Author R. L. Stine is a storytelling genius.
R. L. Stine is an American novelist, short story writer, television producer, screenwriter, and executive editor. His Goosebumps series of books cast a spell upon children by transforming even the most reluctant students into avid readers.
Staff from DCT had the honor of interviewing him when he was in Dallas for the North Texas Teen Book Festival where over 10,000 young people were abuzz about his books and his presence.
Scary or Funny?
I think humor and horror are very closely entwined. When I go to a horror movie, it always makes me laugh; I just think it’s funny. And I think it’s a very similar emotion. If you go to a baby, or you sneak up on someone, and you go, “BOO!” they’ll gasp first, right? First they’ll gasp and then they’ll laugh. Always. It’s just that visceral reaction is very close. And I don’t really want to terrify kids. Really what I’m trying to do in the Goosebumps books, I mainly just want to get them to read. I think the best way to do that is to get that mix of horror and then funny stuff.
In the beginning…
I started when I was nine years old. I would sit in my room typing, typing all day. Why did I like it so much?! I don’t know. I’d be typing little joke books and funny magazines. I’d be typing stories, and my parents didn’t understand it at all. They’d say…Weird, what are you doing? Go outside and play, what’s wrong with you? Good thing I didn’t listen to them, right?
My books are really easy to read, the chapters are real short; it’s all reading motivation. I never get tired when parents come up to me and say, “My kid never read a book in his life, but last night I caught him under the covers with a flashlight reading one of your books. I never get tired of hearing that. It’s a wonderful thing!
I would tell the parent that the best way to get a kid to read is let them pick their own stuff. My son never read a Goosebumps book. Isn’t that awful? He never read one, he read only Garfield comics, that’s all he read, his whole childhood. I said, “Fine, read Garfield. ” Then he went off to college, and he was an English major. It’s insane, right? So I would say the best thing, if you want to really motivate them, is let them pick out their own books.
Based on the best-selling book series by R. L. Stine
Book and Lyrics by John Maclay
Music and Lyrics by Danny AboschSeptember 22 – October 29, 2017Recommended for ages 7 and up
The haphazard detective work of Scooby Doo meets the witty banter of Glee in this frighteningly fun musical based on the beloved Goosebumps series. Brooke and Zeke are starring in their school play…The Phantom. (Yep-it’s a spoof of the Broadway musical!) When strange things start to happen during rehearsals, no one is sure if it’s a practical joke or if the school’s theater is haunted. Wear your favorite costume and bring the entire family to this silly, and only a little spooky, adventure.
™ & © Scholastic Inc. SCHOLASTIC, GOOSEBUMPS and associated logos are trademarks and/or registered marks of Scholastic Inc. Based on Goosebumps® Phantom of the Auditorium. PHOTO BY: Craig Lynch