To celebrate a quarter of a century of beloved children’s series Goosebumps, publisher Scholastic has released an exclusive Goosebumps 25th Anniversary Retro Set collector’s tin that consists five of the series’ bestselling titles, with their original covers.
The books included are Monster Blood, Why I’m Afraid Of Bees, A Night In Terror Tower, The Beast From The East, and Legend Of The Lost Legend. Here’s a chance for three Goosebumps fans to win this special limited edition set, in three easy steps:
#1: Craft your best 25th anniversary wish for Goosebumps in no more than 20 words.
#2: Email your message to firstname.lastname@example.org with the title “Star2 Happy 25th Anniversary Goosebumps” in your subject field.
#3: Make sure you send your entry before 12mn on Dec 19. Note: Only the three winners will be contacted via email.
Scholastic also shares with us a fascinating interview with series creator and author RL Stine, the man who has consistently struck the perfect balance between terror and humour in the phenomenally popular Goosebumps series for more than a quarter century now. And he’s still enjoying every moment of it.
“I’m amazed the series has lasted over 25 years now. I’ve been able to scare several generations!” says the 73-year-old New Yorker. “I’ve written over 130 titles and I can’t believe I still get new ideas”.
The Scholastic Goosebumps series is touted as one of the bestselling children’s series of all time with more than 350 million English language books in print plus an additional 50 million international copies in 22 languages. Not to mention a movie, a TV series, theme park rides, and awards.
This from a man who, as a kid, was scared of just about everything.
“When I was a kid, I was very fearful and I think that’s why I stayed in my room writing all the time. I realised then that I could use humour to keep the stories from being too frightening. After all, I don’t really want to terrify kids.”
Stine’s main motivation was and is to provide entertainment for kids so he always had his young readers in mind when writing.
“I deliberately made the books very easy to read, with short chapters and no challenging vocabulary – so that all kids would be attracted to them. Let kids read what they choose. Don’t try to force them to read what you think they should read. Don’t make reading a chore,” he adds.
In an interview transcript provided by Scholastic Asia, Stine let’s his fans in on what makes him tick.
Goosebumps has had a rich history – 130 books, a movie, a TV series, awards and theme park rides. Which milestones have been your favourite?
It has all been so wonderful, it’s hard to choose. I’m a big Disney fan, so I guess having our own Goosebumps HorrorLand attraction at DisneyWorld in Florida was probably the biggest thrill for me.
The protagonists of these books have met all sorts of fates by the last page – there are twists, laughs, or sighs of relief. What is your favourite type of Goosebumps ending?
My favourite type of ending is one that totally shocks the reader. It comes as a complete surprise. It’s not at all the way they guessed the ending would be.
You started writing when you were nine, how have you kept your passion for it burning and any advice or words of wisdom for your fans who love writing?
People who love writing don’t need advice. They are like me. They start writing when they are young. They love it but they don’t know why. My best writing advice is in my writing programme at rlstine.com.
What makes you laugh?
Old comedy movies. I love Laurel and Hardy, Abbott and Costello, and The Three Stooges.
You’re a grandpa now. Which Goosebumps title would you like your grandson to read first?
My grandson is three. I’d like him to read my new picture book – Mary McScary.
Is it true your wife is a tough editor?
Yes, she is. I have the scars to prove it!
What’s the most memorable thing anyone has said about your work?
A boy once wrote to me and said: “I’ve read 40 of your books, and I think they’re really boring.”
My brother read Goosebumps too, and he never reads books! Was that something you consciously set out to do – get kids who normally don’t read to pick up books?
I deliberately made the books very easy to read, with short chapters and no challenging vocabulary words – so that all kids would be attracted to them.
What scares kids these days? Why do kids like being scared?
Our fears never change. Fear of the dark. Fear of going down into a creepy basement. Fear that something is hiding in your closet. Kids today have the same fears I did when I was a kid.
Which among the books you’ve written has scared you the most?
I never get scared by anything in my books. I think horror is funny – not scary.
Which among your creatures would be on your zombie apocalypse team?
Only Slappy. He could insult them all.
Continue this sentence – I am…
Not willing to finish this sentence.