Darren O'Shaughnessy ( /oʊˈʃɔːnəsi/; born 2 July 1972 in London, England), who commonly writes under the pen name Darren Shan, is an Irish author. Darren Shan is also the main character in Shan's The Saga of Darren Shan young-adult fiction series. He also wrote The Demonata series as well as the stand-alone books, Koyasan and The Thin Executioner. The City Book Trilogy was written for older adults readers. He is currently releasing a four-book series, The Saga of Larten Crepsley.
Darren O'Shaughnessy was born in 1972 at St Thomas' Hospital, London. At the age of three he started school at English Martyr's near the Elephant & Castle. When he was six, he moved with his parents and younger brother, to Limerick, where he has lived ever since.
He received his primary education in Askeaton, and attended secondary school at Copsewood College, Pallaskenry. He returned to London to take a degree in Sociology and English from Roehampton University.
He lives in Limerick, Ireland, with his girlfriend Bas.
Darren Shan, before he decided to become a full-time writer, worked for a cable company in Limericj for two years . He bought his first typewriter when he was fourteen and wrote many short stories, comic scripts, and books that he never finished. His first success came to him at age fifteen, when he was a runner-up in a TV script-writing competition for R.T.É. in Ireland, with a dark comedy story entitled A Day in the Morgue. He finished his first novel at age seventeen. Mute Pursuit was never published, but he loved the writing experience, so he started focusing on novels more and not on short stories.
His breakthrough came with Ayuamarca, written under his full name instead of a pen name. It was published in February 1999 by Orion Publishing Group, and did not sell very well. The sequel, Hell's Horizon, published in February 2000, was thought by some to be a better book, but sold fewer copies than the first. Ayuamarca was re-released in March 2008 under the title of Procession of the Dead and under the pen-name D.B Shan. Hell's Horizon followed in March 2009, and the third in the trilogy, City of the Snakes in March 2010 (but this time under the name of Darren Shan). In January 2000, Shan released Cirque du Freak, the first book of The Saga of Darren Shan series in the UK and Ireland and America.
Shan is in possession of thousands of films and collects original artwork. He enjoys reading books and comic books, taking long walks, watching football (he is a huge Tottenham Hotspur and Republic of Ireland fan), listening to pop and rock music, and travelling worldwide both to promote his works and for leisure.
The Saga of Darren Shan
(Also known as "Cirque Du Freak Series")
The Vampire Blood Trilogy
The Vampire Rites Trilogy
The Vampire War Trilogy
The Vampire Destiny Trilogy
a short novel released for World Book Day in the UK in 2006. Out of print. It has also been translated and released in several other countries.
The Demonata is a ten-book series.
- Lord Loss
- Demon Thief
- Blood Beast
- Demon Apocalypse
- Death's Shadow
- Wolf Island
- Dark Calling
- Hell's Heroes
The City Trilogy
The City Trilogy was written for adult readers and was originally released under the name of Darren O'Shaughnessy. The third book was never published and the original versions are now out of print. They were published by Orion Publishing Group. However, in March 2008, Ayuamarca was re-published as Procession of the Dead (with substantial changes) by the Voyager imprint of Harper Collins (Shan's children's publisher). Hell's Horizon was released in March 2009 and City of the Snakes was released in March 2010. All three books are now also available in the US, as well as in several other countries.
- Ayuamarca - Re-named Procession of the Dead - First published in the United Kingdom in February 1999 and later in Russia. Re-released in the UK in March 2008.
- Hell's Horizon - Sequel to Ayuamarca. First published in the United Kingdom in February 2000. Re-released in March 2009.
- City of the Snakes - Last book of The City Trilogy. It came out in the United Kingdom on the first of March 2010.
The Thin Executioner
A one-off novel, The Thin Executioner was released in April 2010. Inspired in part by The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and based in a brutal, fantastical world, it details the perilous quest of Jebel, the thin son of a respected executioner, to petition a fire god for invincibility, so that he can succeed his father.
Jebel Rum is a thin, scrawny boy. His father is the famed executioner in the city where they live. When Jebel is humiliated in public, he sets off on a quest to gain great strength and invincibility. If successful, he will be able to compete in a gruelling contest to prove himself and replace his father as the wielder of the axe. Failure, on the other hands, means certain death.
To win the favour of a fire god, Jebel must make a human sacrifice. He finds a slave who is willing to pay this grisly price, and the pair set off on a trek through lands deadly and unwelcoming. In the course of their travels they will encounter hatred, bigotry, slavery, death and a whole lot more. It is the nightmarish adventure of a lifetime…
Shan has often stated that this is his favorite out of all of the books he has written over the years
The Saga of Larten Crepsley
This is a four-book series covering 200 years in the life of Larten Crepsley, a vampire first introduced to readers in Cirque Du Freak.
- Book 1, Birth Of A Killer. Released in the UK and US in October 2010.
- Book 2, Ocean Of Blood. Released in UK and US in April 2011.
- Book 3, Palace of the Damned. Released in UK and US in September 2011.
- Book 4, Brothers to the Death. Released in UK and US in April/May 2012.
