Irish author, Kyle Darcy, says he 'felt morally obligated' to tell the story that led to his first book being published.
'Under Current Conditions' tells the story of Irishman, Martin Quinn, who runs a small construction firm in Massachusetts; and is working on a project with enormous financial potential for his company. Quinn's work is constantly sabotaged by an unscrupulous rival and the pressure becomes so unbearable he eventually lands in a mental hospital
Based on actual events that occurred to the author in the late 90's, the book was published in December 2010 and topped the Boston Globe Bestseller list.
Currently in the process of writing the prequel to his popular book, Darcy, a native of County Antrim, took time out to answer some of our questions.
When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
I never had the desire to write a book, however, writing 'Under Current Conditions' was a process that gathered momentum and just carried me along.
From where did you draw your inspiration from for your first novel?
In 1999, I lived through nine weeks which were truly incredible. I felt morally obligated to tell this story not only because of what had happened to me, but also because of the circumstances surrounding my friend’s death. I wasn’t convinced it was an accident because of the conversation we had only days earlier.
How long did it take you to write the book?
I started writing the book in 2002 and thought I was finished with the project in 2007. There was, however, a major development involving an arrest and murder indictment, so I had to wait for the verdict before I could finish the book and release it in December 2010.
Your first novel was a Boston Globe Best Seller; Did you have any idea — or even a hope — of how popular it would be?
I knew I’d experienced something very special in 1999. During the writing process it became apparent that this story had chosen me rather than the other way around.
Why do you think the book resonated with so many people?
I’m basically retelling my own story which just happened to take place in and around the Boston area. In the book, I try to evoke a sense of what it is like to live in New England, especially during winter months; a looming Nor’easter storm in the forecast; Bruins hockey games; and the Big Dig, are integral parts of the story. Having plot lines weave through towns in Massachusetts and Rhode Island strikes a chord with readers who have resided in the area, attended college, or just visited.
The Irish community in the area has also been very supportive and I’m very grateful and appreciative of that.
Do you ever read the comments about your book on Amazon? If so, what is that like for you?
It’s always nice to receive positive feedback in person, at a book club, or library event, but reading a 5-STAR review is also rewarding since it is unsolicited. It’s humbling for me to get praise from readers.
Who would you like to play Martin Quinn in a movie adaptation of your book?
I’d rather develop a shortlist of beautiful actresses who could play my wife in the movie and then bribe the director to cast me to play Martin Quinn! My wife, however, would love to see Bradley Cooper in the role and, naturally, has volunteered to play herself!
Probably the most common question I get asked is, “When’s the movie coming out?” In the hands of the right director, it would certainly make a great movie because of the strong story line and challenging character roles.
What impact has living in America had on your writing?
A huge impact! My experience during nine fateful weeks in Boston was the inspiration for my book. So, had I not immigrated to America, there would not have been a writing career.
What writers have influenced your writing style?
Frederick Forsyth is probably the author who has had the most influence on my style. Even though his novels are published as fiction, the plots are plausible and could have been drawn from actual events
From your first novel, do you think that your writing has changed? And if so, in what way?
This is a tough question for me to answer. Prior to the publication of my first novel; I’d never written for people’s entertainment. Whereas aspects of my style may have developed subconsciously, I’ve worked to improve others. The challenges I encounter today are no different from those which presented themselves when I wrote the first book: specifically, I want my readers to keep turning the pages.
Can you give some insight into what your next book will be about?
In 'Under Current Conditions', when the reader is first introduced to the kidnap victim, Xavier Santos, he is looking at a photograph of his father, Eduardo, and the Colombian soccer star, Andreas Escobar. The next book is a prequel and goes back to the 1970’s when Eduardo Santos came to Boston from Colombia to establish his drug dealing business.
Where do you like to do your writing?
I have an office in my home and find that I work best when I get a 5:00 A.M. start. I try to maintain a routine which even includes wearing the same sweater. I write using a lap top which is never connected to the internet.
What's the best advice you could give to a novice writer starting out?
Strike a balance between living life well and developing a writing style that allows you to share the inspiration from your experience.
What’s been the secret to your success so far?
Respect for people’s time. The hardest thing about writing a novel is not putting words on paper, it’s actually taking them off. Editing is probably the most critical element in the creative process. I’m very fortunate to work with an excellent team of editors. Every word has to fight for its right to remain on the page.
Learn more: www.kyledarcy.com
Or follow him at www.facebook.com/KyleDarcyAuthor