James Patterson Calls off “The Murder of Stephen King”

Patterson has canceled the release of the novel to avoid “any discomfort” for Stephen King’s family

Reigning world’s highest paid novelist, mystery/thriller titan James Patterson, has cancelled the release of his new “fan fiction” novel, The Murder of Stephen King. Although, he claimed, via press release, the “book is a positive portrayal of a fictional character, and…the main character is not actually murdered,” Patterson also expressed concern for King’s comfort, likely motivated by recent uninvited fan arrivals at The Shining author’s house. King was not involved in the production of the novel.

Oddly, this wouldn’t be the legendary author’s first fictionalized appearance. King wrote himself into his expansive Dark Tower series. That rather meta version of King writes a book within the book about the novel’s protagonist, gunslinger Roland Deschain. Much like his unpublished Patterson counterpart this King, despite many attempts on his life, also goes un-murdered (however he does suffer a car crash not dissimilar to the real Stephen King’s 1999 wreck in Maine).

Here are some other examples of authors appearing in novels they did and didn’t write:

Virginia Woolf in Michael Cunningham’s The Hours

Paul Auster in Paul Auster’s The City of Glass

Virgil in Dante’s Inferno

J.D. Salinger in W. P. Kinsella’s Shoeless Joe

Phillip Roth in Phillip Roth’s Operation Shylock

About the Author

More Like This

An Agent Explains the Ins and Outs of Book Deals

How do advances work? When do you get royalties? How long until you can quit your job? A pro demystifies the money part of writing

Sep 20 - Kate McKean

How Brexit Could Destroy the U.K. Publishing Industry

Proposed immigration policies aren't just xenophobic—they also threaten the country's creative and cultural life

Sep 12 - Holly Barrow

What Writers Need to Know About Morality Clauses

You may not even realize that your book contract could be canceled if you're accused of misconduct—or just cause drama

Jul 30 - Carrie V. Mullins