Chloe Building Own 'Carrie' Prom Dress

ETonline has this interesting paragraph about Carrie remake star, Chloe Moretz:
"I'm actually building my own dress and kind of going really deep into it, and I've never gone so deep into a role before," says Chloe, presumably talking about the prom dress Carrie wears in the film's third act. "Yeah, it's cool, it's a lot of work. Fun, but a lot of work."

Beijing censors SHAWSHANK REDEMPTION searches

The China Post reports that  Chinese censors have begun to block search terms related  to blind activist Chen Guangcheng.   You can't search for his name. . . and they have also deemed the search term "Shawshank Redemption" to be unacceptable! Search words  such as: "Shawshank" "blind person" and "embassy" were all blocked.

Why block "Shawshank"?   Because Chen Guangcheng case has been compared to the Shawshank Redemption.  

The  China Post reports:

After completing a four-year jail sentence in September 2010, he and his family were put under what Chen has called “illegal” house arrest at their home in Shandong province.
Some Web users had used the Chinese characters for “Shawshank” to refer to the case.
“The Shawshank Redemption” was a 1994 film based on a novella by U.S. author Stephen King, about a convict's escape from an American prison. 

King: TAX ME!

Stephen King has an article in the Daily Beast, "Stephen King: Tax Me, for F@%&’s Sake!"  (HERE)

Does that title look angry?  Yeah, he's pretty wound up here.

King points out that most rich do not really give much of their income to charity.  King writes,"My wife and I give away roughly $4 million a year to libraries, local fire departments that need updated lifesaving equipment (Jaws of Life tools are always a popular request), schools, and a scattering of organizations that underwrite the arts. Warren Buffett does the same; so does Bill Gates; so does Steven Spielberg; so do the Koch brothers; so did the late Steve Jobs. All fine as far as it goes, but it doesn't go far enough."

King says that giving to charity is not enough because it overlooks  things like the Gulf spill or the need for  improved education in Mississippi and Alabama.  King also addresses the argument that money saved by the rich results in jobs.

King writes,
"I have a total payroll of about 60 people, most of them working for the two radio stations I own in Bangor, Maine. If I hit the movie jackpot—as I have, from time to time—and own a piece of a film that grosses $200 million, what am I going to do with it? Buy another radio station? I don’t think so, since I’m losing my shirt on the ones I own already. But suppose I did, and hired on an additional dozen folks. Good for them. Whoopee-ding for the rest of the economy."
While I  enjoy Kings points and  think he makes sharp arguments, I think he loses ground by being personal and derogatory. Taking digs at Chris Christie's weight cheapens his arguments and  turns politics into -- literally -- a food fight; but food fights are fun to watch.  

Chloe Moretz Says Carrie Will Be More Psychological Than the Original

Work on the new Carrie starts in just a few days.  Chloe Moretz had an interesting interview  She notes that she likes the fan poster that's out, and that she is not focusing at all on the DePalma movie.  In afct, she isn't even watching it.

Moretz says:
"I'm actually not looking at the original, even though De Palma's movie was one of the best movies ever made. It's completely iconic and I'm proud to be able to be doing a retooling of it. We're kind of going off the book. It's darker and much more psychological. More 'Black Swan.' You're really looking into her mind and it really looks into the relationship of Margaret and Carrie. It's set in modern time, so it's a lot different."
I like the word "retooling" and the comment that they are "kind of going off the book."

King's Foundation Contributes To MEALS FROM MAINE

The Bangor Daily News has an article about Meals From Maine, which is sending 100,000 meals to starving children around the world.  Supported by: The Global Aid Network (GaiN), Feed My Starving Children, and $5,000 from The Tabitha and Stephen King Foundation.  Instrumental to the work at hand have been local churches and businesses who have provided space, volunteers and funding.

I like this quote from one of the volunteers, Bruce Knight: "I think we are actually blessed in this country. . . This seems like the very least we can do to help others.”  That's great!

The full article is HERE.   It’s pretty neat what these people are doing.

Gaiman's Unabridged Stephen King Article

Neil Gaiman has posted his full article on his interview with Stephen King.  It appears at his blog,  His version is longer than the version printed in the Sunday Times.

Gaiman explains:

I interviewed Stephen King for the UK Sunday Times Magazine. The interview appeared a few weeks ago. The Times keeps its site paywalled, so I thought I'd post the original version of the interview here. (This is the raw copy, and it's somewhat longer than the interview as published.)  
I don't do much journalism any more, and this was mostly an excuse to drive across Florida back in February and spend a day with some very nice people I do not get to see enough. 

Telling Carrie's Back Story

Max Nicholson at has an article titled, “Found Footage in the Carrie Remake?”  in which he discusses some hints Roger Birnbaum has dropped about the upcoming Carrie movie.

The article re-emphasizes that the movie will be more of an adaptation of the Carrie novel than a remake of the 1976 horror classic.

Carrie is structured not only by Kings narration, but also with official documentsthat give the reader background and insights as to what is happening.  Nicholson explains that the epistolary elements of Carrie are like “found footage.”  How will this be handled in the new movie?

Nicholson then writes, “With that in mind, Birnbaum has implied that the new movie will feature found footage segments to be interspersed throughout.”
“. . . this will likely be done through a series of interviews framing the story as opposed to the traditional POV style that we've grown accustomed to over the last several years. But only time will tell how these scenes will be visually interpreted.”

The full article is HERE.


I really liked  this book!  

Rob Heinze’s novel, Old Dirt Road, is a suspense/horror novel that draws inspiration from the work of Stephen King. (Buy it here on Amazon)

In the novel, Eddie Glenn discovers that the dirt road behind his house (sandwiched between the housing tract and the highway) holds a scary secret. When Eddie is out on a walk with his dog, he finds a construction sign on the dirt road that says, "End Construction." Only, someone crossed out "Construction" and wrote "Life." YIKES! Eddie’s dog is not interested in investigating further. In fact, the pooch is flat out scared! Eddie begins to think there is something to this ominous warning when a bee crosses the sign and drops dead.

Eddie begins to test his theory, throwing various animals into what he calls "The Great Gulf." Some animals die instantly. . . but some of those boogers come back! When Eddie discovers that one of his friends isn’t really such a nice guy, be begins to ponder how he might send him on a one way trip into The Great Gulf.

Here is my interview with Rob:

Talk Stephen King: Hey, thanks for agreeing to this conversation. Your book was great! Tell me a about yourself.

Rob Heinze: Thank you for the compliment. I worked hard on OLD DIRT ROAD and worried that it would fall short with readers. As for myself, I am 30, father of two and a business owner in NJ. I started writing at the age of 19, but somehow always wanted to write because I had this active imagination. I always wrote horror, too, though I started out writing “sword and sorcery” type horror. When I first read Stephen King, at the age of 20, it was like a revelation. I felt like I was already geared and lubricated to write horror, but reading it from the master was a shot of adrenalin. I read everything King wrote in about a year and a half (this was back in 2002) and wrote constantly, every day, usually forsaking friends and a social life for the joy and compulsion of writing. I struggled with trying to break into the business for six years. I secured four NYC literary agents, connected to about a dozen editors, wrote revisions to some older books on specification for these people, and ended up with nothing but a bad case of frustration.

