Christian Darkin

Christian Darkin

Writer and TV animator, running workshops and visits all over the country
Booking enquiry
Christian Darkin - author tools

Available for

After dinner, Commission, Educational, General enquiry, Interview, Reading, Speech, Talk, Workshop


Age 3 to 5, Age 5 to 7, Age 7 to 11, Age 11 to 14, Age 14 to 16, Further Education, Age 16 to 18+, University


Adventure, Comedy, Crime, Historical fiction, Horror, Humour, Journalism, Lifestyle, Manual, Mystery, Non-Fiction, Realistic fiction, Satire, Science, Science fiction, Suspense-thriller, Technology, Textbook, Tragedy, Tragicomedy

Book types

Fiction for children, Fiction 5-9, Fiction 8-13


  • Children's Writers and Illustrators for Stories and Literacy
  • Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators


The boys were enthralled with the creative process shown in Mr Darkin’s time lapse video showing an author’s work from thought to print.

The boys were inspired by his own children’s involvement in the story lines. They couldn’t wait to read the next adventure and were keen to tell him their own ideas for stories.” – Kate Peterson, Dulwich Prep London

 backwell visit

Talks and workshops

As a writer and animator, I have a full programme of talks and workshops in schools, and other venues, and in the past, children have gone away enthused and inspired to take on their own writing, drawing and video projects.


For KS1 and 2 pupils

At 5000 words, the illustrated “Act Normal” chapter books are just the right length for younger or more reluctant readers, but the stories also have the depth of ideas to challenge more confident readers.

Books in the series cover DNA, global warming, magnetism and why adults spend too much time playing on their mobile phones… And the books’ strong female and male lead characters, Jenny and Adam tell enthralling and giggle-inducing stories that are fun, educational and inspiring for girls and boys alike.

I can read from, and talk about the series, and children always enjoy getting involved with the characters and stories, and hearing about how the books come about.

I can also show some of my animation work for “Magic Hands” on Cbeebies and talk about how an animated TV show comes about.


For older pupils

A lot of my writing is about science and technology and the way they change our lives, and in addition to my fiction work, I’ve written for many years for newspapers and magazines about computer related subjects.  This means I’m well placed to talk to pupils about the advantages and problems of writing and reading in the Internet age.

My experience in a wide range of writing (fiction, factual, prose and scriptwriting) means I can talk about how writing works for ‘a range of different contexts, purposes and audiences’.

In addition, my animation work in creating everything from special effects in films and TV to cartoon-style animations is usually of great interest to pupils, and they’re keen to understand how animations and special effects are created as well as how they fit into storytelling.

As a freelance animator, I get asked to work on a lot of unusual projects.  From creating alien spaceships for a feature film to animating a series of poems for Cbebbies, to making logos for videogames.  I’ve even had to resurrect Morecambe and Wise for a live performance on Children In Need, and bring back prehistoric animals for museum displays.



Act Normal books and ideas

Books by Christian Darkin

I'm the writer of the Act Normal series of chapter books for young readers. I've also written two novels for young people, and I'm currently working on more. I've written a range of other books too, as well as scripts for TV, radio and theatre. As an illustrator and animator, I've built spaceships for movies, resurrected the dinosaurs, and animated a series of children's poetry for CBeebies on the BBC. I’d be delighted to answer any questions you’ve got or come along to your school or event to talk about my work. Just get in touch via the contacts page.

Act Normal And Don't Tell Anyone About The Present Machine

Act Normal And Don't Tell Anyone About The Present Machine

It started off as a way for computer coding fan Jenny to pick birthday presents for her friends. But Jenny and her brother Adam are soon being chased across the world by sinister magic fairy dolls, robot forklifts, and a mad party planner...  
The Skull

The Skull

It seemed as though a dragon, for it could be nothing else, had reared out of the ground in the night . . . and then been turned to stone by the first rays of the dawn sun. The Skull follows the Marchant family from generation to generation, exploring key moments in history shaped by radical philosophical and scientific change. 
Act Normal And Don't Tell Anyone About The Dinosaur In The Garden

Act Normal And Don't Tell Anyone About The Dinosaur In The Garden

Jenny’s latest experiment has accidentally turned her chickens into tiny dinosaurs. Her brother, Adam thinks this is great, and decides to feed the same experiment to some ostriches at a local farm…  
Act Normal And Don't Tell Anyone About The Ladder Into Space

Act Normal And Don't Tell Anyone About The Ladder Into Space

If you’ve never had a zero-gravity food fight, you really should try it. Jenny and Adam’s party is only the beginning of their adventures, though, and when they meet an alien spaghetti monster it’s time to ACT NORMAL, and hope the teachers don’t get too scared. But how can they get their new friend back home without anyone noticing?  
Act Normal And Don't Tell Anyone About The Zombie Robots

Act Normal And Don't Tell Anyone About The Zombie Robots

“The problem with grown-ups is that they spend far too much time playing on their mobile phones, and not enough time playing with their children.” All the adults in the town are in the grip of the addictive “Zombie Robots” video game...