- Author bio: I was born on December 14th, 1982 in a small town, called Glienicke, Germany. My family moved to Berlin in 1989. I’ve spent my whole life in the German capital, where I still live and work. My parents are both quite artistically gifted, so maybe my interest in that was naturally. Since I was a kid I was into painting and drawing (I went to an artistically minded school), later photography and writing followed. I struggled with reading at first, but thanks to a famous mouse with big black ears I learned to read and became an avid reader. I also love movies and to listen to music – something I couldn’t live without. I love to travel, too; my favourite country is Great Britain, where I spent several of my summer vacations.
- I started writing my first fantasy novel, “Alaspis – The Search for Eternity”, in 2002. It took me more than nine years to finish it. Why? Well, I’m a bit sentimental and finishing a book means you have to let go of your beloved characters. Back then, I didn’t want to say goodbye to them, so I delayed the completion. But at some point I knew I would have to finish “Alaspis”, and so I wrote the last sentence in 2011 and in 2012 the story about a magical flower with healing power was published (in German). Since then I’ve worked on the fantasy-romance series of books “The Huntress”, telling the story of a young woman, who’s so unlike any other superheroine and has to deal with a radical change in her life. So far I’ve published three parts (in German) and am working on the English edition of the first part. I love the English language and it’s been a huge dream of mine to publish that story also in English. We’ve been working on that since about eighteen months, with many ups and downs. I had to change the translator in 2013, published the book in 2014 just to find out, that it wasn’t the way it should’ve been. So I cancelled the publication and the book was translated anew. But I fight for “The Huntress”, as it means so much to me and is very special. We’re making small, tiny steps forward and hopefully it can be published in 2014.
- Book title: The Huntress – The Beginnings
- Genre: Fantasy-Romance
In flashbacks, the protagonist herself tells her story, beginning with her first meeting with the enigmatic and unapproachable priest, through her first year of training and her secret life, to the problems she encounters on her first hunt, and the issues which crop up when a priest and a woman live together…
Excerpt from The Huntress
25. Come out, come out, little monster!
I had sent the reporter home early enough and had dinner with Father Michael before I got ready for my evening rounds. Father Michael wasn’t too thrilled about it, but I wanted to keep doing my rounds as long as I could to eliminate as many monsters as possible before I went on my maternity leave. After I had put on my arsenal of weapons, the Father walked me to the church door.
“Be careful!” he said, looking at me like he wanted to do nothing more than to strap me down to the altar and stop me from leaving. I patted his arm reassuringly and told him not to worry.
Unfortunately for me, the night was actually worrisome. I had barely been out for fifteen minutes before I saw the first monster in an alley. There was something on the ground in front of it, and judging by the sound, it was someone suffocating. Furious with myself for having arrived too late, I screamed. Had I left out dessert, I would have made it on time, I thought bitterly.
The monster turned towards me. When it realized who I was, it roared at me before a surge of foul reeking breath hit me. Oh man! Why can’t these things smell more like vanilla or strawberries, for example? Mm … strawberries. Yummy! I would love—concentrate now, Ada!
I pulled my sword from under my coat and grinned diabolically at the beast.
“Your last hour has come,” I shouted.
Actually, I didn’t know if these beasts understood what I said and never really found out if they did in all the years I’d fought them. In fact, I didn’t care and still enjoyed making fun of them. Besides, I liked thinking aloud.
The monster roared again before it jumped over the dying man and ran away. Before I went after it, I checked the person lying there. It was a young man; he couldn’t have been older than twenty-five. I couldn’t do anything for him anymore.
I ran through the alley after the monster. It turned left and then right, crossing an empty square before it turned between two houses. It was damn fast and I was starting to get a side ache, but I wasn’t done yet. My anger at those beasts drove me and gave me strength. I followed it relentlessly until I suddenly found myself standing in an old factory hall. There was hardly any light and everything looked gray. The glass on the windows was broken and old machines stood in the corners. There were remnants of all kinds of things on the floor. I pulled the flashlight I always carried with me and looked around the hall. “Come out, come out, little monster,” I whispered. My eyes darted across the shadows in the hall anxiously, trying to find my enemy. There was nothing down there, so I looked up. There it was, hanging onto a steel beam like a bat.
It let go so suddenly that I’d barely had time to get out of the way. The ground under my feet shook as it hit the floor. It roared at me before I inhaled its foul breath. Even if it hadn’t done anything else, I had to kill it just for that!
