Profile by Dave Jenkinson.
"It was great having the NHL strike."
While I'm certain that versions of the above statement were made by countless NHL hockey widows and widowers all over North America during the 2004-05 NHL season strike/lockout, these words were actually uttered by someone who was then, and still is now, employed by the NHL's Edmonton Oilers as their Manager of Corporate Communications. It was not so much that this individual didn't want hockey to be played, but he saw the lockout as an opportunity to fulfill a longstanding dream — that of becoming a writer. And so the fall of 2005 marked not just the resumption of play in the NHL, but the completion of a manuscript that would be published in 2006 as The Uncle Duncle Chronicles: Escape from Treasure Island.
The book's author, Darren Krill, was born in Edmonton, AB, on November 6, 1967. A middle child, Darren is sandwiched between an older brother and a younger sister. He completed all his schooling in Edmonton, and, with the exception of a few adult years when employment took him out of province, Darren can proudly boast of being "an Edmontonian all my life."
From the outset, Darren knew what his career goal was. "Literally from early on, I wanted to be a writer, and that desire carried right through high school, but my life changed in grade 12 when I signed up for a course called work experience. For a couple of afternoons a week, you'd actually go to work, and then you'd get credits for it. An effort was made to get you into your chosen career, and naturally I wanted to do my work experience in a newspaper, but, at that time, neither the Edmonton Journal nor the Sun would take a work experience student. It seemed that I was out of luck until my counselor suggested, ‘Why don't you try a radio station?' At that time, I had no interest in radio, but I decided, ‘Why not? I'll give it a try. It can't hurt.' I went to a station then called K-97, now K-Rock, and I found I loved it. Consequently, my career as a writer veered off to the side. Only now, when I'm almost 40 years old, do I finally get back to what I originally wanted to do, and I have my first book out. When I was younger, I had always envisioned myself being a newspaper reporter or a writer."
"I did a lot of writing when I was on school but mostly on my own, writing little short stories and just kind of dreaming. In junior high, I wrote for the school paper, and I actually won a writing award for a fun article I wrote called ‘Dallas in Edmonton' which had the school's teachers in the roles of characters like J.R. Ewing. In high school, I definitely took as many writing-type courses as I could, but I didn't too much writing for the school paper or anything like that. I was tied up with other activities, and it wasn't really the kind of writing I wanted to do. I was still very much dreaming of writing fiction and just taking my imagination and putting it on paper."
"I've been a voracious reader all my life, and I always have a book going. I credit my parents in The Uncle Duncle Chronicles for sparking my imagination. My brother John was definitely the jock of the family. I tried. He still laughs about the fact that I now work for the Edmonton Oilers, but he says I'm the coolest nerd he's ever known. As we were growing up, it was me saying, ‘Once you drop John off at hockey practice, do you mind taking me to the library or the book store?' I could spend hours on end walking around a book store, just browsing. I jumped from children's books to adult authors because I'd be reading things off my dad's bookshelf. When I was young, I was reading Alistair Maclean and Clive Cussler, and I loved adventure fiction - Wilbur Smith and stuff like that, and that love's just carried on. I still have all my favourite authors, and, lucky for me, they're still writing. Now I find that I'm jumping back and reading a lot of the young adult stuff. I just read The Golden Compass books which I thought was a great series, and, of course, I've read the Harry Potter books. There's just so many great young adult writers out nowadays, and their work really bridges that span between young adult and adult."
Because of Darren's positive work experience at the radio station, he went directly from high school into a radio and TV arts program at Edmonton's Northern Alberta Institute of Technology (NAIT). "It was a two year course, and I specialized in radio. Actually, I didn't even finish the course. When I was going into the final semester of my second year, I got my first radio offer. One of my instructors said, ‘Look, this is what you're here for – to get a job in radio.' Consequently, instead of my going to school for the last semester, they suggested, ‘We'll each give you one assignment to do on your own time. As long as you pass that assignment, we'll give you your diploma.' So I finished my diploma while I was working, and I started my radio career. I probably learned a lot more once I actually got in the working world than I did in school, but the NAIT instructors' suggestion was very forward looking on their part."
