I have to confess, though, that I learned even more about writing from another book of King's. A novel. Misery.
For those unfamiliar with the plot, it's about a writer, Paul Sheldon, and his biggest fan. Paul's historical romance series about an empty-headed character named Misery has made him a fortune but shredded his self-respect.
Finally, in self-defense, Paul decides he must kill Misery. She will die in childbirth. Unfortunately for him, just as Paul's final Misery novel is released, Paul is involved in a horrible car accident in middle-of-nowhere Colorado.
Annie Wilkes, the nurse who saves his life and brings him to her home to heal just happens to be his number one fan who is so looking forward to reading the new Misery book. She just loves Misery.
And when she finds out that Paul has murdered her favorite character, her vengeance is swift and brutal. She buys an old, manual typewriter, slams the still-critically-injured Paul in front of it, and orders him to write Misery back to life.
Here's what I learned from this nail-biter of a book.
1. You can write under any circumstances. Paul writes with two shattered legs and while he is under the addictive influence of pain killers. He writes when he's scared, thirsty, hungry, tired. He even writes after certain parts of his anatomy have been removed during Annie's rages. And I was complaining the other day about having to write with a migraine? Wow.