• Issue 75 - October 2006

    01 October 2006


    Hi gang, and welcome to the October issue of the Shanville Monthly. October, as usual, is going to be one of my busiest months of the year. I'm going to be on tour for most of it, hitting a variety of places in the UK and Ireland -- you can read all about that, and find out if I'm coming to a shop or library near YOU this month, by scrolling down and checking out the fully detailed itinerary a bit further down. I'm looking forward to this tour a lot -- it should be lots of fun!!! I'll be kicking it off in style at a castle in Craggaunowen (see last month's Shanville Monthly for more info about that), but every event will be just as important to me -- when I'm on the road, I try to perform to my best abilities every day. I'll be doing some exciting readings from old books, "Bec" and books yet to be released, and, of course, signing lots and LOTS of books!!! Next month I'll provide you all with a full rundown of how the tour went, but in the meantime there's loads to report in the current issue -- not least the release of "Bec" in the UK and Ireland!! There's an update on how you can win a lunch date with Darren Shan ... details about the special edition of "Bec" ... news about a new horror anthology book with a story by me ... we find out how "Sons of Destiny" did in America ... and we also talk turkey!!!! But before we get round to the turkey, let's start with the release of "Bec" and news about my tour ...


    "Bec", the fourth book of "The Demonata", has gone on sale in the UK and Ireland. If you live in this part of the world, you should be able to find it on the book shelves of a shop near you -- if you can't find it, raise holy hell and demand the shop orders it immediately!! Alternatively, if you prefer buying over the internet, "Bec" is available for sale at a good discount on Amazon UK. The link is: http://www.amazon.co.uk/exec/obidos/ASIN/0007231318/shanville

    I'm very excited about "Bec" -- it's a bit of a departure for me, featuring a girl as the main character, and being set in Celtic Ireland -- so I'm pleased to be going on a big tour of the UK and Ireland (there are full details further down) to promote its launch. I'll be starting with my launch event in a castle, in Craggaunowen on Saturday October 7th, and ending up with a spooky Halloween event at Waterstones Picadilly in London on Monday October 30th. In between, I'm covering as much of the UK, Ireland and Northern Ireland as I can, and hopefully meeting thousands of eager, screaming, bloodthirsty fans along the way!!!!!! As always, I'll be happy to sign as many of my books as fans wish to bring along, so if you plan to come to any of my events or signings, feel free to bring your whole back catalogue of Darren Shan books. Occasionally, if I'm working to a time constraint, I have to place a limit on the numbers of books that I can sign, but that only happens rarely.



    While I'm at the Cheltenham Literary Festival (Saturday 14th October 2006), I've agreed to donate an hour of my time to help raise money for the National Library for the Blind (NLB) as part of their 'Tea with an Author' series. There will be an auction on E-Bay, and the highest bidder will get this once in a lifetime opportunity to spend an hour in private with me, from 11.00a.m. to midday. We'll have tea and cakes together, and the winner can ask me whatever they want (within reason!!). The winner will also receive a special goodie bag and two free tickets into my event at 12.45pm!! The Alias Hotel in Cheltenham has kindly offered to host the Tea With Darren Shan event. Please note, the winner will have to make their own way to Cheltenham, so please only bid if you can get to Cheltenham on Saturday October 14th by 11.00am.


    Although it says on the Ebay auction page that only two people can come to the tea, the Alias Hotel have kindly agreed to allow the winner to bring an additional two guests!! So, if they want, the winning bidder will be able to bring up to 3 other people with them, i.e. 4 people in total can come to the tea. It can be one adult and three children ... or two adults and two children ... three adults and one child ... or even 4 adults!!! But please note, the winner will still only get 2 tickets to the event -- so if you decide to bring an additional two guests to the lunch, they will have to book separate tickets for the event at 12.45. (See the Tour box below for a link to the Cheltenham site.)


    The auction opened at 12.00pm on Tuesday 26th September 2006 and will run for 10 days, closing 12.00pm Friday 6th October 2006. There have been lots of bids already (the current high bid as I write this on October 2nd is £150!!!), so you'll have to dig deep (or ask someone who loves you a LOT to dig deep on your behalf!!) to outbid everyone else!!!! This is the first time I've ever done something like this, and it's for a great cause, so it truly is a very special, one-off event. These days, because I get such large crowds at most of my events, I usually only have time to chat with fans individually for a minute or two while I'm frantically signing their books. This is a once-in-a-lifetime chance to spend a whole HOUR with me by yourself and ask me all the questions you like!!!! If you want to bid, the link is:


