Seven Reasons to Read R.L. Stine

This is a writing sample from Scripted writer Megan Shattuck

R.L. Stine, often referred to as the Stephen King of children's literature, turns 71 today. Now, the last time you visited Stine may have been when you were also wearing light up sneakers, but there are plenty of reasons you should continue to read him as an "adult." Following is my love letter to R.L., the man who was partially responsible for my dreams of becoming a storyteller, and the reasons you should be reading him right now. Before I list a few key reasons you should be reading R.L. right this minute, let me gush for a moment. This man has been writing since the age of nine when he found an old typewriter in his attic. Since that tender age, stories have been pouring out of him as if he were the Niagara Falls of creepy tales. He writes the average Goosebumps novel in eight days. EIGHT DAYS. Yes, they are short, but this is still a crazy accomplishment. As a writer, we should all strive to have this kind of creative ambition. He is 71 and he is the author of hundreds of titles, but he is still adding books to our favorite series. His reason? Because it's still fun.

1.There is always something new…

Whatever your poison, Goosebumps, Fear Street, The Haunting Hour, I can almost guarantee you that you haven't read everything this man has to offer. Check out his list of published works. There are hundreds of titles and series you never even knew existed. Sure, you love Fear Street, but what about all of the series that sprang from it? Fear Street Seniors? Super Chillers? Sagas? Same goes for Goosebumps. You get a peck of nostalgia on top of the thrill of something new.

  1. A Walk Down Memory Lane

Nostalgia you say? Yes, of course another reason to read RL Stine as an adult is the nostalgia factor. Settle into bed on a stormy night and let Mr. Stine take your mind off your terrifying student loans and replace those fears with talking dolls, murderous teenagers, or haunted dwellings. This offers you two levels of escapism. One: Back to the days of your simple youth where your biggest worry was who to invite to your sleepover or what lip smackers to wear on Tuesday. Two: Into a world where crazy and unexpected things await you at every corner. A place where rules of order don't apply.

  1. He Caters to Us

Further, you should be keeping up with RL Stine because he keeps up with you. The man is everywhere catering to his fans both old and new. He wrote us an adult novel called Red Rain simply because people kept asking him to. He travels the world and signs hundreds of battered copies of books he wrote twenty years ago. He responds to fans on Twitter, and keeps up with what they want to read. He is the unselfish storyteller. His stories are fun to read because it is clear he has fun writing them.

  1. He is an active storyteller on multiple mediums

Perfect transition into his Twitter. This man is 71, and he kills the twitter game. He even began a game where he told scary stories 140 characters at a time. Of course, he does the usual stuff like promoting new books and spilling tidbits about coming attractions, but he does it with the same corny and biting wit he displayed in his joke books. Oh yeah, the man has written dozens of joke books. You're welcome. If you want some more kicks, check out his website. It is catered to children, but it is full of things much more fun than your usual boring Facebook feed filled with babies and shots of vacations you can't go on. There are radio plays, short stories, games, and tons of other things that made us fall in love with the internet when we were kids.

  1. You can binge read like you binge Netflix

Can't find a new show to watch? Why not binge read some Fear Street? These books take a few hours at the most to consume, and they are full of beautiful, cheesy, creepy, and fantastical deaths.

  1. Tis the season…

It's October, and you know you love to celebrate Halloween with more than just candy and a costume. It's a scream to go back to a time when Halloween was actually scary and spooky, and not just a stressful holiday where you need to find the best costume and the best party. Make a fort, pop some popcorn, grab a flashlight, and settle in with the things that go bump in the night.

  1. Scary is Trending

Scream Queens, American Horror Story, Scream- Horror is back in (not that it ever truly left) in a big way. The media is filled with snarky commentary on the horror genre, but no one did it better than R.L. Stine. He did what those shows do now. They mix some real horror with a bunch of fun tropes and snipes towards the genre.

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