So I basically gave up and focused on starting a business, family and getting a house. I returned to writing just this year, when I discovered that anyone could self-publish and have their books on Amazon and iBooks and NOOK for free. I wrote a book called THE SWARM in about 8 days, spent a little time on revisions, and put it on sale. It went on to sell like 11,000 copies in the first six weeks and continues to sell anywhere from 500-1,000 per month, mostly on NOOK devices. I have been reinvigorated by this, and so I wrote OLD DIRT ROAD a couple months ago and now we’ll see what happens with it.

TSK: Your novel, The Old Dirt Road, is a twist on the Stephen King novel, Pet Sematary. You reference Pet Sematary twice in the novel itself. What is it about this book that makes such a deep connection with you?

RH: PET SEMETARY is the scariest book I have ever read. It was one of those books where I kept hearing noises in the house while I was reading it. There are only four (4) books that really induced that level of terror in me. They are Shirley Jackson’s THE HAUNGINT OF HILL HOUSE, King’s THE SHINING, THE STAND and of course PET SEMETARY. PET SEMETARY ranks at the top. King’s use of language and prose really unsettles the reader, coupled with the omnipresent power working against the character (see the quote at the beginning of OLD DIRT ROAD for one of my favorite dread-evoking scenes in the book). The book gets below your defenses without being gory or violent. It’s the sort of helpless, you-can’t-win-because-something’s-working-underneath that is the key ingredient of every nightmare. We all want to believe, as humans, that there is a God (or gods) and that someone is watching over us. PET SEMETARY erases that possibility. I explored that concept in OLD DIRT ROAD too. I also think PET SEMETARY is a complicated book with a lot of hidden meaning. Overall, it’s a book about secrets and how they can destroy us. Here is a link to a post on Stephen King’s discussion forum where I expound upon that

TSK: You reference both Edgar Allan Poe and Stephen King. Obviously you have a love for both. Okay, tough question –which one is your favorite?

RH: I think King is my favorite because he has a tremendously larger volume of work, and I can relate to his characters more. Poe was a tremendous word-smith, though, as is evident in THE RAVEN. I wish he had lived a less troubled life and churned out more work. It would also be cool to see what he might do with today’s computers and word processing technology. I am not sure if his power would have translated into the novel form. There are a great many writers who seem to be gifted to create short stories, but who cannot sustain the energy of the story for a full novel (Ray Bradbury comes to mind).

TSK: Do you have a favorite Poe story or poem?
RH: I like the CASK OF AMONTADILLO from Poe. It’s referenced heavily in OLD DIRT ROAD.

TSK: Were your four main characters, Eddie, Nancy, Sal and Marie based on real people – or are they drawn directly from your messed up imagination?

RH: Every character I write about is based on observation, or hybrids of people. I can say that Eddie, the main character, is as close to me as any of my characters. Much of the book and Eddie’s thoughts after discovering the spot at the end of the dirt road reflect my thoughts. Nancy is very close to my wife. Certainly Eddie’s view towards her is the same view I have towards my wife. OLD DIRT ROAD ended up being a love story, which I’ll talk about later in another question, though it might not seem like it. Sal Rosse and Marie Rosse are based on a hybrid of observations and past acquaintances. It’s sad to say that there are still a fair amount of men who want control—total control—of a wife or girlfriend and I knew people like that in my youth. Almost every “bad male character” in my writing is based off of one person I knew.

TSK: Okay, let’s talk God. . . in the novel, Eddie doesn’t believe in God because of the chaos of the end of life zone. Does Eddie’s beliefs reflect your own?

RH: I want to correct you on that. Eddie questions his belief in God after he finds the spot at the end of the old dirt road. I think more importantly, the concept of chaos being so easy while construction, love and order is so hard really makes him question God’s existence. Eddie has a thought in the book that gravity created the universe and holds everything together; therefore, gravity is God. In the same thought, there is talk about “quarks” often.

Quarks are part of particle physics. It is theorized that quarks (and there are a few different types theorized) exist at the sub-atomic level. That is, you can take an electron, neutron or proton (the three components of an atom) and look deeper to find that they are made up of “quarks”. It’s theorized that even quarks have gravitational pull. For instance, in proximity to each other, quarks might pull together to form a neutron or electron, and then other quarks do the same and you have an atom. I use the term quark to describe Nancy and Eddie, and how they met through gravitational grace. And since Eddie believes gravity is God, the fact Nancy and him came together is evidence of God. And the fact that she continues to stay with him is evidence to him that God exists…because God is gravity. Phew!

Hopefully that’s not some wild, confusing stuff! OLD DIRT ROAD ended up being pretty complicated, sort of like PET SEMETARY, and I wanted it to be that way with the story readable as a weird, scary story. I do believe in God personally.

TSK: You said in the introduction that you almost didn’t finish the novel. Why? Also, what caused you to press on?

RH: The novel got me depressed. I was depressed writing it because it has that something-working-below-the-surface theme, where you feel that no matter how hard you work or how persistent you are, you will lose (this pretty much mirrors my efforts to break into publishing). I felt depressed even at night or in the evenings, when I was writing it. I was going through some stuff too, and a lot of that is reflected in the book. I pushed on because I felt the book was a love story to my wife, but mainly because I wanted to know what was going to happen.

The best part of writing fiction for me is that I get to see a movie for free. It really is like that. I got front row seats, the theatre’s empty, and I’m revved up. I wanted to know what was at the end of the dirt road and what would happen if a person went passed the End Life sign and into the Great Gulf. I wanted to know why the sound of the highway haunted Eddie, and was there any connection to the spot at the end of the dirt road. It might seem strange to say that, but I rarely every know what will happen at the end of the story I’m writing, and often I’m just as surprised as readers when I get to it.

TSK: That is actually really sweet!  You mention "quarks" several times. What made you think of "quarks" as an imagery? Did you study physics?

RH: I don’t study physics, but it was one of my favorite classes in college and I have a nerdy habit of watching the Science Channel constantly. I love the concept that no matter how much we contract or expand our explorations into the universe (either looking further, or looking deeper into atoms) we keep finding another layer. Whatever put us here doesn’t want us to find out, that’s for sure. It’s like chasing a dark shape down a tunnel that keeps getting narrower and narrower or wider and wider.

TSK: When you write, do you run with an idea, or do you outline ahead of time?   What was the writing process for the Old Dirt Road like? How long did it take you to hammer this one out?

RH: I don’t write with an outline. This might be why I can’t get published. Every agent or editor is always talking about “plot” and “character development” but the concept that either is essential to writing a good book is stupid. After all, how many people do we know in life that change? There are some that come to points in their life where they make decisions, or their focus shifts, but overall people’s personalities, the way they react to situations, etc…don’t change much from when they’re children. Also, I know King is a proponent of “non-plotted” books.