    You can visit http://www.nlb-online.org/tea for further information about the event. I'm supporting the National Library for the Blind (NLB), a registered charity, because less than 5% of books ever make it into a format that blind people can read -- this includes Braille, large print and audio. By bidding, YOU will help try and change this. For further information about the NLB, please visit http://www.nlb-online.org


    The special edition of "Bec" which I mentioned in the previous issue of the Shanville Monthly is on sale NOW through the HarperCollins web site -- and it's a beauty!!! The link is:


    There are only 666 copies of the special edition, each signed and numbered in strong black ink by ME! Each book comes in a hard, protective box (known in the trade as a slipcase), which has been decorated with artwork from the front cover of the book. Each customer can only buy a maximum of 3 copies. They cost just £20, which is only £7 more than the regular edition!!! (Though you will have to pay post & packaging on top of that.) I think, at that price, they're a sheer bargain! Once they sell out, no more will be made available, so my advice, if you want one, is to act quickly before they're all gone -- if you have to buy one on Ebay later, you'll probably have to pay through the nose!!!!!

    Unfortunately, because of legal reasons, the special edition is only available to fans living in the UK or Ireland. I know this might seem unfair to fans living elsewhere in the world, but there's nothing I can do about that -- international laws mean that book sellers are limited to where they can sell copies of their books.

    "BEC" CD ROM
    Waterstones are running a special "Bec" promotion this month, where people who buy a copy of the book will get a FREE CD Rom with it, featuring a host of attractive goodies! These include ...

    *A filmed interview with me, where I answer questions sent in by fans.
    *The Library, where you can click on your book jackets for a synopsis.
    *Could you be a Creature of the Night? (a multiple choice quiz with 3 outcomes)
    *An audio clip of Lord Loss
    *Win! Win! Win! (this is a competition to win a set of signed books)
    *IM icons (these are Instant Messanger icons - all the rage apparently!)
    *Creepy Special Effects Generator
    *Downloadable screensaver and wallpaper
    It sounds like a super-collectible item to me, so watch out for "Bec" in Waterstones this October, and make sure you buy your copy nice and early, while supplies last! I'm afraid, again for legal reasons, the CD Rom will ONLY be available through Waterstones in the UK and Ireland -- I won't be able to supply any through my site. (Latest update on the "Demonata" trading cards -- I'm very close to making these available through my site! I'd hoped to have them ready for this this month, but because of my tour, it looks more likely that it will be November before I can iron out all the details. Stay tuned for more info ...)


