Yesterday I did take it easy. I even watched a movie yesterday afternoon on Hulu.

It was called “No Exit.” I’d actually read the book a few years ago. I remembered enjoying the book, so I decided to watch the movie.

As usual, however, the book was better than the movie.

See, I love scary movies. Just as I love to read scary books.

Lately, at night I’ve been watching a series on Hulu called “Castle Rock” which is a fictional town in Maine created by Stephen King.

In the first episodes, the story revolves around Castle Rock’s Shawshank Prison.

The Shawshank Redemption:

The movie “The Shawshank Redemption” was based on a novella by Stephen King, the prolific book author who cranks out scary stories one after another with no signs of stopping.

And why would he? He’s been hugely successful in using his vivid imagination to develop stories that are of course hard to imagine. And what is most riveting about his storytelling is the idea that they could be more than imagined.

Lots of terrible things in the fictional town of Castle Rock. People die, strange things happen routinely, and time is turned upside down.

After watching the series for about a week, I ordered more Stephen King books that I had not yet read in the past.

I love my Kindle. But sometimes, especially with Stephen King books which tend to be lengthy, I want to hold the book in my hands.

And I like to shuffle back through the pages to examine something that happened that I want to recall again. Or scare me again.

I know many, probably most of you, don’t like to read books in this genre. Probably most people don’t enjoy being scared. Me, I gravitate toward it. As long as it’s fictional.

A sign that reads "welcome to castle rock"

I guess there’s not much that can shock me after the articles based on real events that I wrote back in the eighties. And there were some that were true stories about people doing hideous things to other people.

Piecing Together Events:

I can’t explain why I was drawn to those events.

Before the internet, I had this fascination with piecing events together to form a story that is as easily readable as a book. When you write things that happened in the exact sequence, with the exact details, it seems easier to recall.

I had a thing about finding out what someone wore on a particular day, which is doable as long as someone who lived with them and were there is still alive. Or learning just how they wore their hair. And what the weather was like that day.

Now it’s easy with Google. But the challenge I always posed for myself was how many details I could ferret out of something that happened years before.

It was like a puzzle. Digging, digging, digging through mounds of information for just one sequence of events or one item of clothing or shade of fingernail polish.

And that was how I wrote. Detail after detail in order to make it realistic.

Anyway, back to Castle Rock, the fictional town in Maine where strange and horrific things happen at a rapid pace.

The first appearance of this town in King’s stories was in his book “The Dead Zone” back in 1979.

Novels Set In Castle Rock:

Other novels set in Castle Rock were “Bag Of Bones”, which I read a few months back. There is also Cujo, Needful Things, The Dark Half, Lisey’s Story, and Elevation.

Castle Rock has since been referenced to or used as the primary setting in many other works by King. As a native of Durham, Maine, King was inspired by his hometown when creating Castle Rock.

My two daughters do not share my love of scary stories, things that go bump in the night, or subject matter that tends to spook you.

By the way, do you ever wonder where the phrase “things that go bump in the night” originated from? I mean, the words do not sum up the idea really. What is a “bump in the night?”

Early 20th-century writers were already using this phrase with familiarity.

They haunt the places of the dark, where there are were-wolves and goblins and “things that go bump in the night.”

— W. M. Letts, The Living Age, July – September 1914

A specific sense of thing in reference to a supernatural or monstrous being was invoked in the early 19th century.

And Round & Round We Go:

Okay, as often happens, I begin a post and end up taking it hither and yon for no reason at all but for the workings of my colorful imagination.

Now you can almost see what I was like as a child, keeping myself occupied and content with only me and my imagination.

Well, I’ve rambled on long enough. I have a physical therapy appointment soon and after that a visit to the chiropractor. So I’d better start getting ready to head out.

Yes, this post was what I call “a ramble.”

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31 Comments

  1. Scary movies are not my thing at all, although I have enjoyed certain scary books, like Stephen King’s The Shining and The Stand. But, I haven’t read a scary book in years!

  2. I’ve been reading Stephen King books for many many years and have enjoyed almost all of them. The Stand is probably my favorite, but I also like It…he does the best characters. The best movie make of any of his books is The Shawshank Redemption…a great movie with a great cast…oh yeah and who can forget the Green Mile…and Insomnia and the Man in Black series. I have many of the books on tape.

  3. I love your ramblings and all your posts. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. In my opinion yours is the best blog out there. I would love to be neighbors. But alas I live across the country. Isn’t the internet a wonder. In so many ways I believe it’s ruined society. But things like your blog… bringing like minded women together and allowing someone like you to share all your rich talents, well that is definitely a silver lining. Hope your appointments go well and looking forward to your next post.

  4. I have 4, 5 foot high bookshelves, full of my favorite books, one shelf is only Stephen King and James Patterson. My 3 sons used to kid me, because I liked “spooky good” books. I have read them all, and enjoyed them.. (I also love spooky Halloween) so go figure…..Boogie men.. Oh… and Frankenstein…when i was a teen, the movies were scary, but so much fun…But then again, going to the movies was different back in the 40s. It was a treat, and only 25 cents, to go to the theater, back in the day. Even tho, I am much older now, I remember, my older brother was with me ” to protect me” on our way home. Ha…anyway, we both survived the spooky stuff. Memories.
    Hugs, from Wisconsin..

  5. Brenda, in my 20’s I read lots of Steven King books but I never read true crime or other scary books. Now I do not read scary books, articles(especially ones dealing with the horrific things people actually do to one another, it is worse than a movie) or watch movies. In fact I rarely watch tv, I think I have watched one movie/tv show in the last 7 months. I love to read, it is how I relax.

    I am fascinated by your process of writing and researching. Did you write these peices for publication?

