Sample Chapters From Book One

September 16, 2013 By: Christopher D. Eldridge Category: Uncategorized

Updated 06/21/15 – Newest revision posted.

Just a quick update for those who might be interested in actually reading something from book 1. I’ve added the prologue and the first two chapters to my website for those interested in getting a glimpse of The Mark of a Legend (pending title). If you happen to read it and would like to read more, just send me a message or post in the comments.

So here you go: Sample Chapters From Book One

Why I Tell Stories

January 07, 2014 By: Christopher D. Eldridge Category: Uncategorized

I am not a story-teller because I want you to laugh, or cry, or love. I tell stories because I want you to believe in magic. I want you to believe that anything is possible, as you probably once did when you were a child.

And along the way, I hope that you will laugh. I hope that you will fall in love. I hope that you will weep in sadness, and cry in your joy. Most of all, I hope you will live in my world as you do in your own. And in that brief time we spend together linked only by a page with words, I hope that my world will stay with you, forever.

I am a writer because of magic, mystery, and the need to believe. It is also why I continue to read. Without stories, who would take me outside of my own imagination? Who would show me a world beyond my own? Who would allow me to dream?

A world without stories is a world without imagination–our unique gift to the world. For it is our imaginations that make us human. And it is why we will never stop telling stories.

Enjoy the Silence

May 23, 2013 By: Christopher D. Eldridge Category: Uncategorized

For the few of you who might stop in occasionally, only to see that I haven’t posted in forever, here’s an update.

I won’t be posting much until I find an agent to represent book 1. So until then, enjoy the silence. Hopefully it won’t be too long…

P.S. I might be doing a major overhaul of the world map. Some of these changes will include adding tons of new biomes and replacing a number of unrealistic names.

Updated Trailer and a New Map

September 28, 2012 By: Christopher D. Eldridge Category: World-Building

Updated 9/30/12

Hey Folks.

I know I’ve been absent for several months, but as I work on finishing up the first book, I wanted to stop in and show the newly updated trailer. It’s not much different than the last one (major changes are coming in the future though). However, this version has a little better audio and the actual map of Zylaria, rather than an abandoned city borrowed from Google Earth.

I’m also including an atlas-style map of Zylaria below the new trailer. Enjoy!

Click to Enlarge

3D Animation and a Book Trailer

March 12, 2012 By: Christopher D. Eldridge Category: Technology

I’ve been neglecting posting on here since I’ve been busy trying to finish the draft of the first book. Well, at least Hendor’s part of the book. But occasionally when I’m stuck and can’t write, or I’m battling with a temporary bout of self-doubt, I turn to feverishly working on the website. This past week, while trying to reconfigure the first chapter, again, for about the one thousandth time, I was finding myself annoyed, angered, and a bit of depressed, so I had to step away from writing.

This time, however, I decided to start dabbling with animation. I’ve tried doing flash animation before, but it requires way too much time spent learning, which I can’t afford to invest. So my flash animation never amounted to much.

A month or so ago when I was updating my maps using a cool program called Zoomify, I decided to pick up their HTML5 product. In case you’re not aware, HTLM5 is the new animation platform that is set to replace flash in the future. I really enjoyed working with it, and was able to produce some pretty cool stuff. Unfortunately, HTLM5 is so new, there’s still some bugs to work out, so I wasn’t able to finish my project and get it up on my website. Look for some really cool zoomable maps in the near future.

Anyways, that led me to Adobe’s new animation program (in beta) called Adobe Edge Preview. It’s super cool. I used it to animate a new webpage to replace the main page of my “The World” tab. Again I ran into some quirks, and wasn’t able to get the animation to work in every web browser (Damn you Firefox! You used to be so reliable. Have you been spending time with Internet Explorer?)

Well, after this I decided to do some real 3D animation. So I turned to making a book trailer. Book trailers are the new hot thing. Of course, from what I hear many of them suck. They either make no sense, have nothing to do with the actual book or books, or they’re totally boring. So I set out to make my own promotional trailer with the goal of it not sucking. I hoped it would be epically awesome.