On 12th October 2011, it was announced that Darren Shan's next series for teenagers would focus on zombies, and that the title of the series was Zom-B. There will be twelve books in total. The first book will be released in the UK and USA in late September 2012, and the sequels will follow at a rate of one every three months. 
Lady of the Shades
On 12th October 2011, it was announced that Darren Shan's next book for adults would be called Lady of the Shades. It is dues for release in the UK in September 2012. 
Online short spin-off stories
- "Hagurosan" - Originally written for Kids' Night In.
- "Young Alan Moore" - Originally written for Alan Moore: Portrait of an Extraordinary Gentleman, a book written to celebrate the 50th birthday of Alan Moore.
- "The Good Ship Tree" - Originally written for the Times Educational Supplement, and accepted.
- "Life's a Beach" - Originally written for the Times Educational Supplement, but rejected.
- "Guyifesto—Who We Are" - Originally written for Guys Write For Guys Read. (Play on words of "manifesto")
- The Saga of Darren Shan tie-in short stories - See above
In July 2009, Shan revealed that he has written first drafts of 53 books in total. 31 of those are published or due for publication over the next few years. The rest include some books that he is working on for the future, along with some he might one day return to and publish, and others that he will probably never do anything more with. We know the names of two of these unpublished books.
- Mute Pursuit - A futuristic cross between The Terminator and Stephen King's The Dark Tower; Shan's first completed book, when he was 17 years old. Shan has written lots of books which have not been published, mainly for adults, and most of these books are still at the first draft stage.
- The Cannibal King - This was originally going to be the 12th book of The Saga of Darren Shan—book 11 was originally meant to be much longer, including elements from the first half of what became Sons of Destiny. The Cannibal King was never published because it was originally part of the planned 24-book Saga. Shan had planned to write 18—24 books for The Saga, with half of them taking place in the future wasteworld shown in Book 10, The Lake of Souls. For reasons explained on his web site, Shan decided to end the series with Sons of Destiny, which was written and released instead of The Cannibal King. He never reveals anything that he wrote in this book, because there is a possibility that he might one day write a follow-up series to The Saga, which would take parts of this book as its starting point.
Universal Studios bought the film rights to the first three books of The Saga of Darren Shan and combined them to make a single movie. Lauren Shuler Donner produced the film, Paul Weitz directed. Original screenplay by Brian Helgeland but rewritten entirely by Paul Weitz. The first movie is called The Vampire's Assistant and was released in the US on 23 October 2009.
The Saga of Darren Shan
- In 2001, Cirque Du Freak (Book 1) received 2nd prize at the Sheffield Children's Book Award.
- In 2001, Cirque Du Freak (Book 1) was shortlisted for the WHSmith Children's Book Of The Year in the UK.
- In 2002, Cirque Du Freak (Book 1) received an IRA-CBC Children's Choice Award, in the US. (IRA = International Reading Association, and CBC = Children's Book Council).
- In 2002, Cirque Du Freak (Book 1) received a certificate of Outstanding Achievement in Books from the Parent's Guide to Children's Media Inc, in the US.
- In 2004, Cirque Du Freak (Book 1) won the Wyoming Soaring Eagle book award.
- In 2005, The Vampire's Assistant (Book 2) was shortlisted for the Wyoming Soaring Eagle book award.
- In 2007, The Allies of the Night (Book 8) was shortlisted for the I Love This Book book award.
- In 2006, Lord Loss won the Redbridge Teenage Book award, in the UK.
- In 2006, Lord Loss was shortlisted for the Berkshire Book award, in the UK.
- In 2006, Lord Loss was shortlisted for the Doncaster Book award, in the UK.
- In 2006, Lord Loss was shortlisted for the Lancashire Children's Book Of The Year award, in the UK.
- In 2007, Lord Loss was shortlisted for the Leeds Children's Book award, in the UK.
- In 2007, Demon Thief was shortlisted for the Doncaster Book award, in the UK.
- In 2007, Demon Thief was shortlisted for the Irish Children's Book Of The Year award, in Ireland.
- In 2007, Demon Thief was shortlisted for the Lancashire Children's Book Of The Year award, in the UK.
- In 2007, Slawter was shortlisted for the Staffordshire Young Teen Fiction book award, in the UK.
- In 2007, Blood Beast was shortlisted for the Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Award, in the UK.
- In 2008, Lord Loss was shortlisted for the Flume: NH Teen Reader's Choice award, in the US.
- In 2008, Blood Beast was shortlisted for the Doncaster Book Award, in the UK.
- In 2008, Demon Apocalypse was shortlisted for the Worcestershire Teen Book Award, in the UK.
- In 2009, Death's Shadow was shortlisted for the Worcestershire Teen Book Award, in the UK.
The Saga Of Larten Crespley
- In 2010, "Birth of a Killer" was shortlisted for the Berkshire Book Award, in the UK.
- In 2011, "Birth of a Killer" was shortlisted for the Independent Booksellers Week Award, in the UK.
- In 2011, "Ocean Of Blood" was shortlisted for the Children's Book Of The Year, in the Irish Book Awards.