Darren Shan, whose real name is Darren O’Shaughnessy, was born in London in 1972, directly opposite Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament. He came from a largely working class Irish family, though his mother was a primary school teacher. In London he lived in a block of council-owned apartments. He lived in London until the age of six, when he and his family moved to Limerick, Ireland.
He loved the switch to Ireland: the family moved into a cottage with Darren's great-grandfather in the countryside and, as a young boy, Darren relished the freedom. He also read lots of books to pass the time. Though he'd reaad almost anything, he especially liked horror stories.
Darren was always interested in horror – both books and films – and loved giving himself nightmares. Many of the books he writes now are rooted in delightfully chilling childhood scare sessions, when he'd keep himself awake at night, imagining horrible scenarios in which vampires and other assorted creatures would surround the family's cottage and lay siege!
Darren continues to live in Ireland, and has been fascinated with vampires since he was six years old. He writse full-time, and he still love giving himself nightmares.
Author's Comment: I read lots of different books. Some of my favourites include: Salem's Lot by Stephen King; The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett; The Lord of the Rings by JRR Tolkien; The Belgariad by David Eddings; Childhood's End by Arthur C Clarke; The Machine Gunners by Robert Westall; Rebecca's World by Terry Nation; Sleeping In Flame by Jonathan Carroll; Dandelion Wine by Ray Bradbury; The Sirens Of Titan by Kurt Vonnegut; The Hyperion Books by Dan Simmons; The Grapes Of Wrath by John Steinbeck; Watership Down by Richard Adams; The Chocolate War by Robert Cormier; and Dracula by Bram Stoker (of course!!) Some of my favourite "hip, young and handsome" authors include: Eoin Colfer, Anthony Horowitz, Melvin Burgess, Louis Sachar, Philip Pullman, Garth Nix, Neil Gaiman, Alan Moore and J.K. Rowling.