What better job description is there than what R.L. Stine has for his own: “I scare kids for a living.”
Stine began his career as a joke writer, but found his groove writing children horror books. Now, after 20 years, Stine makes his stab at an older audience in his new release Into the Dark. This book is about an island where cherubic, innocent kids are really nasty and mean. A mass disaster brings on a ghoulish bright red bloody rain.
In his lecture on October 15 at the MJCCA, Stine was a mix of stand-up comic, story teller, and possessed that weird, fun spirit of the crazy uncle everyone has.
The mixed audience of young and old had an array of fans with copies of the Goosebumps series that made Stine a New York Times bestselling author.
The Goosebumps books revolved around fun subjects like a scary sponge, a monster that lived in the locker, and the good and bad twin. When asked what scares him, Stine said nothing outrageous, mostly normal things. He loves classic horrors and they make him laugh more than they make him scared. His writing process is simple; he gets an idea, creates an outline and begins writing. Stine really enjoys the writing process, as well as wondering with his imagination about the underworld. He mixes in old with the new and just loves making things go wicked.
Stine mentioned that once during the book tour, a librarian asked for a picture with him because she wanted to prove to her readers that he was not dead. Another tale concerned a tattooed and pierced young woman who came up to Stine and told him that he was the greatest influence on her life. He did not know whether to be flattered or scared as a result.
Stine admitted that his mother never really understood what he did and that she used to send him articles about the dangers of New York City when he moved there from Ohio. But he was able to stay grounded when Goosebumps took off; once, when he came back from an interview on the Today Show, his wife left him a note: “You were great, now go plunge the toilet.”
When asked about when he will retire, Stine said, “Never, because I have the best job in the whole world.”
Get geared up for the month-long 21st Edition of the Book Festival at the MJCCA, a chance to check out over 55 authors in November. As a lover of books, I can’t wait!
For information and tickets visit: www.Atlantajcc.org/bookfestival or call the box office (678)812-4005
Follow Dr. Wilson Trivino on [email protected]