Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Question of the Day

Ginger posted this blurb that she found online. Read it and tell us if you agree or disagree with Stephen King's assessment of SM and why.

"Stephen King's opinion may drive a stake through the heart of "Twilight" author, Stephenie Meyer. In an interview with USA Weekend, the bestselling author compared Meyer with J.K. Rowling , the author of the Harry Potter series. According to Stephen, "Both Rowling and Meyer, they're speaking directly to young people... The real difference is that Jo Rowling is a terrific writer and Stephenie Meyer can't write worth a darn. She's not very good." While Stephen may not be a fan of Stephenie's writing, he understands the appeal of the series. "People are attracted by the stories, by the pace and in the case of Stephenie Meyer, it's very clear that she's writing to a whole generation of girls and opening up kind of a safe joining of love and sex in those books. It's exciting and it's thrilling and it's not particularly threatening because it's not overtly sexual." He further explains, "A lot of the physical side of it is conveyed in things like the vampire will touch her forearm or run a hand over skin, and she just flushes all hot and cold. And for girls, that's a shorthand for all the feelings that they're not ready to deal with yet."

24 enjoyed the bouquet.:

alison said...

Sometimes I feel bad being the first responder, because I am afraid that my remarks will spoil the bunch. Please continue to post your opinions even if they dissent from mine... ;)

People might be upset at this, but my feelings about Stephenie's writing are exactly what Stephen King said. I have been feeling this way for a long time. She is a terrible writer. Her story idea is interesting, and thrilling, but she is not a good writer. I picked up Twilight again this week to start reading again, and it is sooo boring and poorly written. Other books, like Harry Potter, hold up over time and you can read them over and over again because they are well written. JK is an amazing author, and writes insightful stories with depth of character. I just don't get that from SM.

But the idea of Twilight is a good one, and I think its what gets everyone hooked on the read, but I think the series would have been waaay better if someone else would have written them.

Ok. Now someone post a different opinion! Jes? where are you? ;)

Ryah said...

Well, I have said the exact thing that Steven King said. I agree that JK is a far better writer then SM. Twilight is a great story, but the writing isn't.

Ginger said...

It's hard for me to judge SM's writing because I just recently got into reading books. I don't have as much to compare it with. I actually HATED reading as a kid. I detested it. I can remember purposely buying "cliff notes" just so I didn't have to read the book! Do they even have those anymore?! probably not with the means of the internet now, haha. Damn I feel old!

Ok back to the subject matter... I agree, I love the storyline and I think that is what most people have fallen in love with and become so engaged with. Maybe not so much with SM's writing style. I have had no desire to read The Host. Has anyone else?! that might be why.

I have been following Cassandra Clare through myspace and google groups.. and I am so addicted to her books! I found myself the other day telling a friend that I like the CoB trilogy more than the Twilight saga. I was a little shocked when that came out of my mouth! haha

alison said...

Ginger that is actually one of the examples I was saying to Ryah. I can read COB and COA a million times and they are always exciting start to finish. Those books are so good!

Corinne said...

I guess I have been willing to overlook the writing because I love the story so much. I also am not a huge reader and don't have a lot to compare it to. I guess the biggest thing for me was the continuity. I found major holes (for me) in the story when Breaking Dawn came out.

I am in love with the chastised love and the emotional draw between the main characters and love the sentiment behind the writing. I think SM does capture that, but I think even SM would say she isn't the most fabulous writer--and it sounds like people agree.

Kari said...

I pretty much agree with the above posters. I fell in love with the characters and the story. The story was creative and new to me. I can look past the bad writing for my fix of Edward.

♦Z~Z♦ said...

I hate to say it but I could probably write the story better than SM. Well... maybe not, but I could definatly do a very good job of it.

Twilight is very boring. They're not the bestly written in the world but as said before everyone falls for the characters and story line. Not the actual writing.

I had one book that I read at least 10 times in the course of a week. It was so good that I just couldn't stop reading it. Where as with Twilight I can read maybe once a month not even because it's not very appealing to me.

I love romance novels, but there has to be another part of the plot. To me if a book is all romance and no action what-so-ever, it's boring. My favorite part of Twilight is the suspense and action at the very end. That's the best part of the book.

Okay, I'll stop now.

Ps - Alison, your comments don't change people's opinions. They can express their actual opinion, but before they wouldn't have because they were afraid that someone would rip their head off.

alison said...

;) thats kind of what I meant, z~z. I just want to make sure that if someone wants to express a different opinion they will be free to do so....are you saying that I rip peoples heads off? ;)

I like the suspense parts the best too.

Whitney said...

I am so over Stephen King!"Oh I write scary stories." What is the deal him ripping on Steph? She is amazing and so what if it isn't his cup of tea? I can stand that fact that he has to be so rude about it.

Maggie said...

I agree, I think JK Rowling is a much better writer and story teller than SM - but that's ok, not every single good story has to be immaculately written.

But why does Stephen King feel the need to say any of this? I think it is hurtful to SM and her fans and just unnecessarily mean.

♦Z~Z♦ said...

Maggie! I think I might have figured it out!!

He's just jelous because HE doesn't get to be anywhere close to Robb!!!!

(hehehe... now for the real one.)

I think he's just a but upset because she's taken some of his readers away. When I'm a published author that everyone knows by name I'd be a bit mad if some new person came in a took some of my fans away.

(Notice how I said "when" and not "if"?)

Maggie said...

Z~Z, I think you are completely right!! haha jealously is an ugly thing.

hopefully SM won't up and die because Stephen Kind made fun of her (like that guy who died after he accidentally ran over SK)

♥♦Z~Z♦♥ said...

