My Interview with Darby Karchut
By Melisa, age 14, Belgium
Sweet Designs Featured Writer
Darby Karchut is a writer, a teacher, and a compulsive dawn greeter. She lives in Colorado with her husband and owns more running shoes than high heels. Griffin Rising is her first novel. She is currently working on the next books in the series: Griffin's Fire (release date Spring 2012) and Griffin's Storm.
Hey everyone! You may recall that in the October 2011 issue I reviewed Griffin Rising, by Darby Karchut. This month, I have the privilege of interviewing the author, Darby Karchut, for Sweet Designs! Away we go!
Hi Melisa. Thanks so much for inviting me to visit with you on Sweet Designs Magazine. I can't wait to get started!
Hi Darby, and thank you too. When and why did you begin writing?
I never wanted to be a writer. I do, however, read loads of books. And one day, I came across a book on legends from the Middle Ages. It included a description of a lower caste of guardian angels said to control the four elements of earth, fire, wind, and water. At that moment, Griffin and his adventures came to life in my mind.
So I started jotting down some plot ideas. Because every story needs a beginning, a middle, and an end. After I decided on what the main story arc would be, I began writing. And promptly went off track. But that's okay, because I knew what the ending was. I just had to fill in the blanks between how Griffin's story began and how it ended. After I finished the rough draft, I went back and rewrote my book. I think I revised some chapters over thirty times.
What books are you reading nowadays?
My current stack includes Rotters, by Daniel Kraus, The Ranger's Apprentice: The Emperor of Nihon-ja, by John Flanagan, Hounded, by Kevin Hearn, White Cat, by Holly Black, and Clockwork Angel, by Cassandra Clare.
What was the first book or short story you ever wrote?
Okay, this is going to sound so weird, but it was Griffin Rising.
Have you been inspired by any particular authors?
My all-time favorites are J.R.R. Tolkien, Lloyd Alexander, John Flanagan, Cassandra Clare (squeee-can't wait for the movie!), and Neil Gaiman.
What are your current projects?
I am in the final editing stage of book two, Griffin's Fire. I have finished the rough draft of book three (Griffin's Storm) and will be revising it for the next few months. (I love revisions - it is my favorite part of writing!)
I have also just written the first book in a new series for younger teens. The first book is entitled Finn Finnegan. It follows the adventures of a thirteen year old apprentice monster hunter in modern-day Colorado, and is based on the legends of the mythical Celtic warriors from Ireland known as the Tuatha De Danaan. Rumor has it that Griffin makes a cameo appearance in Finn Finnegan.
What advice can you give to aspiring authors?
Read a lot. Read anything and everything, but especially in the genre you wish to write. If you noticed my reading list, I tend to focus on fantasies with a male protagonist because that's what I write.
Also, get into a habit of writing every day. It's a discipline as much as music or sports and you will get better with practice.
Melisa, thanks again for having me here. You asked the best questions ever!
Thank you again so much, Darby.
So that's it for this month. I hope you enjoyed the interview, and keep an eye out for Griffin Rising on your local bookshelf! ;)