"I started in radio as an on-air person at a station, CKSA, in Lloydminster, which is right on the Saskatchewan-Alberta border. I spent about a year and a half there before moving down to CHAB in Moose Jaw, SK, where I remained for a couple of years. I was on-air in both cities, but when I got to Moose Jaw, because it was a small town station, you had to do on-air plus something else to save the station money, and so they made me a promotions person. I figured out that I really had a knack for marketing and that I was probably better at it than I was on-air. Then I had the opportunity to come back and work at a brand new radio station in Edmonton called ‘The Bear', and it was strictly off-air as a promotions manager."
"The rest of my career has been in the marketing area where I've done marketing for a number of companies. Marketing is the on-air promotions, things like the contests. It's all the fun stuff. While I was offered the chance to sell radio advertising everywhere I went, I'm just not a sales guy. I'm more of a creative type. Give me a sponsor, give me what they want to give away, and I'll come up with a unique way to do it. It was using my imagination and putting it on air."
"During my on-air days, however, I was ‘the evening guy' which was probably one of the reasons I didn't like being on-air it too much. I had to pull six to midnight every night. I was ‘Darren Stevens,' and, yes, I stole the name from Bewitched. Even though I didn't like the shift, it was actually a really fun job, but radio in small towns and radio in big cities are just completely different industries. In a small town, I really did enjoy the fact that you could turn on your mike and talk about whatever you wanted to talk about, but when you got to the big city, it was like: ‘At 6:10, you're doing a PSA; at 6:20, you're doing the weather; at 6:30, you're doing this' and, unless you're the morning man, they're pretty well dictating what your show's going to be. It was too much of a job, and it wasn't as fun as it was in Moose Jaw or Lloydminster, but I did find that I could still be creative doing marketing and promotions."
"I've had some really fun jobs, and I really have to credit Edmonton for giving me these opportunities. I went from radio into trying TV, and I worked for a cable company, Videotron, then ACCESS, Canadian Learning Television where I spent a couple of years. I finally got to the newspaper world and did marketing for the Edmonton Journal for a couple of years. I think I stuck my toe in that door hoping that I might eventually get up to the newsroom, but that didn't happen. For five years, I went with the Edmonton Eskimos and did all their half-time shows. I was also their in-stands announcer, and so I had a lot of fun with the Eskimos. I did two years of WHL hockey with the Edmonton Ice before they left town, and then I had a chance to come to the Oilers where I've been for five years now. On top of that, Edmonton has been blessed to have some major events, and I've been lucky enough to work on some really phenomenal events, including the world track and field championship. I also did a half-time show for Grey Cup, and the NHL's outdoor hockey game, the Heritage Classic. If I'd stayed in Moose Jaw or wherever, I probably never would have had those opportunities, and so I've been pretty happy with Edmonton."
During all these post high school years, Darren had not forgotten that he had once wanted to be a writer. "Actually, I was always writing, and I even wrote a thriller that I called ‘Artichoke.' It's still sitting in a box somewhere in my garage. It was totally different than Uncle Duncle, and when I finished ‘Artichoke,' I just thought, ‘This is not good enough to send out,' and so I didn't send it to a single agent or publisher. It just went into a binder and was packed away in a box. But when I finished Uncle Duncle, I knew that there was something special about it. Originally, I had planned on maybe self-publishing it for my nieces and nephews, but I decided, ‘Maybe I should send this one out,' and luckily I got a publisher interested."
"I probably started Uncle Duncle a few months before the NHL lockout, but what I was doing then was just kind of mapping out what the story was going to be. We all had a feeling in advance that the lockout was going to happen because you hear rumors through the office, and you could also see that things weren't going well between the NHL and the NHLPA. I began thinking, ‘OK, I could have a year here to do nothing really.' For me, however, it turned out to be a paid year as the Oilers brought in our AHL club from Toronto and called them the Edmonton Roadrunners. Although the team disbanded after they left Edmonton the following year, their being in town kept me working. When the Roadrunners didn't make the playoffs, the Oilers shipped me over to the Edmonton Grand Prix in the off-season, and so I did the very first Edmonton Grand Prix over the summer."
"Hockey then came back in the fall, and, while I had actually worked that entire lockout year, things were obviously a lot quieter than they are during a regular NHL season, and so I had a lot of time to write and to wrap my head around Uncle Duncle. Luckily, it only took me about six months to finish the manuscript. Then I started sending it out to agents and to publishers, and Lobster Press jumped at it."
