Tag Archives: Stephen King

Yet Another Acquisition and Tommyknockers Knockin’ at my Door

This one I had to get because, at the time, it was the only available copy on the internet and I already had number two. You never know if the one on the internet is the first of forty to show up tomorrow or the only one that is going to show up for forty years. So I bit.

I have to put a temporary halt on book buying. I can no longer even pretend that I am keeping up. Hell, last Friday I decided to reread The Tommyknockers by Stephen King on a whim.

Not totally a whim. It is one of my favorites. For one it was the first book I read in my very first place on my own. No television. Just beer and piles of books. And that was when I could read for 6 hours at a spin. Now I have to start fighting a nap within a half hour. That may be because I wear x3 magnification and hold the thing up to my face.

No television, no internet, no computers. Ah, those were the days, brother, those were the days.

Another reason I like it is it is a good story. Stephen King said in an interview it was his least favorite book and he doesn’t remember a lot of the writing. It was at the height of his drinking and cocaine days. And there are places in the book where you think, “ah, man, this was an eight-ball night for him for sure.” By this time he was a lot like Lucas I would imagine – editors as yes-men.

King’s strongest story-telling has always centered around friendship and this one is no exception. That, and the man knows the throws of alcohol abuse – quite intimate on that he is.

Anyway, it is one of my favorite science fiction / horror stories. Those are two genres that haven’t always mixed well, or believably. This one is a gem in my book. Love it. And it’s fast too. There is no hidden symbolism in King’s work, no meta-anything – just straight forward storytelling, contemporary Americana, and some shots of terror.

Hey, I just started a book called The Resurrection of the Son of God – go look up the table of contents. I need some rest after some of my reading!


Storymatic

sc-cons-1202-stranded.jpg-20101202

[1st Note: If I had enough readers, I’d ask them whether they thought my method of starting posts with background story was annoying or boring. I find dry entries to be boring. Or the really short ones: “Found this [picture] cool.” Well, I hope the thing they are referring to is cool because their blog post is a twitter entry. I HATE TWITTER! On that note: I HATE FACEBOOK! We should have more to say than 100 characters or whatever it is (yes, I agree, some should be restricted to 2 to 3 characters) and so I hope the background story is not boring, and I do try to make them short.]

[2nd note: I reserve the right, in the future, upon having a book or story to sell, to reverse this hatred of Twitter and Facebook and shamelessly use it to sell my wares!]

{3rd Note: But that is all, I am too prolix a writer, perhaps even garrulous, for such restrictions as one can tell just from this post. GET TO THE POINT ALREADY!!!]

{4th Note: Actual subject of this post starts 10 paragraphs down!]

So we’re at the Bellevue Square Mall today to have my iPhone repaired as I cracked the screen at work. We had 45 minutes to kill. Unlike the Christians, who have 12 days of Christmas starting on the 25th, there are four to five days of Christmas in the secular calendar consisting of Christmas itself followed by four to five days known as The Great Return (where, I suppose most people return the shit they received for shit they really want – I never return – it’s rude). And I suppose they’ll have to change it to the great “buy my own shit days” because a lot of people merely buy each other cards.

Yes, I find our modern, secular Christmas to be frivolous at best, a recipe for despair at its worst.

I am not a secularist. I am also not a Christian (I lack faith in the resurrection of Christ, and that, as they say, is to lack it all) but I am a mystic.

And by that diatribe above I mean to say the mall was BUSY.

So we had time to kill because the mall was packed. Most of the stores are (way!) overpriced garment shops for women with a dress size of 2 or below and men unsure of their sexual orientation. I mentioned to the wife that what the mall needed was a really cool store. Then we turned a corner and found a really cool store called MARBLES: THE BRAIN STORE.

Although the home screen of the web page doesn’t really show it off, Marbles has all sorts of brain games. Uno can be fun if you have a child in the house but gets boring really quick. They have everything: Solitaire Chess where you learn the game in smaller pieces before you apply it to the full format. That I will probably buy in the future. Always wanted to be a decent player but never found a good strategy for improvement. Breaking something down into manageable pieces is a proven method for skill development.

There is the super trivial pursuit style game: Mindstein. Each card has five questions, multiple choice, each answer has a letter, the combination of correct answers spells out a word, you have to get the answers right to spell out the word (I suspect after 3 questions you could guess like on Wheel of Fortune). I was impressed with the questions – they were not dumbed down.

And then they have books of puzzles, the graphic logic puzzles, the hierarchical, or ordinal logic puzzles (Harry was 1 inch taller than Suzy who was taller than Gary, etc,) one book had a regular search a word that, when completed, was a summary of a literary work, and to finish you had to deduce the literary work.

I mention these because they are fun and I feel too many people nowadays focus on the body to the exclusion of the mind – and the exclusion of the soul. It is not true, is not freaking true, that to Continue reading


Writing Just to Write

And that is just what this post is.

I got back last week from a two week trip to Tucson AZ. I think I may have picked up some bug from a hotel on the way there or back. I’ve felt like crap. Another cause could be the crappy diet a road trip usually entails if you are not careful. I ate a lot of take-out and drank copious amounts of coffee and soda. I also quit smoking (again, Bob, sheesh we’re bored by this one!); 23 days so far and that could have me feeling like crap. My lungs sort of hurt. Or its indigestion. Or I’m sick. I’ll wait a few weeks, if I’m not dead, then I should be fine!

I am quitting for real this time. I have been experiencing shortness of breath over the last year. I shouldn’t be winded going up a single flight of stairs. I’ll miss you, love. But like a crazy woman, you may stimulate me but you’ll kill me.

Reading Stephen King’s Lisey’s Story at the moment. I always read King when traveling, they seem to go together for me. Having a little trouble getting through it which is an odd experience for a King book. I usually smash through them fast. This one is giving me trouble. I’m not connecting with the characters at all. The dead husband I am not buying as a (former) writer. Also King does not make at all clear what the Continue reading


Doctor Sleep

Took some time out of reading Gene Wolfe’s The Knight/Wizard and Fulton Sheen’s Life of Christ (a good read actually) to read King’s sequel to The Shining. In all honesty I didn’t seek the book. On the night of my flight out to Tucson to visit family I left my Kindle at work and desperately needed something for the flight(s). You are not likely to find the sort of stuff I normally read at the airport as they stock mainly Patterson level sellers.

So there was King’s Doctor Sleep. I thought, “why not visit an old friend?” When I was growing up Stephen King was it, he was the author. This was around the time of The Stand, Salm’s Lot, to Night Shift, Cujo, Christine, and onto Pet Cemetery and Tommyknockers – late seventies to early nineties.

I devoured them all.

I moved on to “weightier” stuff after I got married and read maybe two of his novels in the intervening years. I think they were Hearts in Atlantis and Bag of Bones (I have little recollection of the former).

I’m glad I stopped in to visit. A new Stephen King book is similar to a new Continue reading