Darren is another one of this writers found in the stables of ebook publisher, Trestle Press. I don't know if you've noticed or not, but Trestle Press is rapidly becoming the 900 lb. gorilla in the epublishing market. They're collecting new writers, fresh writing styles, and even some old, experience writing talent at a phenomenal rate. And they're marketing plan is refreshingly bold and dynamic--something I'm sure Darren appreciates greatly. I know I do.
Darren is one of those writers who doesn't so much write noir/hard boiled (although he does) as he writes the wickedly wiry horror shtick. His stories have appeared in the Brit anthology series Ragepacket Vols. Four and Five, and he has a series with Trestle Press called Tales of the Longcroft Estate.
Brit writers bring a whole new flavor when they write horror,noir, hard boiled----or at least, for American readers they see something different and unique in their writing. And Darren's stories are excellent. Can't quite pen it down exactly what is different about their style of writing. But most all of them I've come across and have enjoyed reading are . . .shall we say . . . different. (Different in a complimentary sense, boys)
So I thought an interview would be interesting. Without further ado, here we go;
1. Writing is a tough game. How long have you been writing and are you at that point in considering yourself a successful writer?
I’ve been writing for about fifteen years. At first it was poetry and humour. These days it is short stories flash fiction. If your definition of success is being published I’d say that for the amount I write I’ve had a good proportion published in one form or another.
I’d call my genre urban noir. Gritty, dark tales in and around urban environments. I think that to some extent we all have our own style. I like to add humour to my tales and my humour is pretty much distinctive to me. I’d also say that I seem to have to make a moral point a lot of the time. This is something I don’t usually plan it just sort of ingrains itself into my writing.
3. Do you believe/want to write a series, or do you prefer to write short-stories and/or stand alone novels?
At the moment at least I prefer to write short stories. I am currently writing a series of short stories for Trestle Press. It is called Tales from the Longcroft Estate. Whilst each tale is a stand alone short story the overall setting of the Estate remains the same for each of the stories. Some characters within the stories will be mentioned, if not occasionally, used in more than one story. It is a finite setting and that is my intention to give the reader some familiarity with each tale. I want them to get to know the Longcroft Estate and its residents.
4. A question that has to be asked; over the years what other writers have seriously influenced you in your work?
A difficult one for me to answer as my reading is very varied indeed. As a reader I just love a good story and often pick new authors if the story looks interesting. Although the humorous aspects of my writing are definitely influenced by people like Douglas Adams, Terry Pratchett and Tom Holt.
However, I’d be the first to admit that I’m pretty new as a reader to the genre I write in. I’m going to name check some folk whose exciting writing inspires me to continue in this genre: Julie Morrigan, Allan Guthrie Paul D. Brazill, Nigel Bird, Chris Rhatigan, Nick Quantrill, Nick Boldock and Iain Rowan. Huge apologies to anyone I have missed there are just so many writers I admire in this genre at the moment.
5. What is your take on the exponential rise of ebook publishing in regards to the more traditional form of publishing?
For the likes of me it is very exciting. Traditional publishers have needed a kick up the ass for quite a while now. Traditional publishers have been too slow to react to change and too focused on what is popular right now. Ebook publishing is bringing more speculative fiction to the market, which is great. I’m an uncomplicated guy I just love a good story regardless of genre. This explosion of new inexpensive reading in different styles and genres is great for a reader like me. Publishers like Trestle Press are doing new things like giving short story writers like me a chance to publish our short fiction. I believe that e-reading devices will lead to a resurgence in short fiction. People are developing new reading tastes, which is good. I personally believe that it is getting more people reading which is just great. I hope it has a positive effect on literacy standards too.
I am excited to be a part of Paul D. Brazill’s Brit Grit 2 anthology that is due out in a matter of weeks. My story Dope On A Rope is one of my more playful short stories. It features dark deeds but hopefully a few laughs, that is certainly my intention anyway.
Luca VesteRadiohead. It’s a serious tale set in the future. I guess you’d call it a science fiction story. I’m very pleased with it to be honest.
As you can see, Darren in his early developmental years as a writer may have watched Magnum, P.I. on the tube---but then, didn't we all? Nevertheless, if you're looking for an excellent writer and some great stories, don't pass up this guy. He'll grow on you. You'll become a fan.