Gina Penn, unabridged.

Posts tagged “the shining

How Stephen King Saved My Life

To know me is to know I’m a Stephen King fan.

It’s no secret that I love the man’s stories. Trying to choose a favorite would be no easier than picking a favorite pet. There are certain books of his that I tend to turn to the most in times of distress but at any given time, I’m reading at least one Stephen King book.

What am I reading right now? Full Dark, No Stars. Again.

Every year in the fall months, I eagerly look forward to the latest King book. This year it’s 11/22/63. From what I hear, it’s another monster like Under the Dome but I don’t care. Personally, I prefer the luxury liner experience of a good, long read, one I can really immerse myself into instead of the typically encouraged 80-100,000 word book. These books dwarf my own “Learning To Fly” collection but I have my own massive stars on the way.

The Dark Layer, my upcoming book, ended around 155,000 words. The writers I know screamed that it’s too long. But whenever I ask readers what they think, they don’t seem to care. “If I don’t like a book,” a friend told me once, “then I’ll put it down and it won’t waste any more of my time. But if I do, then I don’t want it to end. So how is being long a bad thing?”

Anyway, I’m getting off target. King’s the man and I’m one of his biggest fans. At eight years old, my horror book virginity was popped by Christine. Eight is rather young but I’m glad I was young when I started adult books. If I had children, it’s something I would encourage for them as well. But these were more than just books with interesting characters and crazy stories. These books were escape hatches.

My childhood was rocky, and being an only child, I had no one else to talk to about what was going on. Few friends and no family that gave a damn so my books became my refuge. Christine, Cujo, The Dead Zone, The Shining, Pet Sematary, and Firestarter were my friends. Actually they were better than friends because not only did I learn from them but they never broke my toys or told lies about me behind my back. The best part? They were always, always there. No phone calls, no embarrassing admissions, no judgments. Just companionship.

I write ebooks now. Currently, I’m outlining a book called “Rainbow in the Dark” and what I hope to accomplish with this book is the same thing that King’s books did for me. I want to provide companionship to someone else out there that might be going through a tough time. I want to give them advice on how to stay strong through trials and tribulations they may be living, or surviving. Most of all, I want to give them hope. Because it can get better. Will get better.

26 years later and I’m still reading King. Here’s to the next 26.