Tag Archives: #TheFantasist

Advice for Writing a Steampunk World: Part 2 Implementation

So, you’ve got the background blue-prints to your Steampunk world, now how do you put that to use while building a story with characters and plot?

If you’re an outliner, you may be struggling with the amount of details you have to find a place for. If you’re a discovery writer, you may have already written the story and be trimming down on the info dumps and useless bits of the world.

One of the weirdest things about The Scribbling Windhund is the point of view. Since the story is told by the machine, it exists somewhere between an epistolary work, a play, and the diary of a fashion critic. So, I had an interesting task in building the world without the use of large descriptive paragraphs (except when Otto gets effusive in his drafts).

 

Here’s my advice:

Determine what information about the world is most necessary to develop the plot and characters…

As the creator of the world, I know that Prussians have a list of names approved by the state that parents must use. I know that households are given financial incentives not only to have children but to have children who win awards and honors. I know that there’s a garden inside Prussia where every flower is artificially created to be perfectly symmetrical.

But none of that made it into the story. It filtered my experience of the world and informed how I wrote Otto, especially, but I couldn’t find a place to fit it while I was writing. So, I didn’t try to force it into the story. I remember I had to cut a section I particularly liked where Karl was looking down at the city and could see the garden and Otto told him about the perfect shape of the flowers. There’s was about five pages and it was acting as a fun metaphor for the culling of living things (like people) in the name of perfection, but really it wasn’t adding to the plot or the characters so I took it out.

 

And when to reveal it:

If you try to tell everything about the world on the first page, there will be no room for them to get attached to the character or story and in the end. I might feel like a textbook about the world. So, figure out when a technology or law gets revealed organically (then make sure it’s consistently applied even before the reader knows about it).

For example, Otto doesn’t mention the constant surveillance of the military, or the banning of imported alcohol, or the monitoring of sexual behaviors until later in the story. But he always behaves as someone who lives in that world and is particularly careful about what he says to and about the military.

 

Hide information dumps by building character and tension around them

I feel like this is a dirty trick, but it’s so useful. Whenever I have to get information about the world to the reader, I try to imagine how I would have learned about it explicitly in the world. I’m not afraid of character’s thinking back to school lessons, mother’s lectures, or the like.

I got to really cheat once or twice in this story, because the main character writes for a newspaper and takes the opportunity to educate children about something that happened in the past. Since the story is set up the way it is, I was able to include the actual newspaper story and the character’s interpretation of the event. Karl does his share of educating as well, but it comes paired with either an actual disagreement he’s having with Otto or with a personal disagreement with himself. So there’s always two or three things happening while the reader is learning about the world.

 


The Fantasist is a quarterly online magazine that publishes three original Fantasy novellas on the third Thursday of every third month.

And this month, while they celebrate Steampunk, one of them is mine!

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Support these guys. They have good stories for free.

Steampunk according to Van Essler

I met Van at Seton Hill where we instantly clicked and became intellectual lovers, which is like real lovers, but without the sex. Or the knowing each other very well. Okay, mostly we just get excited by the same things. Which is basically the same as being in love.


Van

Van Essler is a yoga junkie with a tarot collection who makes friends with her dreams, whether they are sweet reveries or nightmares. She won the Founder’s Award from the Professional Writers of Prescott for fiction and has publications in Story Emporium Magazine, Zimbell house anthologies, and Z-composition.

 

Her story “Chasing the Eleusinian” is a play on the girl pretending to be a cabin boy trope only it happens on an airship with some steampunked Greek mythology flair.

According to Van:

Jess Nevins once said “Steampunk is what happens when goths discover brown” and I am that goth.

I have always been fascinated by the Victorian era. The period’s corsets and etiquette in a sharp contrast to harsh realities of the Industrial Revolution had an irresistible allure. I discovered Bram Stoker’s Dracula at thirteen, and immediately dove into research of anything Victorian and dark, from Jack the Ripper to arsenic green dye.

About ten years ago, I read my first steampunk in the way of short fiction in an online zine. I was instantly sucked in by the Victorian aesthetic, but even more entranced with how the authors used the steam technology in the stories. Inspiration struck, and I just had to write the Steampunk stories that flooded my head. It was kismet.

My top five Steampunk influences are:

Boneshaker by Cherie Priest – a mesmerizing steampunk novel featuring a strong female protagonists and zombies in early Seattle.

Mortal Engines by Phillip Reeves – Seriously, cities eating cities. What else can I say but I love the whole concept of this novel.

