How Many Books Has Stephen King Written? A Full Count

Stephen King’s bibliography is extensive and spans several decades, solidifying his reputation as one of the most prolific and influential authors in modern literature. You might be familiar with his work in the horror genre, with iconic titles like “Carrie,” “The Shining,” and “IT,” but his contributions extend well beyond, encompassing suspense, fantasy, science fiction, and even non-fiction. Throughout his career, King has gifted readers with a diverse range of stories that often explore the darker elements of humanity and the supernatural.

With a career that began in the early 1970s, Stephen King has written an impressive number of books. This includes not only his novels but also non-fiction, novellas, short story collections, and those penned under the pen name Richard Bachman. Whether you’re uncovering his works for the first time or reacquainting yourself with his storytelling, tracking the sheer number of his published works can be a formidable task. His novels and collections often dive into complex characters and explore themes that resonate with a wide audience, contributing to his enduring popularity and the continued adaptation of his books into films and television series.

Key Takeaways

  • Stephen King is a prolific author with a diverse literary range extending beyond horror.
  • King has published numerous novels, novellas, short stories, and non-fiction works over several decades.
  • The themes and characters in King’s books have contributed to his worldwide acclaim and the successful adaptation of his works.

Early Career and Breakthrough

Your journey through Stephen King’s literary landscape starts in the 1970s, when King’s storytelling prowess began to cast its long shadow over the horror and suspense genres. His breakthrough novel, “Carrie,” launched his career, and the subsequent string of successful publications firmly established his reputation as a master of horror.


In 1974, you witness King’s first published novel, Carrie. Initially released in 1975, this tale of a tormented girl with telekinetic powers quickly caught the public’s eye. King’s exploration of abuse, puberty, and revenge resonates with readers, setting the stage for a prolific career.

‘Salem’s Lot

The following year brings you to ‘Salem’s Lot, a chilling story where vampires infest a small Maine town. Published in 1975, King’s uncanny ability to transform the mundane into the terrifying is showcased as he probes the dark corners of American small-town life.

The Shining

By 1977, King’s novel The Shining transports you to the isolated Overlook Hotel. This haunting story of a family’s winter caretaking job turning into a struggle with malevolent forces emphasizes King’s talent for creating an atmosphere of claustrophobic horror.

The Stand

In 1978, The Stand unfolds a post-apocalyptic America devastated by a man-made plague. Through this sprawling epic, you experience themes of good versus evil played out across a decimated landscape, underpinning King’s versatility in moving beyond conventional horror.

The Long Walk

A shift to dystopian themes occurs with The Long Walk in 1979, penned under the pseudonym Richard Bachman. In this narrative, you explore a grim future where contestants in a deadly competition walk incessantly or face brutal consequences.

The Dead Zone

Continuing in 1979, King introduces you to The Dead Zone. This novel, interweaving political undertones with psychic abilities, spotlights King’s flair for combining the supernatural with astute social commentary.


Your exploration leads you to Firestarter in 1980, where King ignites the tale of a young girl with pyrokinesis. Demonstrating the government’s interest in harnessing paranormal abilities, King’s fusion of thrills with a critique of power and exploitation concludes your journey through his early groundbreaking works.

Pseudonym and Diversified Genres

You may be familiar with Stephen King’s prominence in horror, but his repertoire spans across various genres under a pseudonym, offering you a rich tapestry of literature. From the haunting corridors of The Shining to the fantastical realm of The Dark Tower, King’s mastery has traveled through genres, including fantasy and science fiction, under his own name and Richard Bachman.

Richard Bachman Works

Stephen King, writing as Richard Bachman, has released gripping tales like The Running Man, a dystopian science fiction novel where society is entranced by a deadly game show. Another notable Bachman book is Thinner, a chilling story where a curse causes the protagonist to lose weight uncontrollably.

