Emily Schultz wrote her first novel eight years ago to little fanfare and success. At least not as much as Stephen King has found in his career. He released a paperback-only novel last year to plenty of fanfare, and at least two novels since.
The connection between Schultz and King are these two novels. Both are called Joyland and both brought the author a lot of attention. Schultz’s Tumblr page for Spending The Stephen King Money explains it best:
I’m Emily Schultz. My first novel came out eight years ago. It was called Joyland. Last year Stephen King released a print-only novel with the same title. That was cool, until a few King readers bought the e-book version of my novel by mistake and started leaving negative and confused Amazon reviews. I asked Amazon to change their search results to keep people from buying the wrong book but never heard back. Apparently there were a lot of confused readers as this week I got a—for me—big royalty check for those mistaken books. I’m not so upset anymore. Sure, it’s more a pleasant surprise than a fortune, and I’m stuck with those reviews, but I thought a blog detailing how we’re spending the Stephen King money would be a nice way to end this funny and strange story.
And spend they did, including a fancy dinner, some IKEA furniture, and the deductible for a little bad luck with their car. Funny how good luck can help balance that out.
The best part of the entire scenario is how word got back to King. Each of the posts on Schultz’s blog features assumptions on what King would think about her purchases. Well now she doesn’t have to wonder. From Entertainment Weekly:
It turns out, King doesn’t mind at all.
“I’m delighted for her, and I’m going to order her book,” King told EW.
King then went back to writing about damaged characters full of gas and bodily discharges facing off against ancient evil set against the backdrop of small town Maine. Or something like that.
Hopefully Schultz continues to spend away, and more importantly I hope she keeps writing. I also hope that folks stop giving her negative reviews for Amazon’s, and essentially their, mistake. Or at least be creative about it all.