Lady of Devices by Shelley Adina – An amazing tale with a smart and strong female protagonist utilizing her inventive skills in the mean streets of London.

The Difference Engine by William Gibson and Bruce Sterling – An exploration into an alternative Victorian world where the computer has been invented, complete with mystery/thriller fast paced plot.

Howls Moving Castle directed by Hayao Miyazaki – A brilliant film that mixes a Steampunk Edwardian aesthetic with witches and sorcerers. If you have kids, this is a great one to cuddle up on the couch and watch with them.

[Behind the scenes, L.J. says: Damn it, that counts? I want Howl’s on my list too. That’s a great film.

Van: It should be on your list! I love that movie on so many levels. It really shows how versatile the genre can be.

L.J.: But I published my list last week…

Van: But isn’t this like three weeks in advance.

L.J.: …

Van: …

L.J.: Anyways, what the Hell is Steampunk?]

 

As a formal definition, I would say that Steampunk is speculative fiction set in Victorian or Edwardian periods, often alternative versions on those times, that reflect the values and challenges of those eras. Typically, the steam technology of the time period is changed to retro-futuristic imaginings or there are variations to the recorded timeline with alternative historical events. Steampunk has also morphed into an aesthetic—a sort of vibe or style that can apply to any story. If it has brass goggles and airships, more than likely it will be considered steampunk.

I feel that so much of the Victorian time period mirrors today’s society; both eras had rapid jumps in technology that drastically alter their culture. Steampunk speaks to me as a writer as a way to explore our current world by pulling from that rich history. Also, the amount of delightful world-building and researching I get to embark on is a perk.

[L.J.: Perk for you, torture for me, lady. You can keep it.

Van: C’mon, you know you can’t resist the research rabbit hole.

L.J.: I can and I will.

Van: Curiosity killed the cat, but satisfaction brought it back.

L.J.: *Mutters and growls with incoherent annoyance, then returns to research Prussian wigs.*]

Steampunk resonates with audiences on a nostalgic level as well as feeling aligned with our current world. There’s something so appealing about a past we feel a part of and yet have never seen. I also think that much of the steam-powered technology of Steampunk feels more human in a sense. Cogs and gears assembled to run a device seem far more accessible to us than motherboards and microchips. We can create and put together the parts of Steampunk, while the overly sleek and perfect technology of today is beyond the capabilities of our own hands.

The conflicts of the Victorian era are ripe to twist and bend into bleak societies.  Philip Reeve’s Mortal Engines has cities literally eating each other for survival, which feels ten shades of dystopic from the first line. Of course, I probably notice the more dystopian works within the subgenre due to my preference of darker themed fiction.
I’ve never been the utopic type of storyteller. I’m always far more interested in characters that face obstacles not only on a personal level, but must overcome the hand dealt to them by the world they live in. I’m sure others would argue they prefer to focus on an individual’s struggle in a society that runs pretty much like clockwork (pun intended), and they should. The more variation we can creatively explore, the better. As for me, I’ll keep to the shadows.

Which is why my most recent Steampunk story “Chasing the Eleusinian” is a little dark. It’s a short story mixing airships with a bit of Greek Mythology. Sam, a girl disguised as a cabin boy aboard The Dire Crimson, sails the skies in search of the legendary Eleusinian ship run with automations. But if she can’t keep her gender concealed from the misogynist first mate, her sky faring days will abruptly end.

 

You can find Van’s story here.

 


The Fantasist is a quarterly online magazine that publishes three original Fantasy novellas on the third Thursday of every third month.

And this month, while they celebrate Steampunk, one of them is mine!

cropped-The-Fantasist-Logo-192x192
Support these guys. They have good stories for free.

 

Advice for Writing a Steampunk World: Part 1 Development

This is my 100th post.

Which is cool. And because that’s cool, I wanted to make sure it was a good post so I’m writing about something I’m really pretty passionate about – building a good world. And I’m going to make it about Steampunk, because having your 100 post is not a good reason to break-up a theme.

There are a couple ways to start building a world. Maybe you have a premise for the whole world. Maybe you have a specific character problem that relies on a certain cultural restraint. Maybe you have a contest offering money for a Steampunk novella and you need to craft a non-Victorian Steampunk.

Either way, you need to grow that kernel of an idea into an entire populated world. I can’t tell which saddens me more, would-be writers with incredibly detailed worlds and no characters or plots to live there or would-be writers with a world just like ours except for one weird quirk that only seems to exist to inconvenience the really well-crafted protagonist.

