Koontz has a wide selection from which to choose his donation.
"He started writing in college, and he has been writing ever since," said Barbara DeMarco-Barrett, host of KUCI's "Writers on Writing and Book Salon." She introduced Koontz and moderated the Q-and-A.
DeMarco-Barrett said Koontz held down a couple of jobs — including a short stint as a school teacher — until his wife, Gerda, made him a deal he couldn't refuse.
"She said she would support him for five years and if he hadn't made it as a writer by then, he never would," DeMarco-Barrett said.
He made it.
Koontz has 60 books in print, in 38 languages, and 44 of them are best sellers, including "77 Shadow Street," which debuted in December as No. 1 on the New York Times Best Seller list.
"It's scary," said Laguna College of Arts & Design President Jonathan Burke, who brought his copy to be signed.
But scary is Koontz's stock in trade, lapped up by his fans, the majority of which are women.
"The split is 60% women and 40% men, spanning all age groups," Koontz said.
Worldwide, his books have sold 450 million copies.
He prides himself on never repeating a book, just because it was a best seller, as one former editor wanted him to do.
In response to a question about whether he outlines his books, Koontz said he writes the first page and rewrites and rewrites and doesn't go on to the second page until he feels the first page is right.
He has the gift of expressing complex notions without becoming verbose.
Koontz writes his books in Newport Beach, where he has lived since the late 1980s with his wife and golden retriever, Trixie, about whom he has written a book.
The Koontzes moved to Southern California from Pennsylvania in 1976.
"We had had 40 days of not one blue sky and my wife said, 'Somewhere there are blue skies,'" said Koontz. "We packed up and left. It was the best thing we ever did.
"We felt more at home here than we ever did at home. We were lucky we ended up in Orange County."