Stephen King: My Novel 'Gas' for School Shooters

Says 'Rage' could have been 'possible accelerant' to killers

By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff

Posted Jan 25, 2013 12:34 PM CST

(Newser) – Stephen King is jumping into America's conversation on gun violence, with a new Kindle Single entitled simply, "Guns." According to Amazon, the 99-cent essay "constructs his argument for what can and should be done" to reduce violence. But the segment that's grabbing attention is one in which King talks about his decision to pull his first novel, Rage, from publication, for fear that it might inspire school shooters.

Rage depicts a hostage situation in a school, and four teenagers mentioned the book after attacking their schools. In an excerpt from "Guns" quoted on MediaBistro, King says the book didn't turn kids into killers—"yet I did see Rage as a possible accelerant, which is why I pulled it from sale. You don’t leave a can of gasoline where a boy with firebug tendencies can lay hands on it." In general, however, King's essay argues that the culture has little impact on gun violence, Salon reports.

Novelist Stephen King speaks to creative writing students at the University of Massachusetts-Lowell in Lowell, Mass., Friday, Dec. 7, 2012.
Novelist Stephen King speaks to creative writing students at the University of Massachusetts-Lowell in Lowell, Mass., Friday, Dec. 7, 2012.   (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)
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