    Here are all the details for my upcoming "Bec" tour. Please read carefully to make sure you get the right venue, date and time. SCHOOL events are limited to select school groups. PUBLIC signings or events are open to everybody -- you can simply turn up on the day. When an event says TICKETED, it means you need a ticket to attend. These are sometimes available at the door on the day of the event, but where possible, you should book in advance.
    Saturday 7th -- 11.00am-2.00pm -- special ticketed Irish launch event at Craggaunowen, County Clare.
    Monday 9th -- 10.00-11.30am -- school event at Bundoran, County Donegal.
    Monday 9th -- 1.30-3.00pm -- school event at Letterkenny, County Donegal.
    Tuesday 10th -- morning -- school events in Derry.
    Tuesday 10th -- 4.00-5.00pm -- public signing at Easons, Foyleside Shopping Centre, Derry.
    Wednesday 11th -- 10.00am -- school event at Royal Belfast Academical Institution, Belfast, County Antrim.
    Wednesday 11th -- 2.00pm -- school event at Corpus Christi College (boys), Belfast, County Antrim.
    Wednesday 11th -- 4.30-5.30pm -- public signing at Waterstones, 44-46, Fountain St, Belfast, County Antrim. phone: 028 9024 0159.
    Thursday 12th -- 10.00-11.30am -- school event at Methodist College Belfast, County Antrim.
    Friday 13th -- 10.00-11.30am -- school event at Bow Secondary School For Boys, London E3.
    Friday 13th -- 1.30-3.00pm -- school event at Ilford Central Library, Clements Rd, Ilford, Essex. I will be collecting my Redbridge Award (see the July issue of the Shanville Monthly) at this event, and meeting some of the children (with great taste in literature!!) who voted for the book.
    Friday 13th -- 4.30-5.30pm -- public signing at Newham Children's Books Centre, Newham bookshop, 745-747 Barking Rd, London E13 9ER. phone: 02085529993
    Saturday 14th -- 11.00am-12.00pm -- tea with prize winner of a National Library for the Blind competition, in the Alias Hotel, Cheltenham -- see above for more information.
    Saturday 14th -- 12.45-1.45pm -- ticketed public event at the Cheltenham Book Festival. You can book online at: http://www.cheltenhamfestivals.com/whats_on/event_detail.html?id=1062 or you can phone: 01242 227979
    Sunday 15th -- 5.30-6.30pm -- ticketed public event at the Ilkley Book Festival. You can book tickets online by clicking here: http://www.ilkleyliteraturefestival.org.uk/user/event_details.php?event_id=139 or you can phone: 01943 816714.
    Monday 16th -- 10.00am -- school event(s) in Doncaster, arranged through Doncaster Library Services.
    Monday 16th -- 12.30-2.00pm -- public signing at Ottakars/Waterstones, 27 Frenchgate Centre Interchange, Doncaster, South Yorkshire DN1 1SZ. phone: 01302 329142
    Monday 16th -- 4.00-5.30pm -- public signing at Borders Books, 1-5 Davygate, York, North Yorkshire YO1 8QR. phone: 01904 653300
    Tuesday 17th -- 10.00-11.30am -- school event at Borders Books, 94-96 Briggate, Leeds, West Yorkshire LS1 6NP. phone: 0113 242 4400
    Wednesday 18th -- 11.00am -- school event at Shannon Library, County Clare.
    Wednesday 18th -- 1.45pm -- school event at Ennis Library, County Clare.
    Wednesday 18th -- 4.00pm -- public signing at The Ennis Bookshop, County Clare.
    Thursday 19th -- 10.15am -- school event at Nenagh Library, County Tipperary.
    Thursday 19th -- 1.45pm -- school event at Excel Theatre, Tipperary, County Tipperary.
    Friday 20th -- 10.00am -- school event at New Ross Library, County Wexford.
    Friday 20th -- 12.30pm -- school event at Wexford Town Library, County Wexford.
    Friday 20th -- 4.00-5.00pm -- public signing at Hughes & Hughes, Redmond Square, Wexford.
    Saturday 21st -- 11.00am-1.00pm -- public signing at Hughes & Hughes, Omni Shopping Centre, Santry, Dublin 9.
    Saturday 21st -- 3.00-5.00pm -- public signing at Hughes & Hughes, Marine Road, Dun Laoighre, Dublin.
    Tuesday 24th -- 4.00pm -- public event/signing at Dooradoyle Library, Limerick.
    Wednesday 25th -- 4.00-5.00pm -- public signing at Ottakars/Waterstones, 77 High St, Staines, Middlesex TW18 4PQ. phone: 01784 490404.
    Thursday 26th -- 11.00am-12.30pm -- public signing at The Lion & Unicorn, 19 King Street, Richmond, Surrey, TW9 1ND.
    Thursday 26th -- 2.30-3.30pm -- public signing at Ottakars/Waterstones, 100 The Glades Shopping Centre, Bromley.
    Friday 27th -- 11.00am -- ticketed event at the Guildford Book Festival. http://www.guildfordbookfestival.co.uk/html/index.php You can book tickets by phone: 01483 444334.
    Friday 27th -- 4.00-5.00pm -- public signing at Waterstones, Broad Street, Reading, RG1 2AP. phone: 0118 958 1270
    Saturday 28th -- 11.00am-12.00pm -- public signing at Borders Books, MSU8, Bullring, Birmingham, West Midlands B5 4BE. Tel: 0121 616 1094.
    Saturday 28th -- 1.30pm -- ticketed public event at Stourbridge Town Hall, arranged by FCBG (the Federation of Children's Books Groups). http://www.btinternet.com/~martin.kromer/
    Sunday 29th -- 3.00-4.00pm -- public signing at Waterstones Bluewater, Wets Village, Greenhithe, Kent, DA9 9SE. phone: 01322 624831
    Monday 30th -- 10.00pm -- school event at Bushey Manor Junior School, Grange Road, Bushey.
    Monday 30th -- 5.30pm -- ticketed public event at Waterstones Picadilly, London.

    AMERICA -- APRIL 2007

    I am coming to America on tour in April 2007. My publicist at Little,Brown has started putting the tour details together. If you're interested in setting up a signing/book store event/school visit for me, then click on the following link:

    APRIL 2007 TOUR

    Read through the guidelines VERY carefully and set to work as soon as you can -- the closing date for proposals is the end of November 2006.

