As a lifelong Darren Shan fan, I am honored to be interviewing Darren Dash, his alter-ego, under which name he has just published the dark adult novel The Evil and The Pure (find my review of that HERE ).
I hope that you enjoy reading the interview as much as I enjoyed conducting it!
1. What was the inspiration behind your novel The Evil and The Pure?
I was reading a lot of James Ellroy books and I wanted to write something in that sort of a style. I'd come close to it with the City trilogy, but the fantasy elements gave it a different feel. I was curious to see if I could write a crime novel that eschewed fantasy completely, so I started working on ideas, and Evil began to form.
2. Who was your favorite character and why?
Big Sandy. Of the four narrators, he's the one it's easiest to relate to, the only one of them who could truly be described as being in any way "nice" -- even though he's just as brutal in his own way as any of them. You've got to have at least one main character that your readers can connect with in a positive way, and although Tulip plays that role to an extent, Big Sandy is the most sympathetic of the narrators.
3. If you could be a character in the story, what kind of character would you be?
Well, it's not the sort of story that I WOULD hope to be in! But if I had no choice, then I'd like to be Big Sandy, someone who is hard because he has to be, but who has his own moral code and tries to do the right thing whenver he can.
4. Will we ever hear from Tulip again? What do you, personally, hope for her future?
No, I very much doubt that I will ever write about Tulip again. I like where her story ends in the book, on a vague but hopeful note.
5. Would you like to see this made into a miniseries or film?
Yes, of course. TV shows and films offer far more exposure and help take your story to a much wider audience. But given how dark this book is, I'm not sure how likely a TV or film adaptation is. But then again, the Stieg Larsson books were really dark too...
6. What do you think was the biggest difference between writing about real humans as opposed to vampires and zombies?
The violence hits in a whole different way when you take out any fantastical elements. As serious as my other books for adults (and children) have been, there's always been an escapist feel to them, because they deal with the impossible and unrealistic. The violence and dark sexual twistedness in Evil is, alas, all too real, and that makes it a far more sobering experience.
7. Are you working on anything under the Darren Dash moniker that you can share with KSR?
Yes, I'm hoping to have my second Darren Dash book ready to go later this year, or else early in 2015. It's a lighter story than Evil, a more staightforward, tongue in cheek horror book about Man vs Monster. In Bulgaria!
8. Did you ever envision a different ending to The Evil and The Pure?
No. I knew how I wanted it to end from the very beginning, with a degree of closure that is lacking in most of my novels. I felt it was important to bring the stories of the four narrators full circle, to leave readers with at least a smidgeon of hope that there CAN be happy endings, even in a world as dark and twisted as this one.
9. If you could only write either adult or YA fiction, would you be able to choose? Which would it be?
If I absolutely HAD to choose, it would be YA, as I just seem to fit more naturally into that world. But I love bouncing about between the two, and I think my work has benefitted from doing that--I don't think my YA books would be as strong as they are if I wasn't exploring other sides of my writing talents in the adult books, and vice versa.
10. If you could meet only one of your characters in all your books, who would it be and why?
In the adult books, I'd have to say The Cardinal from my City trilogy. It would be a memorable meeting... if I survived it!!
Find Darren Dash online via: