17. 'Salem's Lot Is His Favourite
King has written a lot of material in his career. In fact on last count the total stands at something like 54 published novels, eleven collections of short stories, five works of non-fiction, and seven novellas. That's a heck of a back catalogue. Apparently King is distraught when people pick 1978's The Stand as his crowning achievement, because he penned it fairly early in his career and it implies he's done nothing better.
Which is a little hypocritical, since he himself counts his second book 1975's 'Salem's Lot as his personal favourite. A vampire story apparently inspired by the paranoid politics of the age (Nixon's impeachment and the Oval Office tapes were around the time of writing), it was originally titled Jerusalem's Lot. Shortened because his wife thought it sounded like a bad erotic novel.
Not only does he list it as his favourite, but way back in 1985 he was planning on writing a sequel to the book. Whilst he's hit gold doing the same for The Shinning with recent follow-up Doctor Sleep, he eventually abandoned plans to continue 'Salem's Lot, stating on his website that The Dark Tower series already picked up the story in the novels Wolves of the Calla and Song of Susannah.