(This story was updated July 11 to clarify that ticket price includes a first-edition copy of "Doctor Sleep" and Los Angeles is not among the cities Stephen King is expected to visit.)
What: Stephen King will read from, discuss and answer questions about his new novel "Doctor Sleep," sequel to "The Shining."
When: 7:30 p.m. Sept. 25
Where: Chautauqua Auditorium, 900 Baseline Road, Boulder
Tickets: $37.50; $34.50 for Chautauqua members. Tickets will go on sale online at 1 p.m. Thursday, July 11, for Chautauqua and Boulder Book Store Readers Guild members. Tickets will go on sale for the general public at 1 p.m. Friday, July 12. Ticket price includes a first-edition copy of "Doctor Sleep."
Box office: Tickets.chautauqua.com or call 303-440-7666. Walk-up and phone sales available 1 to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday.
Etc.: King will not sign books, but a limited number of signed first editions of "Doctor Sleep" will be randomly distributed at the event.
When it came time to choose a handful of cities to launch his long-awaited sequel to "The Shining," Stephen King knew it was time to come back to Boulder.
After all, he lived in town while writing the 1977 novel about a terrifying haunted hotel in the Colorado mountains, just as his career was about to launch into the literary stratosphere.
Now, with "Doctor Sleep" scheduled for release Sept. 24, King thought he'd come back to his old haunts and celebrate with the locals. He'll read, speak and answer questions Sept. 25 at Boulder's moodily appropriate Chautauqua Auditorium.
King put New York and Boulder on his itinerary -- "Boulder was by his request, since the new book is a sequel to 'The Shining,' " said Arsen Kashkashian, head buyer for Boulder Book Store, which is sponsoring the event -- but it's unclear whether he will make other appearances.
For the uninitiated, "The Shining" tells the story of author Jack Torrance, his wife, Wendy, and their small son, Danny. Feeling stuck on his writing and hoping to bring his family closer together after some unsettling events, he agrees to take on a job as winter caretaker of the Overlook Hotel in the remote mountains northwest of Boulder. The hotel is all but inaccessible in the winter, and the snowbound family soon finds itself confronting terrors unfamiliar -- and all too familiar.
Since "The Shining" was published, literally every book King has written has been a bestseller. Another of his most popular tales, "The Stand," was set partly in Boulder.
The Stanley Hotel in Estes Park famously inspired King to write "The Shining" and conjure the creepy Overlook. Stanley Kubrick made the novel into a film in 1980, but it was largely filmed in Oregon and other locales. King wrote a script for a 1997 miniseries that was closer to the original novel and filmed at the Stanley Hotel.
"When they were filming (the miniseries) in Estes Park, he came into the store quite a bit. Perhaps because of his past in Boulder, and because he got to know the store, they contacted us about hosting a signing," Kashkashian said. "We said yes."
The author first mentioned the idea for "Doctor Sleep" in 2009 while on tour in Toronto to promote "Under the Dome." During an on-stage interview with film director David Cronenberg, he said the book would focus on Danny (now Dan) Torrance.
In his 40s and working for a hospice in New Hampshire where he attends AA and uses his precognitive power to "shine" to comfort the dying, Dan is still haunted by the ghosts and memories of the events at The Overlook. There he meets a young girl with the same ability, and a renewed battle between good and evil ensues, according to a description from Scribner, the book's publisher.
As soon as it received the request to host the signing, the store knew it was going to need a bigger boat, so to speak. With seating for 1,300, the historic Chautauqua Auditorium seemed to fit the bill in more than one way, Kashkashian said.
"It just seems right, doesn't it? Stephen King in that auditorium. Maybe we'll get a thunderstorm, too," he said.