others’ comments on King, you think of him like this:
This scene actually represents my thoughts on R.L. Stein. My childhood loves that guy! And so I thought I’d appreciate the more adult version, the version that has many brilliant film adaptions. The thing about Stephen King is that I’ve been curious about him since birth (probably) but have only seen The Shining and more recently Stand By Me. It was time I found out what his writing is about.
My choice was Misery because Family Guy‘s adaptation featuring “Stewie Wilkes” intrigued me. It was a pretty good book to start with; as a writer, the main character was easy to relate to. It had a rocky start and a quiet enough ending, but the middle. The middle! In short, it was good.
I went in with a forgiving heart thinking King might be close to a pulp writer. Maybe he is. Maybe he isn’t. I give him props in this novel for experimenting with the style. Some pages are the flowered prose of a novel-in-progress written by the main character. Other pages are delusional, dream-like and repetitive. In some pages, the character (probably embodying the writer himself) talks to himself in dialogue, thoughts, and prose. Of course, there are also gory parts. One well-received plus was the inspiration it gave me for one of the novels I’m working on. I’d already developed a specific concept for it, but Misery helped nudged some of the style in the right direction.
Dare I say it was a pleasure reading Misery?
The rest of my Stephen King reading list is pretty much set, but you’ll have to check back here to find out what I’ve chosen. A little of this, and a little of that. There will be celebrity guest appearances (made you look), one or two movies, and something published after 1990.
I hope King’s later work is a little different, stylistically, to fit the book. I’m hoping he isn’t like this other mention in Family Guy:
I’ll be back with more in February, babies!
Hi-diddly-ho there, bloggerinos! (Bloggians? Bloggerites? Bloggessians?) I’m back with a vengeance—for books!
The most joy I’ve ever gotten out of this blog has been from my challenge posts, specifically the ones about books. (I lie; FLOM was pretty good. Pretty darn good if you’re George of the Jungle.) I don’t normally read other people’s reading logs because to each their own, and don’t even like to write about every. single. book. I encounter because my life shouldn’t be one long book report. I don’t even write about every book in each of my challenges (anymore) because I’m not your little literature monkey. Go read your own damn library binges! …*ahem*
But I love these challenges. It makes the need to read every book in the world less daunting, and gives a little method to my madness. It gives me something to plan and look forward to outside the writing of my own novels, which everyone will be forced to read and report on within their own blogs.
With or without the constant spamming of my fictional adventures, I’d like to update you now on my current challenges. Three are coming up, starting in January, and I can’t wait to tell you about them.
Without further Ado, I announce the next three reading challenges for which you can join me!
New, this winter: Author Appreciation Month! I’d like to invest a whole month on one author. Future years may explore my current favorites or the works of classic writers long gone. This year will be Stephen King. Why him? You’ll have to come back in January to find out. (Come on, I have to leave you wanting more somehow.)
I’ll resurrect Manga Month and add all graphic novels in general. Why? Because Batman, that’s why! This year’s manga will probably be strictly from the more adult section of my local library.
March through August
I call this one “At the Mercy of My Library.” It’s a half-year of something I can’t even define yet. It’s super top-secret for now, but I can tell you it involves 45 books of randomness and probably some torture at the hands of general fiction.
I can’t wait for the Mercy Challenge. Yeah, that’s a good name for it.
I depart for now, fellow readers, and pare down my fluctuating, though somehow always expanding, pile of material.