Sunday, 28 December 2014


Today is Day 28 in our Author Spotlight/Giveaways. Today's Featured author is Darren Kirby. Please check out my interview with Author Darren and book information and links below.
Q. Who/What inspired you to become an author?
A. I feel like I've always wanted to be an author, but just never had the nerve to actually do
it. I would read many different books and think, wow, how did they ever come up with
that? The truth is, I'm coming up with great things now myself, and if you're looking around
the ideas are endless. I think it's just something that I needed to do, I just needed to get
the courage up to start it. Now that I'm doing it, it's just as awesome as I imagined it would be.
Q. Can you tell us a little about yourself?
A. Currently I'm the Product Manager with a national education company, which allows me
wonderful opportunities to deal with many different people around the world. It's also
provided me insight into the inner workings of a publishing company. In my off time,
along with enjoying camping, board and video games, and other outdoor activities, I enjoy
Q. What genre do you write?
A. For fiction, I currently write under my own name in the Thriller/Horror genres. I have 7
different works out at present, I'm working on a new title, and I have many, many other
story ideas and sequels to go. For my nonfiction, I write in 2 areas: Political, and outdoor
cooking. The outdoor cooking is still being worked on, but I'm hoping to have it done and
out by the Spring of 2015. The nonfiction works are under pen names.
Q. Have you ever thought about writing something different/another genre?
A. Yes, I have plans to write in different genres. First, I have a few sci-fi story ideas I'd like
to explore, things that I haven't read about yet. I also have an idea for a teen-focused adventure/mystery series that I think would be fun, but I feel that would prove to be a challenge for me as I would want to self-censor. As another idea, sort of on a dare/lark, a group of writer friends are all going to attempt to write some erotica under pen names and put out a bundle of them, as well as individually. This was hilarious to discuss as a group, and I think it will be a fun exercise for all of us.
Q. How many books have you written to date?
A. As I mentioned, I currently have 7 titles out, though to be fair 1 of those is a collection,
so really 6 original works plus the collection. That's all in the fiction realm. I have 1 nonfiction up for Politics, and that is currently also broken up into 6 separate shorts that can stand alone. And I'm just getting started!
Q. Do you proofread/edit all your own books or do you have someone that does
that for you?
A. This is an area of contention for many writers. Personally, I do an edit of my own work,
but I also have a few trusted readers that help greatly on this front as well. Much of the decision comes down to personal preference, but money can also play a factor.
Q. Where can the readers find your books?
A. My novel, “Coordinates For Murder”, is available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble, both
as an ebook and a paperback. My short stories are also available as ebooks on both of
these outlets. I have also put out all of my short stories as a collection, “Sometimes They
Scream”; this is available as an ebook and a paperback as well.
Q. Are you currently working on any new projects? Can you tell us a little about
A. I have a few projects in the works. Presently I'm working to finish up a new novel
tentatively titled “Body Hopping”. I'm excited with this for a number of reasons, and it's
a blast to write it and find out what happens with all of the characters along the way. It
started out as a short story idea, but when I finished it I just knew I needed to continue it.
So that short story is now the first chapter of the book. I also have started working on a
sequel to “Coordinates For Murder”. This book will expand on the geographic scope of the
first book, and incorporate some new characters and a wider world than was even hinted at
in the first book. I'm really excited to see how this sequel turns out. And, I have pages and
pages of story ideas that I want to get to, so I'm just getting started!
Q. What are some of the challenges you've faced when trying to get your name
out to readers?
A. Name recognition is the biggest hurdle that any new author has to face. How will you
make any sales if no one knows you exist? I'm convinced that longevity is the key to lasting
success in this business. Having a website is an easy, and I would argue necessary, first
step. Once you have that, then figure out your social media strategy. You don't have to
do everything, but at least find out the things that get you jazzed with social media, and
then use them. Facebook is the big one for me, but I also have a Twitter account and a
Google+ account. I'm not one that does a ton of marketing, mostly because I'm in the mode
of building my offerings. I want people to have a lot of choices from me, so that if they
read one thing, there are plenty of other pieces waiting for them to read. I do minimal
marketing and appearances, and they work – which is another whole discussion (how to
track your efforts to make sure they work).
Q. If you had the chance to do this journey all over again, would you change
anything about your books or yourself?
A. I would have forced myself to start sooner. Otherwise, I'm happy with how things have
unfolded for me thus far. I am where I am mostly due to choices that I'm making. I'm okay
with that right now, but I know plenty of other writers who do things very different from
me. That's okay too, because it works for them, and I'm just glad to know these successful
writers and am able to call them friends.
Q. How can readers get in contact with you or find out more about your books?
A. The best way to find out about me is to visit my website: Here I
have all of my books listed, with descriptions and links to where they can buy them. They
can also sign up to my email list to learn when new books are released, etc. Drop me a
note via my contact page, I'd love to hear from you!

What will you find hidden in the woods?

Escaping the high-stress world of Minneapolis-St. Paul, good friends Sammy Larson and John Whitfield have their usual summer plans: camping and geocaching. GPS units in hand, they hike towards a newly placed geocache. Each cache provides a new set of coordinates to the next cache, leading them deeper and deeper into 1.5 million acres of forest. Sammy and John become separated, and they each have an encounter with a sadistic monster named The Woodsman. One of them escapes, but can he live long enough to rescue his friend and get help?