I usually have a well-rounded idea in my head, which has been building and has made some connections to other things. Like the inspiration for OLD DIRT ROAD was initially seeing a construction sign that said “END CONSTRUCTION” on a highway, except the word “construction” was all faded. I thought, what if someone played a joke and wrote “END LIFE” instead? Then I thought, what if it wasn’t a joke…what if it was a warning? Months later I remembered my grandparent’s house (which is pretty much the same as the Glenn’s house in the book) and how they had this old construction road. It was all dirt and grown over, and when I was probably 6 or 7 (maybe even younger), I remember my grandfather walking me down it but we always stopped at one spot because there was this huge patch of overgrown grasses. I always wanted to know what was beyond those grasses. I started with that and wrote the book in about 2-3 weeks, then spent another month or two revising and rewriting.

TSK: Who’s been your biggest encouragement in the area of writing?

RH: My biggest encouragement is difficult to say. My wife is reluctant to say “go to it”. After all, I am the only bread-winner and there are two kids. I approach writing (and everything else) in my life with an “all or nothing” view. It’s not enough for me to write a couple hours a day. When I am working on something, it usually consumes all my mental power and energy and I let everything else slide. After I got diagnosed and treated for ADHD, this has toned down a bit and I have more control, but it’s still there. I have always seen writing as what I was meant to do, and would someday be successful at it. But my inability to understand the desire of editors and agents, and to conform to what “they want” and not what I feel “compelled” to write makes even encouraging myself difficult. In fact, after I finished OLD DIRT ROAD, I have written a thing and feel no desire to. I am pretty upset THE SWARM didn’t break into the widen business. Though I will mention that a very well known literary agent read OLD DIRT ROAD and said I needed to change some things (mostly make it longer). I gritted my teeth and gave it a shot. It’s the first time I really pushed hard to write something per another person’s comments. We’ll see what happens…

TSK: What future works do you have on the horizon? Any partnerships with Mr. King?

RH: Stephen King doesn’t even know who the hell I am, but if he wanted to collaborate, I’d have to think about it (just kidding). No, I have sent excerpts of my book, THE SWARM, to his office…hoping that the 1 in a million chance he’d read it would be in my fortune. That was four months ago and I’m pretty sure it was tossed by his assistances with the other thousands of similar things the office gets. I have the hope of someday talking to Mr. King about his craft, his writing, and sharing some of my experiences with creating as well (not that mine would hold any value to him). I also have this unlikely fantasy about Mr. King doing the introduction to my first “officially published” book of short stories. We can dream, can’t we?

TSK: King refers to his fans as "constant reader." You have a more – unusual term: "Celestial Sea Wanderer." What in the world is a Celestial Sea Wanderer?

RH: The first book I published was called SKETCHES FROM A CELESTIAL SEA. This was self-published. It’s a book of short stories. I started marketing this book, and THE SWARM, through Facebook. I have a page called SKETCHES FROM A CELESTIAL SEA. I guess it’s supposed to mean an otherworldly sea, or sea in a strange galaxy. Almost all of my stories are imaginative, so I thought it’d be cool to call my readers “Celestial Sea Wanderers”. I like to imagine walking the shore in the dusk, seeing dark shapes washed ashore and wondering what they are. To me, these flotsam and jetsam of some other world’s ocean are my idea, inspiration and gifts. I hope to find some more soon.

TSK: That’s cool!  Hey, thanks for taking the time to do this!  I hope you sell a billion copies of The Old Dirt Road and hook up with Stephen King someday!

Check out Rob's books here:


Lickona's Hypothesis For The Dark Tower's Delay

I'm left speechless (well, I'm not really speechless). . . and annoyed. . . by Matthew Lickona short article at titled, "Is God Smiting Ron Howard for Making The Da Vinci Code?"  Lickona then posts a list of successful Howard films that were pre-Da Vinci.  This is compared to a list of movies that lost money at the box office post Da Vinci.

Lickona seems to even attribute failure to land a Dark Tower deal to the hand of the Almighty, writing, "he's been  trying for a couple of years now to land a deal to make Stephen King's The Dark Tower into a film, or rather, a series of films.  No luck  yet."

Of  course, he is following up on a series of articles  in which he thinks God  must be "smiting" various actors for their parts  int he Davinci Code.   (Tom Hanks got Lickona's smiting HERE)

I'm left scracthing my head on this one.  REALLY?  That's how Mr. Lickona thinks God works?  He thinks that God is opposed to Ron Howard, and thus the Dark Tower isn't getting made?  I mean, if God worked that way, wouldn't the entire porn industry go broke?  No signs of that  happening, right?  (I'm using an extreme example, so don't go  nutso on me.) But, didn't Bill Mahar's movie do well at  the theater?  I mean, if there was a Hollywood type you would think God would be aiming at, wouldn't it be him?  Makes me think: MAYBE GOD DON'T WORK THAT WAY!

Obviously I'm not a fan of the Da Vinci code.  However, the Da Vinci Code did make money.  So the entire premise makes no sense!  It's just annoying.  But I feel so much better having pointed out how STUPID such logic is.  I think the Bible shows us that God works with us on a much more individual basis.  He convicts us of sinful  behavior and calls for personal repentance; I can't really think of an instance of his smiting entertainment profits.  He reserves most judgment for a day called. . . hold your breath, this is creative. . . judgment day!  I don't think he goes around cursing and smiting Hollywood movies!  If that is really the way Mr. Lickona thinks God works, maybe he should begin having prayer vigils for Mr. Howard so that we can get  the Dark Tower movie  off the ground!

Now, on the positive side, he also has declared that God  is smiting Mel  Gibson for making the Passion of the Christ.  He writes, "Look, it's pretty clear that God's been smiting Mel Gibson ever since Mel made The Passion of the Christ."  (HERE)

As if. . . of all the messed up things Mel  has done, what God is made  about is the movie.  Never mind the abusive behavior, the way he treats. . . everyone. . . what God is focused on is the movie.

Lickona's brilliance is on full display HERE.


picture credit, Darek Kocurek (HERE)

This is exciting: I've hoped for years that Eyes Of The Dragon would become a movie.  Of course, I've  also always  hoped Disney would do it. Dread Central, EW and Lilja's Library are all reporting that SYFY (that's not how you spell Sifi) has decided to take the project on.  I'm hoping for a mini-series format.

Lilja's Library posted (linking from EW)
Stephen King’s fantasy novel Eyes of the Dragon could at last become a movie or miniseries. 
The 1987 bestseller is being developed by Syfy as a longform project, along with a scripted drama series based on the comic Grey Legion and two high-concept movie projects. The network is set to announce all the titles later today at its upfront presentation in New York City. 
Michael Taylor (Battlestar Galactica) and Jeff Vintar (I, Robot) will pen the Dragon script, with Taylor and Bill Haber as executive producers
Dreadcentral reports:
Among the scripted development projects are adaptations of popular works by best-selling novelists such as Stephen King (Eyes of the Dragon). . . 
Eyes of the Dragon – Based on Stephen King’s best-selling novel. A kingdom is in turmoil as the old king dies and his successor must battle for the throne. Pitted against an evil wizard and a would-be rival, Prince Peter makes a daring escape and rallies the forces of good to fight for what is rightfully his. Writers: Michael Taylor (Defiance, Battlestar Galactica) and Jeff Vintar (I, Robot). Executive producers: Michael Taylor and Bill Haber. A production of Universal Cable Productions and Ostar Productions.

