Monday, July 1, 2013

How Authors Write-Antje Hergt

Today I welcome MuseItUp Author Antje Hergt. She talks about her writing process and shares her debut release, Darinel Dragonhunter. Welcome, Antje!!!

What do you write?
I write YA Fantasy with a style kind of like a fairy tale but with a modern approach.
Do you use 1st person, 3rd person, multiple POVs?
I use 3rd person with multiple POVs.
How do you get started with a book- is it an idea, a character, vary from story to story?
Most the time it is an idea for a short story, but when I am about to finish it, my characters protest and want to tell me more.

Do you draft quickly?
I draft roughly with a chapter outline about 2-3 pages. Then I add scene ideas or dialogue snippets, which most of the time I move around later.
Do you do research before your first draft, during?
I do the research during the outline and most of the time during writing as well. To quickly check points when I come across them.
Do you outline? How?
I do the rough outline by hand, then a more chapter oriented one by word document. Later, I start an excel table for continuity and quick reference. Sometimes I even use Keynote to create a storyboard.
Do you name everything up front when you are drafting or do you leave comments for yourself to go back and fill in later so you don't lose the flow of what you are working on?
I am a flow writer, so I don’t fuss about naming when I write, but leave myself tons of sticky notes to go back and name things.
Do you work with CP's or Beta's? How soon into your draft do you let them see your work?
I love to work with beta reader after my 3rd or 4th edit. Then I sent it out to them.
What books/websites have you found most helpful to helping you write your best?
I read a lot of How-to books on writing for children and went to various writing courses, but the most detailed help I found on the Institute of Children's Literature webpage (
What do you know now that you wish you knew when you started writing?
I wish I had know how long the publishing process really was when I started, then I wouldn’t have told everybody I finished my first book before I actually had a publisher.
What do you have out now, or coming out? Any upcoming events? A website we can find you and your books at? An author photo? A booktrailer? Anything else you want to share?
My first book Darinel Dragonhunter was just released by MuseItUp Publishing and you can buy it on their webpage:

Or you can check it out on my webpage: first and see for yourself.

Book Blurb:
Prince Darinel is traveling–for what feels like forever. Expelled from his father’s kingdom, he just wants to find a new home. When a shadow lures him to a wealthy kingdom, he stays to discover more about the darkness, but the citizens are tight-lipped.

Their king welcomes the foreign Prince hoping that he will solve his two problems: the dragon and his strong-willed daughter. Coming from a warrior kingdom, Darinel despises violence, but charmed by Princess Tuskja’s dare, he sets out to confront the beast. Instead of finding a fierce dragon, he finds a friend. The dragon’s malicious humor and his love of fairy tales entangle Darinel in a summer of adventures, while danger stirs in the East, the Dark Prince. Being refused by the Princess and humiliated by the dragon, this proud prince seeks revenge.

In compliance with the king’s decree, Darinel is torn between his friendship with the dragon and his love for Princess Tuskja, whom he can only marry if he kills his friend. Before he can make a decision, the kingdom is under attack. Now it is up to the dragon to either help his friend or respect his wish to not interfere.

The prince sighed. “Yeah, you’re right. Do you mind if I take a break here?”

“Oh no. Be my guest,” the voice replied, cheerfully.

Darinel dismounted and reached to tie Tibor’s reins to the trunk of a tree, when a dark shadow swished over him. The horse bolted in panic and disappeared. Dumbfounded, he stared down the path they had just travelled.

“Oops!” The voice sounded a bit regretful.

“That was not supposed to happen.” Still shaking his head, he turned to a little sparkling stream at his feet and knelt beside it. He took off his helmet and splashed water onto his face and over his head.

“It is a bit inconvenient, isn’t it?” the voice said. “But don’t worry, the way down always seems faster,” it added cheerfully.

“Yeah, right!” the prince said with a smirk as he slid back to lean on a big boulder behind him. “Now you see I am no threat to you, won’t you come out and sit with me?” He ruffled his hand through his wet hair.

“I’d love to, but don’t you know, there’s a fierce dragon in these mountains?” the voice pointed out.

Born and raised in Germany, Antje Hergt came to explore the Canadian Rockies in Canmore, Alberta in 2003. Taking part in the Writing-with-Style Program at the Banff Centre for the Arts in 2007 encouraged her to follow her passion: writing for children. Darinel Dragonhunter is her first novel, which was inspired by her deep love for classic children literature and fairy tales. Her thrill for science fiction/fantasy movies and television shows had an outlet in various genre short stories. She is a member of the Alberta Writer’s Guild and graduated from the Justus-Liebig-University in Giessen with a degree in Modern Languages.
Currently, Antje still lives in Canmore with her snoring cat, Sally, and gets inspired by the magic of the Rocky Mountains.


  1. Enjoyed your interview, Antje. Wish I would outline, but I'm such a panser.

    1. I'm with you there, Victoria. My first draft is just so I can learn about my characters and let them lead me along on their journey!

  2. Really enjoyed this interview especially since I want to write a middle-grade novel. Very helpful!


    1. So glad you stopped by Susan! I've always been fascinated by the different processes authors use to write. Glad you found this one helpful!

  3. Great interview - naming things. thank goodness for the find button.
    love the cover
    Heather G - Natasha's Dream

    1. Ah, yes. Find and replace is my friend.

      Thanks for stopping by Heather!!!

  4. I wish I could do an outline too. My characters have a mind of their own and my life has a habit of getting in there too.

  5. I'm the same way, Suzanne. My characters rebel at the thought of an outline. The most I can convince them of is a general road map with a beginning and end and lots of possibilities for the middle!

  6. Antje, you sound more organised than me. I think I am a pantzer. Though once I have a draft down I begin tinkering and keep on till I am happy.
    Great interview, Mary.
    Darinel Dragonhunter sounds terrific. Congratulations.

    1. Thanks, Rosalie. I'm with you- a total pantster!!

  7. Great interview! Congrats on your debut novel! I am looking forward to experiencing that feeling in November!! :)

    I never outlined until THE PROPHECY, and even then, I only wrote an outline to see if it would require two books or three to complete the story. ;)

    1. Now that's an interesting use of an outline. And what did you find? 2 or 3 books??

  8. Hi Mary,

    Thank you so much for the fun interview! It looks great!

    1. You are so welcome, Antje. I loved having you here!

  9. What a fun interview! I always love seeing more of how other authors work :) Nice to get to know you a bit better, Antje!

    1. Thanks, Meradeth. I also enjoy seeing what we all do that's similar, and what unique approaches we take to writing.


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