"Lobster was actually the first publisher I approached. I must have gone through 50 agents. I bought one of those ‘How to get published in Young Adult' books which said, ‘Do not go to a publisher without an agent' or unless you can say ‘I've already published three books and sold 20,000 copies' or whatever. I literally listed every single young adult agent in North America and even a few in Europe, and I started sending out manuscripts or whatever they asked for, the first 20, the first 50 pages. Out of all 50, I probably had maybe three that said, ‘Can I read the whole thing,' and all three, for one reason or another, concluded, ‘It's not for me.' I was at the point where I was almost going to give up. ‘Fifty agents have turned me down.' I was considering self-publishing, and then I thought, ‘It says not to send it to publishers,' but I don't really have a choice. I picked Lobster Press because I'd seen a few of their books and knew they were in Montreal."
"I think I sent Lobster the first 50 pages, and they asked to read the whole manuscript. The timing of it was actually pretty funny because it was the end of the Roadrunner season in the lockout year. Stew, my boss, had taken me for lunch, and, while sitting across the table from me, he told me that I was going to the Grand Prix for the summer. I was a little upset because it had been a long season and I had done the work of three people for the entire season. I was looking forward to relaxing, and he just said, ‘It's either lay you off, or we have to move you to Grand Prix.' When I got back to the office, still a little upset, I sat down at my computer and checked my emails, and there was an email from Karen at Lobster Press, saying, ‘Congratulations. We want to publish you.' I printed it out and went running down the hall to Stew's office, waving it in my hand, and said, ‘Look! I'm getting published.' It was like going from one of the worst days to one of the best days so the experience was just great. It was during the editing process that Lobster Press asked, ‘Have you ever thought of turning this into a series?' I had no problems with that idea as I can easily envisage 20 more stories I'd love to put Uncle Dunkirk and Sage in. Right now were looking at doing three, and from there we'll see what happens."
"Originally, it was just going to be published in English, and then my publisher sent me a little note saying, ‘Congratulations. We're going to publish it in French at the same time.' Usually a book has to sell a few copies before they start selling the foreign rights. I was really happy to see it out in French. Its title is Les chroniques de mon oncle: Évadé de l'Ile au Trésor. I love the cover art that appears on both the English and French editions. It was done by an artist by the name of Alain Salesse out of Montreal. While we were in the editing process, he was emailing me little snippets of what he was envisioning, and the second I saw that he had the skull-shaped island I loved it. Originally, we had some doubloons at the bottom and a treasure map unrolled, but we trimmed things down. I think the cover really jumps out at kids."
"I envisioned Uncle Duncle as being a book that I would have loved to read when I was young. Like I said earlier, while I was growing up I read a lot of books by authors like Wilbur Smith and Clive Cussler. I like adventure novels, and I always thought it would be nice to have a book for that middle school group that left them with a cliff hanger at the end of almost every chapter so that they would really want to dive into the next one. As well, I wanted to teach my readers a bit about the world. I like to travel quite a bit, and my wife Kelly and I go to some pretty exotic places. I want to share that knowledge, and so that's why I came up with the character of Uncle Dunkirk, this kind of globe-trotting explorer who goes to the farthest corners of the earth and looks for lost civilizations."
"I start with character, and then I built plot around it. I had certain ideas of things that I'd like to incorporate into a novel, a time period I wanted to incorporate, and then just a rough idea of what I wanted this character to do during the span of the novel. I just started building it from there. To me, half the fun is actually building that skeleton and coming up with what's going to happen to that character, how it's going to happen and how they're going to get that final goal, and making it happen and then filling in the blanks."
"I loved Treasure Island as a kid. There's something about that book. We go the Caribbean quite often, and so maybe there's something about islands as well. I probably read Treasure Island three or four times, and I always thought, ‘Wouldn't it be kind of fun to take a modern boy and put him on that island and see what happens?' and that's where Uncle Duncle came from."
"I also wanted all of Uncle Dunkirk's adventures to be authentic, and so, if he does talk about lost civilizations or a treasure he's looking for, readers can actually go on the internet and look it up or else they can go their local library and see, ‘Wow, that's true. It actually took place." There's a lot of information woven into the story, but I wanted it to be fun for kids to read while I was trying to teach them something at the same time."
