• Issue 208 - November 2017

    01 November 2017



    Hi everyone, and welcome to the November issue of the Shanville Monthly. First of all, for those of you who received a second email link to the October issue of the Shanville Monthly late last month -- my apologies. My site has recently been upgraded from http to https, and an unforeseen side-affect of that was that the Monthly link got sent out again for some strange reason. So, don't worry -- you HAVEN'T slipped back in time!! I have lots of news to report this month -- a sale on a couple of my adult books... an award from a prestigious university... a new competition, and lots more. But let's start with that sale, because it's time-sensitive and the opportunity to take advantage of it is swiftly slipping away...







    To celebrate Halloween, the ebooks of The Evil And The Pure and Sunburn -- the first two books for adults that I released under the name of Darren Dash -- are going to be available at a special discounted rate in the UK and USA Kindle stores for all of Halloween week, until 23.00 Sunday November 5th. Each ebook will cost just $0.99 in the USA, and £0.99 in the UK. This is the first time in two years that the books have been discounted, so seize the opportunity to grab them at a bargain-basement price while you can -- and please let all your friends and contacts know about them too!


    If you don't have a Kindle reader, don't worry -- you can download a FREE Kindle App to your PC, Mac, tablet or smartphone, and use that to buy these and other books through Kindle and read them on your device of choice.


    My adult books are available through Amazon stores all around the world, either as eBooks or paperbacks. (The paperbacks are quite expensive, but I keep the eBook prices low.) Sunburn is an out-and-out horror novel about a monster in Bulgaria, so it's perfect for the Halloween season. The Evil And The Pure is a dark, contemporary thriller, and part of it is set during Halloween, so that's a pretty good fit too. You can find out more about them on www.darrendashbooks.com and here are some handy buying links for the UK and USA stores.


    The Evil And The Pure UK

    The Evil And The Pure USA

    Sunburn UK

    Sunburn USA





    Although I made my last public appearance of 2017 last month, I'm popping up in one more place before year's end, on Thursday November 16th, at Trinity College in Dublin. Why? Well, the Trinity College Literary Society has invited me up, in their words, "to award you with Honorary Patronage of our society for your immense contribution to literature." I could hardly say no when they asked me so nicely, could I?!? This is an event for students of Trinity College (I'm guessing lecturers and other people who work there are wlecome too). If you happen to study or work there, and are interested in coming along to listen to me chat, keep an eye out for flyers around campus, or else get in touch with the Literary Society through their web site: http://www.tcdlitsoc.com/ It's going to be a fairly informal event -- I'll give a reading and answer questions from the audience, and then, if anyone would like any books signed, I'll be happy to do so afterwards (but I don't think any books will be on sale on the night, so bring them from home or buy in a book shop beforehand).






    The UK paperback edition of Zom-B Goddess went on sale last month in the UK and Ireland, meaning that all 12 of the Zom-B books are now available in that format. (The additional 13th, Zom-B Circus, is only available as an ebook.) Zom-B Goddess should be on sale in all good book shops -- if you don't see it on the shelves of your local bookseller's store, please do ask a member of staff if they can order it in for you. If you prefer to order online, Amazon UK of course have it, but while Amazon often do offer the best value on books, they aren't ALWAYS the cheapest option, and I've noticed with my Zom-B books that you can actually often get them at better prices through other stores. My advice, if you're buying online, is to use a site like 123PriceCheck, which will highlight the best available deals. Meanwhile, if you don't have the other books, and want to buy the entire series at a truly increidble low prize, read on...





