This is the next entry in a Theatre… a Movie… and a Time, a series that was begun here. The following memory download came by way of this week’s upcoming duo post. In the wake of my re-read of a certain novel by an American author of contemporary horror, suspense, science fiction and fantasy. Recalling what had changed after I first read it, especially by the time its film adaptation arrived.
“Now the time has come. I put two bullets in my gun. One for me, and one for you. Oh darling, it will be so beautiful.”
December 2, 1990: At one time, I read every Stephen King novel that was published. I credit the author for being one of the prime motivators for me to get a Book-of-the-Month Club subscription. Bought and paid for in my name. The author a bewilderment of most (not all) on my grandmother’s side of the family. Mom, her sisters, and brother were in fact, a devout clan of readers. Just not of horror.
I still have some of those same King novels on a shelf where I call home. My daughter has even read a few of them. All that only because I married another book reader, I believe. The last novel of his, in the continuous string of them that went back to King’s first (Carrie) from the 70s, was Misery. Published in the summer 1987. The last year of my lost decade. I’d not pick up another SK novel for three years afterward.
Not because I didn’t enjoy the book. I very much did. Life was readying a change, a significant one. The following year I’d be courting the love of my life. Married by two months into the next. An upheaval only surpassed with the birth of our first borne years later. By the time Misery’s film adaptation arrived in theaters, we weren’t newlyweds any longer. My bride, though, would still let me drag her to movies then.
With her encouragement in the Spring of ’90, I’d pick up and re-devour Stephen King’s The Stand, The Complete & Uncut version on its release. The first for me by the author since Misery.
Talked her into going to what had become our film viewing haunt as a married couple, the Century City 14. In the 176-acre commercial and residential district in West Los Angeles that Cleopatra built. Though she hadn’t read it, and was not the type of novel she would normally, God bless her, she went. Cringing by my side, flinching with every swing of the sledgehammer, I think she still wonders whom she married sometimes.