Using characters from a well-known children's classic presents some challenges. "You definitely don't want to offend all the fans who love Robert Louis Stevenson's original book, and so you try to give his characters as much credit as possible, but, at the same time, his book's a little dated nowadays, and so you want to update it a bit. So far, I haven't had any angry letters from Robert Louis Stevenson fans, but I definitely put some of myself into his characters and modernized them somewhat. For the most part though, I think they're fairly similar to the original characters in Stevenson's novel. I think Treasure Island's definitely a book that today's kids have heard of, maybe from the Disney movie or from the other movies that have been made of the book. I've probably visited 40 to 50 schools since Uncle Duncle came out, and I always ask for a show of hands. ‘How many have heard of Treasure Island', and, if they have a copy of Stevenson's book in the school library, I hold it up. My hope is that a few of the kids will pick up the original and actually read it. I always stress that ‘You should read Treasure Island before you read my book' though they could do the reading in the opposite order. While Treasure Island's not high on today's kids' lists of ‘must-reads,' I'm hoping to change that."
In Uncle Duncle, Darren also expanded upon Stevenson's characterization. "I probably made Long John Silver a little bit more violent or mean than he was in the original book, but I really wanted a villain that jumped off the page, and I thought, ‘Long John Silver.' A lot of kids already know his name, and they know he's a pirate. He's the perfect character for the villain role, but I definitely notched him up a few pegs, making him a bit meaner. I also changed Squire Trelawney by making him into a bit of a criminal at the end where he kind of switched sides. Making these character changes was just me having a little fun with the characters and adding a little twist to my own tale. I did reread Treasure Island just before Uncle Duncle came so as to freshen myself up on it, but I haven't watched the Disney movie, even though my dad has a copy of the DVD. I almost don't want to watch it. I did watch it as a kid, and I do remember it, but I don't want to watch it again. It's like I've got Robert Louis Stevenson's book in my head, and I don't want to paint it over in Disney-ized technicolor. I really respect Stevenson's original version. It's one of my favourite books, and I wanted to make my book wrap around him rather than the Disney version."
In Uncle Duncle, Uncle Dunkirk pilots a Spitfire, one of the fighter plane workhorses of World War II. Darren acknowledges, "I love stuff about World War II. Originally, my first draft of Uncle Duncle was actually based in the 1960's, and Dunkirk Smiley was a war hero from World War II. It was during the editing process that Lobster Press suggested, ‘Let's update him to modern times.' I actually fought them on that because we'd already done one complete edit of the original manuscript, and it was at the second edit that they suggested, ‘Let's modernize the young boy character, Sage Smiley. Kids nowadays won't really relate to that time period. To them, it's 40-50 years away. It's not like opening the book and looking out the window and saying, "Oh, that's what it's like today."' And then Lobster said, ‘Why don't you try a complete edit, and, if you disagree with me at the end, we'll go back to the original.' By the end of that edit, I was convinced that their suggestion was the right decision and that kids today would like the story a lot more than having it based in the Sixties. However, I'm revisiting World War II in the second book."
"The character of Dunkirk Smiley is a bit of Clive Cussler's Dirk Pitt, and he's a bit me. I love reading about lost treasures, and when Kelly and I travel, we (OK, me) are always looking. For example, when we were recently in Cuba, we took a tour of the Christopher Columbus cemetery in Havana. The tour guide started telling us about how the cemetery had been built to bring the bones of Christopher Columbus from the Dominican Republic, but, when the coffin arrived, it was empty. To this day, no one knows where those bones are. The second we got off that bus, I cornered the guide and said, ‘Oh, tell me more,' while getting out my little pen and pad. Kelly just looked at me and said, ‘You're writing about Uncle Duncle, aren't you?' to which I responded, ‘Yes, it's a great idea for a story.' So I'm always trying to take things that I learned on my travels and wrap Uncle Dunkirk around it. So, he's a bit me, and he's a bit just this Indiana Jones-Dirk Pitt kind of explorer who has no trouble getting out of the tightest scrapes and who keeps kids entertained."
Uncle Dunkirk has christened his Spitfire the ‘Willy C,' and in the book, Darren explains the origins of the name. "Willy Coppens was an authentic World War I pilot who landed his plane on an enemy hot air observation balloon. I pulled that piece of information up when I did some research, and it just blew me away. I had never heard of Willy C before and just thought, ‘Wow, what a catchy name for a plane,' but when I read the story about him landing on top of the balloon, it was just, ‘That fact has to be in the book.' When I visit schools and need to read a few pages, that's actually the one little part that I always read – how Uncle Dunkirk named his plane Willy C. That portion's a quick read, and it's got a lot of fun narrative behind it. Whenever I mention that part of Willy's landing on the balloon, the kids go nuts and always ask, ‘Is that a true story?' And I say, ‘Yah, look it up. Willy Coppens.'"
