Lilja’s Library: The World of Stephen King by Hans-Åke Lilja

Lilja’s Library: The World of Stephen King

For over a decade now, Lilja has been one of the leading voices on the Internet when it comes to covering and reporting on Stephen King’s books and movies. His website, Lilja’s Library, is the die-hard fan’s source for information about new King projects and breaking news, but Lilja has also featured his own in-depth reviews and interviews with the most important people in King’s world, including Stephen King himself.

Had a read and while I think this blog-book conversion was good, it was pretty much only useful to me for the Stephen King interviews. While it featured other authors as well, they did not interest me as much so I kinda skimmed over their accounts.

From the Stephen King sets, I’ve selected the best interview snippets below!


Interesting interview snippets:

Lisey’s Story (read review here):

Lilja: Lisey’s Story is a very nice book. One of your best books, if I may say so. Stephen King: I think it’s THE best book

I totally agree with you. The book talks about the depth of despair and loneliness a wife feels after the death of her husband – a renowned author – and how she gets to be harassed by fans and editors who want to put their hands on unpublished manuscripts they think she has. She ends up fighting for her life against a psychopath.

a book quite like Lisey and it was funny how that worked out because when I wrote most of it I was really sick a lot of the time. I had pneumonia and I picked up one of these hospital infections so that when I got out of the hospital I was just nauseated all the time, I couldn’t keep food down, I felt like crap. The book was just angelic…So that was good, but I actually literally wrote Lisey in between running to the bathroom to vomit what I had eaten last, and finally I shook whatever it was I had. And the book just never really lost that magic for me, and usually you write a book and you usually feel pretty good about it when you’re writing it. I usually feel like, “Goddamn, this is good, this is great,” and then it comes to a point when you have to work on it again and you say, “Oh, what a pile of shit this was, what were you thinking?” You know you always feel a little bit like you fell short but I never felt that way with Lisey. I felt good about that book.

The Talisman (read review here: The Talisman * Stephen King)

Stephen King: Ah…[laughs]…it’s there, I mean, sometimes you just know. It’s there, just waiting for us, you know? Because Jack is hurt, goes over to the Territories and the way things are left is that he’ll be OK if he’s over there on the other side, but if he comes back to our world he will sicken and die in short order, so of course you have to put him in some sort of situation where he has to come back and then the clock is ticking.

The Plant (digital edition)

Stephen King: Oh, but the thing is, about The Plant, I ran out of stories. It was a great idea and people downloaded it. I think that a lot of the press was kind of discouraging about the way that that worked financially because it made them nervous, but actually it was a license to coin money. There were no production costs or anything. Well, you know, you run a website. And there’s a certain amount of…you know, expense involved in keeping things like that up and running, but it’s nothing compared to this support system, the infrastructure that it takes to publish books.

Secretary of Dreams 

Stephen King: They are releasing Secretary of Dreams now, and Frank Darabont is really high on the idea of doing a limited edition of The Mist. I don’t like them, I don’t like them. I think they are books for rich people and they’re elitist and the whole idea of limiteds…there’s something wrong with it, you know? The idea that people want a book that they can kind of drool over or masturbate on, I don’t know what it is they want with these things, but it’s like they get this book and it’s this beautiful thing and they go like, “Don’t touch it, don’t…oh God, it’s worth a thousand dollars, he signed it,” and all this, and my idea of a book that I like is when someone comes up to me at an autographing and you got this old beat-to-shit copy of The Stand and they say, “I’m sorry it looks this way,” and I go like, “I’m not.” It means a lot of people have read it and enjoyed it.

Advice for writers:

Stephen King: No, I think any writer would like to be remembered and somebody who’s read, you know, somebody whose work stands the test of time, so to speak. But, on the other hand, as a person, I’ll be dead and if there’s no afterlife then I won’t give a shit, I’m gone. And if there is an afterlife I got an idea that what goes on here is a very minor concern. But, you know, I’m built a certain way and the way I’m built is to try and give people pleasure. That’s what I do. I want people to read the books and be knocked out, and I’d like that to continue even after I stop.

Salem’s Lot (read review here: Salem’s Lot * Stephen King (Or the best vampire book since Dracula)

Cause the titles always kinda suggest themselves after a while. The only time I ever had a problem was the vampire book I wanted to call Second Coming and someone said it sounded like a sex manual.

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