• Issue 120 - July 2010

    01 July 2010


    Hi everyone, and welcome to the 10th BIRTHDAY July issue of the Shanville Monthly!! Yep, this baby is growing up! Hard to believe, but it's been ten full years since I first published a Shanville Monthly. The site has undergone many changes over the last decade (all for the better, I think!) but the Monthly has remained a constant -- the only time it was ever really interrupted was when I went off on hols to Australia, New Zealand and the Far East for nearly 3 months several years ago, but even then I only missed a month!! I'll also be celebrating my own birthday in July -- I turn the horrendously old age of 38 on July 2nd!!! I can't believe I'm just a couple of years away from the big 4-0 -- I still feel like a teenager in many ways!! Anyway, apart from a few days off to celebrate the passing of another fun and freaky year, I'll be working hard this month, to hopefully ensure that the next 10 years are as climactic and memorable as the past decade!!! I've big plans for the future, all of which I'll be sharing with you over the fullness of time here on the Shanville Monthly, first as always with all the latest and hottest Darren Shan news!!!!


    I know I said this last month, but I'm going to take this opportunity to re-stress that if you want to keep receiving notification emails about future issues of the Shanville Monthly, you MUST re-subscribe, using the links on the new site -- sorry for the inconvenience, but it was impossible to transfer the information across. You can choose to subscribe just to the Shanville Monthly if you only want to hear from me once a month with the new roundup, OR in addition to be notified every time I post a blog or news item -- it's your choice!! You can subscribe either by email or using RSS. You can unsubscribe any time you wish, and as always, I will never share your details with any other interested parties. For the subscription page, CLICK HERE



    My first ever one-off, stand-alone novel, THE THIN EXECUTIONER, goes on sale in the USA in August. But my books often start hitting shelves across the States a bit earlier than scheduled, so depending on where you live, there's a chance you might be able to get hold of a copy this month -- so keep looking out for it!!! The response from fans in the UK and Ireland has been fabulous, so I'm keen to see how my American fans take to it... It has been popular with critics too, gaining more reviews than any of my books in quite a while. You can check out what reviewers have said so far about it by CLICKING HERE..


    UPDATE: July 16th -- Apparently, an overly enthusiastic fan somewhere in the NorthWest had the "brainwave" of contacting their local bookstores, pretending to be my publicist, and asking them to submit a propoal to stage an event for me!!! Now, while part of me is flattered, and while another part of me admires the cunning of the plan, such machinations are borderline criminal. They also proved a distraction for Jessica and the stores involved. Such skullduggery will not work. There's still time to pitch for me, but you MUST follow the guidelines below. Good luck -- and hey, play fair!!!!!


    Speaking of the USA... Exciting news for my American fans—I’m coming back to the States on tour in November 2010, for the first time in 2 years!! It’s not going to be a massive tour but I’m going to try to squeeze in as many events as I can while I’m there! The tour will run from approximately November 15th to 23rd, give or take a day or two either side. As for where I’m going to be visiting… well, that has yet to be confirmed, and here is where it gets VERY exciting for those of you who want to try and pitch for a visit from me!!!

    My publishers pick most of the venues whenever I tour the States, but we always try to give people a chance to request a visit, and sometimes events result from those requests! Read the following carefully, and if you pitch smoothly, and if luck is on your side, YOU might be one of those who succeed in luring the Shan to YOUR local school, library or bookstore!!

    First, my publicist, Jessica, WILL NOT entertain requests from individual fans. All requests MUST be made by a teacher, librarian or bookseller (or a combination of them). If you are not one of those, but are interested in trying to arrange an event, talk to your teacher, librarian or local bookseller and see if you can get them interested. It CAN work—I have done plenty of events in the past which started with a single fan spreading the word and trying to convince those with the power to make a pitch!!

    Attention teachers, librarians and booksellers!! When making a pitch, you need to be as clear as you can about what sort of an event you are looking for and where you plan to host it. The more details you can provide Jessica with, the more seriously she will take your request. Jessica will need to know how many students or fans you hope to have at the event. Where do you plan to stage it? How many people does the venue hold? Can you arrange book sales or do you need help from LittleBrown to do this? Where are you based geographically, i.e. which airports are you near??? I do events for all sorts of groups, but as a general rule of thumb I prefer BIG events with lots of kids, especially if it’s a school event. And my absolute favourite type of school events are if we can bring together students from a variety of schools. But I also do smaller events too, particularly if they’re evening or weekend fan events, so don’t be afraid to pitch just because you don’t have somewhere big to host me!!

    All requests need to be submitted by August 1st. Jessica will then start putting the tour together after that, contacting those who have been successful with their requests. If you don’t hear back from her, please understand that it’s not always possible to reqpond to every request. Although don’t lose hope—sometimes events can come together very late in the day, so there’s always a chance that you might be contacted a bit further down the line!!!!

