Monday, April 27, 2009

Power of Storytelling. And How Stephen King's IT Scarred Me.

Yes, I meant to write "scarred" in the title of this post, not scared... And it turned out to be a good thing.

I discovered this Friday night when we had some new friends over for dinner. As I was talking to one of them, we began discussing what we do... he's a professional musician and I write fiction. Upon discovering that I write, he asked me which authors have influenced me, and I immediately threw out Stephen King.

That actually gave me pause. I hadn't read King in a long while, so to name him threw me off there for a second or two. I then explained to him that King's older stuff scared the stuffing out me when I was younger and I'll just never forget his stories. The novel IT, in particular, scarred me in the sense that I'll never ever, ever, EVER look at a clown without suspicion.

When I read that book, I was about 12-years-old and staying with elderly relatives in a rural town in Colorado. My parents didn't join me on that trip--just my grandmother, as they were her sister and brother-in-law. Their 90-year-old house creaked all night long and boasted the darkest basement in the US. If you've read King's book, then you might remember Bill's little brother, Georgie, has to go down into their creepy and dark basement to fetch something for Bill. And in this old house in Colorado, I'd decided to read IT... at 12-years-old.

Yes, it totally freaked me out. (I'm sure you've already figured that out! LOL)

But, heck if I could stop reading! That's the power of storytelling and I'll never forget the entire experience associated with immersing myself in that frightening novel. And obviously, it moved me enough to name King as one the reasons I write today.

How about you? Which authors influenced you... Any that you've recently discovered? Or ones that you'd read in your childhood? I'd love to hear your stories! :)

Take Care,