THE STAND: World Book Night Edition

25,000 American volunteers are participating in World Book Night this Monday.  The idea is to take free paperbacks to people who have limited access to literature; this includes nursing homes, homeless shelters, foster care and. . . hold on for this one. . . Star Bucks.  (I kid you not!  One person is handing out The Hunger Games at Star Bucks.)

Bunny Hand, who manages the bookstore Mysterious Galaxy, is handing out “The Stand” at a homeless shelter.

John Wilkens article in the U-T San Diego, titled “World Book Night Sheds Light On Reading” writes about Bunny and The Stand:
It’s one of her favorite books, “an incredible story of good against evil at the end of the world,” she said.
Wilkens then notes:
It’s also really long — 1,400 pages — and she figured if a homeless person was only going to get one book this year it would be good to have it take awhile to get through.
In order to accomplish the project, special editions of the books had to be printed.  I presume this includes The Stand.  Wilkens explains:
To make it all work, authors waived their royalties. Publishers and printers made special editions of the books and donated them to the project. UPS delivered them free to bookstores and libraries, which agreed to be pickup points for volunteers. Some stores even hosted parties.
Once again, King's generosity shines.

So here's a nutty thought. . . I wonder if the World Book Night edition of The Stand is any different than the "regular" paperback edition.

Note: I am changing the title of the post, as it was originally titled, "The Stand, Homeless Edition." Following Lilja's lead on this one, as he always has great class and grace.

11/22/63 takes LA Times Prize

Martha Groves at the Los Angeles Times has an article titled, “Alex Shakar, Stephen King win Times Book Prizes.”  (HERE)

King’s novel, 11/22.63, took the prize for the catagory “mystery-thrillers.”

Groves writes:
More than 400 authors will participate in readings, signings, panel discussions, musical performances and other events. The festival, which moved to USC in 2011 after 15 years at UCLA, runs through Sunday. About 150,000 visitors are expected to attend.

Keene Headed Back To Print

picture credit HERE

If you’re a Stephen King fan, you’re probably already familiar with Brian Keene’s work as well.  I find his writing a lot of fun.  Keene recently got in a battle with his publisher, Dorchester books, who decided to sell his books without paying him. See how I make a long story short?  The full story, from Keene's angle at least, is at   Keene blogged aboutt his crisis over the last year and the chaos it created in his life.  It’s not fun when a publisher messes with you.

Dorchester also publishes Richard Laymon books. Too bad to see some great works in the horror industry mishandled.

Well, Brian Keene is back!  In a partnership between Thunderstorm Books and Keene (called Maelstorm) several limited run small press books will be published.

Blu Gilliand at examiner explains the plan:
In a nutshell, Maelstrom, a partnership between Keene and publisher Thunderstorm Books, is a new line of collectible, limited-run books designed specifically for the small press market. Maelstrom releases will consist of three signed hardcovers limited to 250 copies: a Keene novel, a Keene novella, and a novel by a new author that Keene himself will select. Each set will be priced at $125.  (Gilliand’s full article is HERE.)
Books include A Gathering of Crows, The Rising: Deliverane and Kelli Owen’s debut novel, Six Days.

Keene's writing is scary, engaging and at times frustrating.  But frustrations aside, I like his work, and thus I forgive those things that drive me crazy and just keep reading.  Okay, so what drives me crazy?  In "Darkness  on the Edge of Town" it seems like everyone is a druggie!  It's a town on the edge of a drug bust.  And they sure see a lot in the dark.  Okay. .. but none of that is worth getting hung up over.  The novel has been compared to Under The Dome.  I don't think so!  More like Poe, I would say.

I suspect the grind of publishing can get to a writer.  King recently said:
As of right now, if I died and everybody kept it a secret, it would go on until 2013. There’s a new Dark Tower novel, The Wind in the Keyhole.That comes out soon, and Dr Sleep is done. . . .
. . . I do want to slow down. My agent is dickering with the publishers about Dr Sleep, that’s the sequel to The Shining, but I held off showing them the manuscript because I wanted time to breathe.”
Time to breathe.  Why?  Okay, I'm guessing here. . . but I suspect it is not King's publisher that might be the issue here, but the demands of publishing a Stephen King book.  He doesn't just release a book, he does a whole big book tour.


I  really enjoyed the Lilja and Lou Podcast, posted a Lilja's Library. (HERE)

My favorites parts were hit right at the beginning, when Lilja gave us the proper pronunciation of his name and discussed the beginnings of his website.  He  takes us from  very humble beginnings to the time he began to get real recognition.  It took a while!  What's cool about Lilja is that even when he's talking about his home-runs, he seems humble.

Lilja also discusses his first phone conversation with Stephen King, and an in person meeting -- calling both "Magical!"  It was nice to put a voice with Lilja's face.

I hope they do this often.

I also enjoy Lilja's book, Lilja's Library.  It is also available on Kindle, which makes bouncing around and searching for topics very easy! (HERE)

RAGE tops the 5 Hit Books Hollywood Will Never Film

Jef withonef has a great article titled at Houston Pres, “5 Hit Books Hollywood Will Never Film.” (HERE) Each entry includes an explanation of “Why we want it”, “Why it’s a bad idea” and “How about instead we film.”

My favorite non-King entry is House of Leaves by Mark Z. Danielewski.  That book was crazy!  Footnotes that went nowhere, text that went around the page in mathematical circles – or something.

Jef’s list includes:

5. J.R.R. Tolkien, The Silmarillion
4. Neil Gaiman, Sandman
3. Mark Z. Danielewski. House of Leaves
2. Robert A. Heinlein, Stranger in a Strange Land
1. Stephen King, Rage

So why does Rage get top position?

Jef writes:
Rage was the first book that King published under the Richard Bachman pseudonym, and follows a deranged high school student that holds his class hostage at gunpoint while forcing them to endure a round of psychological discussions that seriously unhinges them all. It's a violent look at the pressures of youth that so often lead people to brutal violence
Jef than explains why this is one really bad idea.  If you’ve read the book and the newspaper you know why it’s a bad idea! (what’s a newspaper?  Does anyone still get one of those?)

So, what books do you think Hollywood would never film?  

In the King world, I’ve already suggested that Gerald’s Game would probably never make it to screen. And it’s starting to feel like the Dark Tower will never get made!  The Talisman?  How about the rest of Hearts in Atlantis?

The Dark Tower Series Pulls You In

This is re-posted with permission from

The Dark Tower series pulls you in

By Jennifer, Everett Public Library staff

The man in black fled across the desert, and the gunslinger followed.The Dark Tower I: The Gunslinger by Stephen King

Is there any better first line to start a novel?

The beginning hook when I'm writing is usually “Okay, there was this guy running around the desert. And then there's this other guy who's being chased by that one guy.”

I'm headed for the best-seller's list, aren't I? Look for the sequel That Girl in the Orange Shirt Standing by That Tree.

