It has been four decades since Stephen King wrote The Stand, his acclaimed novel about a deadly influenza pandemic wiping out most of human civilization.
So the bestselling contemporary horror novelist has difficulty understanding why authorities did not see the coronavirus crisis coming, or take the necessary precautionary steps.
“Just in the last three or four weeks people are saying to me, ‘We are living in a Stephen King world,’ and boy, all I can say is I wish we weren’t,” King, who has sold an estimated 350m books worldwide, told CNN.
“This has been waiting in the wings for a long, long time. I wrote The Stand about a pandemic that wipes out most of the human race, and thank God this one isn’t that bad, but I wrote that in 1979 and ever since then this has just been waiting to happen.
“The fact that nobody really seemed prepared still mystifies me.”