 

Starting with a concept and filling in the story.

For me, this is the easier of the two starts. I can always find a character to play in a world. But here’s some questions to ask to flesh out a world and find the forces your characters are going to be fighting against.

  • Who takes out the trash? Enforces the laws? Takes care of the children?
  • What are the society’s ideals? Tell the story of a person in conflict with them.
  • Who does this society “other”?
  • Consider basic story types.  I think Seven Plots is limiting yourself and I, of course, would add Romance to the list, but there are worse places to start than the seven basic plots. How can one of those plots work well into your world.

I’ll answer these questions for The Scribbling Windhund. I wanted a Steampunk version of Fredrick the Great’s Prussia. So, I started by researching about this time period in German history and by researching the man himself. My man, Fritz, was a benevolent dictator, almost certainly gay, and obsessed with the ideals of the Enlightenment, service to state before self, and a military genius. His legacy has been a bit muddied in America (Hitler compared himself to Frederick the Great), but I wondered what his ideal society would look like with more modern technology.

So, the concept for my Prussia became a society of people who prized the work of artists, craftsmen, and thinkers, who idolized their military, and who strongly believed in service to the state above self.

People who prized these ideals so much, that they build a city on top of their old city dedicated to their ideals.

I knew this world would be a very pretty place, with gardens and art on every building. There would be intellectual salons, state-sponsored concerts. Basically, a society built around high-brow arts. The restaurants would all run by people who were passionate about food. Every architect would be a visionary. Everyone who wanted to grow up and be an artist, or a writer, or a singer would have an outlet (that wasn’t the internet).

So, who enforces the laws?

Obviously, a strong military. Who takes out the trash and takes care of the kids was harder. Since artistic and intellectual types are incapable of tending to demeaning labor like doing their own laundry and changing diapers, someone else had to do it. But if all education was designed to create artists and philosophers… maybe the military would have to force them to do it.

This took me down a weird 1984 path. Where I started to ask what would happen to the non-artistic and I realized their only place in society would be the military protecting the artists, or in the service industry taking care of the artists. I decided to combine them, so that this sectors military is enormous—over half of the population. The people who take out the trash are soldiers. The ones who repair the roads? Soldiers. The lady behind the counter at the DMV? A soldier. The person doing your taxes. Actually, I’ve met accountants that are very passionate about money, that’s probably an artist’s specialization.

Growing the military to this size made for an interesting twist on this Artist’s Utopia. Would I live in a place that paid me to write, if I was constantly monitored by the military? I don’t think I would.

Which brings me to…

Who is not in line with the society’s ideals?

Since Prussia is a society build around service to the state, idolization of the principles of Enlightenment and arts, someone who doesn’t trust the military-state would be on the outs. Also someone one who either wasn’t an artist, or for some reason had been excluded from the society.

This character became Karl, my terrorist. The champion of the poor, the ugly, the uneducated, and those left behind and erased from history when this perfect society was created. While being a master craftsman himself, Karl knew too many people who did not possess these talents who had been overlooked when the society built itself.

Who is othered?

I cheated on this one, because I decided to make Prussia a conservative country as well and reflect some problematic beliefs about what the ideal family looked like. This led to second-class citizens, people who had mental, physical, or emotional limitations and needed special protection from the government. Religious zealotry (i.e. any worship) and homosexuality fell into this category.

I liked the idea of making second-class citizens, people who weren’t ostracized so much as limited. They needed to be protected from the harm they do to themselves and can’t be put in positions where their limitation might affect their judgement. It gets creepy.

But this idea brought me to my second character, the everyday average man in this society. Otto, a good Prussian boy, who believes in his sector’s military, his own sexual limitations, and the superiority of this system… until he meets the terrorist.

 

Starting with a character and filling in the story.

It’s a littler harder to build a world around a character with a cultural restraint/element. The trouble really comes from having a great idea that relies on one aspect of the character being persecuted. It can make the world seem unfairly biased against the character and ultimately unrealistic.

Here’s the questions to ask about the cultural restraint/element.

  • Could this kind of cultural restraint/element exist in the real world? How is it treated and what are you saying by placing it in this context?
  • How do true-believers in this restraint/element view it? If the justification sounds evil or unlikely, then chances are you need to think more about this element.
  • What other aspects of the society would be affected by the restraint/element? For example, if your element is that your character has a steam-powered airship, what else is the society doing with that technology?
  • Who is in charge of this restraint/element (who created it)?

