Archives for Stephen King

Famous #writers, reading… @StephenKing

Tripwire, Lee Child’s third book in the Jack Reacher series, is keeping Stephen King’s attention from whatever game he’s watching. Perhaps basketball? As any true reader knows, it is torture to put down a book to go out when really you just want to read to the end. And Stephen is very near the end. There are 23 books to date in the Jack Reacher series, I wonder how many Stephen has read now? Stephen is reading an American Penguin edition [above] with a distinctive cover.   ‘Tripwire’ by Lee Child Amazon UK See these other famous people, reading & writing:- Grace Kelly  Charles Dickens Gregory Peck And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet: Famous writers, reading… @StephenKing picks up a @LeeChildReacher novel #amwriting https://wp.me/p5gEM4-3AI via @SandraDanby
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Categories: Book Love and On Writing.

Applying the rules of art to writing: admire your forebears…

“… but don’t try to build a career by repeating their discoveries. Most students come to art training after a passionate engagement with established or historical art. Nothing is more thrilling than to delve deeply into the beauties of Titian, Turner, Rodin, or Cézanne or into the edgy excitement of contemporary work. But every student must remember that art is a constantly tilled field, and its job is to overcome what we know in order to examine and celebrate what we don’t yet know. What makes work of the past endlessly satisfying is the vistas it provides into a moment in history. Every artist must do the same for his or her moment.” Excerpt from ‘101 Things to Learn in Art School’ by Kit White Every writer must read. If you want to write crime fiction, read Sayers, Christie, James, Larsson, Rankin. If you write thrillers, read Harris, Boyd, Grisham, King, Le Carre, Fleming. But don’t stop there. Read outside your genre too. Read the classics, read genres you know nothing about. And read as a writer. Learn from the masters. Then leave behind all that you have read, and write your own thing. Yes learn from the masters, but
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Categories: On Writing.

Applying the rules of art to writing: read!

“Art is a continuing dialogue that stretches back through thousands of years: What you make is your contribution to that dialogue. Therefore, be conscious of what has come before you and the conversation that surrounds you. Try not to repeat what has already been said. Study art history and stay alert to the dialogue of your moment.” Excerpt from ‘101 Things to Learn in Art School’ by Kit White In other words: read, read, read. To quote Stephen King [above]: “If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time (or the tools) to write. Simple as that.” ‘101 Things to Learn in Art School’ by Kit White [MIT Press] Buy now And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet: To quote @StephenKing Read!: applying the rules of #art to #writing http://wp.me/p5gEM4-xc via @SandraDanby
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Categories: On Writing.

It… and the power of fiction

On Friday 13th September, in a small English town, an anonymous clown terrified passers-by. He stood on street corners, holding a bunch of balloons, and stared at passers-by. It must be 26 years since I read It  by Stephen King [first published in paperback in the UK in 1987] but to this day I remember clearly how much that book frightened me.It is the only novel I have been forced to sit up reading all night, not being able to sleep until I finished it… because I was terrified. I didn’t want to finish it, I wanted to throw it away [I didn’t, this is my paperback, below]; but knew I would not sleep easily until I got to the end. I trusted Mr King to give me a resolution at the end which would let me sleep freely. I haven’t picked up the book since. Needless to say, I don’t like being frightened. I don’t like horror movies, I don’t like fairground rides, I don’t like heights. In the 1990 US TV mini-series, Pennywise was played by Tim Curry [below]. I didn’t watch it. Last week, Pennywise was again terrifying people. In Northampton, England. This time it was a local man, a
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Categories: Book Love.

New books coming out this autumn

William Boyd’s ‘Solo’. James Bond is 45 and in Africa. Stephen King’s ‘Doctor Sleep’. Danny Torrance from ‘The Shining’ is now middle-aged. ‘The Story’ is a compilation of 100 short stories, written by women, and edited by Victoria Hislop. A ‘whydunnit’ from Mark Lawson, ‘The Deaths’ combines social commentary and crime. Jhumpa Lahiri’s ‘The Lowland’ is about two brothers growing up in Calcutta.
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Categories: Book Love.

I agree with Stephen King…

Stephen King “Let’s get one thing clear right now, shall we? There is no Idea Dump, no Story Central, no Island of the Buried Bestsellers; good story ideas seem to come quite literally from nowhere, sailing at you right out of the empty sky: two previously unrelated ideas come together and make something new under the sun. Your job isn’t to find these ideas but to recognise them when they show up.” [excerpt from ‘On Writing’ by Stephen King]  He’s right. Ideas come at me all the time, doing the most prosaic things. Doing the washing-up, queuing to park at the supermarket, wandering around an art gallery, sitting in a traffic jam. The fun starts when I realize two [or three] bits belong together. It doesn’t work if I force things to fit, so I’ve had to learn to be patient and let things be for a while. Some of my ideas have been kept for years until they find the right home. When a character finds a setting, a setting finds a story, a name in the newspaper fits a so far unnamed character, the resulting buzz is incredible.   ‘On Writing’ by Stephen King [UK: Hodder] If you
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Categories: On Writing.