Fantasy Novels

In the realm of fantasy, King captivates your imagination with The Eyes of the Dragon, a standalone novel that explores the fight for a kingdom’s throne. But it is his The Dark Tower series that stands as a monumental work, weaving through multiple genres with The Dark Tower: The Gunslinger setting the foundation for this expansive universe.

Science Fiction Stories

While primarily known for horror, King’s ventures into science fiction extend beyond The Running Man. Numerous short stories and novellas intersect with science fiction elements, showcasing King’s ability to explore the implications of technology and the unknown within his horror-filled domains.

Horror Classics and New Directions

In Stephen King’s expansive career, you witness the evolution from landmark horror novels to explorations in new genres. The 1980s heralded some of his most iconic horror works while later years saw a blend of supernatural themes with psychological thrillers.

Pet Sematary and 1980s Horror

During the 1980s, Stephen King solidified his reputation as a master of horror. Pet Sematary, published in 1983, tapped into primal fears with its story of grief and resurrection gone wrong. Similarly, titles like Cujo (1981) and Christine (1983) turned everyday situations—the family pet and a teenage boy’s first car—into sources of terror. These stories captivated readers with their examinations of the macabre lurking within the mundane.

Psychological Thrillers and Serial Novels

As you move into King’s work post-1980s, the incorporation of psychological depth alongside horror becomes evident. Misery (1987), for instance, presents a chilling narrative of obsession and captivity. Here, the real horror is human, rooted in the psychology of its antagonist. King also began exploring serial storytelling with The Green Mile (1996), originally released in six volumes, marrying the horror genre with a serialized format.

Supernatural and Occult

Stephen King’s exploration of supernatural and occult themes gave rise to novels like It (1986) and The Dark Half (1989). In It, an ancient evil manifests as a small-town terror, weaving a complex narrative across two timelines. And in The Dark Half, a writer’s pseudonym takes on a life of its own, blurring lines between reality and the supernatural. These works demonstrate King’s knack for intertwining the occult with a deep understanding of human nature.

Literary Expansions

As you explore Stephen King’s prolific career, you’ll notice it extends beyond horror novels. King’s bibliography includes nonfiction works, collections of short stories and novellas, and collaborations that have fortified his standing in the literary world.

Nonfiction and Memoir

Stephen King’s foray into nonfiction includes the insightful On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft, which not only gives you a window into his life but also serves as an invaluable resource for writers. In Danse Macabre, he delves into the horror genre itself, revealing the influences behind his and others’ works.

Short Stories and Novellas

Your understanding of King’s breadth is incomplete without acknowledging his short stories and novellas, such as the notable collection Different Seasons, which includes “Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption.” Four Past Midnight is another collection that showcases King’s ability to weave tales that keep you awake at night.

Collaborations with Other Authors

King occasionally joins forces with other writers. With Peter Straub, he co-authored The Talisman and its sequel Black House, both of which merge King’s trademark style of horror with Straub’s dark fantasy, creating a compelling read for fans of both authors.

Modern Works and Continuing Legacy

As you explore Stephen King’s collection from the mid-2000s onwards, you’ll find remarkable novels that assert his unflagging relevance in literary horror, as well as adaptations that extend his influence into other media.

Recent Novels

In 2005, Stephen King published Under the Dome, a novel rich with the intricacies of a small town cut off from the world by an impenetrable barrier. By 2011, King had released 11/22/63, a foray into the past with a thrilling blend of historical fiction and sci-fi elements centered around the Kennedy assassination. Conveying a deep sense of nostalgia coupled with King’s signature suspense, 11/22/63 has been hailed for its vivid narrative.

Moving forward, 2013 saw the publication of Doctor Sleep, the anticipated sequel to the Shining that revisits a grown-up Danny Torrance. Continuing with his prolific output, in 2017, King brought you The Institute, a chilling story of abducted kids with psychic powers. Each of these works exemplifies his continued evolution as a storyteller, consistently delivering the unexpected while maintaining his hold on the essence of horror and suspense.