In writing time-slip fantasy, one of the challenges for an author is coming up with a fresh "device" for moving characters back and forth through time. "It definitely took a little bit of work trying to come up with the amulet, but again I ‘found' it in one of my own travel experiences. A number of years ago, I went to Nepal, and I actually did the hike to Mount Everest. I was on the trail for about three or four weeks, and I just fell in love with the area and the area's mysticism with all the Buddhist monks and the monasteries. As I was thinking about Uncle Duncle, I really wanted to tie in that travel experience because it literally is a different world out there in Nepal, and so that's how I came up with the idea. They actually do have an avalanche almost every couple of hours in Nepal, and so I thought, ‘What a great opportunity. Uncle Dunkirk finds a Buddhist monk who's buried up to his neck and trying to ‘flash' his way to safety. The catch phrase, ‘With wings of wind, I fly!' just came to me one night while I was lying in bed. I wrote it down and thought, ‘That's catchy,' and I've been pushing that line ever since. I still think it's a great little catchphrase, and I hope the kids love it too."
At 335 pages, Uncle Duncle is definitely longer than the typical middle school novel. "The one thing that actually turned a lot of the agents off was the size. They said, ‘If it's over 40,000 words, we don't even want to read it.' My original was around 72,000, and it's been trimmed down, but it's definitely more than 40,000. For that reason alone, a lot of agents wouldn't even look at it. From my perspective, that's what the story took. You've got to write what it takes to get that story out there, and I didn't see trimming it down would do it any good. I just kept the faith and thought that eventually I would find either an agent or a publisher who would say, ‘Yah, that is the story, and that's what we want to publish.' Luckily, Lobster Press did believe in the manuscript and took it from there."
Another way in which Uncle Duncle differs from other novels is that Darren utilizes a number of different chapter narrators. "I did jump around quite a bit, but I did so because I wanted to give the kids not only Uncle Dunkirk's and Sage's perspective, but also that of others, like Long John Silver. I didn't want the story just to be from one point of view. I wanted it to be one where I looked into everyone's frame of reference. It was a little more difficult to write that way, and it definitely took a few more pokes through the editing machine with it, but I think the way that it turned out in the end was how I envisioned the story to be. Doing it that way also allowed me to move the story along and then leave the reader dangling. I envisioned the book being like the old Saturday movie matinee serials for kids. I watched a lot of those with my dad when I was growing up. Growing up with that around me really influenced the kind of book I wanted to write, and it was really crystalized in my head. I wanted the book to have a lot of cliffhangers. I realized I was writing for a younger crowd, largely grades 4 to 6, and I knew that their attention spans are short. If they don't get to end of the chapter and think, ‘Wow! I want to read the next one,' they might put the book down. I wanted the kids to pick up the book and read it from chapter one right til the very end and go ‘Wow." Luckily, the response I'm getting from the kids so far says they're actually getting that wow factor which is nice."
Looking toward the sequel, Darren says, "The loose title, because the publisher hasn't approved it yet, is ‘The Uncle Duncle Chronicles: The Burning of Troy.' It's about an opal that Napoleon gave to Josephine. The opal was stolen with a bunch of crown jewels back in the late seventeenth century, and it's been missing ever since. So Uncle Dunkirk and Sage head to Paris, and they end up in the catacombs beneath the city where they come across a lost Roman empire called Lutetia that Paris is built on. At the same time, there's a little bit of a side story with Uncle Dunkirk's father who they call Grampa Jack. He's been missing since World War II, and he was an OSS spy who had been dropped down in France before D-Day. Uncle Dunkirk and Sage just happen to find out the fate of Grampa Jack. There are going to be two storylines going, one in ancient Rome as well as the one connected to World War II. Willy C, Uncle Dunkirk's Spitfire, doesn't play as big a part in the sequel. Most of the story is in modern Paris, and it's this civilization, a whole Roman village, that still exists below Paris. The people just didn't ever want to go up to the modern world, and so they still live in the catacombs. There's a chariot race through the catacombs, and so it's kind of taking ancient Rome into modern day times."
