Cuyler Callahan's Official Author Website

I'll Write Until The Muddy Grave Takes Me

Archive for the ‘fantasy’ tag

Wolf Head Books and Publishing is Accepting Submissions

without comments

So my publishing company, Wolf Head Books and Publishing, is now accepting submissions in Fantasy, Science Fiction, Adventure, and Historical Fiction.

WHBP is accepting shorter and longer works. Shorter work will probably be put into a collection, longer works are stand alone. If you want to submit to Wolf Head Books and Publishing, click here.

I hope that I can publish stories that readers will enjoy and find inspiring.

Good luck to all those that submit.

Editing A Story and Book Covers

without comments

Now that I have a number of short stories completed, I find myself now an editor. More so then if I were to send the stories to magazines for consideration.

As a self publisher you need to be the final gate before the press. It is recommended by many on the web that I should hire a professional editor.

I agree. But I can’t afford an editor. To pay what I can pay for… well lets say I’ll get what I payed for. Not worth the money wasted.

So I decided I must do this myself. I am going to post each story on a critique site. I think this is the best bet for a first reader. With the help from the site and my own skills in the English language, I am sure I can get something that looks professional. If not I’ll hear about it in reviews I’m sure.

As I build my business and career as a writer and I know I can earn out the money spent on an editor… well then I’ll hire one.

But not now.

Instead I’m going to spend my money on a professional book cover using I have heard much about the site and checked it out for myself. So far I’m impressed.

One tool of editing I’m going to include is a style sheet. I want to get good at the style sheet. It will keep my stories congruent.

So currently I am editing a number of short stories that will be part of a science fiction/fantasy anthology. My first book. Each story will be released as singles as well.  The covers for the singles will be done by me, or bought cheap from a designer. The main anthology will have the large purchase cover. $300 if I go with the smallest package 99designs offers.

Thats where I am at.

I also want to note that I’m sorry if the site was down. I just tried to get on today to discover it blank. One of the plugins was giving me trouble. But as you can see the site is back up now.

Cheer’s all.

Written by Cali

February 10th, 2014 at 2:34 am

The Fantasy Novel Checklist

without comments

This are the steps to take when writing a fantasy novel. Well the steps I’m taking when writing a fantasy novel. I hope it helps anybody else who wants to give it a shot.

Fantasy Novel Checklist

___ Draw A Map.Include Interesting Places of Note that Could Possibly Be Used in Story

___ Draw Inhabitants Of People or Races on Map

___ Develop Creatures and Eco System for World, Record in World Building Notebook

___ Place Creatures of Importance on Map, Indicate Rest in World Building Notebook

___ Develop Language For Each Race as Needed in Current Book, Record in Culture Notebook

___ Develop Culture For Each Race as Needed in Current Book, Record in Culture Notebook

___ Develop the History of the Interesting Places of Note. Record in World Building Notebook

___ Develop Characters as Needed in Current Book, Record in Character Notebook

___ Develop Plot, Using Ideas From Past Check Points, Record in Plot Notebook and Cards

___ Begin Writing Book

___ Go Back to Any Check Point and Add Details as they are Needed While Writing Book

There is a lot more to each check point. Like in culture, you have to develop home life, community, religion, government. Each one of those will have different things related like architecture, clothing, magic, science, folk lore, music.

Characters are going to have many questions aside from physical attributes and habits. You need to go into past life, future plans, present problems. What do they need now, and how are they getting it. What are the things they have done they don’t want others to know about. How will they react if people do know, etc.

There is a lot to this list, but I break it down in an order that will help me move ahead and get the book finished. I placed it in a certain order for a reason.

I find that if I don’t have a map, I don’t have a place to start. I then find I need to place people on the maps, and creatures and other important places of note. I don’t know anything about the people or the creatures, or the places, but I know I will know when I start researching the languages of the people, and the culture, and developing the ecosystem, and the creatures. I have to do it in order.

Once that is done, I can then go and create characters based on their culture. Once I learn about the people I will then work on my plot. Usually if I’m not sure what I need for a plot, it will start developing as I learn about the characters.

If I have a plot already, I can work the people to fit into it. But usually, so far anyways, the plot comes after I develop the people.

Now you write.

While your writing, you will find there are things you need to know about. So then go back and research it as you write. Don’t try to research everything at once, because half of it you won’t even use. If you try to research everything, you will never get to writing. Just research enough to get the book started. Then research as you need the info.

Hopes this helps.

NaNoWriMo Excerpts : Sins Of Our Fathers

without comments

It’s week three into National Novel Writing Month. Week One went well. Week Two I had the flu for a few days and barely could think let alone write. The next day was Rememberance day, and being in the army, I was part of that. I stayed at a friends house for the night, to drunk to drive home. So that was out. I fell far behind, and have so far lost interest to catch up on the word count. I may try to, but right now I’m in the mode that I got a story started, I will finish it on my own time now, not worrying about the dead line.

I have titled the book “Sins Of Our Fathers”

But here are a couple excerpts of the story so far.

Hope you enjoy.

Excerpt # 1

Manard Swanter rode his roan gelding through the Forest of Felrenn only a day’s ride south of Felrenn on the road back his Lord Ehorld’s estate. He trotted his horse Big Guy — as he had named him from a foal — then let him rest, trotted, then let rest.

