Shadow Rabbit: A Novel of Dark Dreams & Bunny Rabbits

Shadow Rabbit is a dark fantasy novel. Katy, a meek rabbit with a cursed eye is all that stands in the way of endless waking nightmares for all who dare dream.


Shadow Rabbit is a story about talking animals written for adults. Katy, a rabbit with a deformed and haunted eye, must master the power of her curse to save the world when an undead horror seeks to plunge reality into eternal nightmare.

To accomplish her goal, Katy must travel across mystic realms, master dream magic, and uncover the dark secret of her own sinister origin. Murder, lies, and conspiracies among both humans and animals force Katy to question who she can afford to trust or love. The temptation to use her new power to punish humanity and its allies grows with each injustice she discovers. This is a book for grown ups with elements of horror, science fiction, and fairy tales thrown into the mix.

Sample Pages

Click the image above to read a sample!

Who is this book for?

Shadow Rabbit has broad appeal for adults who enjoy fantasy, fables, horror, and science fiction. It is also for anyone that loves animals, or who is fascinated by the power of dreams and myth. Though there is much beauty in the world of Shadow Rabbit, there are dark and graphic elements which make this story inappropriate for children.

Shadow Rabbit was once described as The Talisman meets Watership Down. I took this as a great compliment.

Link to character page

Click the button above to meet some of the characters.


Denizens of Shadow Rabbit

Learn about the strange beasts and spirits that populate the worlds of Shadow Rabbit! Click the image above!


Who is writing Shadow Rabbit?

My name is Walt Batycki. I'm a graduate of the California Institute of the Arts film school, I majored in story development and animation, and later graduated from the UCLA professional screenwriting program. I worked for several years in the entertainment industry in character animation, designing theme park attractions, screenwriting, TV series production, and video game design.  My former employers include Walt Disney Imagineering, Rough Draft Studios, Dreamworks, and Electronic Arts. 

I left behind steady creative work to spend several intense years working in animal rescue and rehabilitation at one of the nation's leading farm animal rescues. During my non-profit years I managed barn staff, and became the facilities Animal Health Care Director, working with veterinarians and often fostering special needs animals in my own home.  During that hectic time on the farm, a story that had been brewing in my imagination for years began to finally gel and become Shadow Rabbit.

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Why this book is important.

In addition to Shadow Rabbit being a fun and frightening tale that I hope will entertain, I am also hoping it will open up minds and hearts in regard to showing more compassion to our fellow Earthlings of every species. Though the story is a fantasy, all-too-real elements of animal cruelty are explored. I am hoping that readers will be moved to consider how their own lifestyles affect countless living creatures across the globe, and explore many deep questions by considering each non-human life on a personal level. I don't see much in the way of fiction written for adults doing that lately.

I feel that my unique background makes me the perfect hybrid of author, artist, and advocate to tell this particular story.

Link to video:

Click the graphic above for a Youtube hosted video that explains why Shadow Rabbit needs you!

How you can help!

I am currently reworking a final draft of Shadow Rabbit based on feedback from test readers, but as I have been scrambling for freelance jobs to stay afloat, it has been difficult to find enough time and focus to make swift progress. I am seeking funds to help support my son and I while I dedicate three to four months to doing rewrites, reworking the ending, and creating maps and illustrations. I want to have a digital version of the novel available for purchase online before the year is out. I am also hoping to use some of the funds raised to pay for professional editing services, as well as registering an ISBN so print versions can be made available in book stores, though electronic distribution is my primary focus.

I am close to finishing, but I just need to buy the time to make sure I release a quality manuscript. It would be wonderful if I could exceed my financial goals, so that I could accomplish even more, but I am certain I can do what needs to be done with the amount I have set out to raise.



What happens if I don't reach my financial goal?

The book will still be finished and published, but it will just take me longer to make that happen. Whatever funds that are raised will be used to offset my cost of living so that I can dedicate as much time as possible to the book, so every contribution will still make a big difference. I am passionate about this project and I will not let it go unfinished.

All promised perks will still be delivered to supporters. The digital copy of the book will just be longer to arrive, as falling short of funds will require me to split my focus in order to drum up freelance work. Writers must eat.

What happens if Shadow Rabbit Exceeds its financial goal?

In addition to having time to give the book even more polish, I will add more illustrations beyond the small pieces I already plan for the start of each chapter. I will also be able to afford professional editing services, and layout services. With enough funds, I can make Shadow Rabbit available as a quality book in multiple formats, such as a hardcover edition, paperback edition, ipad specific edition, as well as nook, and kindle formats. If enough funds are raised above what is needed to complete the book, I will embark on a marketing campaign with both online and print ads, as well as sending hardcover editions to publications for review. I will also try to attend events to promote the book.

Should fund raising excel by enough, I would love to explore the possibility of recording an audio version for digital distribution, but that project would require a substantial amount of money and might be better suited to another fundraiser after publication.

Of course, all these possibilities are up to you, my potential sponsors. I will utilize all funds raised to create something you will be proud to have supported.

Shadow Rabbit is meant to be the start of a series. The world of Shadow Rabbit begins to change by the end of the story, and that ending begins the next tale, and so on. Ripples of change move across the lives of humans and non-humans alike. Alliances and betrayals abound and the universe is altered forever.

Ways you can help.

In addition to directly contributing funds to this project, it would be immensely helpful if you spread the word among friends or organizations that might either be able to back the project or further publicize it. I encourage you to use Email, word-of-mouth, Facebook, Twitter, or any way available to let people know about Shadow Rabbit and this fund raising effort. It will help in a big way!

Thank you for your time and attention!

Learn more about Shadow Rabbit by clicking the image below!


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