"I've been jotting down ideas for the third ‘Chronicle', but, until I actually sign off on book two, I'm keeping focused. I'm pretty protective about my writing, and I don't want to give it to my publisher until I'm actually at the point where I can say, ‘This is what I want to publish' and then go through editing with them. There's still a couple of things I want to tweak, and my hockey season's been so busy that I haven't been as prolific in my writing as I'd like to have been this year."
Asked when he does find or make time for writing, Darren responds, "The off-season. It was great having the NHL strike. It really was. It gave me a lot of time to write, but this year has been so busy that writing's literally been weekends and evenings. Occasionally, when the Oilers go on the road, I'll get a little bit of a break where I'll get a chance to write. Literally, I've been packing my weekends with sitting down in front of the computer and grinding out as much as I can and then doing the research on top of that. As well, I'm out there trying to promote the first book, and so I'm doing school visits. This year has been really tough, but I really want to polish off the second book in the next two weeks and use the entire off-season to get going on book three"
"I'd love to be a more disciplined writer, but my schedule blows that right out of the water. As much as I can say I'd love to sit down three hours a night and bang out a couple of more chapters, my schedule just jumps around. Tonight I'm off, and so there's an evening of writing, but tomorrow night's a home game. Then I think we have a night off before another home game. I find I really have to wrap my head around the story and keep that train of thought going. I put it down for about two weeks while we got really busy because we just had the Mark Messier retirement and then Ryan Smyth's getting traded. When Kelly went to Lethbridge this past weekend, instead of my picking up from where I left off, I literally had to go back to page one and reread the entire manuscript to where I did leave off so that I was back in that train of thought, and then I could start writing again."
"Having the weekend to myself, I woke up on Saturday at 7 a.m., sat down at the computer, and I actually wrote right until about six o'clock. I did take a break for lunch, but that was it. I don't get days like that often, and when I'm ‘stuck' in my pages and really wrapped up in my characters, I could literally write until I collapsed at the chair. I just keep going and going, but there does come a point where you start thinking, ‘OK, I'm getting tired now. Is it really helping out my story? Should I really just take a break and force myself to get off that computer keyboard and relax for a bit and do something where you're a little bit brain dead and you're not harming the tale you're telling?' I forced myself to sit down for a few hours and take a break. I tried to pick up again on Sunday, but I think I burnt myself out on Saturday, and so I only got in a couple of hours on Sunday."
"As I said, I really have to be focused on keeping that train going, and, for me, it means at least trying to get in a couple of pages a night. The more I can write, the more prolific I am, definitely."
Darren is an entirely self-taught writer, having not taken any how-to-write courses. He learns, he says, by doing "a lot of writing just on my own time. I'll jot down story ideas and flesh them out a bit. Right now, I probably have about four or five books on the go, and half of them, if not all of them, may never ever see the light of day. However, there comes a point where you just want to give yourself a mental break from writing Uncle Duncle or you just want to freshen yourself up, and so I've actually started writing other things. I think I've got two adult fiction books going right now, and I also have another young adult book with a female protagonist that I've started as well. It may takes years to get them done, and they may not get done at all, but it's more like a mental exercise for me to keep me on top of my game and growing as a writer. If I write until I'm 80-years-old, I'll be learning with every single book "
"The fun thing about having your book out is all the opportunities that come your way, like getting invited to conferences. I'm very passionate about the book, and having the opportunity to talk to kids about it is a lot of fun. The kids love the fact that I'm with the Oilers, and, as compared to the book, a good percentage of the questions are definitely about the Oilers, questions like ‘Do you know Dwayne Roloson and Ales Hemsky?' My being employed by the Oilers definitely makes an instant connection with the kids in a way where you're not just some guy who sells retail and also wrote a book. The kids could talk to me for the entire hour about the Oilers if they wanted to, but I'm also the guy who wrote this cool book with pirates and sharks and stuff like that, and so I can capture their imaginations two ways."
"I've been really lucky in my jobs and what I've done. I've always been a dreamer, and being a writer is just one dream I just never wanted to give up. As a reader, I've read so many books where half way through the book I've thought, ‘I can write better than this guy or at least I thought I could write better than this guy, and I just wanted to prove it to myself. To go out now and to walk into a bookstore and go to the Young Adult section and actually see your book on a shelf, that's a dream come true."
Books by Darren Krill:
This article is based on an interview conducted in Edmonton, AB, on March 13, 2007, and revised August, 2007.