Of course, I knew zero about 3D animation. So I watched some tutorials and spent about 100 hours making my own trailer. It’s not totally finished yet, but here’s my first attempt at real 3D animation with audio, of course. Let me know what you think.

The Zenita Calendar – Hours, Days, Months of the Year

February 26, 2012 By: Christopher D. Eldridge Category: World-Building

Click to Enlarge

I’m trying to solidify the hours of the day, the days of the week, and the months of the year for the Zenita World. I’d like to get people’s opinions on what they like and don’t like. So I was hoping you could post comments on here and let me know what you think. A lot of them are meant to be descriptive of that particular time.

If you don’t like something, please offer an alternative, if you can think of one.

Here are the months. Note that there are 10 months, not 12 (30 days to every month):

Winter’s Grip (1st Month)
Last Snow (2nd Month)
First Sow/First Seeds/First Planting (Tell me your favorite) (3rd Month)
Life’s Blessing (4th Month)
Mid Year (5th Month)
Great Sun (6th Month)
Full Harvest (7th Month)
High Gathering (8th Month)
First Freeze (9th Month)
Winter’s Dawn (10th Month)

Here are the hours of the day. Common folk break the day up into 10 divisions, sort of similar to the Liturgy of the Hours in the Middle Ages. There are 30 hours in a day (NOT 24), hence 10 divisions. Note that there are 15 hours to a night and day (on average) as opposed to our 12. Just subtract 3 from any of these times to compare them to Earth and ignore the 3 o’clock times.
Also, do you like the time as two words or one?

High Night/Highnight (3 am)
Last Dark/Lastdark (6 am)
First Light/Firstlight (9 am)
Low Day/Lowday or Low Sun/Lowsun (12 am)
Mid Day/Midday (15 noon)
High Day/Highday or High Sun/Highsun (3 pm)
Last Light/Lastlight (6pm)
First Dark/Firstdark (9 pm)
Low Night/Lownight or Low Moon/Lowmoon (12 pm)
Mid Night/Midnight (15 midnight)

Lastly are the days of the week, which as of now I’m using important historical and religious figures. In my world there are 10 days in a week as opposed to our 7. So here they are 1-10:

Zeniton’s Day
Mara’s Day
Brigg’s Day
Luna’s Day
Grumm’s Day
Isla’s Day
Amadon’s Day
Vadra’s Day
Kai’s Day

Another alternative is to use the 10 luminaries (the Sun, the 3 Moons, and the 6 planets visible to the naked eye).
The names of the 3 Moons are:
– Mephador (green colored moon, also known as the Life Moon or Kindra. It is the symbol of life, earth, or birth);
– Zeladon (red colored moon, also known as the Blood Moon, Sigor, or Kravin. It is the symbol of blood, or death);
– Mephon (blue colored moon, also known as the Spirit Moon or Nesric. It is the symbol of rebirth).

I have not officially named the other 6 visible planets yet, but, like in traditional East Asian Philosophy, where the 5 planets in our sky are named after the 5 elements (Fire being Mars, Water being Mercury, Wood being Jupiter, Metal being Venus, and Earth being Saturn), I thought of doing the same, except using 6 elements: Fire, Water, Earth, Sky/Air, Wood, and Metal.

So what do you think. Stick with what I have, go with the luminaries, or perhaps something else? I’d love to hear any suggestions that you might have.

Worldbuilders – Making the World a Better Place

December 09, 2011 By: Christopher D. Eldridge Category: Uncategorized

Updated 2/7/12 – Thanks to everyone who participated this year to make Worldbuilders such a success.

As a worldbuilder, a lover of books, and a person who believes in helping others, I wanted to share a fabulous charity that one of my favorite authors, Patrick Rothfuss, runs every December. Pat is an awesome fantasy writer, and he also happens to be a wonderful and giving person. Every year, since becoming a published author, he runs a charity called Worldbuilders.

