Steampunk Month — KAPOW!
It’s the second week of February — my favorite month of the year. For one, it’s my birthday month, so obviously that makes it extra-special with cherries on top. For two, um…there is no two. Or rather, I’m making a #2, and that is:
For the rest of this wonderful month, I’ll be sharing All Things Steampunk, Victoriana, and Gaslamp. Why? Do we really need a reason?
It all began when the amazing Amanda Plavich suggested we do a steampunk photo shoot for a “special set of author photos”. Um, can we say best idea EVER? I’ve spent ages getting a costume together and browsing steampunk fashion online. So fun.
PLUS, for the last few weeks, I’ve been immersed in my editorial revisions for The Spirit-Hunters, meaning I’ve been immersed in Eleanor’s alternate 1876 Philadelphia where corpses rise from the grave and dashing inventors turn young ladies’ knees to jelly — to say nothing of the Centennial Exhibition!
All this gadgetry, corset-ry, and ghoul-etry have me itching for any and all steampunk I can get my hands on!
Seriously, guys, do you know another sub-genre that is just so much fun? I’ve taken to wearing silver steampunk lockets (you’ll see one is in my author photo!), Victorian style boots, and newsboy caps.
What makes steampunk (and it’s various relatives) so exciting and entertaining is that it has evolved beyond a mere sub-genre of fantasy/sci-fi into whole lifestyle. Steampunk conventions, steampunk jewelry, steampunk clothing and furniture and communities and art! My inner geek (and my outer geek) just LOVE THIS STUFF.
Just check out these amazing steampunk stores (and no, I am in no way affiliated with these people; I just love their stuff!):
Or these great online steampunk communities:
Or these super fun-looking steampunk meetings and conventions (Oh, how I wish I lived on a different continent sometimes):
- Wild Wild West Steampunk Convention
- Canadian National Steampunk Exhibition
- Gaslight Gathering
- World Steam Expo
So now that I’ve introduced you to this AMAZING world of Zeppelins, goggles, and gadgets, let’s look at what’s coming the rest of this month:
♥ Book recommendations of a steampunk/Victoriana/gaslamp nature ♥
♥ How to make your own steampunk goggles and gear ♥
♥ GIVEAWAYS! ♥
What is it about gears and clockwork and brass that make steampunk so appealing? Like, seriously, if you have an answer, please share it.
You tell me: Are you as enthralled by steampunk/Victorian stuff as I? Or are you kinda “meh”? Have you stumbled across any awesome steampunk stuff? Or do you have any steampunk-related recs for me?
February 7, 2011 @ 8:56 am
Oooh, I’m excited for this–especially considering that niggle of a steampunk idea I have going on in the back of my mind. Maybe this month will help me brainstorm.
And clearly, the reason is this: people are always interested in history, but steampunk is a fascinating confluence of modernity and the trappings of history. That causes different sort of effects outside of where we might have ended up today. Technology and, eventually, modernity changes culture, which therefore leads us to different connections between who we are as a species.
Plus, it just looks cool.
ANYWAY. IT’S YOUR BIRTHDAY MONTH?! I shall send you another package whenever you get back to Germany. It’ll probably be late for your birthday, though.
February 7, 2011 @ 3:12 pm
Nice answer! You make a good point about “where we might have ended up”–I think that aspect is really fascinating.
And, since THE SPIRIT-HUNTERS isn’t really *steampunk* but more *gaslamp* or just plain alternate history, I have it agree, much of the appeal of all that stuff is just: LOOKING COOL. 😀
My birthday is Feb. 25–so there’s time. But seriously, don’t send me more GOODIES. I shall feel spoiled, and that is never good. 😉
February 7, 2011 @ 9:15 am
Ooooo thanks for the links! I love steampunk and there is a little town about an hour up the road from me that has declared itself the steampunk capital of NZ! Check it out here
February 7, 2011 @ 3:13 pm
Oh wow! The steampunk capital! Holy crow, have you visited? That sounds so fun!
February 7, 2011 @ 12:42 pm
•Ohhhhh…you are a riot. You are the first blog I’m reading this morning…and what a way to begin the day. Love it!!!
Checked out your sites and understood your enthusiasm. I certainly could see myself walking around the streets of Manhattan wearing Clockwork Couture (My fav site).
Keep the fun coming…and looking forward to pics.
