This came to my head the other day after I saw the remake of Carrie, and then talked to my friends about it. We were talking about how King's been around for a long time, and covered several different genres, and if maybe eventually they will teach college courses dedicated to his works, like they already have for some writers like Lovecraft and Tolkien. One of my friends said probably not because he doesn't think King is all that great. 

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13,511 hits 3.5 (2 votes) Share Favorite | Flag 4 years ago by Tartarus88

Do you think Stephen King is a good writer?
This came to my head the other day after I saw the remake of Carrie, and then talked to my friends about it. We were talking about how King's been around for a long time, and covered several different genres, and if maybe eventually they will teach college courses dedicated to his works, like they already have for some writers like Lovecraft and Tolkien. One of my friends said probably not because he doesn't think King is all that great.

What do you think?


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4 yrs ago - Sunday 11/10/13 - 5:23:47 PM EST (GMT-5)
Many of his books are, or will become, classics.
Bad or mediocre writers aren't awarded the Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters.
4 yrs ago - Sunday 11/10/13 - 7:55:06 PM EST (GMT-5)
stephen king is very commercialized, unlike tolkien and lovecraft were in their days. he is a good story teller, i don't know if he is much of a wordsmith. i've read a good number of his books, mostly in high school, and enjoyed myself. so i would say yes, but i don't think he'll ever be studied.
4 yrs ago - Sunday 11/10/13 - 7:59:28 PM EST (GMT-5)
yes
4 yrs ago - Monday 11/11/13 - 12:09:16 AM EST (GMT-5)
He's a good storyteller. He's no literature.
4 yrs ago - Monday 11/11/13 - 1:13:52 AM EST (GMT-5)
I devoured nearly everything he wrote when I was a young teenager. I don't know if he's a GOOD writer, but good enough for teenage me.
4 yrs ago - Monday 11/11/13 - 7:23:18 AM EST (GMT-5)
Yes, very much so. I think there's a tendency to think that good writing and popularity are mutually exclusive b/c we're cynical about what the masses like, but King is very good.

On Sunday 11/10/13 - 7:55:06 PM amaqdrinker wrote:
stephen king is very commercialized, unlike tolkien and lovecraft were in their days...

I can't speak for Lovecraft, but Tolkien was very popular and successful in his lifetime. Perhaps the nature of "commercial" has changed, but relative to his time, he was just as well known and widely read as King is.
4 yrs ago - Monday 11/11/13 - 8:05:23 AM EST (GMT-5)
^^^This
4 yrs ago - Monday 11/11/13 - 10:22:52 AM EST (GMT-5)
I'm starting to think so. I didn't used to get into his books before, but I'm starting to now. LOVED 11-22-63!
4 yrs ago - Monday 11/11/13 - 12:19:16 PM EST (GMT-5)
He bugs me. I love the concepts he comes up with but his execution is lacking. There are far too many characters in his books. In Cujo, he talks for ages about this old gossip and ages about a dye mishap at a cereal company. Boooring! If i get bored, i tune out. Master of horror my balls!
4 yrs ago - Monday 11/11/13 - 4:59:48 PM EST (GMT-5)
On Monday 11/11/13 - 12:19:16 PM marvelheroes wrote:
In Cujo, he talks for ages about this old gossip and ages about a dye mishap at a cereal company. Boooring! If i get bored, i tune out. Master of horror my balls!

I read Cujo when I was around 10, and soooo much of the relationships between the people went way over my head. I got bored with those parts and just wanted to read the parts with the rabid dog

I feel like there was a part where somebody was mad that his wife/girlfriend was sleeping with someone else, and he went into their house when no one was home and splooged on their bed.
So then, since I was a 10-year-old girl, I asked my older brother, while riding in the car with my parents, about that part because I was confused. "He peed on their bed or something?"
4 yrs ago - Monday 11/11/13 - 5:04:22 PM EST (GMT-5)
On Monday 11/11/13 - 12:19:16 PM marvelheroes wrote:
He bugs me. I love the concepts he comes up with but his execution is lacking. There are far too many characters in his books. In Cujo, he talks for ages about this old gossip and ages about a dye mishap at a cereal company. Boooring! If i get bored, i tune out. Master of horror my balls!

