• TY RADIO SHOW (broadcast by RTE) | 07 May 2006 | Sadhbh McCoy

    On Sunday, May 7th, 2006, I was interviewed for TY radio -- a radio show on RTE in Ireland, where transition year students (kids aged 15/16) get to create their own radio show. Super-fan Karen Kavett transcribed it, typing out the full interview! Please bear in mind that it was a live radio interview, and this is a direct transcript, so it won't read as smoothly as most of my interviews!!!

    Host: When we were deciding on who to interview on our program, our next guest was top of our list, and we're delighted he agreed to our request. Sadhbh McCoy is here to introduce him. Limerick has produced many best-selling authors over the years, including Frank McCourt and Sarah O'Brien. But one of our best has had international success with his turning books. I am talking about none other than Darren Shan, who is in studio with me now. Hi Darren, and welcome to TY Radio.

    Darren: Thanks, how are you?

    Host: For those who have not read your books, tell us about the Saga of Darren Shan.

    Darren: The Saga is a 12-book series about a boy called Darren Shan who becomes a vampire's assistant, and the books tell about his adventures in the world of vampires.

    Host: And tell us a bit about your new series.

    Darren: The Demonata is a new one. It's going to be ten books in total. It's all about demons, there's a variety of characters in there. It's a little bit gorier, perhaps, than the Saga, but not especially so.

    Host: Do you think it will be as successful as the first series?

    Darren: Hopefully. The first couple books have done really, really well. Lots of fans have followed us, and we've picked up some new fans. We'll see in a few more years how it goes.

    Host: And what's your inspiration for writing books like this?

    Darren: I just write the sort of books which I love to read. I've always loved making up stories, telling stories to my friends, and when I sit down to write a book, I don't think about other people, I think of myself when I was 11, 12, 13, 14 years of age. I think about what I liked to read back then, what I would have liked to have read, and I just write for the boy in me.

    Host: And we've heard that you sold the movie rights of the saga. Is this true, and if so, when can we expect Darren Shan to hit our screens?

    Darren: Yep, Universal have bought the rights. A script has been written, but there's no director at the moment. It's a very complicated business, the movie business, so there's no release date that has been talked about yet, they haven't started casting or anything like that. I think it would be at least 2 years, probably, before we see a film, but only time will tell.

    Host: You were born in England and moved to Ireland when you were young. Do you consider yourself Irish or English?

    Darren: Irish. I mean, I've still got the cockney accent, I know, but I've lived here in Limerick since I was six years old. That's over 27 years now, so I've been to school from first class onwards. Even though I don't sound it, I am Irish.

    Host: What books do you read for your own personal enjoyment?

    Darren: I read, well, obviously lots of horror, that's no surprise, lots of fantasy. I quite like mystery books as well, detective novels, things like that.

    Host: If you hadn't become a writer, what do you think you would have done?

    Darren: I probably would have tried to be a writer. Lots of writers aren't lucky, don't get that lucky break and they can't support themselves, have to have another job. If I had to have another job, probably something to do with computers. I was always interested in computers, I put my own website together years ago. I have it designed now by professionals, but I still update it all myself. So, probably something with computers.

    Host: And on behalf of the Transition Year class, we'd like to present you with a dream catcher that we made for our mini-company.

    Darren: Ooh, that's very nice. I like the blood-red color around it. Thank you very much!

    Host: Thanks for joining us, Darren. And you can find out more about Darren and his books on his website darrenshan.com.

    Darren: You did that very professionally.

    Host: Thank you. 

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