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View Diary: Bookflurries-Bookchat: Songs of Life (130 comments)

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  •  I've always assumed (8+ / 0-)

    the King based his settings on his own growing-up experiences in small-town Maine. Which is why the places seem so real, because they are.

    Great Questions of Western Philosophy: How much wood would a woodchuck chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood?

    by Mnemosyne on Wed Nov 06, 2013 at 06:48:04 PM PST

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    •  Derry, the town he uses in (5+ / 0-)

      It and later on in Insomnia (maybe some other stories, too) is based on his hometown of Bangor, Maine, where he grew up and still lives.  

      A couple of years, I took the time to actually draw a map of Derry based on all the descriptions of the geography of the town over the course of the book.  You try to build it up in your head as your reading it, because it all kind of fits together into a large landscape.  There are The Barrens, the swampy riverbed that feeds sewage to the Kenduskeag and where a lot of the spookiest stuff takes place.  There is the Kissing Bridge, Canal Street, (where the Kenduskeag goes underground for a mile or so), Witcham Street, the train depot which later becomes the airport in Insomnia, the rural farm areas, Up-Mile Hill, the library with the greenhouse effect hallway to the children's section, the high school, the band park, the Kitchener Ironworks...  The children in the book are constantly traveling to and fro over these areas and watching their backs, and as bodies show up, you have to construct your own map in your head anyway.

      I thought somebody would have surely made such a map already, but I couldn't find one online, so I started taking notes and scribbling.  It wasn't totally consistent, which was a problem.  Comments I read on Stephen King's forum by fans suggested that Derry was based very much on Bangor Maine, so I started comparing my map to the Google maps of Bangor.  If you squeeze Bangor here and there and simplify things, it does start to look like Derry.

      And there really is a Barrens.  I found this amateur youtube of it.  It's not embeddable, so you need to click the link.  It is kind of spooky.

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