Coordinates For Murder Purchase Links:
This collection of five very different stories will find you checking behind doors and leaving a light on at night. “frequency” features a 1967 Buick Skylark and an eerie young voice coming from the old radio asking for help. Jill knows where he is, but will she get there in time? “The Ritual” introduces you to a father and son who share a family secret, but the son doesn't know it...yet. He'll find out soon enough when his father has a heart attack in the basement, and the stoic men in black suits with red ties show up. In “A Push Too Far”, Susan needs to come to terms with the loss of her only daughter, Julie, and her ex-husband is not helping. Then she starts receiving anonymous texts. Was it an accident? How far will she go to learn the truth, and what will she do if she finds out? “Two Inches of Revenge” tells the story of a group of toys that aren't going to sit idly by while their owner's mother plots to get rid of them. She's been planning for a day like today, but so have the toys. And in “Pins And Dolls”, Andre lets the heat of the moment get to him and he overpays at an auction for an old trunk. After having been given the business by his friend, he goes home dejected. His girlfriend cheers him up, and while pulling things out of the old trunk, they discover old voodoo dolls. This is Andre's chance to have a little fun with his friend...

BONUS! Includes the first chapter of “Coordinates For Murder”, a thrilling geocache mystery.
Sometimes They Scream Purchase Links:
After nearly a year of searching, Jill finally finds her dream car: a rusty, beat up 1967 Buick Skylark. Not the car that most girls have in mind, but for Jill, it's her fantasy car, both to drive and to fix up.

After delivery and while checking out the car in more detail, she gets a shock from a shorted wire in the electrical system. But that's not the only shock, as she starts hearing a young voice coming through the old AM radio during a coming storm. The voice begs her to come and save him, and she knows where he is, but how can he talk with her through the radio?
frequency Purchase Links:
From the author of "Coordinates For Murder" comes a new tale of the bizarre...

You arrive back at your childhood home, intending on spending a nice weekend catching up with your father. Then the phone calls start, and your father refuses to talk about them. Strange men show up on his doorstep and argue with him. And then things get really weird when your father starts spinning yarns about a secret society. You think he's getting senile, but senile people don't stab their own children - do they? You'll find out the grisly details that have haunted your family for generations, but will you be taken in as well? It all depends on if you go through with The Ritual.
The Ritual Purchase Links:
High school parties – it's almost a rite of passage, especially when you're in your senior year. It was no different for Julie, who gets invited to a Fall party, probably the last outdoor party of the year. After a series of questions (you know what boys are like!), her mother, Susan, allows her to go. At the party, all is going well, laughs are had, beer is consumed...and then the unthinkable happens.

The police perform an investigation on Julie's death, but nothing comes up amiss. Susan is struggling to move on, but the holidays don't make things any easier. Then she gets a text from an unknown number. The person claims to know what happened, and that it wasn't an accident. Can they be believed? If so, what does that mean for Susan? And what does it mean for the other people at the party that day?
Push Too Far Purchase Links:
Two friends. One trunk. A collection of old dolls. What could possibly go wrong?

When Andre shows his friend Kevin the old trunk that he bought at an auction, Kevin goes crazy over the price his friend paid for it. Realizing that it's only full of torn clothes and ratty dolls, they part company on unfriendly terms. Back at home, Andre and his girlfriend go through the contents more closely. The dolls aren't just any dolls, and what happens later was just an accident...wasn't it?
Two Inches of Revenge Purchase Links:
Two friends. One trunk. A collection of old dolls. What could possibly go wrong?

When Andre shows his friend Kevin the old trunk that he bought at an auction, Kevin goes crazy over the price his friend paid for it. Realizing that it's only full of torn clothes and ratty dolls, they part company on unfriendly terms. Back at home, Andre and his girlfriend go through the contents more closely. The dolls aren't just any dolls, and what happens later was just an accident...wasn't it?
Pins and Dolls Purchase Links:
Darren Kirby is a Wisconsin native, having lived in numerous different cities throughout his life.
From a young age he loved to read, devouring such classics as The Hardy Boys series and, as he got
older, branched out to Stephen King, John Grisham, and Tom Clancy. Often he thought it would be a
lot of fun to be a writer, but never imagined that he'd have the talent.
Fast-forward to 2008 when he and his wife were closing their coffee shop. As luck would have it,
a woman came in for the last author meet n' greet the shop hosted and she talked about getting
a writer's critique group together. Thinking it would be a good diversion while he sought a new
job, he agreed to get the group going. After a few years and numerous stories started (but not
finished), he finally managed to finish his first short story, "Pins And Dolls". After that he finished
his first novel, "Coordinates For Murder", as well as his second short story, "The Ritual". He is
currently working on the sequel to "Coordinates For Murder" and a new novel tentatively titled
“Body Hopping”.
Darren lives in a small community in northern Wisconsin with his wife of many years and 3 hilarious
cats. He loves talking writing and publishing, he's somewhat of a closet geek, and enjoys camping.
He encourages people to drop him a note through his website, or visit his Facebook page.

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