News Column

Horror author Stephen King star of Manatee County library fundraiser

August 6, 2014

By Kathryn Moschella, The Bradenton Herald

Aug. 06--BRADENTON -- The Manatee County Public Library System has scored a major coup: Stephen King, best-selling American author of science-fiction, horror and fantasy novels will be the honored guest at a benefit in January.

Many of King's novels have been adapted into feature films, television movies and comic books, including "The Shawshank Redemption," The Green Mile" and "Stand By Me."

King, who divides his time between homes in Maine and Casey Key in Sarasota, and who first made his mark with the supernatural thriller novel, "Carrie," will headline the 28th annual author event, "An Evening with Stephen King."

King, whose books have sold 350 million copies around the world, will be the featured speaker at 7 p.m.Jan. 29 at the Manatee Performing Arts Center, 502 Third Ave. W., Bradenton. The event will support the Manatee County Library Foundation, which has set a goal to raise $100,000 to

help finance technological upgrades of the library's online operating system.

King is expected to speak for an hour, respond to audience questions and sign copies of his new book, "Revival."

"You have to literally be living under a rock not to know who this person is. It's so exciting," said state Rep. Jim Boyd, R-Bradenton, who along with his wife, Sandy, are the honorary chairs of the Stephen King author event.

"He's enthusiastic about our library and what our goal is," said Jane Plitt, Manatee Library Foundation president, referring to a letter she personally wrote to King.

Plitt said the foundation has already raised about half of its goal.

"We have pledged to the community that we will raise $100,000 this year to encourage the county to pay for the rest," she said.

To help raise more money for the library, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, the foundation is sponsoring a mystery thriller writing contest, called PageTurner, to win a free ticket to see King on Jan. 29. To enter, submit the first paragraph -- no more than 250 words -- of an originally conceived mystery or suspense novel that conveys a sense of style, creativity, readability and intrigue. The official deadline for submission is Nov. 15, and the winner will be announced Jan. 5.

Details about the contest and sponsorship participation for the King event are available at

The libary's countywide, integrated operating system, responsible for cataloging, referencing and circulation, will become more interactive and user-friendly with the addition of new upgrades, according to Library Services Manager Ava Ehde,

"As our formats change, this allows us to change the way we provide services. This additional $100,000 will make it possible for us to make that big leap across the old traditional way to all the new and innovative ways that are out there."

General tickets will go on sale Nov. 1 and can be purchased later this year through the Manatee Performing Arts Center box office and the Manatee Library Foundation website.

Kathryn Moschella, Lakewood Ranch reporter, can be reached at 941-745-7010. Follow her on Twitter @MoschellaHerald.


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Source: Bradenton Herald (FL)

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