Sunday, August 15, 2010

Do you Steampunk? Steampunking in the 21st Century...

So there I was, doing some research for my latest novel, looking up some info on the 1940's and some other things I want to include in the novel when I stumbled upon this blog: Hawkins Strongbox. Now, this is some fun and intriguing work and it has me excited thinking of all the fantastic possibilities for authorship in this technological age. I've seen and heard of ideas like this before, but Mr. Pepper (a Disney writer) has put a crazy amount of time and effort into this blog, not just the writing, but the artistic side as well. The blog is fascinating and the potential is endless. And it is an example of "steampunk" writing.

Having never heard of the term "steampunk" until today, I am surprised to find myself already a fan of the genre. I've long been a science fiction fan, loving the futuristic works of Ray Bradbury, Isaac Asimov, and the like. I've also liked The Leauge of Extraordinary Gentlemen which is based on the comic book series by Alan Moore who also created the anti-hero V of V for Vendetta fame Apparently those movies are somewhat Steampunk. Similarly, I've always been intrigued by the movie starring Will Smith and Kevin Kline which is based upon a television series of the same name - Wild Wild West. Apparently, this is Western Steampunk. And, of course, I have long read H.G. Wells and Jules Verne, which apparently a lot of steampunk artists base their stuff on. Do you find yourself scratching your head and saying, "Huh?" out loud to yourself? 'Cause I certainly did earlier today.

So, I did a little research and found out that steampunk actually has a long and fascinating history. What I find equally as fascinating is the apparently large cult following of all things steampunk and how little I previously knew of this interesting genre and its audience. A quick search on for steampunk turned up everything from books to apparel to props and more.

My momma always told me, "You learn something new every day." Today I learned more than one thing. I learned about a new genre, I learned something about what the future of writing might be and how it could involve the internet and I learned that steampunk is a word...okay a made up word...but, hey, Shakespeare made up a whole bunch of words that we don't call made up any more!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Writing and Waiting

I am getting more and more excited about this novel that has been brewing in my head. I've put some scenes onto paper and am working on character backgrounds and plot points. This is the fun part, the interesting part. The part where I am finding out who I am writing about and how their story unfolds. Next will come the hard part. Sitting down and writing and putting it all together into something cohesive! I can't wait to see what will happen. Yep, that's right. Even I, with all my plot points, don't know exactly what is going to happen yet. My characters are often sneaky that way!

I am also still waiting to hear from the journal to which I submitted my recent article. That is HARDEST part - all the waiting after a submission. Oh - the agony! (Too dramatic? Don't forget, I'm also into drama.)

Speaking of which - sounds like plans are coming together for the performing arts studio - perhaps my drama teaching position will be starting soon. I'll be sure and update on here!

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Working on New Characters

The whisper of an idea for a novel came to me about eight years ago, during the time that I lived in Las Vegas and pieces of it have been floating around in my (strange) cranium for that many years. The other night, after reading the last chapter of The Piano Teacher by Janice Y.K. Lee, I was inspired to actually begin putting together this novel that I have been playing around with for that long. It is amazing to me the process of building characters. I've only been working on this particular work for two days and already some of the characters that have been lurking in the shadows of my brain have surprised me with who they really are! For instance, one of the main female characters that I have been thinking of for several years as young, essentially good and innocent surprised me today when I peeked into her closet. I suddenly realized that she is not as innocent as I had previously assumed. I can't wait to see what other surprises lie in store for me as I get to know better these folks who have been my acquaintances for a number of years. Well, back to plotting...

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Writing? What's that?

I'll admit there has been very little real writing going on around here as of late. For a multitude of reasons. One of them is one year of age, teething, and sitting on my lap right now. Also, I had a great arrangement with a good friend to keep my kids one day a week so I could devote that day to writing, but that didn't work out because I didn't stay disciplined and because she went out and got a real job.

I have been doing some work since I last posted here in 2009, though. I have been writing for the blog at Knowledge Equips and have been offered a job as a drama instructor with a local performing arts studio. That position will start within a couple of months, as soon as the new studio is up and running.

Writing anything with two busy, active young children in the house is so incredibly difficult, but I plan to make more of an effort, starting today. So, here is my first blog post back here. A few days ago, I pulled out my copy of the Gotham Writers' Workshop book Writing Fiction. I'm going to start going through it and do some of the exercises and see what comes up. I also found my copy of Sparknotes How to Write Poetry, so stay tuned for updates of what comes out of digging into both of those books.

Monday, June 28, 2010

What to Read?

I'm looking for something new to read. I just finished Burr by Gore Vidal and loved it! You'd think with all the books I just finished unpacking a few days ago that I would have a ton to read. My problem is that there are a lot of hardbacks which are hard to read in bed and all of the paperbacks are Koontz. (They are hand-me-down's from my mom and she has a bit of a Koontz fetish.) While I do love a good Koontz now and then, a girl has to read something other than old Deano from time to time. So, I'm asking all of you out there for some good suggestions. Throw me some fun summertime paperback reading selections! I'm trying out this new affiliate linking program from Amazon, so send me some great Amazon links to your summer reading favorites!

To give you a hint of what I like, here are some of my former summer favorites: