DARREN E. LAWS – A brief history of (his) time…
Born forty-five years ago in the East End of London, the last of three children. Darren developed a warped sense of humour, which he attributes to his half-Irish heritage. This side of his psyche he believes to have played an important part in shaping both his outlook and slightly skewed view on life. Though equally, half his genetic pool stems from his father and the influence of an East End upbringing has played its part too, thus the east end hoodlum that lurks in every conversation.A very brief flirtation in the early eighties with the Royal Marine Commandos in the form of a TA unit was an unwise move for someone who didn’t consider crawling through freezing cold lakes on November mornings and wandering aimlessly lost on the plains of Salisbury to be health inducing. Though the camaraderie (that’s Army-speak for getting blind drunk whenever the opportunity presented itself) was character building; had he managed to build any more character he would have found himself sharing accommodation with various television personalities at the Priory. During this time, though, he did learn to assemble and disassemble a rifle blindfolded. The only apparent use for this skill - as far as he has been able to glean - is to be able to fight when totally drunk, which in fact was the only time he wanted to fight anyhow.During a fleeting period of sobriety Darren began to write, mostly with crayons at first, as he wasn’t allowed near sharp objects. He moved on to work at the BBC in the photographic department at White City, where he learned all about the ‘Old Boy’s Network’; the main things he learned while there was that he wasn’t an ‘Old Boy’, and that he didn’t have a network, and they did. A career followed working in the field of photography, bluffing his way through various laboratories and studios in London.By the mid-eighties romance entered his life. Unfortunately, it was ‘New Romance’ and an unwise spell followed listening to Spandau Ballet and trying to copy Limahl’s (from Kajagoogoo) hairstyle. After a short spell of therapy Darren met the love of his life, Natalie, who was foolish enough to marry him.In the 1990’s Darren once again began to persue a career in writing. Numerous attempts at writing screenplays, short stories and novels followed. In 1996 he was a winner of a BBC Radio 4 ‘Kaleidoscope’ short story competition.Spurred on by this success, during 1997 Darren saw a brief foray into the world of television when he starred in an episode of ‘The X-Philes’, sadly not the highly rated Sci-Fi action adventure programme but a homage paid by the BBC to the myriad of lunatics who lived for 42 minutes of pure hokum every week. By this time though the writing bug had well and truly taken hold.After much persuasion by his wife to persue his writing ambitions, Darren soon found himself ensconced in the welcoming arms of the Medway and Maidstone Writers’ Group, a ragbag group of reprobates, alcoholics and artisans with one binding destiny; though nobody was quite sure what that was. A year later he led a breakaway band of desperados to form The Write Idea – Maidstone. For the first year the group was tutored by novelist, Kate Pullinger, and subsequently by crime novelist, Peter Guttridge. The following summer saw the group stage its first writing event, a comedy-writing workshop that took six months planning (If you attended you would get the joke). Darren left the group after a period of two and a half years, by which time he was desperate to finish his novel, Turtle Island. The group continues to meet in a dark corner of Medway every now and then but without Darren’s interference. A brief spell in various forms of employment followed the ending of his career in photography as the digital age dawned and everybody realised they no longer needed film. Darren worked at one stage organising book signings for WHSmith in Bluewater before chasing a dream to write for a living. He worked in the book department where he spent most of his time constantly clearing space in the ‘L’ section in the hope that one-day…maybe one day.After a year of absolute madness and fun, Darren left the heady world of book retail to practice the dark art of public relations for a Public Relations Broadcasting specialist – Just Talking. This first bite of the cherry opened a world of fascination. He was at last being paid to write for a living.After a brief spell at Just Talking, Darren made his way to one of the finest marketing and communications agencies in Kent…Zest. Now based in Lords Wood and working only five minutes from home, Darren is a Public Relations Account Manager by day and a dark and twisted author by night. The day job enables Darren to see sunlight and meet people; something 20 years of working in darkrooms denied him. In 2007 he formed his own publishing company - Caffeine Nights Publishing - and begun a journey that has no final destination but he knows the trip will be fun. In 2009 Caffeine Nights Publishing signed its first authors to join him on the road to somewhere. Its a lonely road but as that fine singer Sia says 'Soon we'll be found.'. Addicted to his wife, malt whiskey and his computer, Darren spends his nighttime writing novels such as ‘Turtle Island’ and ‘Tripping’, practicing Yoga, and running on his new acquired treadmill. He is currently editing the second book in the Georgina O’Neil series, or as it will be known – Dark Country. Future work includes a Sci-Fi noir set in New York in 1946, the third instalment of the Georgina O’Neil series (Brooklyn Falls) and a black comedy set in London and Kent. Darren is available for counselling…
Dark Country - The second novel in the Georgina O'Neil trilogy and the sequel to Turtle Island
Caffeine Nights Publishing
Said it all already...oh, except movies, reading, music
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