In addition to a thriving career as a novelist, author Darin Gibby is also one of the country’s premiere patent attorneys and a partner at the prestigious firm of Kilpatrick Townsend (www.kilpatricktownsend.com). With over twenty years of experience in obtaining patents on hundreds of inventions from the latest drug delivery systems to life-saving cardiac equipment, he has built IP portfolios for numerous Fortune 500 companies. In addition to securing patents, Gibby helps clients enforce and license their patents around the world, and he has monetized patents on a range of products.
Darin’s first book, Why Has America Stopped Inventing?, explored the critical issue of
With a Bachelor of Science degree in mechanical engineering and a Master of Business Administration degree, he is highly regarded in
An avid traveler and accomplished triathlete, Darin also enjoys back country fly-fishing trips and skiing in the
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Did you like thrillers when you were growing up?
I’m not sure I knew what a thriller was when growing up. My reading was primarily what my English teacher stuck in front of me. But I did love reading, and I had some great English teachers. I grew up loving American and British classics. I still enjoy breaking out Steinbeck or Hemmingway every now and then.
What was the first story in that genre that you wrote?
The first thriller I wrote was The Vintage Club. It’s a story about a group of the world’s wealthiest men who form a club that is centered around a legend about a wine that can make one live forever. Here’s link to the trailer https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K8fyebbxwRY.
What is your favorite part of writing in this genre?
My favorite part of writing thrillers is thinking about an initial dilemma or challenge, and then how my character is going to overcome that obstacle. For example, in Chasing Hindy, the main character, Addy, thinks she’s landed her dream job when she leaves her law firm to join a startup that purports to have a technology to let cars run on water. As the story progresses, she discovers that things aren’t as they seem. In fact, she ends up being a pawn in a ruse to steal other technology and she must risk everything to prove her innocence while still trying to disclose the remarkable technology to the world.
What do you find most difficult about writing in this genre?
Developing a strong character is always the most difficult for me. It doesn’t matter how good of a plot authors come up with, if the readers can’t relate to the characters, the book is going to fall flat. I spend a lot of time just thinking what is going through a character’s head and what is her or his prime motivation.
When writing Chasing Hindy, I struggled with such a character for years, and, in fact, rewrote the book several times with other characters that just didn’t seem to work. What made the story finally click was my discovery of Addy—a patent attorney with a dream to change the world. I decided on a female character (who was also a patent attorney) for several reasons. Perhaps the main reason was that female patent attorneys are in short supply and I wanted to encourage women to enter the profession. So I created Addy to hopefully show what a difference one person can make, and through her experience more women would want to become patent attorneys.
Is there an author in this genre that you admire most?
John Grisham has always been my favorite author, although his writing has slipped a bit in recent years. When The Firm was first released, I was a first year law student. One of my friends came into class one morning carrying the book and said that I had to read it. I did in one day. Since then, I have read all of his books. In his day, he was certainly the best at what he did.
What is up next for you?
I am currently working on a piece of historical fiction based in the mid-18th century. I was just at the New Jersey Historical Society doing research. I’m going to tell about an important and fascinating part of American history that has somehow been overlooked.
Do you have anything to add?
As Stephen King is fond of saying, as long as you can wake up and write, life is going to be okay.
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