Bestselling author, WKU professor releases new thriller “Kill All Your Darlings”

Published: Jul. 7, 2021 at 12:42 PM CDT
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BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (WBKO) - A WKU professor and bestselling author has released the provocative new thriller “Kill All Your Darlings.” The work of crime fiction is about a professor who passes off a student’s manuscript as his own - only to find out later that it implicates him in an unsolved murder. David Bell’s “Kill All Your Darlings” was released July 6.

The plot centers on Connor Nye, an English professor who has published his first novel, a thriller about the murder of a young woman. In actuality, the book is not Nye’s work but that of his student who has gone missing. But then that student, once presumed dead, shows up on his doorstep and threatens to expose him, creating a major dilemma for Nye.

In an interesting parallel, Bell is a professor of English at Western Kentucky University. “I had been wanting to write a book set on a college campus for awhile. I’ve tried a couple different times to make a story like this work and I just couldn’t get it right. So finally for the book this year, I figured out a way to make this story work,” said Bell. He said readers may notice similarities between the college campus in his novel and the Hill. “There’s a building on campus in the book where the English department is, and it has a bell tower on top, much like a famous building on our campus here,” insinuating his fictional campus building may conjure images and memories of Cherry Hall. In his book, however, there’s likely a more sinister story attached. “A couple of characters climb up into that bell tower on a cold windy day, and you’ll just have to read the book to find out if everybody comes down the stairs, or if they come down out of the bell tower a different way.”

The phrase “kill all your darlings” is a common expression used among creative writers, referring to the revision and editing process in which a writer must cut things out of their manuscript. “It’s really painful to remove that beautiful, perfect thing you’ve written to revise it, to cut it out of the book...all writers have experienced that pain of having to cut something out of the book.” The nature of the expression made for a fitting title for Bell’s latest work. “Spoiler alert, it’s a thriller, so some darlings do literally get killed in the book so the title has a double meaning in that way,” he told us.

David Bell will sell and sign copies of his book on Friday, July 9 from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. at Crocker Law Firm’s Food Truck Friday event. Proceeds will benefit the pop-up libraries organized by Warren County Public Library. The first ten people to arrive get a free book.

Learn more about author David Bell and his books here.

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