I could cheat again and talk about Otto’s homosexuality and how Prussia monitors and restricts him because of it, how I based it off of conservative communities in real life and the logical conclusion of enforcing anti-sodomy laws, and how the authorities in Prussia view homosexuality as dangerous to the individual…

But, I’m going to focus on the actually technology instead.

There are two big technological element I created for this story. The Environmental Dome and the DikTak. Both of them are vital to the story, but the dome exists in a vacuum I had to explain away.

So the character premise was: a terrorist escapes a prison by sneaking parts off an unobtrusive clock-work machine and using it to remove the environmental dome that’s been keeping all his friend imprisoned underneath the current city.

I’ll start with the DikTak. This is a simple clockwork automaton that functions as a note-taking machine because it can record what it ‘hears’ and ‘sees.’ Since I wanted the DikTak as the narrator of the story, it needed to be able to ‘see’ which is fairly advanced (it only sort of exists in real life). However, it had to be unremarkable enough to be allowed into a prison, which meant Prussia had to have not only clock-work devises by extraordinarily complex ones or else they would need to remark on how weird the DikTak was.

I could have left the DikTak as the solitary technological advancement (since its an invention of local genius, Karl Schneider), but I thought it would feel more organic in a world filled with other advancements. So, Otto mentions it casually like an advanced watch or toy. The characters don’t react to the machine like it’s extraordinary. There’s other technology like it. We see a clock-work telegraph machine in action and Otto draws attention to another piece of clockwork that is even more advanced. The clockwork in the prison-tower.

So that’s how the technology effects of the aspects of the world. If I got out of the DikTak’s narration, I would show other elements of Prussian life, which probably include clockwork sidewalks and staircases. It was created fairly recently since Karl’s designed are still used by clock-work re-creationists, but it’s entered enough into daily use for a little mechanical dog to not be notably out of place.

The second big piece of tech I had was the environment domes. So far this doesn’t exist in the real world, though as a metaphor for a strict border I was saying some pretty interesting things by keeping it impermeable and having the government forcing people to remain trapped inside it.

This had to be a complicated and not easily understood technology (it takes my genius a decade to break it). If it was a simple technology that was widely understood, then the people in the Undercity would be able to fabricate their own and certain plot elements would fall apart.

So it sounds pretty evil, which meant I had to take some time to ensure that the readers saw why it was necessary. Life without the dome is impossible because the environment is unlivable outside of them. Yup, I might be saying something with those domes…

Because the domes are complex, they are not widely used in society. There’s no thunderstorm rooms, or snow-filled parks—at least not in Prussia.

And of course, in Prussia the military controls the dome. Until, of course, they don’t…

 

 


The Fantasist is a quarterly online magazine that publishes three original Fantasy novellas on the third Thursday of every third month.

And this month, while they celebrate Steampunk, one of them is mine!

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Support these guys. They have good stories for free.

Images from the Past: Weirdly Accurate Images from the 1800s

I love it when Science Fiction manages to predict the future. The seashells in your ears from Bradbury’s  Fahrenheit 451.  Assimov’s Robotic laws forming the basis to real life robot training. Religious Zealots taking over the country like in The Handmaidens Tale…okay I don’t like that one so much.

Anyways, the Victorians had some interesting ideas about what the future would bring that make it easier to add flavor to a Steampunk world.  Here’s some of the ones that came true

original

I know it’s not technically a roomba, but it does the same thing.  It’s very telling that even with a machine to do the work, the Victorians still assumed we’d have household servants.

Skype imagined over 100 years ago

In my filthy, little mind, this is a sex hotline. She’s about to show some ankle and the operator is just like, “oh, not this foot fantasy again…”

18-future

I want benches on the moving sidewalks in airports.  I mean, I also want a suave mustache and a fancy half-cape, but  this is such an improvement on the modern design!

20-future

Their are few things more modern than going out for drinks with a friend and then ignoring that friend to look at pictures of babies and male models. I also love that the woman is red is smoking a blunt and there’s some kind of weird space car in the background.  The predicted cars and legalization, folks!

cycling-vr-1896--dyn--fullviewsize

The only thing unrealistic about a machine that combines stationary bicycling and virtual reality goggles is that the owner is actually using it for exercise and not as a clothes rack.


The Fantasist is a quarterly online magazine that publishes three original Fantasy novellas on the third Thursday of every third month.

