MiseryI love anything Stephen King, have I mentioned that before? Well, in case I haven’t let it be known from here on out that Stephen King is one of the best story tellers that came out of the 20th century. A pretty amazing feat when you consider that other authors such as Issac Asmiov, Arthur C. Clarke, Phillip K. Dick, Phillip Jose Farmer, John Steinbeck, and J.D. Salinger, just to name a few, all lived large and wrote amazing stories that tapped into the human condition and helped us understand the how’s and whys that confronted us in a century that was fraught with turmoil.

Sadly, all the previously mentioned authors have passed on, with the exception of J.D. Salinger who simply stopped publishing his fiction in the mid sixties. But Stephen King is still around and still going strong. As I have already mention, Stephen King is releasing an 1,100 page book in November entitles Under the Dome, which I am struggling with whether or not I should buy when it comes out, considering the asking price of $35. But that’s besides the fact. Also, I have been toying with the idea of re-reading Four Past Midnight and The Stand which I read late last year. So when I came across the movie Misery when I was unpacking some boxes, I quickly popped it into the DVD player, curled up on the futon and enjoyed the show. 

When it was over, it suddenly occurred to me how great of a story teller Stephen King is. The building of conflict early on when Annie Wilkes sets fire to Paul Sheldon latest manuscript, calling it filth. A scene that has tremendous impact in the end when Paul Sheldon reverses the table, burning the manuscript he wrote for her where he brings back from the dead her favorite characters, from previous novels.

But imagination is not the only aspect of writing that Stephen King excells at, he is also a master of character development. Hot on the trail through out the movie of the missing Paul Sheldon is local sheriff, sheriff Buster. Sheriff Buster is a small town sheriff that, it would seem, would have little or nothing to do in a small mountain town that has little or no crime. But rather then being unmotivated and laid-back when the famous romance novelist, Paul Sheldon, goes missing, he takes what steps he can to find him even though everyone believes that he is safe and sound, driving down the highway somewhere in his Mustang on his way to New York. Sure it’s fiction and sure the characters are the ones telling the story, how else is conflict supposed to build, but still…

…but still, the fact that the characters are so believable makes an aspiring writer kinda envious, makes an aspiring writer kinda wish he could be that good at character development.