James D. McCallister

author of the Edgewater County series


It’s getting into that holiday-week feeling vibe, and with the end of month number two of the composition of DIXIANA upon us, time for an update regarding what we may also think of as Novel 2013. Click through to find out more about what this project’s all about, my approach to the writing, and my ambitions for this long-planned project, which has spun out of me for the last eight weeks at a fairly relentless pace. For the moment, let it be said that today I passed the 150,000 word mark, and have almost roughed in all the remaining scenes. Getting there.

Yikes, you may think. Why, that must be 550 pages or more! Yep. Long.


The don’t-break-the-chain method. See how the two missed days in May, which despite being career-related (book fest promotion), are nonetheless boxed in ignominious pink highlighter.


But remember, only a first draft, and I already can sense a few spots where much of what’s going on is backstory, and probably ripe for compression, if not outright excision. As for what’s to come, with quite a bit of plot to wrap up here on the downslope, I think I will be looking at my first 200,000+ word draft since the original MANSION OF HIGH GHOSTS—the  original draft of my first novel clocked in back in 2005 at a ridiculous and bloated length of nearly 270,000 words. Read more about that MS, currently out on submission, here.

I can see a multi-phase publication of the DIXIANA’s seven (or possibly eight) parts, all of which represent fairly complete movements in this literary symphony I’m on the road to concocting; an omnibus edition once Books 1-8 have all been published could then be offered. It’s an interesting model that’s resulted in some terrific success for other current writers pursuing both traditional as well as emerging publication paths.

In any case, I’m terribly happy with this work so far, and with my vibration (mostly) in tune with that of love and the overall beneficence of the abundant universe, I’m certain that I’ll be able to  make my late-August deadline to have a complete and workable draft in place of DIXIANA. This work augurs one of my most significant achievements yet, and will represent a high point of what could turn out to be the biggest year yet for my career in other ways as well.

More on all threads as the news warrants.

Dixiana Depot 2

About dmac

James D. McCallister is a South Carolina author of novels, short stories, and creative nonfiction. His latest book, a story collection called The Year They Canceled Christmas, releases in November 2017.

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