And this month, while they celebrate Steampunk, one of them is mine!

cropped-The-Fantasist-Logo-192x192
Support these guys. They have good stories for free.

Images from the Past: The Future from the 1800s

 

These three images directly inspired some aspects of my world.

The first two are moving houses. The black and white one is actually the cover of an early speculative fiction novel.  The other is a post card of an entire town being moved someplace. I’m not sure if its meant to be unloaded or just in constant motion, but the idea of taking a city apart building by building and moving it elsewhere, probably without the unwanted parts of the city, really got my gears turning.

 

This bad boy has been on my computer since the early days of the internet.

17-future

One of the hallmarks of my sectoral universe is the environmental domes. They feature briefly in Evasive Love and are central to The Scribbling Windhund. Partly it comes from my fear of natural disaster and my non-scientific mind trying to imagine how actual scientists will save us from the coming environmental apocalypse. The idea of a city encased in a glass box (complete with artificial sunlight!) has long intrigued me.

 


The Fantasist is a quarterly online magazine that publishes three original Fantasy novellas on the third Thursday of every third month.

And this month, while they celebrate Steampunk, one of them is mine!

cropped-The-Fantasist-Logo-192x192
Support these guys. They have good stories for free.

Steampunk Music: Bitter Ruin

 

Bitter Ruin has to be one of my favorite bands, partly because I like so many different kinds of music and they experiment with all of them.  I’m not sure if they’d like being called Steampunk, but “Ticker Don’t Tock” definitely helped me get into that clockwork mindset while I was writing The Scribbling Windhund.

 

I’m not sure “Trust” has anything to do with Steampunk either, but man is this a great video.

 


The Fantasist is a quarterly online magazine that publishes three original Fantasy novellas on the third Thursday of every third month.

And this month, while they celebrate Steampunk, one of them is mine!

cropped-The-Fantasist-Logo-192x192
Support these guys. They have good stories for free.

Steampunk Movie Review: City of Lost Children

I realize that my number one influence for Steampunk was actually La Cité des Enfants Perdus which is the proper French title for my favorite movie of all time, The City of Lost Children. The visuals are striking and extremely Steampunk, which is odd to me because I wasn’t thinking of this as Steampunk until just today when I was thinking about the Cyclops (the fat-faced guy with the eye thing is actually a blind man in a cult that kidnaps and sells children to the really old guy).

“The City of Lost Children is…the story of Krank, a tormented scientist who sets about kidnapping local children in order to steal their dreams and reverse his accelerated ageing process. When Krank’s henchmen kidnap his brother, local fisherman and former circus strongman One (Ron Perlman) sets out on a journey to Krank’s nightmarish laboratory, accompanied by a little orphan girl called Miette.”  – Umbrella Productions

It’s a weird quest story with a lot of strange world elements. The ocean is polluted (possibly poisonous, judging by the milky green hue), the world is dark (I don’t think there’s any day light in this movie), the characters are all incredibly well-rounded. Almost everyone even the smallest side characters has something they want that they can’t have.

And because trailers in the 90’s were almost as fucking weird as the movie itself, enjoy this:

 


The Fantasist is a quarterly online magazine that publishes three original Fantasy novellas on the third Thursday of every third month.

And this month, while they celebrate Steampunk, one of them is mine!

cropped-The-Fantasist-Logo-192x192
Support these guys. They have good stories for free.

Images from the Past: Women of the Future

There are from a set of postcards designed by Albert Bergeret in 1902. He was French and apparently these were a little risque.  Personally, I think they fit very neatly into what we would now call a Steampunk aesthetic.  Especially, the Lady General.

 

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The Fantasist is a quarterly online magazine that publishes three original Fantasy novellas on the third Thursday of every third month.

And this month, while they celebrate Steampunk, one of them is mine!

cropped-The-Fantasist-Logo-192x192
Support these guys. They have good stories for free.

Steampunk according to L.J.

I was brought to Steampunk a little late to the game, probably by The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen and Hellboy (which might not be Steampunk…). I really wish I could say books, or music, or even the fashion brought me into the fold, but I was really not aware of Steampunk until it went mainstream enough to have movies. But that look is so cool, I incorporated the sci-fi element into my ghost tour uniform (a black skirt, corset, cape, and top hat) pretty quickly.

 

My top five Steampunk influences are:

The DIY fashionistas. I regularly google steampunk just to see the new retrofuture stuff that exists on the internet.

