Emma Pass guest post: the post-apocalyptic novel I wish I’d written
I’m really pleased to have Emma Pass guesting on my blog today. She’s the author of two dystopian YA novels, ACID, which has been picking up some excellent reviews, and THE FEARLESS – out just a couple of days ago! Here, she writes about one of the books that inspires her.
The Post Apocalyptic Novel I Wish I’d Written by Emma Pass
I am a prolific reader – my husband tells people I’ve got a ‘reading habit’ – and every time I finish a book I really love, I find myself thinking, ‘I wish I’d written that!’ So choosing just one book for this post has not been an easy task.
After a lot of thought, however, and some time spent perusing my bookshelves, I think I’ve found one – The Stand by Stephen King. If you’re not familiar with it, here’s the blurb from Amazon:
First came the days of the plague. Then came the dreams.
Dark dreams that warned of the coming of the dark man. The apostate of death, his worn-down boot heels tramping the night roads. The warlord of the charnel house and Prince of Evil.
His time is at hand. His empire grows in the west and the Apocalypse looms.
When a man crashes his car into a petrol station, he brings with him the foul corpses of his wife and daughter. He dies and it doesn’t take long for the plague which killed him to spread across America and the world.
The story then follows the lives of a group of people who’ve managed to survive the deadly ‘superflu’, with a huge and multi-plotted narrative that in the wrong hands could become hugely overcomplicated. But in King’s hands, it never does. Despite its complexity, the story flows seamlessly and unlike some books, I don’t need a character glossary to remind me who everyone is.
I’ve been a huge fan of Stephen King since I was thirteen years old, which was also the age I realised I wanted to be a writer. Often sneered at by the critics, he is an incredible storyteller who has had a huge influence on me, and I think The Stand is by far and away my favourite novel of his. I love dark, ‘what if?’ scenarios – the more terrifying, the better, because you get to experience the horrors of these scenarios without, well, actually having to experience them (which needless to say, would not be fun at all).
Every time I read The Stand it makes me want to push myself ¬– to try harder and aim higher, and keep striving to improve my own writing. To me, that’s the sign of a truly great book!