Stephen King's Dark Tower series was actually inspired by Robert Browning's poem “Childe Roland to the Dark Tower Came". The Dark Tower novels (starting with The Gunslinger and ending (?) with The Wind Through the Keyhole out April 24th) are among his most popular works. He gets batches of mail from people asking how and when he's going to finish the series. One woman in her 80s wrote to him and said she didn't have much time left because she has cancer so could he please tell her how the books are going to end? She then added “I won't tell anyone.”

In Dark Tower I: Gunslinger, Roland Deschain is the last of his kind: a gunslinger. Gunslingers were boys raised to fight and protect their world, the old ways and old traditions. But his home has been destroyed by the man in black who some call the devil and others call a dark magician. For years Roland has been on a quest to kill the dark man, traveling in a world that is parallel to ours (except Roland's world doesn't have Wal-Marts or McDonald's but has some hold-overs like “Hey Jude” and "Beans, Beans, the Magical Fruit”). Cities have been decimated, migrations patterns all askew, and mutated humans roam in the dark places.

I've read the book 3 times and, honestly, I have no idea why Roland needs to get to the Dark Tower. When I ask other people who've read the book about it, instead of enlightenment I get a blank stare. Hey at least I know I'm not alone. But in the end it doesn't matter. All you neeed to know is that the Tower is the gravitational pull for both good and evil.

In addition to Roland's obsession with destroying the man in black and getting to the Tower, there is the story of Jake a boy from our world who was hit by a car in the 70's and ended up in Midworld. Roland finds himself torn between caring for the boy and continuing his chase for the man in black. He and Jake meet up with the Muties who are horribly deformed humans that live underground. Did I mention the spiders the size of a monster truck wheel? That alone had me checking the corners of my ceiling and tucking my biggest spider smashing pair of shoes under my bed. Just in case.

The Dark Tower I: The Gunslinger is a fast paced novel that barely skims the surface of what's to come for Roland and the people who fall into his life. This book is followed by The Drawing of the Three, The Waste Lands, Wizard and Glass, Wolves of the Calla, Song of Susannah, The Dark Tower and the soon to be released The Wind Through the Keyhole.

So if you want a book about good versus evil (and maybe a little gray area mixed in between) this one will be absolutely perfect.

But make sure to check for those spiders.


CD: Knowing Darkness for under $100

Cemetery Dance has posted  news  that it has several dinged and slight imperfect copies of the huge book, "Knowing Darkness, Artist Inspired By Stephen King" for  66% off their normal cost.
Publisher: Centipede Press
Trim Size: A HUGE 11 x 15 inches -- this book weighs over 15 pounds!
Page Count: 448 pages
Format: Deluxe Cloth Limited Edition with FOUR COLOR interior printing, bound with imported fabric with printed silk panels, housed in an amazing cloth slipcase printed in four colors: original retail price of $295
Special Note About These Copies: These copies have very minor dings and imperfections, so we're knocking 66% off the retail price! It's an incredible deal for this gigantic, beautiful book! Just look at the photos below to see how BIG it is!

Cemetery Dance notes:

This is an incredible Deluxe Cloth Limited Edition with FOUR COLOR interior printing, bound with imported fabric with printed silk panels, housed in an amazing cloth slipcase printed in four colors. We cannot explain in words how HUGE AND IMPRESSIVE this special volume is, you really have to see it in person to understand!
You can purchase the book HERE.

Humphrey: How Pet Sematary Changed My Life

Photo credit: HERE

I enjoyed Joe Humphrey’s article, “How Pet Sematary Changed My Life” very much!  It relates not only thoughts on Pet Sematary, but on reading Stephen King.

Here are the first couple of paragraphs of his article:
In 1989 I was 11 years old and I was not fond of horror movies. I had seen horror movies but they scared me and I didn’t understand why a person would choose to do something that scared them. I didn’t enjoy the sensation of fear and there were things in my life that actually were legitimately scary. My childhood had its share of real monsters. 
When I was three or four, I saw the movie The Wizard of Oz and was terrified of the flying monkeys. Even more so, there was one scene where Dorothy is in the Wicked Witch of the West’s tower prison and the image of her Aunt Em appears in a crystal ball. Dorothy calls out to the image and it transforms into the Witch’s mocking, cackling face as she barks “AUNTIE EM! AUNTIE EM!” at a sobbing Dorothy.

Julianne Moore edges closer to Mama

picture credit:

Bloody Disgusting has a new post from Mr. Disgusting that reports it has "inside word" that Columbia Pictures is speaking closely with Julianne Moore for the role of Margaret White.

Mr. Disgusting writes, "Moore is no stranger to the genre having starred alongside Hannibal Lecter in Hannibal and has also played Lila Crane in the Psycho remake. She is currently working on the exorcism fantasy The Seventh Son for Warners."

By the way. . . I like the names over there at Bloody Disgusting.  "Mr. Disgusting."  That's great.  Just who you might want cooking you dinner, eh!

The full story is HERE.

Amazon: Wind Through The Keyhole Already #17

Publishers Weekly has a very interesting article today titled, "Tracking Amazon: 'Casual Vacancy' Cracks Top 10."  (HERE)

Casual Vacancy is J.K. Rowling's upcoming novel.  So what?  Well,  it's not  going to be released until September 27, but it's already in the top 10 of orders.  In fact, the top 20 has eight books that have  not yet been published! Pre-orders are starting to dominate the market

#17 on the list is Wind Through The Keyhole.  While many of us already have Wind Through The Keyhole in hand, that's because we bought the Grant edition -- the listed Scribner edition that's rising on the bestseller list isn't even out yet!

Also  interesting is this note,
"Perhaps because of the small price discrepancy (the hardcover is only $1 more than the e-book), the print sales have far surpassed the e-book, as the e-book is ranked #84 on the Kindle bestseller list."

Last Rung On The Ladder Takes 2 Awards

Not only was “You Can’t Kill Stephen King” a big hit at the Lewiston-Auburn film festival, but the "Last Rung on the Ladder" took two awards:

  • People's Choice - Best Short: "Last Rung on the Ladder"
  • Best Maine Film: "Last Rung on the Ladder"

This project was filmed by New England School Of Communications.

This January I interviewed the director of this film, Lucas Stewart and the producer, Mike Magilnick.  Check it out HERE.

So I guess it was a big Stephen King night!

Film fest: 'You Can't Kill Stephen King' wins People's Choice best feature

Photo credit: Michael Bernstrein
Monroe Mann (Center) Ronnie Khalil and John E Seymore


Big news for Monroe Mann and the cast/crew of You Can’t Kill Stephen King: The horror film won the People's Choice award for feature film at the second annual Lewiston Auburn Film Festival.

Kathryn Skelton, staff writer at Lewiston-Auburn Sun Journal notes that "You Can't Kill Stephen King" drew the largest crowd of the day.  The movie was filmed in 19 days around Western Maine.  That’s exciting, because King has often encouraged film makers to make his movies in Maine.