    I've recently been adding author notes for all of my books to my Facebook page. I normally post 2 or 3 of them a week. I started with my first published book (Ayuamarca, which was later re-released as Procession Of The Dead) and I'm working my way up chronologically through all 49 that have so far been published-- as this month kicks off, I've just about finished with The Saga Of Darren Shan notes, and I'm about to start with The Demonata. Most of the notes have been adapted from the notes that have been available in the Books part of my site for quite some time, but I've been tweaking and adding to them, and replacing the Books notes with the updated versions as I'm going along. There are lots of fascinating insights into how I got the ideas for the books, how I went about writing them, the difficulties I had with publishers and editors, what sort of a reception they met with, who many of the characters were named after, etc. The notes have been meeting with a warm reception, attracting lots of views and visits each time I add a new set to the site, so don't miss out, or your best friends might end up knowing more about my books than you do!






    As I've mentioned quite a few times before, UK site Lowplex have complete sets of my series at amazingly low prices -- and they've just added all twelve of the Zom-B paperbacks to their site. The listed price can change from day to day, but has been coming in under £20 ever since it went live. Yes, that's right, it's not a typo -- less than £20 for all 12 Zom-B books!!! It's an incredible bargain, especially given the fact that the 12th book only went on sale in paperback for the first time last month. If you don't already own the books, this is the perfect time to swoop and nab them. I honestly don't think they're every going to be available at a better price than this.


    As I said above, it's not just my Zom-B series that Lowplex sells at too-good-to-be-true-but-true-nonetheless prices! A fan called Rowan sent me the photo above, of books that had just arrived in the post, and said, simply, "Best day ever!" At the time of writing, you can get all four sets of my YA series (The Saga Of Darren Shan, The Saga Of Larten Crepsley, The Demonata, Zom-B) for a grand total of just under £64! Yep, 36 books for £64 -- just £1.78 per book! If that's not a bargain, I don't know what is! So, if YOU would like to guarantee yourself a best day ever in the near future, click on the following link for Lowplex, enter the words Darren Shan in the search box, and treat yourself to a little piece of cut-price grisly glory!! https://www.lowplex.com/


    Shipping is extra, but Lowplex keep their shipping rates quite competetive, and they also ship worldwide.





    Here's a rarity -- a new interview with me! Of course I've given lots and lots of interviews over the years, but with no new book out in 2017, I've been keeping a low profile. Not low enough, though, to avoid a dogged reporter called Fintan, who came to my Culture Night event in Limerick last month, and collared me afterwards to ask a few questions. He wrote a nice piece, largley dealing with the struggles I had to make the breakthrough with Cirque Du Freak, and you can read it in the locally legendary Limerick Leader by CLICKING HERE






    Halloween has just passed, but as far as I'm concerned, any time is a good time for a good spooky read! If you're like me, than check out this list of recommended reads for Halloween over on the Corpse Bride site. It includes one of my series in among the mix -- but which do you think it is?!? Place your bets, ladies and gents, then click on the following link to find out if you were right: CORPSE BRIDE





    As I said higher up in the Monthly, I posted some memories of my first published book, Ayuamarca, a month or so ago. It was re-released years later under a different title as Procession Of The Dead, and in a nicely timed coincidence, it has just been reviewed by a new reviewer for the first time in ages. The reviewer thought it was "a masterclass on how to write a believable, compelling character arc." And added that "if you’re looking for pointers on how to build a horror setting, this is the book to read." If you want to check out the entire review CLICK HERE


    Procession of the Dead is on sale as a paperback or ebook in the UK, USA and lots of other countries. Ask for it in your local book store, or you can buy it online through a site like Amazon. I published four books for adults under the name of Darren Shan, but these day I release them as Darren Dash -- three so far, and counting. If you're interested in finding out more about those, visit www.darrendashbooks.com






    I was a big fan of the Bone comics by Jeff Smith back in the day. I started reading them for my own pleasure, but also used to read them out to a young cousin of mine called Ronan, putting on voices for the different characters. (I mimicked W C Fields for one of them, and I think I did a pretty good impression, even if I do say so myself.) So when I was strolling through Leake Street tunnel (which features in my Zom-B books -- it's the tunnel where the Angels do some zombie-killing training) in London last month with Mrs Shan and Dante, and spotted this graffitti drawing of Phoney Bone, I got very excited and had to have a picture taken!





