Monday, June 1, 2009

How Stephen King has Impacted Society

When you think of a horror writer, all that comes to mind is blood, guts, ghosts, gaols, the paranormal and a twist of evil. It's hard to imagine anyone who writes about evil being or the extinction of mankind as anything but evil, and perhaps selfish who not doing anything good for any one else. The same could be said for people who are wealthy, and have vast amounts of money that they use for their own benefit. This is not the case of Stephen King. He and his wife Tabitha are very involved in the community they live in. The community is not Hollywood or New York, or other cities that the rich and famous seem to live in, but the small community of Bangor, Maine.

One way that he has helped the community is he sold the movie rights to Pet Semetary to a production company that agreed to film in Maine. This was a big boost to the economy, and brought many more filming crews to the area.

In 1987, Stephen and wife Tabitha created the Stephen and Tabitha King foundation. The foundation gave grants to various charities as well as scholarships to graduates of Hampden Academy, the high school where Stephen taught. The foundation has also helped students from other areas of the country with their tuitions.

The Haven Foundation was set-up in 2002 by Stephen to help freelance artists who where suffering from illness or had been disabled by an accident who weren't able to support themselves. To help the foundation King, gave up the rights to one of his books so the foundation would receive 100 per cent of the revenue.

Not only has King been generous with his money, as he has financially helped several friends and acquaintances, but he has also donated his time. On occasion he has given lectures at various universities without charging a fee. He has also helped struggling writers by supplying comments to the covers of their books, as well as giving film rights of his short stories to amateur filmmakers for the sum of one dollar. Many small publishing companies can be thankful to Stephen King for helping save their businesses. He used many small publishers for his books as well as supplying short stories to many struggling magazine companies to boost sales.

Stephen King has influenced more people than he can imagine, and doesn't seem to comprehend why. His three children are probably the most influenced by him. His two sons' are both writers; son Joe says, "we grew up around the dinner table talking about books and writers, so it's only natural, for us to be writers". Daughter Naomi, whom is an ordained minister, somehow manages to use the family gift of storytelling in her sermons.

As you can see Stephen King has managed to make a positive impact on society by helping the less fortunate when needed as well as making an impact on up and coming writers and artists. Hopefully these newcomers will see that fame and fortune can not only be used for their benefit, but that helping others can be very satisfying.

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