Skelton writes:
Mann and Ronnie Khalil took the stage for an audience Q&A after the screening. Khalil and Jorge Valdes-Iga directed with Mann. 
Mann, an actor, and Khalil, a stand-up comedian, wrote the screenplay on a lark, during a rainy weekend at Mann's family camp five years ago. The pair also co-starred and produced. 
In real life, "I'm creepy but not that creepy," Khalil said. 
Mann saw Stephen King twice during filming. The famous author declined a cameo in the movie. The directors are talking now to sales agents and fielding distribution offers.
The full article is HERE.

The Dark Tower: The Gunslinger

I finally completed my set of gunslinger F&SF magazines. That means I got all five magazines that had the original Gunslinger text.  First thing I did. . . pull out my earliest copy of the Gunslinger and compare the book text to the magazine text.  Were there differences?  Yes.  Mostly nothing worth noting.  Some editing had been done to make the text sharper. 

The images are not all my collection, as blogger wants to print my images sideways. Go figure.  

I'm printing the introduction and close to each story.  Also the synopsis for a couple of the stories, just because it's neat to read how King explained his work.

The Gunslinger" (October 1978) 

The Gunslinger opens with this note:
"Stephen King, author of Carrie, Salem's Lot, The Shining and  "The Night of the Tiger" (F&SF, Feb. 1978), returns with a grim and gripping fantasy about the last gunslinger and his search for The Man In Black."

The Gunslinger closes with the note:
"Thus ends what is written in the first  Book of Roland, and his Quest for the Tower which stands at the root of Time."

"The Way Station" (April 1980) 

The Way Station opens with this note:
"Stephen King is the author of the best-selling novels Salem's Lo,The Stand and most recently, The Dead Zone.  The unusual and gripping story you are about to read is a sequel to "The Gunslinger" (October 1978) and the author has provided a short synopsis of the earlier story."

SYNOPSIS: The dark days have come; the last of the lights are guttering, flickering out --in the minds of men as well as in their dwellings.  The world has moved on.  Something has, perhaps, happened to the continuum itself.  Dark things haunt the dark; communities stand alone and isolated.  Some houses, shunned, have become dens of demons.

Against this dying, twilit land-scape, the gunslinger --last of his kind, and wearing the sandalwood-in-laid pistols of his father --pursues the man in black into the desert, leaving the last, tattered vestiges of life and civilization behind.  The town of Tull, now miles and days at his back, the man in black set him a snare; reanimated a corpse and set the town against him.  The gunslinger has left  them all dead, victims of the man in black's mordant prank and the deadly mindless speed of his own hands.

Following the ashes of days-old fires, the gunslinger pursues the man in black.

He may be gaining, and it may be that the man in black knows the secret of The Dark Tower, which stands at the root of time.  For it is not ultimately the man in black which the gunslinger seeks; it is the tower.

The dark days have come.
The world has moved on.

The Way Station concludes with this note:
"This ends the second section of The Dark Tower -- the story of Roland, the last gunslinger, and his search for the Tower that stands at the root of time. 

"The Oracle and the Mountains" (February 1981) 

The Oracle and the Mountains opens with this note:
"Two earlier stories about Roland and his search for The Dark Tower are "The Gunslinger," October 1978 and "The Way Station," April 1980. We promise a much shorter wait for the fourth story, "The Slow Mutants" which is already in hand.  Mr. King's latest novel is FIRESTARTER (Viking).

SYNOPSIS: This is the third tale of Roland, the last gunslinger, and his quest for the Dark Tower which stands at the root of  time.

Time is the problem; the dark days have come and the world has moved on.  Demons haunt the dark and monsters walk in empty places. The time of light and knowledge has passed, and only remnants -- and revenants -- remain.

Against this twilit landscape, the gunslinger pursues the man in black into the desert, leaving behind the town of Tull where  the man he pursues --if he is a man-- set him a snare.  The man in black reanimated the corpse of a weed-eater and set in motion a chain of events that ended with Roland gunning down every living soul in Tull.

Following the ashes  of the days-old fires, the gunslinger pursues the man in black. Three-quarters of the way across the desert he comes upon the husk of a way station that served the stage-lines years (or centuries, or milennia) ago.

Yet there is life here; not the man in black but a puzzling young boy named Jake, who had no understanding of how he came to be  there.  The gunslinger hypnotizes the boy and hears a puzzling, disquieting tale: Jake remembers a great city whose harbor is guarded by "a lady with a torch."  He remembers going to a private school and wearing a tie; he remembers  yellow vehicles and that pedestrians could hire.

And he remembers being killed.

Pushed from behind in front of an oncoming vehicle (called a "Cadillac"), Jake was run over.  Who pushed him?

It was the man in black, he says.

There is water enough at the way station for two pilgrims to continue onward, across the rest of the desert to the foothills. . . and the mountains beyond.  And in the cellar of the way station, Roland discovers a Speaking Demon in the wall which tells him: "Go slow, gunslinger.  Go slow past the Drawers.  While you travel with the boy, the man in black travels with your soul in his pocket."  

According tot he old ways, a Speaking Demon may only speak through the mouth of a corpse; reaching into the wall, Roland discovers a jawbone which he takes with him.

As Jake and the gunslinger continue toward the mountains, the camp fire remnants of the man in black glow fresher.  And as Jake sleeps, the gunslinger works laboriously over  the figures in his own past: Gabrielle, his mother. . . Marten, the sorcerer-physician who may have been the half brother of the man in black. . . Roland his father. . .Cort, his teacher. . .Cuthbert, his friend. . . and David, the falcon, "God's gunslinger."

He remembers the death of  a traitor, the cook Hax, by hanging. .  . and how he  and Cuthbert broke bread beneath the hanged man's feet as an offering to the rooks.  He remembers "the good man," in whose service Hax died, "The good man" who was ushered in this new dark age.  The good man, Marten.  His mother's lover . . . and the man in black?

As Jake and the gunslinger reach the first hilly upswells marking the far edge of the desert, the boy points upward and, far  above and miles beyond, the gunslinger sees the man in black, climbing up and up toward what the gunslinger feels may be another killing ground.

The man in black  has set him snares before on this terrible progress toward the Tower.  

Roland fears the boy Jake may be another -- and Roland has come to love him.

The Oracle and the Mountains closes with this note: "This ends the third section of the Dark Tower --the story of Roland,the last gunslinger,and his search for the Tower that stands at the root of  time."

"The Slow Mutants" (July 1981) 

The Slow Mutants opens with: This, the fourth and longest  tale in the series about the last gunslinger and his eerie and gripping pursuit of the man in black, follows"The Oracle and the Mountains," (February 1981).  Stephen King's recent books include DANSE MACABRE, non-fiction from Everest House, and CUJO, a new horror novel due in the fall from Viking.

The story is preceded by a lengthy synopsis.  

The Slow Mutants closes with this note: This ends the fourth section of The Dark Tower --the story of Roland the last gunslinger, and his search for the Tower that stands at the root of time.

"The Gunslinger and the Dark Man" (November 1981)

The Gunslinger And The Dark Man opens with: "Stephen King's tales about Roland, the last gunslinger, include: "The Gunslinger" (October 1978), "The Way Station" (April 1980), "The Oracle and the Mountains" (February1981), "The Slow Mutants" (July 1981) an, below, the fifth and last story in the first cycle.  The series will be published in a limited hard-cover edition by Donald M. Grant in the Spring of 1982."

