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Posts published in “Steampunk”

Jeremiah Willstone and the Adventures of Liberated Women in an Age of Steam!

I Can’t Stop Writing

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[caption id="attachment_810" align="alignright" width="300" caption="At Work on the Clockwork Time Machine at Borders"]At Work on the Clockwork Time Machine at Borders[/caption]I've "won" National Novel Writing Month for 2010, but I just can't stop writing. I know I have bills to pay, books to edit, projects at work, and a massive cleaning project in my library ... but THE CLOCKWORK TIME MACHINE has me right now and I can't stop.

But ... really ... is that such a bad thing? Since I've "won", I've written 4200 more words, 2600 today alone. Fantastic!

-the Centaur

Viiiiictory … A New Series

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Winner's Badge for Nanowrimo 2010Once again, I have completed National Novel Writing Month! This year’s entry is the first in the Jeremiah Willstone series, THE CLOCKWORK TIME MACHINE:

On an alternate Earth, the feminist revolution started a century early, technological progress doubled ... and Mary Shelley's granddaughter Jeremiah Willstone is an adventurer defending the world in a flying airship! She's used to fighting off monsters with nothing more than goggles, an electric gun and the advice of a half-human computer, but what will she do when her own uncle changes the rules of the game ... with a Clockwork Time Machine?

I've posted a few snippets in this series ... let me see if I can find one which doesn't give any key plot elements away.

With Patrick’s blunderblast slung over her shoulder, Jeremiah whizzed through the streets on her autocycle, discharging its cylinder flat out, its teakettle scream and clanking frame adding another layer of mist and noise to the steam and bustle of Boston. Her legs were tensed, her knees bent against the pedals, half to jump the cycle over curbs, and half to keep the juddering vibration from the cobblestones of Beacon Hill from rattling her tailbone clean off.

She squealed to a stop before the Moffat’s, pulled the cylinder and tossed it to a street urchin. “Top me off?” she asked, hopping off onto the sidewalk with a whirl and pulling her bag out of its basket in one smooth motion.

“Yes, ma’am,” the boy said, taking the cycle. His eyes lighted on her vest, her denims—and on the big brass buttons on her lapels, a steering wheel, sword and airsail overlaid with a stylized V. “Are you an Expeditionary?”

Jeremiah smiled. “Yes,” she said, ruffing his cap so that tufts of blond hair showed. “Maybe one day you’ll become one too. Polish the brasslite a bit and there’s a second shilling in it for you. Quick now; I won’t be long.”

“Yes, ma’am,” he said, walking the cycle off.

Jeremiah turned to the tottering three-story shop, glancing up at the enclosed balcony jutting out from the newer brick buildings around it. Beneath the balcony, carbide-etched into the thick window of carbonate glass, were the words:

MOFFAT’S MECHANISMS & MYSTERIES

Her mouth quirked; as usual, today she was in the market for a bit of both.

Unlike last year, I didn't have to write 38,000 words in only ten days. But I did do pretty well; I still have a few days of writing left and I'm going to try to push further on the story.
[caption id="attachment_797" align="alignnone" width="450" caption="Victory Point for Nanowrimo 2010"]Victory Point for Nanowrimo 2010[/caption]

Prevail, Victoriana!

-the Centaur

National Novel Writing Month Approaches Again

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Once again Nanowrimo approaches ... every November, a collection of insane people around the Earth get together to write 50,000 words of a new novel in 30 days. I usually tweak the rules and write 50,000 MORE words on top of some seed of a few thousand words I've already started. This year, I'm doing Jeremiah Willstone and the Clockwork Time Machine, what I hope is a twist on the steampunk mythos:

Xenotaur on Nanowrimo.org
Synopsis: Jeremiah Willstone and the Clockwork Time Machine

On an alternate Earth, the feminist revolution started a century early, technological progress doubled ... and Mary Shelley's granddaughter Jeremiah Willstone is an adventurer defending the world in a flying airship! She's used to fighting off monsters with nothing more than goggles, an electric gun and the advice of a half-human computer, but what will she do when her own uncle changes the rules of the game ... with a Clockwork Time Machine?

Excerpt: Jeremiah Willstone and the Clockwork Time Machine

Lightning gouged a chunk of the wainscoting an inch from Jeremiah Willstone’s head and she hurled herself back, bumping down the stairs on her tailcoat, firing both Kathodenstrahls again and again until the doorpanels were blasted into sparks and splinters.

Her shoulders hit the landing hard enough to rattle her teeth, but Jeremiah didn’t lose her grip: she just kept both guns trained on the cracked door, watching foxfire shimmer off its hinges and knobs. The crackling green tracers crept around the frame, and with horror she realized the door was reinforced with iron bands. She’d intended to blast the thing apart and deny her enemy cover, but had just created more arrowholes for him-or-her to shoot from.

As the foxfire dissipated, the crackling continued, and her eyes flicked aside to see sparks escaping the broken glass of her left Kathodenstrahl’s vacuum tubes. Its thermionics were shot, and she tossed it aside with a curse and checked the charge canister on her remaining gun. The little brass bead was hovering between three and four notches. Briefly she thought of swapping canisters, but a slight creak upstairs refocused her attention.

No. You only need three shots. Keep them pinned, wait for reinforcements.

Like last year, I donated to help keep Nanowrimo running, and if it's helped you you should think about it as well. If that's not in your budget, try setting up or joining a local Nanowrimo group. I participate in the South Bay Nanowrimo group, and I'm trying to organize one at the Search Engine That Starts With A G if I can get enough people to participate.

Happy writing!
-the Centaur