It’s no surprise that some of the greatest creators are eccentric individuals, with the likes of Freddie Mercury dancing on stage with Darth Vader, to Ozzy Osborne biting the head off a live bat on stage at a concert like a feral wolf. Recreational drugs have taken the wheel behind the creative process of many legends, but one artist you may not associate the rock and roll lifestyle with is highly acclaimed novelist, Stephen King.
For most of the eighties, King was so high on cocaine, he legitimately doesn’t remember writing “Cujo.” King admits to heavy drug use throughout most of the decade, combining drugs and alcohol to create a concoction of stories so odd in their premise and even odder in execution, the fact drugs were involved should come as little surprise. One must commend King though, despite the fact that he was literally nose deep in the coco, he still managed to keep one detail consistent, all of his stories take place in Maine. Some of King’s most iconic works, including “It”, “Carrie”, “Pet Sematary”, and the topic of today’s article, “Cujo”, all take place in the state.
Touching back on “Cujo” where the work itself clearly depicts the state that King was in at the time, as the book is a blunt metaphor for what happens to someone suffering from addiction. Unlike King’s other more surreal plots, the dog isn’t influenced by supernatural forces, no government conspiracies, and no aliens. Just a tale of a dog gone bad.
King was in fact so deep into his addiction, with a mental state so addled, he frankly just doesn’t remember writing the book, as he stated in an article from The Guardian, “There’s one novel, Cujo, that I barely remember writing at all. I don’t say that with pride or shame, only with a vague sense of sorrow and loss.” It’s quite sad that the author of some of horror’s most famed stories went through something like this, to the point where the creation of one of his own stories is lost to him.
The main takeaway though is that if you were to bet money on which story King wrote while high on drugs, I don’t think “Cujo” would be your first choice. I’d say something like “Maximum Overdrive” which is a story about a meteor that passes over Earth, turning all machines into killers, where in which the main antagonist is a large truck with the Green Goblins face on it, that’s the story I’d think was the one where King was high as balls, but no, it was really the story that most closely paralleled his own struggles
What is important to remember is that King was able to beat his addiction and now leads a healthy life with his loving family.