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Stephen Spignesi on Stephen King, Writing, and More

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Stephen Spignesi is a New York Times bestselling author who writes about historical biography, popular culture, television, film, American and world history, and contemporary fiction. He is also a university professor, novelist, poet, screenwriter, and musician.

Spignesi — christened “the world’s leading authority on Stephen King” by Entertainment Weekly magazine — has worked with Stephen King, Turner Entertainment, the Margaret Mitchell Estate, Ron Howard, Andy Griffith, the Smithsonian Institution, George Washington’s Mount Vernon, Viacom, and other personalities and entities on a wide range of projects. Spignesi has also contributed essays, chapters, articles, and introductions to a wide range of books.

Spignesi’s more than 60 books have been translated into several languages and he has also written for Harper’s, Cinefantastique, Saturday Review, TV Guide, Mystery Scene, Gauntlet, and Midnight Graffiti magazines; as well as the New York Times, the New York Daily News, the New York Post, the New Haven Register, the French literary journal Tenébres and the Italian online literary journal, Horror.It. Spignesi has also appeared on CNN, MSNBC, Fox News Channel, and other TV and radio outlets; and also appeared in the 1998 E! documentary, The Kennedys: Power, Seduction, and Hollywood, as a Kennedy family authority; and in the A & E Biography of Stephen King that aired in January 2000. Spignesi’s 1997 book JFK Jr. was a New York Times bestseller. Spignesi’s Complete Stephen King Encyclopedia was a 1991 Bram Stoker Award nominee.

In addition to writing, Spignesi also lectures on a variety of popular culture and historical subjects and is a Practitioner in Residence at the University of New Haven and Adjunct Professor at Gateway Community College in Connecticut. He is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of the small press publishing company, The Stephen John Press. Spignesi was recently praised for “reinventing the psychological thriller” upon the publication of his acclaimed debut novel, Dialogues.

Spignesi lives in New Haven, Connecticut with his grey cat, Chloe.

Deadman’s Tome podcast is a variety show covers everything from horror writing, horror movies, filmmaking, youtube drama, and fringe communities. Deadman’s Tome has stong stance on free speech and is open to exploring conspiracy theories and social issues. While the show has a comedic bent to it, some many heartfelt moments have been explored on the program. The show was designed to be somewhere between the Joe Rogan Experience and Howard Stern, but with a stronger focus on horror and writing.

Live stream every monday, wednesday, and friday at 9:30pm

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Pushed to the Limit!

Have you ever worked on a project that tested your comfort level? During a conversation with Renee Miller, we discussed a story that she wrote that really pushed her limits. If you missed the conversation, you can check it out here:

This had me thinking about projects that I’ve worked on that made me uncomfortable. The only book that has really left an emotional impression on me is Seven Attempts at One Death. I wrote that book during one of the darker chapters of my life, and it reflects on a very deep, and corrosive depression that tried to hollow me out completely. The emotions connected are so strong I did nothing with the book for almost a decade.

What about you? What projects have you worked on that really pushed you to the limits of your comfort level?

Let me know in the comments below.

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Write Under the Influence

Have you ever worked on your craft while under the influence? Not going to judge if you have, or if you do. Several well-known authors have had worked on various books while under the influence. Stephen King drank mouthwash for alcohol and snorted rock star levels of coke while working on Cujo. The legend has even admitted he doesn’t remember how he even wrote the book, because he was so out of it. Ayn Rand was taking speed while working on Fountainhead. Of course we can’t forget Hunter S. Thompson, he wrote Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas while experimenting on mushrooms.

So, I extend the question to you. Do you write under the influence? If not, why not/ Have you ever, and if so what was it like?