    Have a great day, thank you for coming to the blog, it is a sad day to learn about Michele and Paula.

  6. I’m a HSP (Highly Sensitive Person) so scary movies and books are definitely not my thing. Phil loved Stephen King – was his favorite author. He started reading SK at age 12 when he got bored with “young adult” books.

    I’m sure that your local library would have all, if not most of Stephen King’s novels, so you wouldn’t have to buy them.

  7. I thoroughly enjoy your rambles! In fact, I enjoy whatever you decide to talk about on any given day. Please don’t ever stop.
    I hope your outing today was good. Enjoy the rest of your day.

  8. I don’t like scary movies bc after watching one it makes me very jumpy and jittery! Comedy, drama and romance movies are my go too!
    After being almost grabbed twice within two yrs I can’t even watch the movie u just watched bc that could of been me! Thank God I have a sharp mind and can think fast with fast reflexes so I was safe and sound! Just seeing a pic of winding roads now gives me anxiety instead of feeling peacefulness!
    Give me a sappy hallmark movie to watch any day! I know how it’s going to turn out and doesn’t make me jumpy or jittery or hide my face with a pillow! Lol
    I hope your appts went well today Brenda.

    1. J,
      I’m with you. The regular Hallmark movies are my favorite! They’re never scary, and they always have a happy ending. I’m ok with the Hallmark mysteries. But if they get a little intense, I’ll hide behind a pillow too, lol! I’m so glad you’re safe after being almost grabbed twice! I’m not sure I’d ever leave the house again!

      1. I am with both of you and Hallmark shows and movies are my favorite.
        So looking forward to When calls the Heart and Chesapeake Shores series again. I like books, shows or movies that allow me to sleep peacefully and with no dark thoughts.

      2. I use to speed run over my parents house every week and time myself how long it took me to get there. Then I would visit with them and dust, wash floors and help them with whatever they needed to get done. The scary part is that I never told anyone that I was coming over, I would just show up! So nobody would of known where I went and my phone battery needed recharging so I couldn’t call for help! It was in the afternoon on a hot summer day and nobody was around except those two scumbags in a car! Not one single car came by bc I would of ran in the road and stopped it!

        The second time a yr after in the hot summer again it was at a shopping center and it was around 5 pm and everyone was in the store except the scumbag! I had my oldest granddaughter with me and usually she jumps right in the car and locks the door but this time she didn’t know if she should run or not! The expressions on her face told it all, to just get it my car groceries bags in all! When I put my bags in the backseat is when I saw why she was so scared! The first thing she said to me was I thought that guy was going to grab u! I told her I did too, but watching the expressions on her face, told me to just get in my car fast!

        She was so traumatized that she wouldn’t see me til the next yr on Easter! This girl always would call or come over my house every month, even with friends! So that was very usual for her! That night she slept over and woke me up having nightmares of that day with him grabbing both of us! I’m so glad that she was alert and watching everything unfold and not on her phone then bc I wouldn’t be writing this now!!!
        I’m getting anxiety thinking about this, but it’s very important for everyone to stay alert wherever u go, even in the daytime with your phone on!

        Sorry this is lengthy but it’s important to let ppl know that it could happen to anyone and in the daytime too! There’s always scumbags lurking around watching ppl! I think I was being targeted bc I was laughing and talking with my granddaughter and it didn’t look like I was paying attention to my surroundings! I was bc I was even walking backwards abit looking all around!
        After this I haven’t been able to go grocery shopping alone since! Right when I was deciding to go shopping alone bc I wasn’t going to let that scumbag ruin my life, Covid came around!

    2. I’m so sorry! That must have been terrifying. Luckily, nothing like that has ever happened to me. One reason I don’t go out at night is because I know most crimes are crimes of opportunity.

      1. It wasn’t at night Brenda, it was early afternoon first time and around 5 pm the second time!
        I wrote alittle bit about it not going into too much detail, but I wanted everyone to be aware at all times!
        I’m hurrying up and sending b4 this disappears again like yesterday!

  9. I also read the book,”No Exit” possibly on your recommendation:)
    And I disliked the Hulu movie very much!
    Not a Stephen King fan at all,so I can’t share you’re enthusiasm.
    Hope PT went well,I noticed sometimes we have more pain when they’re finished manipulating.
    Here’s to March coming in like a lamb!

  10. I like some SK, but some of his are just to scary. The last one I read was 11/22/63. It was very good. I love how his stories are often set in Maine. My mother’s family is from Maine and in the book 11/22/63 one of the characters mentioned going to a diner called the 95’er which is where my aunt used to work.

  11. I love your rambles, lol! Ramble on!! I’m more like your daughters. Not a fan of scary things, although, I do like reading cozy mysteries. They aren’t too scary. But really scary, nope, it freaks me out. I think it started as a teenager. I watched a scary movie about a babysitter who kept getting phone calls asking about the kids. She didn’t realize he was already in the house with her! I forget the name of the movie, but I couldn’t babysit for months after that, and when I finally did, I talked to my boyfriend on the phone the whole time the parents were gone, because I didn’t want to answer the phone if it rang. I’m pretty sure that scared me for life, lol! I hope your appointments go well today.

  12. I’ve had too much bad stuff happen in my recent years to enjoy scary movies, books, etc. I stop a movie or audiobook if I feel it’s going sideways on me. I like good stories with depth and not a ton of romance, either. Done with that!!!! Enjoy yourself.

  13. I have read Stephen King as long as I can remember, starting with The Stand. Didn’t realize Castle Rock was in so many of his books though. Now I’ll be looking for it!

  14. “From ghoulies and ghosties and long leggety beasties and things that go bump in the night, the good lord deliver us.”

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