Worldbuilders is connected to Heifer International, a charity that helps people raise themselves up out of poverty and starvation. They also promote education, sustainable agriculture, and local industry. By doing so, they don’t just keep kids from starving, they make it so families can take care of themselves. They give goats, sheep, and chickens to families so their children have milk to drink, warm clothes to wear, and eggs to eat. It’s no surprise that this is Patrick’s favorite charity.

YOU CAN HELP! By following the above Worldbuilders link, you can donate money and get your name entered into a drawing to win any number of cool stuff, like rare and signed books. Every ten dollars gets your name put into this lottery. If risk isn’t your game, you can also hop over to Pat’s gift shop, The Tinker’s Pack and purchase any number of the cool merchandise available. All of the proceeds go to Worldbuilders. There will also be auctions, where you can bid on ultra-rare and super cool stuff, such as an entire manuscript review/critique by Patrick Rothfuss himself, or one from several professional agents in the industry (something I hope to bid on next year…if I can come up with the money).

Note that Patrick matches every dollar you donate and Heifer matches 50%. That’s pretty awesome. In fact, the first year Pat started up Worldbuilders, it did so well that it left him broke. But he said the entire process helped him get his emotional feet back under him after dealing with all the stress of becoming a published author, as well as getting him out of a dip of a depression.

Worldbuilders is something I partake in every year, and if you like the cause, I urge you to do the same. Helping people and winning cool stuff is a win-win for everyone. So just click this WORLDBUILDERS link and get all the info from Pat himself OR go directly to the Worldbuilders Donation Page.

Zenita Wiki – The Shagans

October 08, 2011 By: Christopher D. Eldridge Category: Zenita Wiki

The shagans are an ancient people, and yet they keep no written records of their civilization. Everything is taught through word of mouth, through story and song. They keep no records of their way of life, for they feared what would become of them if Vendria knew the truth. Yet genocide came to them nonetheless, as one of the shagans discovered a way to live forever by stealing youth and by thieving bodies. Read the rest of this entry →

Zenita Wiki – The Body Thieves

September 28, 2011 By: Christopher D. Eldridge Category: Zenita Wiki

It is said, that long ago, one of the shagans discovered a way to live forever. But rather than share this secret with his brothers and sisters, he kept the truth of immortality to himself. And yet, rumors abound that others uncovered his secret and passed it on to those capable of learning it. These select few shagans have come to be known as “Body Thieves”. Read the rest of this entry →

Zenita Wiki – The Deadrisers

September 21, 2011 By: Christopher D. Eldridge Category: Zenita Wiki

The Deadrisers are the lepers of society–unwanted, despised, and rejected. Of course they have always lived on the fringes of society, more a whisper of truth than reality. This is because the world has often mistaken them for dark mages, for necromancers and liches that raise the dead to do their bidding. And while it is true there are those among them capable of such monstrous feats, they are not simply a collection of Magi that have taken a darker path. Read the rest of this entry →

Zenita Wiki – The Blood Cultists

September 18, 2011 By: Christopher D. Eldridge Category: Zenita Wiki

The blood cultists believe that there is power in death. When killing another, man or beast, you may take his strength through blood. Death is never clean by the hands of a cultist, for it must be bloody. A cultists’ body must be painted red, as must the earth. Only then will the blood cultist gain his enemy’s strength. Read the rest of this entry →

Zenita Wiki – The Nama

September 15, 2011 By: Christopher D. Eldridge Category: Zenita Wiki

The Nama are a peaceful race, but a powerful one. They have learned to command the earth and the sky and everything in between through their bond with the Great Mother, Zola. While their beliefs are very close to that of the Zylarians, the Nama do not believe in war, nor using Zola’s power to destroy. Read the rest of this entry →

Book Cover Contest

August 18, 2011 By: Christopher D. Eldridge Category: Uncategorized

Help me decide which of the following book covers to chose by placing your vote for your favorite cover art. There are three different versions for the book Eater of Worlds. Just follow the links below and then place your vote.

