I Stand With Stephen King

So the daughter of serial killer Dennis Rader is upset over Stephen King’s story A GOOD MARRIAGE, claiming that it’s based on her father’s story and exploits her father’s victims. Here’s my take on the matter…

As a writer I know what it’s like to read/hear/see something and be inspired to write a story. I’ve based many of my stories on actual events, most of which are serial killer-related. Can you tell? No, because they’re not accounts of THAT story. They’re completely different stories, only INSPIRED by that story. Which, if the statement from King that I read is true, is what happened in this case. King read of the Rader situation, particularly the part about Rader’s wife being totally unaware of her husband’s actions, and was inspired to write a story about a wife who stumbles upon a box in her garage that contains proof of her husband’s crimes. It’s not about Rader or his victims. It’s a story about a woman who suddenly learns that her husband of over 20 years is a serial killer. While I read the story years ago when it was first released, not once did Dennis Rader’s name come to mind. In fact, I was reminded of Gary Ridgeway and his wife, who also was unaware of her husband’s murderous ways. Ridgeway killed more than 50 women and his wife never knew anything about it. He’s who came to mind while I read the story. Not Rader. This story is a reflection of ANY wife or spouse of ANY criminal who was unaware of the crimes of their significant others. For her to claim it’s based on her father and exploits his victims is nonsense and untrue.

Every story ever written comes from somewhere. Something we’ve read, something we’ve seen, something we’ve heard. That’s what inspiration is. It’s hearing/seeing/reading something and having it trigger your thoughts, sending your mind whirring at the possibilities of a story. Because believe it or not, there’s a story in EVERYTHING. A simple trip to the supermarket could erupt into a full-blown kidnapping complete with police corruption, botched ransom drops, and a happy reunion with your family at the end. A power outage in an apartment building becomes a terrifying horror story with evil monsters lurking in the darkened corners. Everything is inspiration when you’re a writer. There’s no turning it off, no stopping it.

King did nothing wrong in this case. This woman is really reaching if she wants to claim that story is based on her father and exploiting his victims. It’s a wildly ridiculous claim and makes me wonder if it’s not she who wants to exploit the situation. And you know what? I do believe there’s a story there…



About Kimberly A Bettes

I whittle away the minutes of my life by entertaining myself with various projects and people. One thing is certain. I'm never bored. I also write stuff and take pictures of things.

Posted on September 27, 2014, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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