i love that stuff
i think his strength is the love of ordinary middle america type people. it really grounds it all

i don't think his writing is great, but it's good enough and i really feel like there's something fundamental about his stories that tap into something that people connect to. he is woven into the american subconscious
4 yrs ago - Monday 11/11/13 - 5:05:25 PM EST (GMT-5)
(i haven't actually read cujo, i'm just saying that the sort of thing marvelheroes mentions seems very stephen king to me and doesn't put me off)
4 yrs ago - Monday 11/11/13 - 6:01:23 PM EST (GMT-5)
Eh, their okay. I mean, most of his stories are pretty predictable and dwell too long on boring things, when really it should be focusing on the plot more. I'm also not a huge horror fan, so his stories don't catch my eye that much. Yes, I respect him for writing so long and making such large sized literature and committing to it so well, but he just isn't my kind of author. And also, a lot of his stories revolve around God and such, which gets boring after awhile. I'm sorry, it's just my opinion, but that doesn't mean it's right.
4 yrs ago - Monday 11/11/13 - 9:57:58 PM EST (GMT-5)
better than stephanie meyer and all those people putting out teen romance novels for 8th graders, that's for sure.
4 yrs ago - Monday 11/11/13 - 11:18:54 PM EST (GMT-5)
I've read a lot of his work too and honestly wasn't a fan either. Or maybe the movies were just so bad (excluding Stand By Me) that it made me hate his writing now too.
4 yrs ago - Monday 11/11/13 - 11:32:13 PM EST (GMT-5)
I love Stephen King. There is the occasional King book that leaves me disappointed, but by and large, I am left connected to the characters and wondering what happens next.

Whether you classify his writing as literature or fluff, he is a phenomenal storyteller and has the ability to churn out not just page-turners, but page-turners that connect with people.
4 yrs ago - Tuesday 11/12/13 - 7:23:06 PM EST (GMT-5)
He is very successful and although I don't really read the books, I still like the stories (movies, though).
4 yrs ago - Tuesday 11/12/13 - 11:48:40 PM EST (GMT-5)
I've thought a number of his stories (and here I agree with abz comment) were interesting and thought provoking: especially his short stories. However, I think that at a certain point, he became formulitic in his writing, and I got bored with his work some time ago.

In many ways I think he is like Tom Clancy in that. Really great stuff for a while, then same story over and over with new names and new settings, and a bit more vulgarity.
4 yrs ago - Wednesday 11/13/13 - 10:23:03 AM EST (GMT-5)
I've only read one book by Stephen King (Misery) so I don't have a very strong opinion of him. I liked Misery, but I know that I'd need to read more of him before I can really have a stance.
4 yrs ago - Wednesday 11/13/13 - 2:24:14 PM EST (GMT-5)
He is an entertaining writer. Not the same thing. He does have a knack for coming up with scary images, but my God he can't do endings. Remember the end of IT? Oh dear.

I think it was best summed up by family guy. "My next book is about a haunted... ...erm... ...lamp! Ooooo!"

4 yrs ago - Wednesday 11/13/13 - 4:40:39 PM EST (GMT-5)
a thousand pages isn't needed to get the point across.
4 yrs ago - Wednesday 11/13/13 - 5:43:15 PM EST (GMT-5)
he is good but i hate 20% of his books he has losted hs book have kind of lost there touch
4 yrs ago - Wednesday 11/13/13 - 5:44:18 PM EST (GMT-5)
you mother f*cking key board
4 yrs ago - Friday 11/15/13 - 1:29:25 PM EST (GMT-5)
Good, not incredible, but outright bad authors don't receive the slew of awards that have been shot his way. Whilst not all of his works are classics and some of them are just super-forgettable he's had an ever-lasting effect on popular culture and horror fiction that few can match.
4 yrs ago - Friday 11/15/13 - 2:07:17 PM EST (GMT-5)
On Monday 11/11/13 - 12:19:16 PM marvelheroes wrote:
He bugs me. I love the concepts he comes up with but his execution is lacking. There are far too many characters in his books. In Cujo, he talks for ages about this old gossip and ages about a dye mishap at a cereal company. Boooring! If i get bored, i tune out. Master of horror my balls!
On Monday 11/11/13 - 5:04:22 PM skyfish wrote:
i love that stuff i think his strength is the love of ordinary middle america type people. it really grounds it all


Yeah, exactly. The point is that he's grounding the story in the ordinary and mundane in order to make the supernatural happenings that much weirder.

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