Stephen King in Other Media

King’s influence radiates beyond books, notably into movies and comics. Adapting his narratives into other forms, King’s work garnered new audiences, sustaining his legacy. Notably, in 2017 his book adaptations saw a surge, including the release of the cinematic retelling of The Dark Tower and the widely acclaimed film version of It. As film adaptations, these movies provide a visual and emotional experience that complements the depth of King’s novels.

The expansion into comics has also offered a new vista for King’s creativity. The Dark Tower series was translated into a graphic novel format, bridging the gap between literature and art. This adaptation strategy demonstrates King’s versatility and the timeless appeal of his storytelling, ensuring his resonance with successive generations of horror and fiction enthusiasts.

Cultural Impact and Persistent Themes

Stephen King’s works have left an indelible mark on contemporary culture, often intertwining the familiar with the supernatural. Within his narratives, you’ll find recurring themes of good versus evil threaded through ordinary lives and settings, reflecting a complex tapestry of human experience and emotion.

Maine as a Setting

Maine, King’s home state, serves as the backdrop for many of his tales. You can see this in ‘The Dark Tower: The Gunslinger’ and ‘Wolves of the Calla’, where King creates a microcosm of American life that feels both intimate and expansive. Maine’s rugged landscapes and small-town communities offer a canvas on which the universal struggles of his characters play out, lending authenticity to otherworldly events.

Recurring Characters and Locations

In his pursuit of continuity, King reuses characters and locales, further deepening the collective narrative. Notably, ‘Wizard and Glass’ and ‘Song of Susannah’ showcase this technique. You’ll encounter familiar figures navigating through shared histories within King’s universe. This approach not only forges a sense of connection across different stories but also reinforces the enduring nature of King’s fictional realms.

Comprehensive Bibliography

Stephen King’s repertoire spans a remarkable number of literary works, with your own shelves perhaps hosting a fraction of his prolific output. Notably, he has penned over 65 novels, with a selection written under the pseudonym Richard Bachman. The vibrancy of King’s imagination also stretches across more than 200 short stories, many of which are conveniently bundled into enthralling collections.

For instance, Night Shift emerged as King’s first collection of short stories, gifting readers with a taste of his expanding universe. Subsequently, Skeleton Crew followed, stitching together another compelling assemblage of tales, each distinct in its eerie resonance.

Advancing through King’s timeline of terror and wonder, you might encounter Nightmares & Dreamscapes. This anthology further cements King’s mastery over the short story format, beckoning you into worlds both strange and familiar.

Transitioning into the 21st century, King compiled Everything’s Eventual, a volume where each story unfurls with meticulous craft, exhibiting his undiminished knack for suspense.

As you survey King’s extensive bibliography, his novels and nonfiction works also command attention. His narratives, often rooted in his home state of Maine, traverse genres and challenge perceptions—unshackled by conventional bounds.

Here’s a snapshot of King’s comprehensive bibliography across various categories:

Novels: 65+ (Including works as Richard Bachman)
Collections: Notable ones include Night Shift, Skeleton Crew, Nightmares & Dreamscapes, Everything’s Eventual
Non-Fiction: 5
Short Stories: 200+

Each entry in King’s oeuvre invites you to delve into captivating realms, evidencing not only his prolificacy but also his unending ability to engage and terrify. Your literary journey through King’s work is assuredly vast and rich with unseen corners and untold frights.

Interviews and Personal Insights

In your exploration of Stephen King’s work, you’ll find that interviews offer a wealth of knowledge. King has shared his experiences and creative journey in numerous interviews, providing an intimate glimpse into his world.

Stephen King Goes to the Movies is a unique collection that reveals his insights about the film adaptations of his books. Through interviews, King expresses his perspectives, ranging from the challenges of translating print to screen to the moments of cinematic triumph.

Additionally, King’s collaboration with Stewart O’Nan in the non-fiction work Faithful underscores his versatility. In interviews about this book, King steps away from fiction, illustrating his passion for baseball and his capacity to co-author a detailed chronicle of the Boston Red Sox’s 2004 season.

