TIL Stephen King threw away the first few pages of Carrie until his wife fished it out of the trash can and said she liked it and would help him with the female perspective. The book would become his first published novel and wildly successful, launching his $400 million career. : todayilearned

No, you’re mistaken. In On Writing, he says he had that idea on his own. He once worked as a janitor in a high school, and noticed how different the girls’ shower is from the boys’ shower.

This memory came back to me one day while I was working at the laundry, and I started seeing the opening scene of a story: girls showering in a locker room where there were no U-rings, pink plastic curtains, or privacy. And this one girl starts to have her period. Only she doesn’t know what it is and the other girls, grossed out, horrified, amused, start pelting her with sanitary napkins… The girl begins to scream. All that blood! She thinks she’s dying, that the other girls are making fun of her even while she’s bleeding to death… she reacts… fights back… but how?

King’s wife did help him with writing about teenage girls, since he didn’t know much about them – that was one of the reasons he threw out the manuscript of Carrie.

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