The story is preceded by a very lengthy synopsis.  

The Gunslinger And The Dark Man closes with this note: "This ends the fifth and last section of the First Cycle of the Dark Tower -- the story of Roland, the last gunslinger and his search for the Tower that stands at the root of time."

EBAY: It's A Whaaaat ?

I love ebay!  But, you definitely have to be discerning. And, you also have to decide exactly what King items you want to own.

I stick pretty close to books, magazines and one toy car of Christine.  I don't mess -- much -- with Red Leather editions, though  I have a few.  I've spotted Stephen King cuckoo clocks, Christmas ornaments, a photo of Christine -- "signed" by the car (meaning the car  ran over it). Photo's always strike me as strange.  I read Stephen King, I don't plaster my bedroom with his pictures!

I do own some -- odd stuff, but it's mostly in book  form.  A  pop-up book, copies of the Castle Rock, books that have King introductions, and The Mist and  The Stand on audio tape.  (TAPE!)  How about a Desperation/Regulators shrink-wrapped together with a book light.  No, I don't really "get it", but I got it.

Sometimes ebay pops up with a search result that makes you go, "huh?"  Stuff I didn't even know existed.

Here's an example:


"I havea not super great condition William Arnold House by Cats Meow, co 1991, this is signed on the back 93. This is Stephen Kings House in Bangor, Maine! There was some water damage to the bottom of the wood and there is slight pitting of paint on front, cleaned it up as best I could. But hopefully someone would like a spare one or you can try to restore it yourself. This house has a gate in the front of the door which looks like a spider's web with bats!"

A what?  What is a "William Arnold House by Cats Meow" ?!  It looks like a box. Why would someone want a box of Stephen King's house?  I mean, isn't that. . . uhhh. . . kinda strangely personal?  I'll admit, King's Bangor home is super duper cool.  Looks like an old haunted mansion.  But, I don't want my house full of little miniatures of his house!

Let me rant for a moment. . .

I don't get it!  Reading Stephen King and thinking he's super cool is one thing; but some people really are strange!  Take the Christmas decoration, for instance.  Why would you want Stephen King's house on your Christmas Tree?  Who really wants their kitchen clock to be a version of The Shining?

I'm not even sure I know why I think first editions are so cool.  Seriously, it's just a book.  Why pay more when it's really about  the story, right?  Why is my big super copy of IT better than the paperback?  I don't know.  But I know I like that Cemetery Dance edtion of IT!  But I don't sit around reading it.

HERE is a whole page devoted to King ornaments.
HERE is my article  on the King House Christmas Ornament.

So, tell me. . .
1. What are you collecting guidelines.  What do you collect, and what is on your "not interested" list?
2. What is a "William Arnold House by Cats Meow"?
3. What strange things have you spotted? (I didn't even start to  list the toys and miniatures.)

LA Times Review Of Ghost Brothers

The LATimes has a short review of the Stephen King musical Ghost Brothers Of Darkland County (HERE).

I like the line, "“It’s Tennessee Williams in hell."

The review ends with this note about Wednesday night's curtain call:
King, Mellencamp and Burnett all appeared onstage. Mellencamp’s girlfriend, Meg Ryan, and basketball commentator Charles Barkley were also in the house. Mellencamp looked ecstatic. He picked up director Booth and twirled her.

Over 6,000 Pages Of THE STAND

The  New Yorker's website has a short article  by their staff relating what they are currently reading.

Ian Crouch's current reading is a digital copy of The Stand. In fact, Crouch relates that the novel is 6,154 pages on the small screen of his phone!

Here's Crouch's full comments:

I realized recently that I’d not read anything by the most famous writer (and low-key philanthropist) from my home state of Maine: Stephen King. So I jumped in the deep end and bought his 1978 opus, “The Stand,” from the Apple e-book store. (Judging from this week’s news, I may have paid too much for it.) Deep is nearly the right word—long is the better one, as in 6,154 pages on the small screen of my phone, which is the device on which I’ve been reading it, late at night, in the dark. (King added hundreds of pages to the novel for its 1990 reissue, which is the one I’m reading.) 
A strain of the flu engineered by the U.S. military has been accidently unleashed on an unsuspecting population. The government attempts a coverup, but the truth, and death, is spreading quickly. 
King writes with the mad energy of an outcast, dirty-minded teen-ager—volume trumps precision, and the prose gets a little goofy at times. I might be coming to this a bit late in life, but there’s a dirty-minded teen-ager in me somewhere, and so I’m reading on. The cast of characters is sprawling. Of those still alive, I’m taken by a young pregnant woman in Maine, a deaf-mute kid in Arkansas, and a rock-and-roll semi-star who finds himself in a suddenly depopulated New York City. And somewhere out there is Randall Flagg, a dark demon of a man in “sharp-toed cowboy boots” and a jean jacket, who’s clearly ready to do some weird and wicked things. Their fates should come together at some point. There’s a long way to go.—Ian Crouch

The full article is HERE.

Want A Date With Carrie White? has posted that the new Carrie film will be released March15, 2013.

The article also gives this encouraging word:

Most famously adapted for the screen by Brian De Palma in 1976, Carrie received a sequel in 1999 and a made-for-TV adaptation in 2002. The story was also the basis for a famously-troubled Broadway adaptation in 1988.

The new version of Carrie, to be scripted by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, is said to be less a remake of the De Palma film and more a re-adaptation of the original text.

News Is Out: You Can't Kill Stephen King

Here is the press release for “You Can’t Kill Stephen King.”

Stephen King Immortalized in New Campy Horror Film, “You Can’t Kill Stephen King”

April 11, 2012 10:03 AM Eastern Daylight Time

LEWISTON, Maine--(EON: Enhanced Online News)--Stephen King has long been a staple in the horror genre, penning such box office hits as The Shining, Carrie, Apt Pupil, and many more. But on Saturday, a new film premieres that immortalizes Mr. King, making him not only the subject of the film but possibly one of its killers.

“You Can’t Kill Stephen King” is a campy horror parody about a group of friends that vacation near a lake where Mr. King lives, and begin to get killed off one at a time in ways from his books. The friends must piece together a string of clues to stop the copy-cat killer, or risk falling victim themselves.

Judging by the trailer on YouTube, which is both funny and self-deprecating, the film doesn’t take itself too seriously and labels itself as “a horror film that breaks all the rules by not breaking a single rule.”

The film is the brainchild of Monroe Mann and Ronnie Khalil, an attorney/Iraq vet and a stand-up comedian respectively, who came up with the idea during a rainy day at the very lake they shot the film.

What does Mr. King think about the film? “Well, he declined being in it,” says Khalil. “But we did get him the script very early on and he was kind enough to feature our trailer on his ‘unofficial news’ section of his website, so we’re thrilled about that.”

The premiere will take place at the Lewiston Auburn Film Festival this Saturday, April 14th, in the Mr.

