Tag Archives: steampunk

Signal Boost: Steam-Powered Anthologies Looking for Submissions

JoSelle Vanderhooft, the editor of the Steam-Powered: Lesbian Steampunk anthology series has given me her blessing to signal boost her call for submissions here. She recently accepted my story, The Kissing Booth Girl, for Steam-Powered III: Further Lesbian Steampunk Stories, and she’s looking for a few more tales to fill the volume. In particular, she’s interested in stories featuring WoC and stories in non-European/non-American settings.

The original call for submissions appears below, but there are a few important changes to note. The new submission address is: steamthologies@gmail.com.

Ideally, stories should be received by March 15, 2014.

But wait, there’s more! She will also be considering stories for the next volume in the series, Steam-Powered IV. So if you aren’t able to make the March 15 deadline, don’t despair. And if you are able to make the deadline, wonderful! Submissions will be considered for both anthologies.

Steam-Powered III Guidelines:

Although “steampunk” is a fairly broad genre, we are interested in the following:

* Stories set in the past and present as we know them, or in an alternate past or present, as well as a future in which 19th Century technology dominates.
* Stories that involve 19th Century steam technology or retro-future technology that does not involve steam. For example, if your story is set in the Gobi Desert, the lack of water may make this technology look different than it would in a society that has enough water for steam technology to be feasible. For a good idea of what I mean here, please read this essay by Steam-Powered 1 contributor Amal El-Mohtar: http://www.tor.com/blogs/2010/10/towards-a-steampunk-without-steam.
* Stories that explore and critique 19th and early 20th Century notions of colonialism, empire, race, sex and sexuality.
* The editor also has a strong preference for stories set outside Victorian England and the United States, stories that feature women of color protagonists, stories that feature protagonists from the lower or working class, stories with disabled protagonists (including those with cognitive disabilities and mental illnesses), and stories whose protagonists are not Christian. This is not to say that more ‘typical’ steampunk stories are unwelcome, just that they will be a harder sell.
* While Torquere Press publishes several romance and erotica titles, stories need not have romantic or erotic elements.

We are not interested in the following:

* Stories that exoticize, misrepresent or demonize lesbians, people of color, people with disabilities, or any culture or religion. (look up “cultural appropriation” for an idea of what we mean here).
* Stories with anti-lesbian clichés (such as the lesbian who would really enjoy heterosexual sex, if she met the right man)
* Stories with villains whose sole motivation for being bad is a mental illness or “being crazy.”
* Poetry
* Fan fiction (stories featuring characters that are not copyrighted to the author)

As Steam-Powered is entering its third incarnation, we’ve seen a lot of stories set in a lot of places. However, some countries and regions have never appeared at all. Thus, I am particularly keen on seeing stories set in the following countries/regions/cultures.

1) Eastern and Central Europe. Seriously. We’ve had all of one submission ever set here.
2) Italy, Germany, the Netherlands, or Scandinavia. (I will seriously love you forever if you send me a story set in Italy–though by saying this I’m aware I may have just opened the floodgates lol)
3) Southern and Central Africa. Though I always want more stories about this continent!
4) Australia
5) Russia
6) Mexico
7) Canada
8) Anywhere in South America. I have one acceptance for SP3 set here, but I’d love more.

Of course, all regions are fine–specifically if they’re not England–so please don’t think I’m going to bounce your story if it isn’t set in any of these places. I’m simply, again, offering up a few that I’ve seen little or nothing from and would like to see represented.

Word Count: 3,000 – 10,000 words (though shorter stories may be considered). **PLEASE query with your story idea first to save both you and the editor time.
Payment: $35 per story.

If your query is accepted, submit stories in .rtf or .doc format to JoSelle Vanderhooft at steamthologies@gmail.com. Please title your submissions as [Author’s Last Name]: Steam-Powered III Submission, and use standard manuscript format that includes your full name (and pen name if applicable), address, phone number and email.

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Less Pirates Than Advertised

We recently got back from a trip to the Caribbean, so this is a post for catching up and saying thank you. The trip was a family cruise with my dad, stepmom, stepsister, and stepsister’s boyfriend, so the first thank you goes to Dad and Valerie for bring us along – thank you guys very much! Though there were less pirates than advertised, and certainly none that looked like Johnny Depp, the Caribbean did contain goats, stingrays, sea urchins, towels shaped like bats, cigars, hats, waves, and vast quantities of food and alcohol, not necessarily in that order. As far as I can tell, the rum is never gone; no matter how much we drank, there always seemed to be more.

I also received two pieces of writing-related news while I was away, which I’m very happy about. Thing the first: my short story, The Trans-Siberian, will be appearing in the upcoming anthology In an Iron Cage: The Magic of Steampunk. Thank you, brni, for passing along the opportunity, and for giving me feedback through multiple revisions. Thing the second: my short story, The Children of Main Street, will appear in the next issue of Clarkesworld!(!!!) Thank you, Jeff, and everyone in Group 3 at the Anticipation Workshop for helping me make this story better. You guys rock! I believe the lesson here is I should leave town more often. Luckily, I plan to do just that at the end of this week.

And now, a random selection of Caribbean-related images below the cut. None of them contain pirates.

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Dorian’s Parlor

I received a last-minute invitation to Dorian’s Parlor last night so, fighting my natural laziness, I threw on the only thing I had that remotely approximated steampunk/neo-victorian/retro fashion and headed into the city. After all, it’s not every day I get offered free tickets to a steampunk party. I’d heard of Dorian’s Parlor before, but never attended, and I have to say, it was tons of fun.

We were primarily there for The Gypsy Nomads. My friend, Steve, does photography work for them, so the free tickets came courtesy of them (thank you!) I’d never heard their work before, but I’m a converted fan after last night. There are samples of their songs available on their website – I highly recommend checking them out. My particular favorite is Yes! I’m French, and since it isn’t up as a sample, you’ll just have to buy their album to hear it. I promise, you won’t regret it.

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A Geek-tastic Weekend

This was a weekend for reveling in geekery. Last night we saw Curio Theater’s production of Twelfth Night. Aside from English Literature geekery, this particular production also featured gorgeous steampunk costumes (a fact which none of the promotion for the play seems to mention…what’s up with that?)

The actors did a wonderful job, the costumes were tons of fun, and the theater itself a beautiful old church with lovely stained glass and a big, ole pipe organ, which was used to great effect as part of the set. The staging was very minimal, using the natural space of the church, and adding a bit of scaffolding, but nothing else in terms of sets or backdrops. The actors (and the costumes) carried the whole production, and carried it well. If you happen to be in the Philadelphia area and dig steampunk, Shakespeare, or both, I highly recommend checking it out. There are only a few performances left, but an additional matinee was just added for next Saturday. If you still need convincing, go look at the pretty, pretty pictures excerpted from the program, shot by Kyle Cassidy, here.

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