Letter to Stephen King from The American Adverb Association

Subject: Letter to Stephen King
From: The American Adverb Association

Dear Stephen King,

We read your book On Writing. It wasn’t bad, there was some useful stuff in it, and for the most part we enjoyed it. But then we got to THE CHAPTER! You know the one!

We have the falsely mean quote!


Let’s just say right off the bat that we are deeply disappointed! Yes, us! And yes, “deeply” is the right word—it works to show exactly how disappointed we are.

Sir, we are extremely, completely, and utterly fucking pissed off!

Not a little pissed, but not every drop of urine in the world pissed, just enough to fill up an outside port-a-potty, or, as we like to say, extremely fucking pissed! But no!!! The word with the “Ly” at the end should be thrown out. In your world, you’d have us eaten by one of your slightly scary monsters. Maybe you’d feed us to the brown goo in the “Raft Episode” of Creepshow 2, which was awfully scary. Huh, is that an adverb or an insult—you decide, Mr. King!

But guess what, Stephen? Do you know who we are good enough for? Who loves us endearingly? Tolstoy. That’s right! Go read Anna Karenina. It’s terrifically awesome writing, and guess what? He uses us! He uses us amazingly! He leans on us, and his sentences stand strong because of us. Speaking of The Stand—wasn’t that your one and only truly good book? Ooooh, does that burn majorly or slightly?

Your attacks on us have made us intensely enraged! We cannot hold back our rightfully resentful emotions! You owe us and the American readers a deeply felt apology! You have ignorantly dismissed the “Ly’s of Life” that light up the lines of all white pages.

For we are the common man’s gray areas!

The smart man’s time savers!

And the fast reader’s running start!

We belong on the page, we most certainly do! For we are The American Adverb Association! And we will not go quietly!

And you will certainly hear from us again!

The American Adverb Association


Christoph Paul is an award winning humor writer who uses adverbs sparingly. He is the publisher of New English Press. His most recent books are Slasher Camp for Nerd Dorks and Great White House 2: Billary Bites Back. His next book will be a poetry collection titled “Horror Film Poems.” Find him on Twitter @Christophpaul_ and Christophpaulauthor.com.



About Christoph Paul

Nice Jewish boy who writes mean books. Publisher of New English Press. Rep'd by Veronika Boom and writes Bizarro Erotica as Mandy DeSandra.

1 Response

  1. Never read King’s book but he ain’t the first to say, and I agree. Adverbs and adjectives can suck the life out of a story.

    They are either extra words that make for more reading or they short hand where a writer could have dropped some “poetry” into their prose. Every book I’ve read written by a “traditional” editor is kind of on the same page as King.

    Now, when does the Association for Independent Clauses go after Elmore Leonard?

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