  • Interview Highlights:
    • Creative Process
    • Adapting books to films
    • Collaboration insights

In these dialogues, not only do you discover King’s approach to writing, but you also discern how his personal interests, like his sports fandom, distinctly influence his literary scope.

To delve deeper into King’s musings, peruse the transcripts on the Stephen King website, where you’ll encounter a trove of his thoughts captured across various stages of his career. Each session invites you to learn directly from the master of horror himself.

List of Adaptations

Stephen King’s bibliography extends well beyond the written page, leading to numerous screen adaptations that you may find thrilling. Here are a few notable ones:

  • The Shawshank Redemption: This film, directed by Frank Darabont, is considered one of the greatest movies ever made. Its portrayal of hope and friendship in bleak circumstances has resonated with many. For more details on the adaptation, you can visit Wikipedia.

  • The Green Mile: Another powerful Darabont adaptation of King’s work, this movie mixes elements of magic realism with the somber realities of death row. It’s a further testament to Darabont’s adaptational skills and respect for King’s material.

  • The Shining: Directed by Stanley Kubrick, the movie takes you into the unsettling confines of the Overlook Hotel. Despite differing from King’s original vision, the film stands as a monumental work in the horror genre.

  • Gerald’s Game: A more recent adaptation, this movie explores psychological horror through the predicament of a woman left handcuffed to her bed in a remote lake house.

In terms of comics, there are also graphic novel interpretations of King’s work:

  • The Dark Tower series, which expands on the novels’ mythology and gives you a visual tour through Mid-World.

Additionally, adaptations of King’s stories aren’t confined to just movies or comics. Your viewing selection also includes television series and miniseries that have broadened the universe of his stories. With this extensive body of work, King’s stories have been brought to life for you in various forms, ensuring that there’s likely a medium that matches your preference.

Recent Publications and Future Projects

Stephen King, a prolific author, continues to thrill his readers with an array of recent books and anticipated upcoming works. For your reading pleasure, you should be aware of these notable additions to his oeuvre.

Recent Releases:

  • The Institute (2019): Follows the story of Luke Ellis and his abduction to a sinister facility where children with special talents are held.
  • If It Bleeds (2020): Presents four novellas, and you’ll find the title story is a sequel to The Outsider.
  • Later (2021): Tells the tale of a boy with an unsettling ability to see and learn secrets from the dead.
  • Billy Summers (2021): Introduces you to a sniper in his twilight years, engaged in one final job.

On the Horizon:
You can anticipate You Like It Darker, a collection of twelve short stories, many of which have never been published before, set to release on May 21st, 2024. This collection promises to showcase some of King’s best work to date.

Upcoming Works

TitleRelease DateType
You Like It DarkerMay 21, 2024Collection of Short Stories

You may also want to explore Stephen King’s official website to stay informed on the precise release dates and detailed content of his new stories. Keep track of his upcoming titles to ensure you don’t miss out on the latest spine-tingling narratives from one of the masters of modern fiction.


Stephen King, a prolific writer, has astounded you with a significant number of written works. To date, he has published 65 novels, some of which were released under his pen name, Richard Bachman. Alongside these novels, your reading list can extend to over 200 short stories, many of which have been gathered in collections offering a diverse range of themes and genres. Furthermore, King has contributed five non-fiction books to the literary world, exploring topics beyond his usual realm of horror and suspense.

Additionally, you may find an assortment of novellas and screenplays enriching his bibliography. King’s profound impact on literature is evident, and for enthusiasts such as yourself, his collective works present an expansive universe to explore. If you’re interested in witnessing the evolution of King’s career or want to delve into his thematic versatility, his complete list of works is readily available.

Reflecting on King’s extensive contribution, it’s clear that his storytelling excellence has earned him a place among the most influential writers of our time. As you continue to revisit, or perhaps discover, his stories, keep in mind that each book, novella, or short story offers a unique experience crafted by King’s imaginative prowess.

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