Monday, January 31, 2011

Really, Steve? Really?

Oh, for Pete's sake.
Wesley Smith buys an Amazon Kindle to keep his mind off his recent nasty breakup, but he finds that his version is no ordinary e-reading device. Smith's Kindle has a special Ur option, which reveals the future and all the works his favorite authors have written in parallel dimensions. However, when the Ur delivers news of terrible events on the way, Smith must decide if he should interfere in fate. While King can certainly spin a good story, the Amazon Kindle focus (the story was written exclusively for and can only be read on an Amazon Kindle) keeps this one feeling like an advertising gimmick.
Let's see--why, do you think?  Maybe because...it is one?  I mean, I like the Kindle and all, but this is really a step beyond that U2-branded iPod.


The funny thing is, my Kindle also has an Ur option, which enables me to predict exactly what kind of book Stephen King is going to write next.  It's going to be about an educated guy in a creative profession, who nevertheless possesses considerable working-class street cred, and who discovers some kind of evil lurking in a small town, and must confront his own fears to defeat it.


Ah, I should leave the poor guy alone--he probably needed the dough.

13 comments:

Ginger said...

Have you seen this one yet?

James Frey’s Fiction Factory:
The controversial author is hiring young writers to join him in a new publishing company. The goal is to produce the next Twilight. The contracts are brutal.

This is just one of the myriad reasons I think it's bad, bad, bad to have poetry and literary fiction produced for and distributed through the entertainment market.

Year of the Depend Adult Undergarment indeed!

Ginger said...

Also, this King Kindle thing is probably a strong argument against using brand names non-ironically to up the authenticity factor in realist fiction. Unfortunately I've seen that done. Recently. In a published short story.

jrlennon said...

Oh god yes, I remember the Frey thing. And then there was Fay Weldon's Bvlgari whatsis.

I try not to ever use brand names, names of real books or songs, etc., with some strategic exceptions. I mock this tendency among crime writers here:

http://www.jrobertlennon.com/articles/soundtracktomurder/

Burl Veneer said...

Wasn't this already an Adam Sandler movie?

rmellis said...

Kingle?

Oh, I don't think there's anything wrong with this. He's always been into brand names. I do wonder if one day we'll look back and see the ebook as the time when everything began to change, when the novel began to disintegrate and people stopped reading them.... already so many of these ebook-only books are short: why? Because they don't make much money? Is it just a temporary marketing artifact, or does the ebook format somehow like short books?

Of course it could go the other way, fiction renaissance, etc. Guess we'll see. Which will win, pessimism or optimism?

George F. Snell III said...

Even Sandler had the sense to pass this one by...

Anonymous said...

Books should be long. That's why they're called books. Until we see an age when people do not need, say, five or more hours of sleep, we will need books. Life is long. So are the days and nights in which we live.

jrlennon said...

Hmm, I dunno, there are some lovely short books out there. I'm a little more dismayed by the product placement.

Rhian, c'mon, fiction renaissance all the way!!!

Matt said...

He's clearly reached a stage of semi-enlightenment where he can just sit and write anything. Book introductions, big novels, small novels, short stories - hell, I'm sure he has a collection of sestinas dedicated to 50s muscle cars in the works.

The thing is, like, love, hate, or ignore him: he can do it. I respect his diligence as a writer, even if I stopped reading his stuff around The Dark Half-era (when every King protagonist was a novelist).

rmellis said...

John still reads (almost) everything King writes. It's a loving complaint! And of course, King does his thing like no one else. You have to respect that.

jrlennon said...

Yeah, it's true, click the tag, you'll see me rant and rave about Mister Horror Man all day long.

violentbore said...

At first glance, I read the italics as:

Wesley Snipes buys an Amazon Kindle to keep his mind off his recent nasty breakup...

Coming to theaters next fall...(fingers crossed)

Pete said...

How bout an evil Kindle that hypnotizes Wesley Smith into serial-killing... iPad owners! Right before he kills his victims, he says: "Isn't that incredible?"