Born in Hartford, Connecticut, Stephenie Meyer has five siblings. When she was young, her family soon moved to Phoenix, Arizona, where she grew up. Meyer, who is Mormon, graduated from Brigham Young University in Utah with a bachelor’s degree in English. While still in university, she married her childhood sweetheart, Christiaan (aka Pancho), whom she’d known since she was four through church. They live in Arizona, where they’re raising their three sons.
Her first novel, Twilight, was an instant hit when it was published in 2005, debuting at No. 5 on the New York Times Best Seller List for Children’s Chapter books. It was No. 1 in its second week of release, remaining in that spot for the next 11 weeks. Meyer says the idea for the book derived from a dream she’d had and based on that, she wrote what was to become Chapter 13 of the book. The entire novel was finished in three months and she soon signed a three-book deal with Little, Brown and Company.
Meyer has since written and published three sequels, entitled New Moon, Eclipse and Breaking Dawn. Due to the popularity of the series, she has not only gained a devoted fan base, but because the books are set in Forks, Washington, the small town celebrates “Stephenie Meyer Day” each September 13 (fictional character Bella Swan’s birthday).
Before the book had even been released, Meyers was approached by producers to adapt it into a film. Because she had no idea of how well it would be accepted as a book, she was initially reluctant, but finally accepted the idea, and was allowed some involvement in the creative process. When she first met the cast, they were all in costume, which she described as a “surreal” experience, elaborating: “There is nothing in the world like sitting down at a table with a bunch of people who are people you made up.”
During a round table Q&A interview at Comic-Con ‘08, Meyer was asked how she felt when she saw the Entertainment Weekly cover that stated: “Is she the next JK Rowling?” In response, Meyer said, “You know, I get that a lot…And on one hand, it’s so completely flattering. She is historically the most important author that’s ever been, I think, just numbers-wise. But then at the same time, there’s no way to ever really compare with that. And what I do is so different. The only thing we really have in common is that our fans are equally fanatical. She just has a billion more of them. It’s flattering, but still there’s no comparison.”
Directed by Catherine Hardwicke (Thirteen, Lords of Dogtown) and starring Kristen Stewart, Twilight has a November 21, 2008 release date.