All at once, it jumped at me. I rolled away from under it just in time. That was close. I got up quickly and pulled myself together. That thing stood there lurking and waiting. I did the same. Suddenly, it took a run and came right at me. I started running towards it too, holding my sword up in the air; I rammed it into him with a loud scream before I heard one of my favorite sounds: that of a dying monster. Then it slumped on top of me. Great!
Disgusted, I pushed the heap of a monster off me. It fell on the floor with a loud splat! I lay there for a moment, taking a breather, but the eerie atmosphere in the factory hall had me up on my feet soon enough. I got my sword back, pulled a cloth out of my pocket, and cleaned it before I called the Padre and told him where to send the cleanup team. I stifled his anxious words crudely. I wanted to get on with my round and not waste any more time on pointless rambling.
It wasn’t long before I came across the next monster. This one didn’t take that long; I was really grateful that it spared me all the running around and decided to attack me right away. It was a short process and the cleanup team had yet another job to do… except, the night was far from over. I found three more creatures later on. The last in line was the worst. Maybe because I was exhausted by then. Fatigue crept over me and my concentration was waning.
..... the story continues in The Huntress ...
Author interview with Nadja
Hi Nadja, welcome to my interview couch here in Australia. It's wonderful to have you here all the way from Germany too. Guten Morgan.
Nadja: Many greetings from Germany. This is my first English interview.
Kasper: That is so exciting. I'm sure you'll be great. Let's start at the beginning: When did you start writing and why?
I started writing my first fantasy novel “Alaspis – The Search for Eternity” when I was 19. I’ve always loved writing; I had lots of pen pals when I was a teenager. I still
2. Which one of your characters from The Huntress would you like to be?
That’s hard to choose. I think I’d like to have qualities from each of the main characters. I’d like to be as independent and strong as Ada, the huntress. And I’d like to be as disciplined as Father Michael, Ada’s mentor and guardian, especially when it comes to eating chocolate. ;-)
Ah, I see we share a love of chocolate. Good to know.
3. Have you used any real events or places as inspiration for your writing?
Yes, I did. Close to where I live there’s a small church. When I had finished writing “Alaspis”, I didn’t know what to write next but thought it should be something about the church in front of my house. So, the home of “The Huntress” really does exist, though I changed the name, of course. I also used some personal experiences and memories to create the characters and to develop the story.
4. Do you have another job outside of writing?
Yes. From Monday to Friday I’m a dental nurse. J
Awesome. I'm a part-time health care worker too. I guess we have so much experience meeting folks from all walks of life, that it helps us develop characters for writing.
5. What song would you choose as the theme song of your book?
It’s a song called “Immigrant Song” by Trent Raznor, Atticus Ross and Karen O. Some may know it from the movie “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo”. From the first moment I heard that song I wished I could have used it for the book trailer I made for “The Huntress”. The music is just so fitting. I can clearly see the huntress running through the streets of her hometown.
6. What do you do when you have writers’ block?
Fortunately I haven’t had any real writers’ block yet. If I don’t know what to do about a certain scene in a book I stop writing for the moment, do something else like watching TV or going outside. I think that’s the best you can do: do something else, clear your mind.
7. I love the intriguing covers of The Huntress series. How did you go about developing your cover artwork?
It was pretty strange. I hadn’t even finished writing “The Huntress – The Beginnings” when I saw an image in my mind’s eye: a woman holding a sword and a man watching over her. It was clear to me: I didn’t want and also couldn’t imagine anything else. The graphic designer, Tom Jay, is well known to German self-publishers and he looked for the right images and put them together perfectly, adding some mysterious red smoke and the fantastic red letters and ornaments, which make it all complete. He did a great job and so I asked him to do the covers for the other parts of “The Huntress”, too, which are available only in German so far.
8. Who are your favourite authors?
I’m a huge fan of Karen Marie Moning and Cody MacFadyen, and I also like to read Simon Beckett, Jonathan Nasaw, J.K.Rowling and J.R.R. Tolkien.
9. What is your favourite quote?
“Each of us has heaven and hell in him” – from “The Picture of Dorian Gray” by Oscar Wilde. It’s simple but so, so true.
10. Who would you choose to read your audiobook?
Good question. I think I’d choose actors Sean Bean or Richard Armitage. They both have great and powerful voices. To hear them reading “The Huntress” would be quite interesting.
11. What’s your dream job and do you think you’ll do it one day?
I wished I’d be a full time author someday. That would be fantastic. I love writing, to play with words and create new worlds.
Nadja: Thank you for having me.
Please check out Nadja's links:
Book trailer: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCMu_bSkLjTUreFuUHYy6Kcg/videos