February 7, 2011 @ 3:15 pm
Walking around city streets dressed in corsets and newsboy caps? That sounds AWESOME. I can’t wait to start going to conventions with my couture and relishing how darn COOL I look…or…at least, how darn cool I *think* I look. 😉
February 7, 2011 @ 1:03 pm
I love steampunk stuff! I’m very excited for everything you’re planning for this month… 🙂
February 7, 2011 @ 3:15 pm
Weeee! Fingers crossed it’s actually cool and fun rather than a big fat SPLAT of gears and gadgets. 😉
February 7, 2011 @ 2:22 pm
Oooooh YAY!!! I <3<3<3 steampunk!!! 😀
February 7, 2011 @ 3:16 pm
I know you <3 steampunk, so you should definitely contribute in fun factoids you have! (Like about wicked cool GUNS from the 19th century!)
Julie, A Tale of Many Reviews
February 7, 2011 @ 4:01 pm
I’ve recently become a steampunk fan after reading Vampire Empire: The Greyfriar and The Iron Duke. Glad I read your blog and will be able to learn more! no idea why it’s fun, but you’re right, it is! Gaslamp? Never heard of this before. I guess I have a huge learning curve ahead. 🙂
February 7, 2011 @ 4:18 pm
Oh yay to spreading steampunk! Thanks for stopping by, Julie!
Gaslamp fantasy is a subgenre with more fantasy and less gadgets–it’s set in a Victorian time, but there aren’t necessarily inventions and crazy clockwork critters. The emphasis is more on Victorian styles and feeling combined with fantasy (or paranormal) elements.
Julie, A Tale of Many Reviews
February 7, 2011 @ 4:36 pm
Interesting! I stole your answer and posted it on my blog with some love sent your way for the Steampunk Month – Kapow! Looking forward to learning more. 🙂
February 9, 2011 @ 12:41 am
AWESOME!!! Thanks, Julie! 😀
February 7, 2011 @ 4:15 pm
Woot for fun pictures! 😀
I honestly didn’t know what steampunk was until a few months ago, but it’s so neat to me. I love anything historical, so I’m all about it. 🙂
February 7, 2011 @ 4:22 pm
Um, you’d better be all about it, missy! Since you’re the one who sparked my borderline obsession with all things steampunk/Victorian/gaslamp–before the picture idea, I was just into it as a genre for fiction. But now? BRING ON THE COSTUMES!
February 7, 2011 @ 6:25 pm
Too bad my story doesn’t inspire constuming! lol
February 7, 2011 @ 6:25 pm
What the crap is constuming? lmao
I’m having issues.
February 7, 2011 @ 7:01 pm
HAHAHA. You type too fast, I guess. 😀
February 7, 2011 @ 5:34 pm
Happy birthday month!! Way to extend the festivities.
I think I told you there was steampunk-y goodness at Comic Con 2010? There were whole booths of corsets, cloaks, cloak clasps, jewelry, goggles, compasses, telescopes… I spent the entire time I was there either at the steampunk booths or the star trek booths.
I strongly suspect you would love comic con.
February 7, 2011 @ 7:02 pm
Um, I am CERTAIN I would love Comic Con. Seeing as Dragon Con (Atlanta’s sci-fi/fantasy convention) is one of my most favoritest college memories, I have no doubt I’d adore Comic Con–and when I go, I shall have an awesome steampunk costume!
(Who knows? Maybe I’ll have a booth and sign books too!)
February 7, 2011 @ 7:14 pm
This is SO awesome 😀 I saw it in my inbox and it just made me happy.
Steampunk is the best thing that happened to my fantasy/YA-loving life. And, by the way, spell-check doesn’t recognize “Steampunk” as a word. LAME. Go away, squiggly red line.
I don’t have any recommendations (mostly because my Steampunk read have come from YOUR recommendations lol), but I loved loved LOVED “The Native Star”. Stanton… 😀 *utter happiness*
Have you read Incarceron? I’m not sure it’s considered “steampunk” necessarily, but it does lean towards it. Pretty cool book 🙂 If anything, it is very dystopian (which I also love).
I think from now on February should officially be Steampunk Month, I shall spread the word around. Besides, it just looks right: February = Steampunk. See? 🙂 No, it has nothing to do with my birthday being in February. Pfffff.
