The Next Big Thing: What I’m Doing Next

Roger Colby at Writing is Hard Work invited me to be a part of a blog chain that introduces my latest work while promoting his blog and three other blogs of writers like myself.  I hope that you will check them out.  I’m highlighting:

Daniel Bowman at

Jessie Clemence at

Elizabeth Hein at

  • What is your working title of your book (or story)?

The Tale of Calelleth

  • Where did the idea come from for the book?

This is a hard question. I’d like to say it came from everywhere. What I was reading at the time – How the Irish Saved Civilization, what I was interested in writing – grand sweeping epics, coming of age stories and, yes, romance, and something that happened in my life – a vicious storm that swept through my home town. The sort of storm that makes noon like night. It causes the constant hum of reality skip a beat and become suddenly vicious and beyond your control. All three of these things collided one summer.

  • What genre does your book fall under?

Fantasy – high adventure, coming of age, young adult.

  • Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

I write with some characters in mind. I picture my villain Maero as Russell Crowe from Gladiator. Strong, noble, and a family man, but he is bent and tortured by his loss. Beyond that, the characters are drawn from people I have met, with the possibility of the main character’s best friend Comitis – recently, I’ve tried to paint him in the light of James Roday (Shawn Spencer) from Psyche.

  • What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

Calelleth’s leaders have sworn to forget the horrors of their past and succeed in rewriting history for their people, that is, until an army arrives unannounced demanding the past atrocities be remembered and atoned for.

  • Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

I’ve met with an agent and will be submitting my novel to an acquisitions editor soon (hopefully next week). I’d like to have it represented. I know this is a difficult task but I believe in my work and will be relentless about publication until it happens.

  • How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

About a year. However there have been numerous drafts. Some chapters have been rewritten 8-9 times, others 4-5 times. I’ve been working in the debut novel, outlines for subsequent books and the history behind my world for over 8 years.

  • What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

If you’ve read The Emerald Atlas you’ll find children thrust into roles that they find unfitting. One day at an orphanage, the next caught up in the grand struggle of trying to save a world. Also, the academics and young love of Harry Potter, the Merlinesque grandfather in innumerable tales, and the robbing of the rich to equip the poor that is accustom to Robin Hood.

  • Who or what inspired you to write this book?

Sadly, I never read the Lord of the Rings while growing up. While that might shock some people I think this was to my benefit as it is not old hat now. I did not begin to write or read a lot until I was in college. I read while younger but stopped for sports. I rediscovered the spark by watching the first Lord of the Rings film. The age and reality of the other world was enchanting. I couldn’t stop until my one tale was written and I have been reading and reading since. I love the Inklings (C.S Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien and others) and my writer’s group is called the Weaklings in tribute to them.

  • What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

This is the first installment of seven books. You follow not only the life and death of many characters but also the redemption of a people that suddenly come to realize the depth at which they have scared the earth and the peoples they have forgotten beyond their borders. In The Tale of Calelleth I have tried my best to intertwine the familiar portions of Young Adult fiction – love, coming of age, and the reality that comes with responsibilities of adulthood with a medieval epic.

2 thoughts on “The Next Big Thing: What I’m Doing Next

  1. Your book sounds great, and current too–which is really a huge obstacle seeing as how it takes us so long to write these darned things!

    I’m unfamiliar with The Emerald Atlas. Would an 8-year-old enjoy reading that, or having it read to him? I’m running out of books for him!!

    1. It is aimed at preteens. What sort of books in the YA genre has he read? I have a one and three year old (with one on the way! so I am not sure how to gauge the scariness meter yet) It was fun, but there might be a couple of scary parts (some of the minions of the bad guy are corpse-like beings) but the story was great and the writing was clean. I learned a lot about telling a story by reading it. Each paragraph holds its own and each chapter pours into the next and leaves you asking what could happened next.

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