H.G. Wells, Robert Lewis Stevenson, and Arthur Conan Doyle’s speculative fiction (particularly Doyle’s illustrations).

Sherlock Holmes with Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law.

Neil Gaiman’s graphic novel, Neverwhere. I know, it’s not really steampunk, but damn it, it feels like it to me.

The Legend of Korra which also… might not count, but I don’t care about your labels!

 

The official (i.e., Wikipedia) definition is a science fiction/fantasy work which uses 19th-century designs and technology like steam and clockwork, but for me, Steam-punk is a chance to talk about the modern-day issues by making them relevant to our history. Only without all the limits of actual history (you know, like not having instant communication, or gay rights, or laser guns).

I’ll also add that I’ve always had a somewhat tenuous grasp of history. I was convinced Italians still wore togas until I was in middle school. Part of the problem was that I grew up near the Amish and a Native American reservation. My mom used to watch a lot of Anne of Avonlea, and Dr. Quinn: Medicine Woman and something Victorian that I suspect was the BBC. I was utterly unable to differentiate them from the modern day, so I assumed that Canadians, Coloradans, and the British actually acted and dressed that way. I realized this wasn’t true by the time I started reading Robert Lewis Stevenson and Arthur Conan Doyle, but I was a little disappointed that I couldn’t get on a plane and step out and explore Victorian London. Steampunk was a natural fit for my skewed understanding of history and time periods.

I think it appeals particularly to female readers. There’s a very exciting genre of adventure/exploration stories that girls kinda got left out of. Steampunk, which always seems to very extremely cool female leads, lets women particulate in that era of progress as changers and not just spectators.

Steampunk is also really interesting because it lives in a positive time period that precedes one of the most violent and destructive eras in history. So, no matter what advancements a writer creates in a Victorian London, the reader has this background feeling that in a few years WWI is going to happen and be made all the more horrific for these advancements. I think, the era of progress appeals to people who want to write utopias and that might be why so many good Steampunk plots stem from trying to prevent WWI (and I think in our modern minds preventing WW2 and the Holocaust). Personally, I always found it kind of cheating when a single villainous mastermind orchestrates something as complicated as “The War to End All War,” but then again it started as a seemingly random assignation…

But thinking about WWI and progress and classism, and that bright-eyed Utopian ideal in Steampunk, really got my cogs turning for The Scribbling Windhund. I’m not writing about the past in my story in The Fantasist, so I sort of cheated as a steampunk writer. My story takes place in a future where climate change destroyed our current globalized world and forced us into segregated environmental domes where all counties had to reform their old pre-industrial identities. So, Germany becomes Prussia and again reflects the ideals of Fredrick the Great: service to the state, near worship of art and culture, but also a very heavy reliance on its military. Prussia is a very safe sector, where artists and craftsmen are the most highly prized citizens, and over half the population acts as the military/police force supervising the community to keep them from engaging in harmful behaviors.

You know, like being too gay.

The main character, Otto Lang, is pretty comfortable in this utopic state until he’s asked to interview a terrorist who’s been imprisoned for fourteen years for kidnapping the last Prussian princess. Throughout their interviews, Otto begins to question everything he believes about his sector, and his government, and his life. Eventually, well, I won’t spoil it because you can read it for free here.


The Fantasist is a quarterly online magazine that publishes three original Fantasy novellas on the third Thursday of every third month.

And this month, while they celebrate Steampunk, one of them is mine!

cropped-The-Fantasist-Logo-192x192
Support these guys. They have good stories for free.

 

The Scribbling Windhund: available at The Fantasist

The Fantasist is a quarterly online magazine that publishes three original Fantasy novellas on the third Thursday of every third month.

And this month, one of them is mine!

The Scribbling Windhund

Way back in the spring-time, I finished this novella just in time to send it into a Steampunk themed issue of The Fantasist. I didn’t have particularly high hopes; since I wasn’t sure a futuristic version of colonial-era Prussia about the impact of climate change, with very dark moral undertones narrated by a mechanical dog counted as steam-punk. I’m not really sure what Steampunk is. I know it when I see it… sorta.

The guest editor, Megan O’Keefe, was open to a wide interpretation of steampunk and my little love story managed to sneak into The Fantasist. In order to celebrate, I thought I’d bring you an exploration of Steam-punk.

I’m going to be showcasing the Steam-punk that inspired my story. There’s going to be music, movies, artwork, and more than a few author interviews.


Also you can find my steampunk story, The Scribbling Windhund, here.

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Support these guys. They have good stories for free.