    If you’ve read all of the above, and are keen to make a pitch, then please email Jessica at the following address: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

    Best of luck!!!!


    Over the last year or so I’ve noticed that the phrase “Cirque du Freak” seems to be creeping into popular usage. It’s been used at least a handful of times in the press that I’m aware of, in articles completely unreleated to my books. For instance a reporter called Louis Virtel used it recently when commenting on America’s Got Talent on the Movie Line web site: CLICK HERE to read it. And another reporter called Jeff Pearlman used it when discussing the sacking of a basketball coach on the Sports Illustrated site: CLICK HERE for full article. I’m quite intrigued by this—it’s the first time that I’ve introduced a new phrase into everyday talk!!! I’ll be curious to see if this continues to spread over the coming months and years… If any of you spot a mention of “Cirque Du Freak” in articles, or hear it mentioned by anyone on TV or radio, do please let me know!!!


    The competition winners for the Shanville Monthly June competition have been drawn and they are…

    UK & Ireland comp: Katie-Louise Dean, Swindon.

    Rest Of World comp: Christine Holman, Iowa, USA.

    There were 143 correct and correctly submitted entries in the UK & Ireland comp, and 187 in the Rest of World comp, with entries coming from pretty much every part of the globe! Congratulations to the winners, my thanks to everyone for entering, and better luck next time if your name wasn’t drawn this time round!!!


    You can read a new interview with me, mostly about my adult work, on The World In A Satin Bag, by clicking on this link: http://tinyurl.com/2fjnfp9

    And you can read another interview with me, again about my adult books, on the Voyager site by clicking here: http://www.voyagerbooks.com/2010/06/30/darren-shan-qa/

    2010 TOUR NEWS

    I am pleased to announce that I wil be appearing at the Edinburgh Book Festival again, for my 11th year in a row, on Saturday, August14th, at 1.30pm!! For more details of the festival, and to book tickets for my event or any of the others, CLICK HERE. I plan to read at least one world-exclusive extract this year, maybe even more, and there will be plenty of time for questions and answers!! As usual, I’ll be happy to sign as many of my books as fans bring along at the end, so feel free to bring your entire Darren Shan collection if you wish, but be prepared to stand in line for quite a long time—my queue normally last 3 or 4 hours up in Edinburgh!!!!

    In October I will be touring in the UK and Ireland again, to promote the release of the first book about Mr Crepsley, Birth Of A Killer. I can't confirm any dates at this time, but we're close to finalising most of the events, so I should be able to list tour details in the next issue of the Shanville Monthly, so stay tuned!! If you're a teacher, librarian or bookseller and you're interested in inquiring and finding out more about how to invite me to YOUR area, or to try and be part of an event that is already scheduled for your area, visit the Contact page on my site: http://www.darrenshan.com/contact/

    Then, in November, as I stated above, I will be coming to the USA again on tour!! It will have been more than a couple of years since my last American tour (October 2008), so hopefully my fans Stateside will be chomping at the bit!! I can't confirm details yet, as we're still working on putting the tour together, but I can say that it finishes in Florida on or around November 22nd. There's no point writing to me directly asking me to come to your area -- follow the rules listed above if you are genuinely interested in trying to pitch for me.

    Click here for all upcoming events information. This list will be updated whenever an event is confirmed.


    I’ve added several new reviews for Dark Calling to the site, as well as a few new reviews for Procession of the Dead. You can find them, along with all of the other reviews for my books, by CLICKING HERE.


    I often get asked when my next book is coming out, or where and when I'm going to be touring. That's why one of the first things I pencilled in to be included in the new site was an EVENTS page. You can find the release dates for my upcoming books on this page for every country where I have such information to hand. You can also see when and where I'm going to be on tour. And you can even find out about any upcoming media appearances that I might be making. I include all of the information that is made available to me by my publishers on the Events page -- but publishers don't always share their plans with me, which is why in many cases I can't say when a new book is coming out, because I honestly don't know!! But if I DO know, you can find the info on the Events page. So go check it out!!!!!


    And that's it for July!! I hope you all enjoy the summer -- I'll be glued to the TV watching the final stages of the World Cup! But working hard at the same time, believe me!! I'm looking forward to hitting Edinburgh again in August -- I always have a blast up there -- but there's plenty of writing to be done before I allow myself that treat! I'm also going to be working hard on my newly extended house -- we're getting close to the stage where we have to choose all of the interior stuff like doors, tiles, floorboards, etc. Not my idea of a good time, but it has to be done!! Anyway, whatever happens with the house and my work schedule, I'll be back here early in August with all the latest news and updates. Until then, all my bloody best, Darren Shan x x x

    Follow Darren Shan on MySpace and Twitter and on his Blog. He also has a YouTube page.