King’s home state of Maine, where so many of his books took place. The film is a hot ticket item at the Festival and Mr. King was sent a personal invitation.

“Well, I’m not really sure that’s going to happen,” says Mann. “But this film is an homage to him and his films, all of which have obviously influenced us as well many of the cast and crew. If he does come, we hope he laughs and enjoys it.”

To learn more about the film, visit

The Lewiston Auburn Film Festival will take place on April 13, 14 and 15, opening with a concert by Don McLean at the Franco-American Heritage Center in Lewiston. For ticket and film information, visit

Ben Affleck Still Working On THE STAND

all about Hollywood has this Ben Affleck news:

MUMBAI: Ben Affleck has been signed on to star in Warner Bros Pictures' Nathan Decker. In the political comedy will have the 39-year old Affleck play a politician who is caught in an affair and returns home to confront his past. 
Since the Daredevil star will not direct the film because of his current busy schedule doing the post-production stage of Argo, the Studio is currently looking for a director to helm the project.  
His upcoming directorial venture includes a big-budgeted adaptation of Stephen King's novel The Stand. Affleck has also been attached for an untitled Terrence Malick project that is said to be a romantic drama also starring Javier Bardem, Rachel Weisz and Rachel McAdams. 
Affleck was last seen in 2010's The Town that he also directed.
Full article HERE 

What's Ghost Brothers About?

Adam Hetrick has posted some details at about Ghost Brothers Of Darkland County.

Ghost Brothers is unique because Carrie and other “Stephen King musicals” – this story was actually written to be a musical.

The musical opens today (April 11) in Atlanta at the Alliance Theater.

Okay. . . so what in the world is Ghost Brothers of Darkland County about?  Here’s the summary:
"In the tiny town of Lake Belle Reve, Mississippi in 1957, a terrible tragedy took the lives of two brothers and a beautiful young girl. During the next 40 years, the events of that night became the stuff of local legend. But legend is often just another word for lie. Joe McCandless knows what really happened; he saw it all. The question is whether or not he can bring himself to tell the truth in time to save his own troubled sons, and whether the ghosts left behind by an act of violence will help him — or tear the McCandless family apart forever."
Sounds pretty awesome to me.

Joyland News and Joe Hill

Photo Credit: The Fire Wire

Uncle Creepy at Dread Central posted this an insightful bit from Neil Gaiman’s recent interview with Stephen King.

King praised his son, Joe Hill’s work, saying that Joe could finish Joyland if something happened to him, because their writing styles are “almost indistinguishable.”  He went further, indicating that he thought his sons ideas are better than his own.  The two have collaborated before on shorter works, and we know that Joe played an important role in the final chapters of 11.22.63 – Man Of The Century.

It is kind of strange for King to be thinking the "what if something happened to me" question.  First, it doesn't take him long to hammer out a novel, so it's not like he'll be working on this thing for the next few decades.  Actually, King's website posted news today that the work "has been completed" but still needs to be edited.

And, it turns out there has been some “dickering” with King’s publishers about Dr. Sleep.  I wonder if this is why there is not a November (fall) release of a King novel.  I know that I am super excited about Dr. Sleep, and now Joyland.  King's website also says that Joyland does not currently have a publisher.

The full quote:
“So if I got hit by a taxi cab, like Margaret Mitchell ... 'Joyland' wouldn’t be done but Joe could finish it, in a breeze. His style is almost indistinguishable from mine. His ideas are better than mine. Being around Joe is like being next to a Catherine Wheel throwing off sparks, all these ideas. I do want to slow down. My agent is dickering with the publishers about 'Dr. Sleep,' that’s the sequel to 'The Shining,' but I held off showing them the manuscript because I wanted time to breathe.”
The Dread Central article is HERE.
King's full interview is ablaze at The Fire Wire

King's website published this today:
Following up on Neil Gaimain's interview in the (UK) Sunday Times mentioning a new novel to be titled Joyland about an amusement park serial killer, Stephen has given the thumbs up to officially report that this is indeed a work in progress that has been completed but will need to be edited. There is no official publisher or publication date set at this time. We will update you as more official news becomes available.
So, tell me, all ye who have read Mr. Hill's work -- how like King's is it?  I do know he is very good, but I do not know so from personal examination.  I must say that it is really neat to see King's pride in his children's work.

All I Need To Know I Learned From THE SHINING

The Sixth Wall (Koldcast) has a great article titled, "All I need to know I learned from Steven King's The Shining."  Okay, need I even point out that they misspelled his name in the title?  That aside. . . the article (HERE) is fun.

Marti Resteghini writes, “What makes Stephen King such a great writer is how he takes real environments, feelings and events and distorts them so as to create situations eerily familiar and strikingly horrific.”  That’s so true!  And, it’s also why we are so excited at just the idea of King’s current writing project, Joyland.  Imagine a theme park – a fun happy place, right?  Until Mr. King runs it through that funhouse mirror he calls a word processor.

Here are the article headings.
1. Listen to the little voice inside you.
2. Take your job seriously.
3. If it’s too good to be true, it probably is.
4. Marriage is hard. Give each other some room.
5. Children are wise.
6. Just when you’re ready to quit, hang on a little longer.
7. There are always two sides to every story.
8. Always keep the lines of communication open.
9. Focus.
10. There IS such a thing as too much of a good thing. 
The full article is at: Koldcast The Sixth Wall

Herman Wouk Is Still Alive & Writing

Remember Stephen King's short story, "Herman Wouk is still alive."  Boy is he!

The author of the Caine Mutiny is not only still alive, he's still writing.  According to AP, Wouk has switched publishers and will be titled "The Lawgiver."  AP notes, "It's the story of a planned movie about Moses, complete with references to Skype and Twitter."

Full story HERE

Doctor Gash's Trip Back to The 80's

I enjoyed Dread Central’s “Doctor Gash's Tip of the Scalpel: A Tribute to Stephen King Part 2.”  It is a time warp back to the 80's.

We all know that this was a particularly productive era for King, giving us the first glimpse of The Dark Tower, Fire Starter, Cujo, IT and so much more.  The article focuses particularly on Misery as a center piece to King’s work in the 80's.

It was also an era of Stephen King movies.  It seemed in those days if King wrote it, someone was ready to fork over the money to put it on screen.  Compare that to these days, when if King wrote it, someone is ready to talk about putting up the money to get it on that big screen.

When discussing The Runningman movie, Dr. Gash points out that it starred not one, but two U.S. Governors: Arnold Schwarzenegger and Jesse Ventura.  The Running Man’s similarities to The Hunger Games is not lost on the good doctor, who writes, “One can only speculate how much, if any, inspiration Suzanne Collins drew from The Running Man for her uber-hit The Hunger Games books, but one does have to acknowledge the similarities.”

Dr. Gash calls 1982 and 1983 the most impressive years of the decade.  King gave us: The Dark Tower, Christine, Pet Sematery, Cycle of the Warewolf. . . and the list goes on.

I enjoyed this article a lot.  I wish Dr. Gash had honed in closer to IT, as I think it is actually the center piece of the decade.

The full article is HERE.