Archive for the ‘steampunk’ Category

The first annoucement that is coming out of the changes previously announced is a new blog – Of Dust and Gold.  This is a collaborative project between my fiance and I, based on a steampunk setting we are planning to write in.

The website is still in the very early stages of construction, but will be regularly update, wtih a serialised story starting to appear soon, we hope.

Of Dust and Gold centres around an old tramp freighter airship, Aria, and her eccletic crew, as they travel a region modelled on the Colonial Australia gold-rushes, with a steampunk flavour to it.  Hence why I found the old gold rush photos so interesting, and relevant.

We hope to give it a really Australian feel, which is somewhat different to most current steampunk.

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Sir Richard Hammerman, gentleman-adventurer, his most excellent companion Doctor Hamilton Gooding and his loyal manservant Obadiah Crabb, have plans to explore an ancient pygmy temple in the depths of Africus, though things take a turn for the unexpected in this alternate Earth steampunk fantasy adventure.

I was digging through some files and came across this completed 10,000 word story I’d written some time back.  It was my first attempt at having a go at a steampunk style story, but, as is normally the case, I added other elements in that I felt would be fun to the setting.  I had planned to write a collection of novelettes, all stand-alone but with an over-arcing plot, though they haven’t materialised yet, so until they do I felt I’d release this one into the wild as a free book to get some reactions.

The setting is an alternate Earth, where a number of fantastical elements mingle alongside historical events and people.  Alchemy exists, and science is a mix of it and steampower.  Mermaids and other sea monsters play in the seas, there are djinns in the desert and pygmies who ride pterodactyls in the heart of the Dark Continent.  Normally any type of historical accuracy annoys me, especially Hollywood histories which play really fast and loose with the truth.  This gives me the chance to go wild and really mix things up.  For example, the Empire of Albion is ruled over by the Immortal Queen Elizabeth the First, though true power lies with the Lord Protector Oliver Cromwell.  George Washington, Duke of New England, is a Hero of the Realm for defeating separatist rebels.  Other historical personages, such as the Duke of Wellington, Charles Babbage and Sir Joseph Banks are also all mixed in together.

I have written two novels of what I like to think as serious fantasy, and have plans for more, but I have come to the realisation that at the moment I am a pulp writer – and I like it.

Those big, epic, world changing bookstopper fantasy series – they aren’t me. It was hard enough to finish off the two novels at novel length. It was after doing so that I realised that I prefer the short versions of stories – shorts and novelettes and novellas – and more importantly, prefer writing stories in the pulp style; action, adventure, larger than life characters etc. Nothing too serious, nor high literature, but fun to read.

I find myself even preferring to read the shorter style stories – I haven’t read one of those mega series in a long time.

For the time being I am going to be concentrating on writing pulp style shorts, working on four series mainly; The Chronicles of the White Bull, Primal Tales, The Sir Richard Hammerman Adventures and Peregrine and Blade.

The Chronicles of the White Bull and Primal Tales both have stories already written and available in the Pure Escapism collection; Primal tales is fantasy set in a primeval, low-tech world, a place of wild forests and prehistoric creatures. The Chronicles of the White Bull follows the exploits of an escaped minotaur gladiator, travelling a dying world in the search for home.

The Sir Richard Hammerman is steampunk pulp; currently with a novella and novelette half-written. Sir Richard Hammerman is a gentleman adventurer who travels with his companions who travels an Earth similar, but not exactly, to our own, a place of weird science, of pterodactyl riding pygmies, airships and odd contraptions.

Peregrine and Blade is pure pulp, inspired by the likes of Robert E Howard, Fritz Leiber and their ilk. The first novelette has been written up in rough form – and can be read here – the first of many.