Friday, March 07, 2014

Stephen King: Announces His Retirement (2002)

In January 2002, Stephen King, then 54 years old, told the Los Angeles Times that he was retiring from publishing books.

King explained he had a few books in the pipeline (Everything's Eventual, a collection of short stories, and From A Buick 8, which he had completed before his 1999 accident, and he wanted to finish the Dark Tower series.

"Then, that's it. I'm done. Done writing books. ... You get to a point where you get to the edges of a room, and you can go back and go where you've been, and basically recycle stuff. I've seen it in my own work. People when they read Buick Eight are going to think Christine. It's about a car that's not normal, OK? You say, 'I've said the things that I have to say, that are new and fresh and interesting to people.' Then you have a choice. You can either continue to go on, or say I left when I was still on top of my game. I left when I was still holding the ball, instead of it holding me."

King had also hinted at retirement back in 1998, after Bag of Bones was published, saying he feared drifting into self-parody.

The Onion weighed in:

Obviously, King never retired. Indeed, he barely slowed down.

In 2007, he explained his comments: "When I said to that lady from the L.A. Times I might retire, I was still recovering from the accident that I was in, I was in a lot of pain, and I was under the pressure of finishing The Dark Tower. At that point, retirement looked good. When the pain went away and The Dark Tower finished up, retirement started to look bad."

Still going strong at age 66, King will publish two novels this year (Mr. Mercedes in June and Revival in November).

1 comment:

laura k said...

Is this retirement announcement in chrono order with the books? I assume so... which means, damn, he has written a lot in even the last 12 years!