In last year’s “Reasons to Love New York” edition of New York mag, a reader wrote something like, “Because every band, movie, friend, etc. I ever want to see comes through town eventually.”
Last night I got to see Stephen King for that exact reason. I lived in Maine for 22 years, went to King’s alma mater—worked at the same newspaper he did—and never saw him, either at an event or on the street (seens like everyone I know either caught him in Borders, at a restaurant, or in line for the movies at some point).
I sat four rows away at the New York Times Center’s TimesTalk with book critic Janet Maslin chatting with Stephen King for 90 minutes. The cozy hall only seats 350 people. The event was simulcast to 70 movie theaters around the country. Pretty cool.
King was hilarious, way taller than I expected (a bluejeaned giant), and insightful. I took a few notes on some of his funnier or more profound moments (“I’ve thought of things that were too awful for human consumption…and then wrote them anyway”), but don’t have said notes handy for a complete writeup. Suffice to say I got to see my biggest influence and writing idol and it was spectacular.
I also broke the news (I think?) that King will definitely be adding another installment to his seven-volume Dark Tower series. It was rumored before, but King put it in black and white terms last night. He also said he’s always wondered what happened to Danny Torrance from The Shining, what he’d be like as a 40-year-old after the events at the Overlook Hotel. He joked that maybe Danny and Charlie McGee from Firestarter would hook up. I sent the word to my favorite SK fansite and they published it. Check it out.