He could make a good pace this way. At least make it back in eight days instead of ten. He was instructed to take his time, as his message would be accepted easily and be of no worry to the King.

But it looked like his Lord Ehorld was wrong and now a quicky pace must be maintained to end the war before his Lord got his head hanged of the kings castle as an example.

Manard took his messenger skills seriously, and with great pride. His father had laughed at him when he said he wanted to be a messenger boy. “Boy,” he said, “you couldn’t remember your own name if I hadn’t beat it into your head.” But he proved his father wrong.

He joined his lords army, became a messenger boy, and fought in many campaigns the Carcan had committed to fight in with the king. His memory to words saved lives. No messenger carried his message on paper. If he died, or was caught, the enemy could find out what the message was by simply reading the orders. No every messenger memorized every message, and they went with him to the grave.

Manard felt Big Guy weezing a bit. His horse could keep the pace up for so long, but he would need a break. He slowed Big Guy to walk for about half an hour, then turned off the road into the Felrenn forest.
A creek ran along this part of the road. Before he let Big Guy drink he listened to make sure he had cooled down. He learned from his mistakes when he had let a horse that had been running drink a bunch of water right after. The horse later became sick and died.

He moved his trusty friend up to the creek. Big Guy resisted at first, his ears laying back. “Whats wrong Big Guy? It’s alright, we’re just getting some water.” Manard coaxed his big horse farther into the forest towards the creek. Bug Guy’s ears lay flat. Something must be wrong here. He needs water though. We’ll just get some water and get out fast. Probably just a coyote stalking around, no big deal.

Big Guy stuck his big nose into the water. Manard gave a stretch and leaned back on the saddle. He looked up into the tree above him and gave a howl. Big Guy started and gave a buck, sending Manard into the air. The large mountain cat jumped out of the tree and onto Big Guy’s back, clawing away as Big Guy took off through the bush.

Manard watched his big horse take off. He knew his friend was doomed. He was doomed. He couldn’t move his legs, his arms. He could not move his head. He could hear something wet dripping onto the leaves. My blood. Oh I have failed! His eye sight began to fade. Then he slowly could not think. Finally Manard Swanter the Messenger of Lord Ehorld Carcan was no more, and so his message bore the same fate.


Excerpt # 2

A guard came to attention at the dinning hall, stomping his foot down. “My Lord, a messenger from the King. Urgent business my Lord.”

Lord Terrance looked to his guests. “Please excuse me. Enjoy your meal. We will drink and play with my wenches after dinner.” Some of the old men huffed at that. Of course they would not mind some pretty women while away from their wifes, but they would not openly admit that.

Lord Terrance pulled some black leather gloves over his hands and motioned to his guard to take him to the messenger. He strode down his fortress corridors until they reached the main floor where a messenger waited in the throne room. Lord Terrance approached the man who bowed deeply and handed him a parchment with the Kings seal on it.

“Must be important to send this message on parchment.” Lord Terrance flipped the messenger a coin who looked confused while snatching the coin out of the air at the same time. Either way, he quickly stuffed it in his pocket, likely before he thought Lord Terrance would change his mind.

Terrance walked over to his throne and sat down, reading the message. A few minutes later he looked up at the messenger. “Tell King Martakdus my troops will be there in half a months time.”

“Yes my Lord.” The messenger bowed then left.

Lord Terrance turned to the guard who led him to the messenger. “Arot, bring me General Lanctar.”

“Yes my Lord.” Arot said turning to his new task.

Half whispering to himself, “We have plans to discuss.” Terrance laid his head against the black thrown felt with a grin on his face the King himself would cringe at.

Written by Cali

November 17th, 2010 at 12:17 am

Nation Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo)

without comments

So November is coming up soon. I participated in NaNoWriMo in the years of 2006 and 2007. I pretty much fell of the wagon when it came to writing for 08 and never started to pick it up again until October 09. Even then, I can not say my writing has been very focused. I finally finished the Soldier Qualification Serials, but those were not professional and very focused work. Sporadic at best.

I really need to focus on writing a book. I don’t need to write a best seller, I don’t need to write something that is even publishable; though I am going to try. I just need to focus on writing and completing a book. So I will enter NaNoWriMo for the third time this year of 2010. I will write the 50,000 words in 30 days.

What will my story be about. Not sure yet, but it will be fantasy. I need to write up an outline, some characters, and develop a world. Nothing to complicated, but enough that I can put together a believable story in a month. Once this story is complete, I will spend December editing it to a professional standard, then I will either send it off to an agent, or try to sell it myself on this website and the internet.

If any of you are interested in getting some motivation to write, then NaNoWriMo is the month to do it. Thousands of people around the world write to win the NaNoWriMo contest. You win by completing the 50,000 words before the end of the month. If you are interested, check out their site at

They give you your own little section on their site to post up your word count, tell other WriMo contestants about yourself, and your book. It’s a pretty cool site. It is a fun go. Really, when you think about it, you are only writing 1667 words a day. That is very achievable, especially when at the beginning you are excited and write like 3000 a day. You are then left with a little breathing room from then on.

Check it out at

Written by Cali

October 24th, 2010 at 4:52 am

Featuring Recent Posts WordPress Widget development by YD