Stephen King: I had no idea I'd written a sequel to The Shining

09-09-13

MY new novel, Doctor Sleep, is about a man called Danny Torrance who has psychic powers which saved his life as a child.

VARIOUS FILM STILLSCritics are saying it sounds like a sequel to The Shining, and my response is: the what?

Don’t get me wrong, it sounds sorta familiar. There was a bunch of horror stuff with those kind of names back in the 80s; The Shining, The Howling, The Whining. And sure, I probably wrote more than my share. But I’m pretty sure this whole backstory I’ve come up with for Danny, about his dad trying to kill him in a haunted hotel, is completely new.

My agent tells me this Shining is about a writer going crazy in Colorado during a harsh winter, and it’s true my characters are always writers. But, as I explained to him, my books are about writers who live in Maine.

Apparently they made a Shining movie that was pretty good. Great. But trust me, you stop paying attention to the film adaptations of your work after the cheque comes in for Children of the Corn III: Urban Harvest, and that was six Children of the Corn films ago.

Let’s get real here: I’ve written 50 books. I can’t be expected to remember them all. So if my readers think this one’s a sequel, what does it matter who wrote what and if it was by accident or on purpose?

Anyway, I’m already hard at work on my next novel, which I think people are gonna love. It’s about an injured writer from Maine who gets picked up by a telekinetic teenager driving her haunted car into a town full of vampires controlled by a killer clown.

Try telling me that’s not original.

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