    Sweden has become the latest country to join the Shan Revolution -- the first book of "The Saga" recently went on sale there. My Swedish publishers, Berghs, have created their own Darren Shan web site, for the benefit of my new Swedish fans. It's a cool little site, featuring a mix of new material and some translated bits from my own web site. Berghs are very excited about the books and I know they plan to put a lot more work into the site as the series expands. You can check it out in its first incarnation by clicking here: http://www.darrenshan.se/


    I've added a couple of new reviews of "Lord of the Shadows" to my web site. You can check them out here: http://www.darrenshan.com/vampires/reviews/11/indx-11lord.html

    I've added the Norwegian cover for "Lord Loss" to my site. You can check it out by clicking here: http://www.darrenshan.com/demons/covers/index.html I've also added new "Saga" covers for Brazil, Italy and Sweden. You can find them here: http://www.darrenshan.com/vampires/covers/index.html

    NEW FAN ART!!!!

    After FAR too long a gap, I've finally got around to adding some new fan art to my web site! I updated and overhauled the "Demonata" pages to begin with, adding loads of fabulous new images. You can check them out by clicking here: http://www.darrenshan.com/demons/fanart/index.html

    I then completely readjusted the art on the Vampires part of my site, adding new galleries as well as a couple of hundred or so brand new pieces -- some submitted to me as long as 2 years ago!!!!! I'm still working on the art pages, and should have them finished within the first few days of October -- the only galleries which have still to be completed are those for DARREN and VARIOUS. You can check out the new art by clicking here: http://www.darrenshan.com/vampires/fanart/index.html

    Please note, it was impossible for me to include ALL the art which I have been sent over the last couple of years, so I had to be selective. If you sent art to me and it didn't make it to the site, my apologies. Please don't consider the omission a criticism of your art -- I just don't have the time or the space on my site to include every piece of wonderful fan art which gets forwarded to me.


    In America, "Sons of Destiny", the final book in my "Cirque Du Freak" series, went on sale in September. It spent a healthy 4 weeks in the New York Times Top 10 Children's Bestsellers Chart, peaking at #8. If you live in the States and haven't bought the book already, you should be able to find it in your local book shop -- if you don't see it on the shelves, you can always ask the people there to order it in for you. Alternatively, you can order it online from Amazon at http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0316156299/ref=pd_sim_b_1/102-4045036-7476946?ie=UTF8 or from Barnes & Noble at http://search.barnesandnoble.com/booksearch/isbninquiry.asp?z=y&pwb=1&ean=9780316156295


    I recently contributed a short story to a horror collection called "Tales of Terror -- Shrouded by Darkness". The story is a reworked version of a short story which you can find in the Extras section on my web site called "Life's A Beach". If you'd like to read the new version of the story, as well as other creepy stories by the likes of Neil Gaiman, Michael Marshall Smith, Graham Masterton and others, you can order a copy of the book by clicking here: http://www.telos.cuttingsarchive.com/ordering/ocfic_order01.htm#shrouded

    All royalties from the book will be donated to DebRA, a national charity working on behalf of people with the genetic skin blistering condition, Epidermolysis Bullosa (EB). Please note, this is a book aimed at adults, so some of the stories might not be suitable for younger readers.


    If you don't live in Ireland, or do but missed my appearance on "Dustin's Daily News" on Wednesday September 20th, you can watch it online by clicking on the following link: http://dynamic.rte.ie/av/228-2174923.smil Dustin the Turkey is a huge TV star in Ireland, appealing to adults as well as children. As well as having his own TV show, he's released hit records in the past! He's a merciless interviewer, who loves to goad and tease his guests -- nobody gets the better of Dustin!!! I think I came out of the encounter better than many, but I still felt like I'd been swept along a few miles by a hurricane by the end of the show!!! If you check the show out, you'll see what I mean!!

    You will need RealPlayer to watch the show -- if you don't already have it installed on your computer, you can download it for free by clicking here: http://www.real.com/freeplayer/?rppr=rnwk


    I've added my third and fourth set of notes about the writing of "Bec" - book 4 of "The Demonata" - to my web site. These are the final notes on the book. So if you want to find out how to pronounce the names of the characters, and learn some more about Bec's place in the grander scheme of things, click here: http://www.darrenshan.com/secretgateway.html


    And that's it for October! I'm going to be on the road most of this month -- I hope I have enough pens to keep me going!!! I often get asked if my hand hurts after all the signings that I do, but it almost never does -- in fact, the only time I've ever had a sore hand was when I once had to sign for about 10 hours in Hungary!!! My only real worry when I set off on a long tour is that I usually catch a cold during it -- and addressing large crowds with a sore throat and a runny nose is nobody's idea of fun!!! But I'm trying a new First Defense spray this time, and I have plenty of Lemsip to back me up, so hopefully I'll be able to soldier through without too much coughing and sniffling! Anyway, I'll be back here at the start of November to catch up with everything and break all the latest news. Until then, take care of yourselves and have a grisly, gruesome, great Halloween!!! All the bloody best, Darren Shan x x x