May 22 Literary Gala to Honor Stephen King and Celebrate Free Speech and the Power of Words to Bridge Divides
“Writing isn’t about making money, getting famous, getting dates, getting laid, or making friends. In the end, it’s about enriching the lives of those who will read your work, and enriching your own life, as well.” Stephen King
PEN America will honor legendary suspense writer Stephen King with the 2018 PEN America Literary Service Award at its annual Literary Gala on May 22 at the American Museum of Natural History in New York. PEN America confers the Literary Service Award each year to a critically-acclaimed writer whose body of work helps us understand and interpret the human condition, engendering empathy and imagination in even the darkest hours.
Stephen King is the author of more than fifty books, all of them worldwide best-sellers and many—including such classics as It, The Stand, The Dark Tower, Misery, Lisey’s Story, 11/22/63, On Writing, Under the Dome, and many more—providing the basis for major motion pictures and serving as cultural hallmarks for generations.
Among King’s many accolades are the 2003 National Book Foundation Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters and the 2014 National Medal of Arts presented by Barack Obama. His depictions of horror and violence have also earned him a title as one of the most banned or challenged authors in recent decades.
King is an impassioned advocate of freedom of expression, literacy, and access to information, which he and his wife Tabitha support through their philanthropy.
King’s Haven Foundation provides unique and generous support to writers and other freelancers in the arts who have suffered personal hardship.
Stephen King’s outspoken defense against encroachments on free speech and pointed public criticism of policies that infringe on this and other rights have resulted in his being blocked by President Trump on Twitter.
Scribner will release King’s newest novel, The Outsider, on May 22, the day of the PEN America award presentation.
“No stranger to the dark side, Stephen King has inspired us to stand up to sinister forces through his rich prose, his generous philanthropy, and his outspoken defense of free expression,” said author Andrew Solomon, president of PEN America. “Stephen has fearlessly used his bully pulpit as one of our country’s best-loved writers to speak out about the mounting threats to free expression and democracy that are endemic to our times. His vivid storytelling reaches across boundaries to captivate multitudes of readers, young and old, in this country and worldwide, across the political spectrum. He helps us all to confront our demons—whether a dancing clown or a tweeting president.”
If you are reading this post from an email subscription, you’ll have to link through to the The Poet by Day site to view it: Creative Writing Lessons: Creative Writing Tips from Stephen King.
STEPHEN KING (b. 1947) is an American author of horror, supernatural fiction, suspense, science fiction, and fantasy. His books have sold more than 350 million copies. King has published over fifty novels, including seven under the pen name Richard Bachman, and six non-fiction books. He has written around 200 short stories, most of which are in book collections. Mr. King’s Amazon page is HERE.
His novella Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption was the basis for the film The Shawshank Redemption widely regarded as one of the greatest films of all time. It was in fact voted the greatest film of all time by Empire magazine readers in “The 201 Greatest Movies of All Time” poll in March, 2006.
PEN America stands at the intersection of literature and human rights to protect open expression in the United States and worldwide. It champions the freedom to write, recognizing the power of the word to transform the world. PEN America’s mission is to unite writers and their allies to celebrate creative expression and defend the liberties that make it possible.
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