My book is here!!

Forgotten Skills

My publisher just called me to say that my book, “Forgotten Skills of Self-Suffciency Used by the Mormon Pioneers” is at his office -- hurrah! If you would like a signed copy, I’d love to get you one! The book will also be available everywhere on Aug. 8, but if you order from me, you can get you copy signed. The book is full color on every page, and the price is $17. Shipping is $3 if you want me to ship it to you. You can pay via paypal by sending the money to Or you can mail me a check. Email me at the address above for my address.

Or you can pick up a book and pay in person TONIGHT (Wednesday July 27) between 6:30 and 9:30 p.m. at Historic American Fork City Hall, 31 North Church Street (50 East) in American Fork.

I’m so excited to finally be able to sign copies of the book! Below is information about the book. Thanks! -Caleb

Kirt Forakis Caleb Warnock (author)
Marketing Director, Cedar Fort Publishers
2373 West 700 South 801-756-3412
Springville, UT 84663
P – 801-477-9033
F – 800-388-3727

“Forgotten Skills of Self-Sufficiency Used by the Mormon Pioneers”

Caleb Warnock’s New Book to be Released: “Forgotten Skills of Self-Sufficiency Used by the Mormon Pioneers”

7/25/11– Provo, Utah -- Journalist Caleb Warnock announces the Aug. 8 2011 release of his book, “Forgotten Skills of Self-Sufficiency Used by the Mormon Pioneers,” on pre-sale now at

Many people dream of becoming self-reliant during these times of fluctuating prices and uncertain job security. Using truly simple techniques, you can cultivate the pioneer's independence to provide safety against lost wages, harsh weather, economic recession, and commercial contamination and shortages. Strengthen your family's self-reliance as you discover anew the joy of homegrown food, thrift, and self-sufficient living.

Using truly simple techniques, homestead families harvested sweet, crisp carrots out of the snow-blanketed garden soil in December. They raised robust summer vegetables without expensive seed catalogs or nurseries. They created spectacular flower gardens at no cost. They ate fresh out of the garden twelve months a year, a skill that has now all but vanished. Their self-sufficiency provided security against lost wages, harsh weather, economic depression and recession, and commercial contamination and shortages.

Today, that kind of family security and self-reliance has never been more appealing. Many of the pioneer techniques are now lost to the general population. I was lucky enough to grow up in the kitchens and gardens of the last generation to provide family meals without relying on the grocery store. They managed their family budgets by putting to work centuries of received wisdom about food and self-sufficient living. My book teaches the reader just how simple and fulfilling the path to increased self-reliance can be, along with the pleasure of eating fresh garden produce with robust, homegrown flavor twelve months of the year.
This is not a book about bottling peaches or digging a root cellar. This book begins to overcome the myth that self-reliant living is practical only for up-before-dawn farmers or green-thumb gardeners with huge yards and no social life. The reality is that self-sufficiency need not be elaborate, time-consuming, or back-breaking. Any modern family can be strengthened by discovering these forgotten skills:

Growing Hardy and Perennial Vegetables: From Egyptian walking onions to self-seeding lettuce and spinach which thrives in below-freezing temperatures, our ancestors knew how to benefit their families with vigorous strains of garden goods. The early homesteaders ate fresh corn on the cob long after snow covered the ground and homegrown tomatoes at Thanksgiving -- with flavor beyond anything offered in today’s grocery stores.

Home-Grown Garden Seed: How did the pioneers garden without relying on seed catalogs and nurseries? Open-pollinated seed in the garden is the vegetable equivalent of wheat in food storage. My book explains the pioneer seed bank, the pros and cons of open-pollinated and hybrid garden seed, and a new effort now underway to revive it.

Eat Fresh in Winter: Following in the footsteps of the settlers, savvy modern gardeners can store their carrots, onions, parsnips, turnips, and beets over winter by leaving them exactly where they grew in the garden, or by using their garage!

Fresh Eggs: Taking a Second Look: Eggs were among the most valued homegrown pioneer foods. My book discusses how the backyard chicken coop disappeared, and why many cities, petitioned by residents, are allowing them once again. What every family should know when considering whether a few backyard hens might be right for them.

Baking with Pioneer Yeast: Learn about the health and nutrition benefits of baking with pioneer yeast instead of commercial quick-rise yeasts. Learn how bread was made for thousands of years before yeast was every sold in a grocery store.

Forgotten Recipes : Delicious hunger-gap omelets, roast vegetables, winter pioneer treats, family-pleasing meals entirely from the garden and storeroom, heritage recipes, and more.

Caleb Warnock is a full-time journalist and have been working for a central Utah daily newspaper for the past ten years. He has won more than 20 awards for journalism and creative writing, including the Utah Arts Council Original Writing Contest, the David O. McKay Essay Contest, and voted top reporter in Utah. His freelance publications range from articles on wolf-watching in Yellowstone to backyard poultry-keeping to perennial gardening. He has published several true stories about his ancestors in the Friend magazine. Caleb is a full-time journalist for Provo's Daily Herald.

"Forgotten Skills of Self-Sufficiency Used by the Mormon Pioneers" is available at bookstores everywhere, in addition to Walmart and Costco stores, and Caleb Warnock can be reached at

"Forgotten Skills of Self-Sufficiency Used by the Mormon Pioneers" by Caleb Warnock
Cedar Fort Publishers
$16.99, available Aug. 8 2011

No words were harmed?!

Hello all!

So, the WritingSnippetts podcast has posted a third installment of me taking on the first page of a couple more manuscripts. Am I mean? Honest? Egotistical? Imperial? As I say in the podcast, all of my comments are aimed at one goal -- getting writers published.

