Episode 17:

American Author - Stephen King

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Transcript of the Episode:

Welcome to the English for Everyone ESL Podcast! I’m your host, Caren Hayden, and I’m here to help you improve your English.


In honor of the creepiest month of the year, today’s episode is dedicated to the master of horror himself, Stephen King. I’ll tell you all about this critically acclaimed author and share some of my favorite Stephen King books and movies. He is one of America’s favorite writers, and I’m going to tell you why! Stay tuned!


It’s difficult to walk through a bookstore or browse movies on your television without seeing something created by the wickedly imaginative mind of Stephen King. He is one of the most prolific American writers. That means he has published a lot of books - at least 61 fictional novels and six non-fiction books! And, he’s only 72 years old! 

Stephen King was born in the state of Maine, which is the setting for many of his novels. While he was growing up, his family was very poor, and he even lived without running water for a time. His father abandoned the family when Stephen was two, and they never saw him again. Even with these hardships, reading and literature were very important in King’s family. He and his brother, David King, were very interested in reading and writing from a young age. 

While Stephen King was a high school English teacher, he was spending lots of his free time writing. His first published novel, Carrie, became very popular, and was eventually turned into a movie. (I highly recommend this movie, for the record!) But King was not confident that any publisher would actually buy Carrie, so he threw it away. His wife, Tabitha, fished it out of the trash and encouraged him to submit it! Thank goodness for her! This book really jumpstarted King’s career.

As a young child, I remember seeing my mom read one Stephen King book after another. She was definitely a fan! I guess I picked up my love of King from her. I read my first King novel when I was around ten years old. This was certainly too young, but I just found a book on our shelf and started reading it. I couldn’t put it down! His stories gave me nightmares for sure, but I was still drawn to them. Nowadays I still read a lot of King, but I don’t get scared anymore.
Some of my favorite books by Stephen King are Salem’s Lot, Rose Madder, The Stand, It, Gerald’s Game, and The Institute (which is his latest book). A lot of King’s books have been turned into movies. Some of the most famous are The Shining, Stand by Me, The Shawshank Redemption, Christine, Cujo, and Carrie. If you like reading scary or suspenseful stories, then Stephen King is for you. Even though Stephen King has said in many interviews that he did not set out to become a horror writer, that is certainly how most of his books are categorized. 


It turns out that King himself liked to be scared even as a young child. He once said, “My childhood was pretty ordinary, except from a very early age I wanted to be scared. I just did. I was scared afterward. I wanted a light on because I was scared. There was something in the closet. My imagination was very active even at a young age.”

Do you like being scared by thrilling stories, books, or movies? Why or why not? I hope you have enjoyed learning about one of the most famous and bestselling authors in the United States - Stephen King. Have you read any of his books or seen any of his movies? Let me know in the episode comments!

Thank you so much for listening to the English for Everyone ESL Podcast! Don’t forget to subscribe to the podcast on iTunes. You will find the transcript of today’s show and some helpful links about today’s topic on the show website: www.englishforeveryonepod.com. [Stay tuned for the slower version of today’s episode].


[slower version, same transcript]

Bye Bye!



Music is Where’s My Jetpack by Computer Music All-Stars found on www.freemusicarchive.org