James D. McCallister

author of the Edgewater County series

Review (Blu-ray): FLIGHT (2012)

After a decade of mo-cap kid movies, big ticket director Robert Zemeckis returns from the uncanny valley to live action filmmaking with Flight, a Denzel Washington Oscar-bait vehicle that starts out as spectacular as much of Zemeckis’ prior catalog would lead viewers to expect, with a plane crash sequence even more harrowing than the one […]

My Writing Journey — Part 1

In the immortal words of David Byrne, how did I get here? The path I’ve taken in becoming an author of novels, short stories, and screenplays (along with industrial scripts, narrative nonfiction articles, academic papers, advertising copy, and various business documents I’ve been tasked with composing) is certainly ongoing, but began the day as child […]

Marc Levy’s Writing Rules

Here’s a useful set of writing rules courtesy French author Marc Levy. After an initial stroke of luck in 1999 with his first book (Dreamworks nabbed the film rights, allowing Levy to quit his day job and write full time), he’s since had quite a bit more success—thirteen novels in print to the worldwide tune of 27 million total […]

THE LIMELIGHT Launches Soon!

Muddy Ford Press‘s Tribute to Columbia’s Arts Community, The Limelight: A Compendium of Contemporary Columbia Artists is almost here! Among many wonderful essays, I’m honored to contribute a piece about one of my principal writing mentors and enablers, Robert Lamb, a fine author, teacher, publisher, and an all-around Southern gentleman. Other subjects include musicologist and author […]

UPDATED: Another DOGS Request

UPDATED: Well, just got word that that’s a big negatory from Bantam/RH, and so, back to the editor’s list. DOGS will yet find a home—as of this writing it’s still out to Penguin, so we also still have that chance at being picked up. No worries—rejections are but stepping stones to an eventual yes! —- […]

Review (Blu-ray): MAGIC MIKE (2012)

So the supposedly retiring Steven Soderbergh’s penultimate movie is a micro-budget male stripper soap opera? Yep. A solid, respectable, and profitable base hit (a triple to right center, let’s say, but just barely a triple), Magic Mike makes for an undemanding, not-terribly-stylized two-hour character study with a fair degree of heart. From the Saul Bass 70s Warner Brothers logo […]


Quick news break: Tonight I’m pleased to announce a change in representation—no, not with a new agent, but rather the same Michelle L. Johnson who has shepherded DOGS OF PARSONS HOLLOW thus far on its path to eventual publication. Michelle’s just moved under a new shingle, Inklings Literary, which is where she’ll now be repping […]

February 2013 Writing Projects Update

As work progresses in 2013, every month or so I’ll post an update. — DOGS OF PARSONS HOLLOW (novel) After a fast and somewhat mysterious rejection from Simon & Schuster, the MS is currently at Penguin Group, where the longer it stays the better: these things take time. I persuaded an agent, Michelle L. Johnson, who persuaded […]

Review (Blu-ray): LOOPER (2012)

LOOPER A Sony/TriStar Pictures Release Dir-scr: Rian Johnson Throughout the history of storytelling, writers and other artists have toyed with a Big Impossible Idea: that of attaining the power imbued through an ability to move outside the parameters of the flow of time. It’s irresistible for one reason alone—the individual who has the ability to […]


UPDATE: After viewing all 13 episodes, the Netflix Original series House of Cards builds to a thrilling conclusion in which all of Rep. Underwood’s machinations, some of which have turned deadly, demonstrate both how far he will go to achieve his ravenous ambition, and how far that naked, amoral hunger will take him. Only an […]