An Object Lesson in Politics and Authors

May 1, 2012 in General Topics

As if to illustrate a broader point about the dangers of politicizing one’s brand, along comes Stephen King’s recent article imploring the government to raise his taxes.

I’m not going to get into the politics of King’s article. I’m simply dumbfounded he wrote it in the first place.

Though I certainly respect his passion, from a career perspective it seems wreckless. Such high-profile politics risk losing readers, both first-time and established.

Further, it’s just disappointing writing.

For a writer that seemed so humble and reflective about his past battle with addiction in the excellent On Writing, I found the comments about Chris Christie’s weight more than a little ironic. In fact, I found them beneath Stephen King.

I think there are more eloquent, appropriate ways to address some of these points.

King is right. He’s rich — really, really rich — and he’s certainly less worried about losing readers than say, Jonathan C. Gillespie would be. But even if one has such a profile, and such assets that losing a chunk of the reader base isn’t much of an issue, there are other reasons not to go wading into this kind of stuff. We all know what a massive noise chamber the political scene and the media is, especially during an election season. The flaming has already begun. That can’t be a nice diversion for an author trying to come up with new material.

Does King really want to have his creative process sidetracked because he chose to step into this?:

Credit Due: Memorex

The mind boggles.

As a side note: The Stand is still one of my favorite books of all time.

Stay Tuned.

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