He's definatly NOT "Stephen Kind". Not much of a "King" either...

Sorry, I love picking on other people's spelling mistakes. ;-p

Erin said...

I'm weighing in late on this, but it's something I was thinking about over the past few days. I don't disagree with Stephen King - in fact, I think he's right on. SM is NOT a writer by trade. I've read many, many other authors' works that top hers in terms of literary skill. But what seems odd to me is that she's addressed this - she's never claimed to be a fantastic writer; she only claims to be a storyteller. And I think she is extremely successful at that. The odd part is that Stephen King would choose to go public with his opinion when she's already addressed this. What's his motive? Why kick a dog when he's down, so to speak? She's not being pompous or bragging, but being rather humble for her enormous fame with the series. I think Stephen King might be a bit irked that SM has had the success she's had, somewhat on accident - I mean, she has the whirlwind scenario. Stay at home mom to three has great dream, writes it down and has an instant money-making bestseller. She didn't have to work all that hard at it. Many career authors with a ton of writing talent will never match a fraction of what she's done.

Anyway, if you're still reading this tirade, yay for you! That's just my thought. SK's opinion seems a bit mean-spirited even if it is true, seeing as though SM has already addressed it.

Ginger said...

I think you made a very valid point Erin and I have to agree with you. Thats a good way of describing SM's work... storytelling.

alison said...

I think that it illustrates how I have been slowly turning against SM that I kind of secretly enjoy that she was "kicked while she was down."

I don't know. Breaking Dawn still is very upsetting to me, and I think she deserves to be punished.

Ginger said...

Just curious, why was Breaking Dawn upsetting to you Alison?

alison said...

well, I have to be honest and say I didn't read it. the thing is, after the exerpts I DID read, and finding out the storyline, and then reading different chapter by chapter synopsis available, I felt there was no reason for me to actually read it. I hate everything that I know about the book and wish I could pretend it didn't exist and that the Twilight series is a trilogy.
I know that other people really liked it, but.... yeesh. I can't move past it.

Ginger said...

**spoiler alert -- if you haven't read Breaking Dawn yet! haha**

I can see what you mean though. When I did read it, I felt like SM had jam packed a lot in the last book. Sometimes I felt all over the place with Bella being pregnant, turning into a vampire, and then having to face the all-mighty Volturi (which btw was a total let down! I just thought that whole scene was really hyped up for nothing). The one part I found to be worth reading was the very last paragraph when Bella is able to let Edward into her mind and he sees everything she's ever thought or felt since the day he walked into her life. It was a good way to sum up everything to me. I really enjoyed that part.

Kaitlyn said...

okay, sorry, but some heads are about to get ripped off...and i agree with Whitney...
OKAY, I SERIOUSLY DON'T GET WHAT WOULD BE WRONG WITH READING TWILIGHT MORE THAN ONCE A MONTH!!!!!!! AND WHAT THE #@$%@#% IS STEPHEN KING DOING? IT'S LIKE BECAUSE THE FREAKIN' STORYLINE ISN'T SCARY ENOUGHT BUT STILL SOME OF HIS FANS LIKE IT HE HAS TO DEFACE THE BOOKS! I CAN'T BELIEVE HE WAS SO RUDE!
sorry, i've just grown more obsessed after a month of i-net deprivation...and is SK related to Royce? Okay, i'm taking a real-life person and asking if they're related to someone in the Books...wow, i'm weird.

relmneiko said...

I have to say I agree with Stephen King's comments. As for why he said it - it seems pretty obvious that he was prompted by the interviewer, and he gave his honest opinion. Being critical isn't the same as being mean - e highlighted both the negative and appealing aspects of the books in his comments, and was far more generous than I would have been.

Twilight just came out at the right time - it's urban fantasy when urban fantasy is in (pre-Buffy, it was so hard to find urban fantasy on bookstore shelves) and hooked onto the 'sexy vampire' trend that's been building slowly since Interview with the Vampire - then all of this collided with tweeny pseudo-goth emo culture to create a huge fanbase... the novel itself is not only poorly written and starring characters that really have no personality outside of their contrived romance (tell me, what do Edward and Bella do together besides stare into each others' eyes?), it does nothing that mounds of paperback romance novels haven't been doing for decades. Also it's rather sexist.

...I'm sorry, I just had to get that off my back. I enjoyed the books for what they were: schmoopy teen romance novels, a guilty pleasure, nothing more.

I suggest those who want a fun light read in the teen-novel sphere read The Princess Diaries books - the characters are much more developed and the female protagonist had actual goals and thoughts outside of her love interest and getting her ass saved every five minutes.

Seriously, the popularity of the Twilight series makes my inner feminist cry. (Though really, Edward isn't any better, what with his seriously disturbing stalking of a girl way too young for him. If he *looked* eighty you'd want to put him in jail. "I'm watching you sleeeeeep...")

alison said...

relmneiko --
you are awesome. I love you.

Just had to say it! I agree wholeheartedly with everything you said (except the bit about the princess diaries as I have not read those.)

Ginger said...

Very well said!
See this is why I like following this blog b/c there's real people here with real opinions. I get so sick of reading about the Twilight fans who swoon over the series just b/c they think Rob Pattinson is hot (which I think he is, don't get me wrong). Its very refreshing to read people's opinions on the books that actually HAVE an opinion and aren't just following the fad. Know what I mean??!!

Kari said...

Yes -- I too am so sick of reading some of the popular forums where no one is allowed to have a negative opinion without getting flamed. I can't stand that we're all supposed to have the same opinion: SM is perfect, Edward is perfect, Bella is awesome, etc. etc.

For the record, Edward IS perfect ;)