I found it ironic that at the end of the podcast, the voice-over says "No words were harmed in the making of this podcast." You be the judge! Personally, I was hoping that at least a couple of sentences that were harming the manuscript were killed off. :)

You can listen to the podcast here:

Buckets of Love from Caleb

Okay friends, here is your chance to see how I take on the first page of a manuscript.

In this second Writing Snippetts podcast featuring an interview with me, each of the Writing Snippets crew brought their first page of one of their novels. They asked for my opinion, and, well, they got it!

By the way, how is your narrative voice? You can listen here:

Borders Bookstores are dead.

Who knew the ebook revolution would kill off a major chain so quickly?
Borders has been struggling for a while, as I reported in here. When they tried to get someone to buy the company, there were no bids. So, they are out of business -- and their 11,000 employees are out of work.
"The move adds Borders to the list of retailers that have failed to adapt to changing consumers’ shopping habits and survive the economic downturn, including Circuit City Stores Inc., Blockbuster and Linens ‘N Things," said the Associated Press today.
“We were all working hard toward a different outcome, but the headwinds we have been facing for quite some time, including the rapidly changing book industry, e-reader revolution, and turbulent economy, have brought us to where we are now,” said  the president of Borders, Mike Edwards, in a statement.

Puppet Mouth: “The blog lives on like Wesley in Princess Bride”

Puppet Mouth is one my favorite blogs ever. In fact, I love it so much I’m tempted to create an award to give it. “CALEB LOVES THIS” shall be the name of the award, and I hereby award this to Puppet Mouth!!!

The goal of puppet mouth is both simple and profound -- let the liars of the world, who refuse to tell the truth, speak with their faces. Below is an exclusive interview with Puppet Mouth creator Matt Evans.

Q: Did you coin the phrase "puppet mouth"?
A: No and no (and yes). Let me explain. Google "puppet mouth" and you'll see that the primary meaning refers to a derogatory way of characterizing an older man or woman's lower face that, yes, with age, takes on the aspect of a ventriloquist's puppet's mouth. Which is valid as a characterization, I suppose. But what I'm going for, in my use of the phrase, is a facial expression (as opposed to a 'facial feature') that seems to embody a range of emotions running from abashment to frustration to exasperation to exhaustion. Also, it seems to include some ineffable something else in addition to the range of emotions just listed, something like a battle between various levels of self-consciousness or awareness. I hope that makes sense. Another way of looking --

I'm going to interrupt myself to finish the "no (and yes)" part of my two-and-one-parenthetical-part answer to your question. No, I did not in fact coin the phrase "puppet mouth" as I use it; my wife did. Brooklyn did. She doesn't remember having coined the phrase, however (which, of course, doesn't matter; I don't recall the circumstances of my conception or emergence at birth but I'm still here), but I'm a stickler for credit. The "(and yes)" part refers to my part in remembering Brooklyn's coined term and applying pictures and descriptions to various attempts to lexically fix the term, each attempt a blog post.

I could go on to redefine what I just wrote. For some reason I'm never happy with my responses. I'd be a lot happier, though, if you'd just stop me or maybe just --

Q: Stop.
A: ...

Q: Tell us the concept behind the blog.
A: When I visited the "Bodies" exhibit at some lower-tier casino in Vegas back in 2008, I saw for the first time that the human body is simply a marionette puppet that controls its own strings. Expanding the metaphor: the body's muscles and tendons are the strings and the brain is the hand. The body doesn't just move on its own; the brain (a vat, essentially, of electrified fats) sends impulses to the muscles and tendons, and these move the body. This fact may be totally obvious to everyone but me; regardless, though, it's at that exhibit where I made the connection. And that view of myself and others has never quite left me. I keep looking at people, peering into their eyes and saying, "Who are you really? Because you aren't who you or I think you appear to be." That's essentially the ethos of Puppet Mouth. The "puppet mouth" facial expression as I've conceived of it seems like yet one more aspect of the "auto-controlled" marionette thing. Feel free to cut any of this.

Q: No.
A: ...

Q: Puppet mouth is all about public shame and hypocrisy. Does shame matter in 2011? Does hypocrisy matter?
A: If the internet has taught us anything at all, it's that public (and private) figures today can expect to have their secret misdeeds (metaphorically) shouted from the housetops. E.g., Wikileaks. The stepping down of various public figures from office for reasons that have everything to do with shame or exposed hypocrisy. Picking at total random, the Scott Adams thing where he was exposed as having created his own cyberspace "puppet" defenders for murky reasons that I suspect have to do with the shame or discomfort he felt at having been exposed as a sexist cretin. How's that for subject interpretation of an empirical phenomenon?

Q: How do you pick the photos you feature?
A: Random happenstance, and reader email.

Q: The puppet mouth concept seems like an idea whose time has come. What is the future of the blog?
A: Thank you. The blog lives on in the same way that Wesley in Princess Bride lived on in captivity to the Dread Pirate Roberts: "Good night, Wesley! I'll most likely kill you in the morning." Like all or any of us, "" escapes death by the skin of its teeth until that one day when it won't. Escape, that is. Then it will go black.

Caleb is interviewed on the Writing Snippets blog

WS ButtonLet the book tour begin!

The great group of writers who put out the Writing Snippets podcast recently invited me to drop by for an interview. They had wanted to record one podcast but the conversation got very interesting and we ended up recording not one, not two, but three podcasts. 

As you all know, I'm shy and retiring and just hate to field questions! (Not!) So big surprise that our conversation turned into three podcasts :)

In this first podcast, we talk about my new book, Forgotten Skills of Self-Sufficiency Used by the Mormon Pioneers, and about the success of my students, why my masters degree was not as useful to me as I'd hoped, and the difference between nice and good when it comes to critique groups. So hope on over and visit for the full interview! -Caleb