Richard Matheson Begot Stephen King

26 Jun

What if – that is what always fired up Richard Matheson’s imagination. This legendary science fiction and horror story writer died this week.

If you’ve ever seen The Twilight Zone episode with William Shatner on an airplane watching a gremlin ripping up the airplane’s wing, you have never forgotten how scary it was. Richard Matheson wrote that:

“I was on an airplane and I looked out and there were all these fluffy clouds and I thought, ‘Gee, what if I saw a guy skiing across that like it was snow?,’ because it looked like snow. But when I thought it over, that’s not very scary, so I turned it into a gremlin out on the wing.”

It was Richard Matheson’s tales that inspired Stephen King’s own imagination, igniting his writing direction:

“He fired my imagination by placing his horrors not in European castles and Lovecraftian universes, but in American scenes I knew and could relate to. ‘I want to do that,’ I thought. ‘I must do that.’ Matheson showed the way.”



Richard Matheson quote: NY Times, June 26, 2013
Stephen King quote: Stephen King Official Website
The Twilight Zone poster:

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