Derek Landy Interview, plus links to author biography, book summaries, excerpts and reviews

Derek Landy

Derek Landy

An interview with Derek Landy

Derek Landy talks about his transition from writing film scripts to writing his first book, Skulduggery Pleasant, about a snappy dressing, razor-tongued ace detective, who happens to be a skeleton.

You've previously written horror films--how different did you find the process of writing a novel?
Writing for film is a lot of fun, and most scripts are only one hundred pages long, so some scripts can be written over a few days or weeks. Writing a book is completely different. It takes a lot longer, for a start, and it requires so much THINKING...

But on the whole, it's a lot more rewarding. Film scripts are interfered with by producers, directors, and financiers- whereas when I'm writing a book I'm totally free. It's a wonderful feeling, and I can just let my imagination go crazy over the page. And my imagination LIKES going crazy.

Do you believe in ghosts and vampires?
I would love to believe in the supernatural, I truly would, but despite my best efforts I remain frustratingly logical. Maybe this is why I love writing about the things I write about- maybe this is my way of living in a world where anything can happen.

Uncle Gordon's house is wonderfully spooky--is it based on a house you've been to?
Gordon's house is a product of my own imagination, but every spooky house movie I've ever seen as a child has found its way into the architecture. I love stories where the house is big, and old, and it creaks and groans in the darkness, where there are so many places for something to hide, and to reach out at you when you pass...

Stephanie's adventures lift her out of her ordinary life--when you were her age did you used to wish for similar adventures?
Oh yes. I'd sit in class and dream about horrible creatures threatening the school, and I'd be the only one able to fight them off...! I dreamt about that kind of thing a LOT. Stephanie is a very lucky girl, because I'm letting all the great things I used to dream about actually happen to her, and she gets to live the life I always wanted. Of course, all the things I used to have nightmares about will ALSO happen to her, so I suppose she isn't THAT lucky...

We're really looking forward to the next book--can you please give us a hint what happens next?!
Hmm, what can I tell you about the next book? Let's see... I suppose I could tell you about the new villain, an old enemy of Skulduggery's who escapes from prison. Or, I could tell you about the unstoppable monster that gets brought back to life. Wait, no, I could tell you about the assassins, or maybe the zombie horde, or the man with black holes where his eyes should be... But no. Actually, I'm not going to tell you any of that. You're just going to have to read it yourself. Sorry.

If you could use a mirror to create a second you who would cover for you in your absence, where would you run off to?
I wouldn't run off anywhere, I'd stay right where I was and use my mirror's reflection to finish my next book for me while I played with my dog!

Unless otherwise stated, this interview was conducted at the time the book was first published, and is reproduced with permission of the publisher. This interview may not be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the copyright holder.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $12 for 3 months or $39 for a year.
  • More about membership!

Support BookBrowse

Become a Member and discover books that entertain, engage & enlighten.

Join Now!


Today's Top Picks

  • Book Jacket: Memorial Drive
    Memorial Drive
    by Natasha Trethewey
    On June 5, 1985, Natasha Trethewey's mother, Gwendolyn Turnbough, was murdered by her ex-husband, ...
  • Book Jacket: All the Devils Are Here
    All the Devils Are Here
    by Louise Penny
    In Louise Penny's All the Devils Are Here, the 16th book in the Chief Inspector Armand Gamache ...
  • Book Jacket: A Girl is A Body of Water
    A Girl is A Body of Water
    by Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi
    First Impressions readers were fascinated by A Girl Is a Body of Water, a riveting and nuanced novel...
  • Book Jacket
    Heaven, My Home
    by Attica Locke
    Attica Locke's 2017 novel Bluebird, Bluebird introduced us to Texas Ranger Darren Mathews, who ...

Readers Recommend

  • Book Jacket

    Piranesi
    by Susanna Clarke

    A new novel from the NY Times bestselling author of Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell.
    Reader Reviews

  • Book Jacket

    A Girl is A Body of Water
    by Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi

    A powerful portrait of a young Ugandan girl and her family.
    Reader Reviews

Book Club Discussion
Book Jacket
The Shadow King
by Maaza Mengiste

An unforgettable epic shortlisted for the 2020 Booker Prize, and named a best book of the year by the New York Times.

About the book
Join the discussion!
Win this book!
Win Memorial Drive

Memorial Drive
by Natasha Trethewey

The moving, intimate story of a poet coming into her own in the wake of tragedy.

Enter


Wordplay

Solve this clue:

L N Take I C

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends the best in contemporary fiction and nonfiction—books that not only engage and entertain but also deepen our understanding of ourselves and the world around us.