Andy Petersen

Writer

He slouches a bit when he stands, his hair looks as if it's been ruffled and he's still growing into his features. But when Andy Petersen speaks, he doesn't spout the expected "likes,� "dudes� or "whatevers�. This 16-year-old writer of fantasy novel Daniel Fox and the Jester's Legacy has a maturity and confidence that belies his age. "I am like other 16-year-olds in my school,� he says, looking down at his St John's blazer, his shirt slightly coming out on one side. "But the difference is I have published a book and that's because of my hard work.� Petersen worked on his manuscript between his unpredictable and demanding school schedule, fitting it in between sports or drama rehearsals. He says that it was during the school holidays in December that he got most work on his book done. "When I had free time I wrote, in periods of productivity, a page a day,� he says. "Other times nothing for three weeks.� Fantasy is not a typical South African genre, so he set the first part of the book in New York. "South African literature has a certain style, I didn't want that. I wanted my book to be more universal.� At the moment Petersen is working on a sequel, which he began writing in April; his first work will form part of a planned trilogy, which is sure to make his fans happy. � Eamon Allan

Lunch spot: Nice, Parkview, Johannesburg