    While fans are always welcome to ask me questions on Facebook or Twitter, or by using the Contact page on my web site I tend not to give very lengthy answers if I reply, as I simply don't have the time to thoroughly answer every single question that comes my way over the course of an average week. However, I also answer questions that are put to me through my Goodreads author's page, and since these stay online in one easily accessed place that is open to everyone, I sometimes go into a bit more depth with my answers, as I did recently when someone asked me how many hours a day I would recommend that a young writer work. If you're interested in checking out those questions and answers, and maybe even putting a question of your own to me, you can visit the Goodreads page here: https://www.goodreads.com/author/5816.Darren_Shan/questions





    The winners of the October Shanville Monthly competition, in the order drawn, were...


    1st -- Hannah Davies, UK.

    2nd -- Amber Stepp, USA.

    3rd -- Zach Winters, Ireland.

    4th -- Paula Coomber, UK.

    5th -- Alex Locke, UK.


    An unusually high percentage of British Isles winners this time, but as usual, entries came from all over the world. Thanks to everyone who took part, congratulations to the winners, and better luck next time to everyone else. Speaking of which...







    I'm running a competition (third in a row! I do spoil you!!!) to link in with Christmas. Yes, I know I'm early, but if I didn't run it until next month, I'd have to send the prizes out in mid-December, and there's a good chance they wouldn't get through to the winners until the new year, so I figured it was better to be safe than sorry.


    Up for grabs are four very special complete signed sets of my Zom-B series. Why are they so special? Well, each set features all 12 of the second generation UK Zom-B paperbacks, i.e. the paperbacks with the new cover images. They were released over the last year, and I built up a collection of seven complete sets. I signed every single book in each of those seven sets on its day of publication, and dated each one, and also wrote "publication day" into most of them (but not books 2 to 6, as they were released on the same day as book 1). This is the first time I have ever put together such a collection -- I didn't do this with any of my other series, as I was often away on tour around publication day. There are only seven of these publication day sets in the entire world, and there can never be any more. I'm keeping three for myself and givng away the other four sets up as prizes this month. Let me stress again -- these publication day sets are ultra rare, and this will probably be the only chance you'll ever have to get your hands on one of them.


    1) Answer this question: "What was the title of the final book in the Zom-B series?" (You can find the answer elsewhere in this newsletter.)


    2 Send your entry to: [email protected]


    3) Put your NAME in the SUBJECT BOX when you send your e-mail. And make sure you INCLUDE YOUR FULL POSTAL ADDRESS in the body of the e-mail, as well as the answer. This is so that I can easily send your prize to you if you win.


    (4) Closing date is midnight, UK Time, Thursday, November 9th, 2017.


    (5) This competition is open to everybodyeverywhere in the world, unless you work for one of my publishers or are one of my relations.


    (6) You can only enter the competition ONCE. If you try to enter more than once, ALL of your entries will be disqualified.


    (7) Only one entry per household -- if you send in more than one entry, ALL of your entries will be rejected. If more than one person in a house wants to enter, you'll need to make a joint entry.


    (8) The draw for the winners will be made on or after Friday, November 10th, 2017. It will be a completely random draw, made by Darren Shan personally (I use an online number generator to pick the winners). I will try to notify the winners by e-mail, and will post their names in the Shanville Monthly, and on Facebook too.


    (9) Information submitted by entrants WILL NOT be shared by me with any other individual or company.


    (10) My decision will be final.



    IT'S A WRAP!



    And that's it for November. I did my final public signing of 2017 just before Halloween, in the Crescent Book Store in Limerick. I spotted an advert for it in the window a couple of weeks earlier, and had a quick photo taken that features three generations of Shan -- my son Dante, me, and my Vampire Dad, Liam! I'll be back at the start of December with all the latest yuletide news and updates. Until then, all my bloody best, Darren Shan. x x x



    Follow Darren Shan on Facebook and Twitter. He also has a (very rarely updated!) YouTube page.