Anyway, I’ve babbled enough and I need to get back to BAM. So, yeah. Bye! <3
February 7, 2011 @ 7:53 pm
OMGOSH! The squiggly spell-check lines are INFURIATING! Soon we shall revolutionize spell-check with our STEAMPUNK SINGLE WORD SPELLING. Soon, Adriana, soon! 😉
And yeah, February totally fits steampunk — not sure why, but I agree. It just works.
(Um, btw, I’m sooooo glad you liked THE NATIVE STAR. Isn’t Dreadnought just the BEST name every!?)
February 7, 2011 @ 7:56 pm
I do love the clothes – definitely cool. My fav. steampunk is Gail Carriger’s Soulless series. But really, it probably had more to do with her writing and sense of humor. That’s why I end up reading any book – voice. Not just because of a genre.
February 8, 2011 @ 3:54 am
Ah yes, SOULLESS! Carriger’s voice is sooooo fantastic in that series, isn’t it? What made me fall in love with Victoriana/gaslamp was Libba Bray’s voice in GREAT AND TERRIBLE BEAUTY!
February 8, 2011 @ 3:50 am
I haven’t read nearly as much steampunk as I should. But I’m obsessed with the Victorian era, and have been since I learned about it in various history classes. So I’ll be eagerly watching your blog =)
February 8, 2011 @ 3:56 am
Awesome! I bet you’ll have some cool info to contribute if you’re a Victorian-fangirl! I realize how horrible real-life Victorian times were (I’ve read plenty of Dickens and Poe!), but gosh…those costumes! And the steam technology–so cool! Like Kat says, mixing eras via steampunk lets us take the cool stuff and kinda drop off some of the bad. 😉
February 8, 2011 @ 5:27 pm
I collect birthdays. Honestly. Birthdays are THE best thing – they give me and you a reason to go overboard in a happyfest. Now I have yours… *chuckles evilly*
Can’t say I’m a ginormous fan of steampunk (mainly because zombies = not appealing to me), but have you seen Victorian clocks? OMGodiva so pretty. I DIG those.
February 9, 2011 @ 12:40 am
Um, zombies aren’t really part of steampunk… In fact, other than BONESHAKER (by Cherie Priest), I can’t think of any steampunks that have zombies–at least not as a staple to the story. It’s more the gears, machinery, clothing, and behavior that makes it steampunk… 🙂
And yay for birthdays!! 😀
February 9, 2011 @ 2:06 pm
Oh. Whoops-a-daisy. Sorry. *grins sheepishly*
February 8, 2011 @ 8:23 pm
I’m intrigued by steampunk, but it’s hard for any fantasy sub-genre to draw me n the way epic/high fantasy does. Ur book will prob change that 😉
February 9, 2011 @ 12:41 am
Haha, thanks Brandi! Let’s hope, right? 😉 And I too LOVE high fantasy–that was my main diet growing up.
February 9, 2011 @ 8:34 pm
happy birthday month!
yay! i’m looking forward to your steampunk.
February 11, 2011 @ 6:06 am
February 10, 2011 @ 6:13 pm
Looking forward to your steampunk month. Our fave steampunk books (so far) are Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld, Warlord of the Air by Michael Moorcock, Anubis Gates by Tim Powers, The Peshawar Lancers by S. M. Stirlin & Airbornby Kenneth Oppel. We love dressing up steampunk here in San Diego. For inspiration and ideas, check out our local steampunk photographer: http://jerryabuan.zenfolio.com/ . Loads of great pics of steampunk outfits!
February 10, 2011 @ 6:26 pm
Don’t forget about steampunk music. There’s quite a few bands out there who call themselves steampunk as well as a lot of others who fit the aesthetic. Some of my favorites are Sunday Driver UK http://www.sundaydriver.co.uk/ Unextraordinary Gentlemen http://unextraordinarygentlemen.com/ and Steam Powered Giraffe http://www.steampoweredgiraffe.com & their BEST song Brass Goggles http://www.youtube.com/user/SpineRaptor#p/u/5/QR9XkEHaM8g
Love, love, love it!
February 11, 2011 @ 6:05 am
OH FANTASTIC!! Thanks so much, Ingrid! 😀 😀
February 27, 2011 @ 6:24 am
I’m head over heels with all things Steampunk. For me it’s the combination of derring do, fab outfits and tea served by automatons. My WIP is a MG steampunk mystery, and I keep creeping off to write snippets, even though technically I’m in revisions on something else.