Darren O’Shaughnessy was born on 2 July 1972 in London. After starting school at the age of three, he moved to Limerick with his parents and younger brother. He went back to London to study Sociology/English at college. Darren worked for a cable television company for 2 years before setting up as a full time writer. He had his first taste of literary success aged 15 when he was runner-up in a television script-writing competition with a comedy script titled, ‘Day in the Morgue’. Darren completed his first book aged 17.
A big film buff, he also reads lots of adult-orientated indy comics. Other interests include long walks, outdoor swimming, watching and discussing football, scuba-diving…and dreaming up new ways to terrify his readers!
‘Cirque Du Freak’ was Darren’s first children’s book. It is about something out of the ordinary, but set against the background of children’s normal lives to chilling effect. J.K Rowling describes it as, ‘A compelling book…a plot full of twists which leaves the reader hungry for more.’ The Times Educational Supplement describe the book as, ‘a compelling page-turner.’
When interviewed in T2, Darren comments, ‘It’s not a book that sets out to be frightening for the sake of it. Dark things happen, but they happen for a reason, and there are definitely repercussions.’
Since then, Darren has completed the 12-book Saga, which has sold over ten milliion copies, been translated into twenty languages and available in over 30 countries.
His follow-up series – The Demonata – took Darren into hardback for the first time and is proving to be an even bigger hit with the Shansters, as his fans are known. Book six of the ten-book series was unveiled as a world exclusive at the first Bath Festival of Children’s Literature in 2007. And there are plenty more chills still to come…