The double life of Eoin Colfer!!!

November 23, 2009 at 21:48 (1)

Drove down to Wexford with Bas on Saturday for my final events of 2009. It was a terrible day weatherwise — the worst in some parts of Ireland for hundreds of years!! I was worried that flooding might bar our way, but we kept plodding along and made it in the end. I did an enjoyable signing session at Hughes & Huges for two hours, then had a break, before launching into my event with Eoin Colfer. It was great fun. I started by reading out a scene from one of Eoin’s books — it’s probably the only time I’m ever going to be doing a reading about a farting dwarf!!! Then Eoin read my Lord Loss extract. Then we chatted together for a while, asking each other questions, before taking more questions from the audience of 200 plus. It was a really nice, fun, relaxed event, and the time flew by. At the end we signed books for everyone who had come, and that was that for my 2009 touring schedule — roll on 2010!!!!

Later on Saturday, Bas and I went to see Eoin do an event about his Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy book. We then went to a cabaret after that, which included writers reading out extracts of their work (if I’d known that in advance, I’d have taken something along too). Eoin read out a short story he’d written for adults, for an anthology published a while back, called Dublin Noir. It was one of the filthiest, rudest stories I’ve ever heard — and also one of the funniest!!! I can’t remember the last time I enjoyed an author reading so much!! It definitely wasn’t fit for children, but it was brilliant for everyone else — I think Mr Colfer could go far in the adult world if he has a mind to turn his talents in that dark, disturbingly raucous direction!!!!!!

On Sunday, having driven home, Bas and I watched the movie of Twilight. Hurm!!! I have to say, I can’t see what all the fuss was about. Bas assures me that the book was much better, but I thought the film was pretty lame. In fact it seemed almost like a parody to me — I mean, how can you have THAT MUCH dark, brooding stares in a film and expect people to take you seriously?!? Maybe I’m just missing the point, and can’t appreciate its true brilliance because I’m not a teenage girl, but this looks to me like it coasted on the reputation of the books and its audience’s attraction to its lead actor. It might have made a gazillion dollars at the box office, but I’ve a strong hunch that in years to come this won’t be thought of quite as highly — or prove as influential — as the likes of Buffy or The Lost Boys. Blockbusters don’t always have legs, and many fade away from memory with the passage of time, and I’ll be surprised if that isn’t the case here. I hope I’m wrong, because as a horror fan I always want a successful movie or book to bring more fans into my field, to keep it alive and vibrant, but I don’t think that’s going to happen in this instance — I think the fans of the film will move on and lose interest in it as they find new eye-candy to obsess over, and newer generations of fans won’t replace them as, without the hype, there’s not really an awful lot to dig in this film. At least, that’s my opinion — but having said that, on a music front I also would have said pretty much the same thing about Take That ten years ago, and look at how far off the mark I would have been there!!!!!!

Today I started my latest edit on what will hopefully be my next adult book after City of the Snakes. The response from my agent and editor has been very strong, but they asked me to trim it down a bit from its previous draft, to place the focus firmly on the main story thread — there were a few too many asides in earlier drafts. It means cutting out a lot of what actually drew me to the story in the first place (it began life back in the days when I was a committed reader of The Fortean Times, and was inspired by all sorts of weird stories, from Spontaneous Human Combustion to Men In Black to UFOs beaming people up for experiments). But that’s something I’m sure most writers have experienced in their time. The starting point for a book sometimes has little to do with where you ultimately go with the story, and ideas which sparked you off have to be sacrificed to make way for their children. It’s never nice having to cut out chunks which were integral to the story of your creation, but if it has to be done, so be it. In the end, it should always be all about where you end up with a story — not how you got there.

11 Comments

  1. Elvira Ekberg said,

    Hi! I´ve reading your book Cirque Du Freak, and it´s the best! Now I´m going to read “Vampires assistant”, and I have big hopes about it!

  2. Robbie said,

    I would say that my friend shall read and enjoy your new adult book Darren Shan. Thank you for signing Tunnels Of Blood manga and Hell’s Heroes on Saturday and for writing this brilliant blog. Very much appreciated. I think my friend may also enjoy Dublin Noir, but perhaps not. I am looking forward to seeing Cirque du Freak:The Vampire’s Assistant, reading the fourth volume of The Saga Of Darren Shan manga, Vampire Mountain, your one off fantasy book, The Thin Executioner and the four book series about Mister Crepsley. Please keep up what I view as good work by writing more soon please!!!!

  3. Chloe said,

    Bas is right, the books are much better than the first film but the second film is much better than the first.

  4. Alina said,

    Frankly I found the original Twilight books were mediocre. *gasp*

  5. Emma said,

    All of my friends are in love with twilight and some times it’s pretty much all they can talk about, whereas I don’t really get the whole appeal either, I mean, I was laughing at the movie when I went to see it and tried reading the books but got a bit bored with them. I guess it just comes down to what type of books you like because they like the romance in twilight where I prefer the gore and coolness of your books XD They want me to read the twilight books but I’d rather spend my time reading books I want to read than read what’s in fashion.
    p.s Can’t wait for the crepsley books!

  6. Sandra said,

    I personally prefer the first movie to the first book, and the second book to the second movie… and I actually find the second movie a bore. =X I’m not crazy about the books, but I do enjoy the read. :3

    Colfer’s wittiness/sense of humour shows in his works. I’ve so far only read his Wish List, and I enjoyed it.. Glad ya had fun! ;3

  7. Artemis said,

    that’s awesome that you got to see Eoin Colfer. I find it awesome that two of my favorite authors were in the same room haha. I also find it just hilarious that Mr Colfer has a book like that^^

  8. DORSA said,

    hi!i’ve read all of your books and i’m going to read dark calling,so excited.
    anyways i’m so FREAKED out by the idea of you coming to DUBAI!!!it’s unbeliavable but it’s true.me and my friend are 1 of your biggest fans we are definitely coming to see u when r in dubai.
    DARREN SHAN U ROCK!!!!!!

  9. Aliah said,

    Hi Darren! I’ve all the collection of your vampire and demonata books and i totally love it. I started collecting it last year and finished it then. Darren, is your vampirites book published yet? if it is, then where can i buy it? I live in Malaysia though. Also when will the movies showing in Malaysia?

    • eric cates said,

      omg what is vampirites

  10. eric cates said,

    duuuude i may only be 16 years old but i know a great book when i see one usually i dont read cuz i havent come across a book that enterests me but youre cirque du freak series literally tugged my eyes i checked them out from a school library afew days ago like around thursday so almost 5 days ago and im already on book six and it kicks ass!!!
    you totally had me twisted when the vampaneze were atacking gavner and kurda stepped in acting like he was going to help but stabbed him instead… you are a fucking genius… as soon as im finished with this series im going to read youre demonata series you are the only writer that i have ever taking an interest in
    , i even went through the trouble of looking you up to give you this comment …. once again you kick ass later…. signed, eric

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