There are a few things in life that have been constant for me - my love of Stephen King and my love of Bon Jovi. Oh sure, right now I am crushing hard on Tim McGraw and Kate Furnivall, but that will fade.
One day I was scrolling facebook and I noticed a post on Stephen King's page about a book tour for his new book, Revival. Clicked through, saw a Kansas City date, checked my business bank account and discovered I had $3 more than it was going to cost me to buy the tickets, hurriedly blew my entire wad buying the tickets without even thinking and jumped for joy.
So yesterday Dave and I set off to Kansas City to hear him speak at the Unity Temple courtesy of Rainy Day Books.
Listen - it was SO GOOD. Like so, so, so, so good. WAY better than I ever expected. On par with seeing Bon Jovi (which I have done at least three times now).
I never want to forget that 75 minutes. It was bucket list material for sure.
I read my first King book at 11. It was "It." My mother was a King reader and she left that book lying around after she was done with it.
I could NOT resist it. It was calling to me. It said read me all the way through, every last page, even if it will scare you shitless.
My mother warned me that it was scary, but she didn't prohibit it.
And I was hooked.
Almost thirty years of reading those books (many of them over and over!) came to a beautiful moment in that church last night.
He is funny and warm and entertaining and told us stories of a very normal life lived. Of having his wife say when their kids were little that the hours between 4 and 6 should never exist (AMEN to that brother) and that as a way to help her during that time of day he would read to his little kids. Except that Richard Scary books were total "bullshit" (I could not agree more - what is with these kids books with SO MUCH SHIT ON EACH PAGE?) so he read them spiderman comics instead. There was talk of him reading all the current popular books (from Harry Potter to Divergent to 50 shades of Grey - which he says took him three months to read and I give a hearty AMEN to that shit too, worst.book.ever) and how to him the best books ever are those books which were forbidden when he was young. (Which is obviously what brought me to read It, even though it wasn't expressly forbidden. Jack is already awaiting the day I let him dive into my pile, and he is getting very close.) There was talk of life in Florida ("we didn't want to move there, but we turned 60 AND IT'S THE LAW) and the way people act in Florida (umm, yes please! after living there for 2 years that's another Amen from me) and how being characterized as a "horror" writer is utter bullshit. (To which I also heartily agree, plenty of his stuff is not horror at all.) There was talk about religion and marriage and relationships and oh so much more.
The lovely owner of Rainy Day Books was just beside her that she FINALLY, after 40 years, was getting the chance to sit down with STEPHEN KING, the man who is to her bigger than the presidents she has interviewed in that chair.
I get that.
It was amazing. The chance to see, in front of you, all those times and places and words that are in your head for all those years. I know I can mark off periods of my life by which King book I was reading then.
If you are a "constant reader" and ever get the chance, do not miss it. Even if you have to drive 6 hours.
I know I am already desperately hoping that when the next book is released I am able to get to a location for a book signing, as I still do not have his autograph. (This event distributed the autographed copies randomly and I did not get one.)
In the meantime, I will hold onto that freezing cold November evening, squashed in the middle of two big dudes in a warm church sanctuary in Kansas City, listening to every.single.word with rapt attention for the rest of my life.
I am the constant reader.
(who is hoping to get some time with the newest book here very soon!)