Cover 1. – The Eater of Worlds has just consumed the planet of Ephos, leaving it a dead husk, and has now moved on to Zenita.
Cover 2. – The Eater of Worlds has consumed all living things on the planet of Ephos and half of its atmosphere. It has just begun to feed on Zenita.
Cover 3. – The Eater of Worlds is making its way toward the planets of Andine and Endico in the far reaches of the Solar System. It has ripped the planet of Ephos apart and consumed half of it. It is now just beginning to feed on Rindar and Zenita, the only two planets that bear life within the Solar System.

What's Your Favorite Cover?

Cover 1.
Cover 2.
Cover 3.

A Writer’s Journey – Part 3: My First Novel

August 15, 2011 By: Christopher D. Eldridge Category: Writing Craft

During the summer of 8th grade I was inspired to create my first novel. I was on vacation in California, spending time with my dad, step-mom, and two of my younger sisters. We were heading up toward Round Mountain through the beautiful California wilderness, when I spotted a bird, either an eagle or hawk, and an idea popped into my head. I loved nature and adventuring, and I wondered what it would be like to spend my life traveling the world in search of things–relics, treasures, mythical beasts, etc. Read the rest of this entry →

A Writer’s Journey – Part 2: My First Book

July 25, 2011 By: Christopher D. Eldridge Category: Plot & Stucture, Writing Craft

I don’t know just how many stories I had written by sixth grade, but I know for certain that this is when I created my first book, bound and with my own color illustrations. It was our major assignment for the semester in English. I’m sure I was thrilled about making my own book, though I can’t say for certain. I do remember it being a labor of love, something I was truly proud of after finishing. Unfortunately, I can’t remember who my teacher was.
Read the rest of this entry →

A Writer’s Journey – Part 1: My Beginning

July 18, 2011 By: Christopher D. Eldridge Category: Writing Craft

I was born to be a writer. I know that sounds trite or even ridiculous to some, but writing is in my DNA. Let me tell you why.
Read the rest of this entry →

A Little Fun With Poetry

June 18, 2011 By: Christopher D. Eldridge Category: Uncategorized

For today’s post, here is a fun and silly, semi-philosophical free-verse poem. It is a bit of a play (quip, spoof, parody) on poetry in general, so it is chalked full of repetition, alliteration, and rhyming. I originally wrote this way back in 1997 in High School, and I’ve only moderately revised it in order to keep it true to its original form. I hope you enjoy it.

Twisted Babbles of the Hidden Truths

Confusion runs rampant in the neural circuits of life, a traveling message ever-changing, never stable as it seeks to find the answers to its troubling fable. Read the rest of this entry →

Birthday Wishes

June 15, 2011 By: Christopher D. Eldridge Category: Flash Fiction, Love

After a couple of long, exhaustive guides, I wanted to post up a creative piece that’s short and fun. So for today’s post, I have for you a short story I wrote as a gift for my wife’s birthday, which means it also happens to be romantic. And who doesn’t need a little more romance in their life?
Read the rest of this entry →

World-Building in Fiction: A Guide

May 23, 2011 By: Christopher D. Eldridge Category: World-Building

World building is not an exact science. There are countless ways to go about doing it, largely because there is some level of world-building in all fiction. World-Building in Fiction: A Guide is meant to help you build a world through several different approaches. You may use one of these methods or any combination of them. Read the rest of this entry →

Map-Making: A Guide

May 09, 2011 By: Christopher D. Eldridge Category: World-Building

Created With Photoshop by Christopher D Eldridge & Robert Altbauer



I. Why Create A Map?

Until you put your world on paper or on file, it is no more than a figment of your imagination, no matter how well-realized that figment may be. Creating a map of your world is one of the first steps you should take in world-building. In fact, I believe it is a must. Not only then does your world become tangible, and perhaps something you can show off to others, but it also becomes part of a chain reaction in which your map and story feed off of one another. Read the rest of this entry →

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