Friday, December 4, 2009

Ask and Ye Shall Receive Part the Second

Yesterday I said I'd answer the questions remaining from Wednesday because I didn't want Part the First of these posts to be humongous. And today I come through on my promise.

From L.T.:

What inspired you to write steampunk? What do you like most about it?

The reason I decided to write steampunk is kind of simple. I say "kind of" because, well let's be honest, I'm a bit long winded.

When I first wrote SON OF MAGIC (the only finished MS I have worth looking at), I began adding certain elements like trains, steam carriages, and steam cannons that I'd seen in other fantasy stories and thought were interesting pieces of technology. The desire to write steampunk with all the accouterments came up when I was composing the first draft of CALLARION AT NIGHT (which was originally called MORIAH, CHILD OF THE ROWAN). I essentially decided "hey, I want to write something with more technology but not so advanced that it can be mistaken for urban fantasy. How about steampunk?"

What I like most about steampunk is that it allows me to play with the Victorian culture, something I like doing quite a bit. As scott g.f. bailey said in a comment at The Literary Lab, "AI is boring, but AI powered by a coal-burning engine and programmed by Edwardian gentlemen who drink brandy with Jules Verne? That's cool."

And yeah, I heartily agree.

Do you like hazelnuts?

Yes, yes I do. But not as much as cashews. Mmm ... cashews.

From Adam:

* How far along is Callarion at Night? How long have you been working on it?

CALLARION AT NIGHT is currently midway through Chapter 18. I'm having some issues working on that particular chapter though, which is tremendously bothersome. I've been working on it for (looking at a calendar now) eight months now. That's counting writing 21 chapters of an original draft, scrapping them, restarting it with 5 new chapters, scrapping those, and restarting it in the current incarnation. Also including a few weeks where I only wrote freelance articles, the period where I got married/went on honeymoon, and several busy earnings times.

* Is CaN your first novel-sized writing? What other fiction have you written, if any?

The original version of SON OF MAGIC (a book called ROSEFIRE) was my first novel-length fiction. ROSEFIRE's absolutely painful to read now. As for other fiction, I have a lengthy paranormal short story called EMERALD MIDNIGHT and an abortive flash fiction attempt called DEAL WITH A DEVIL.

* What are you thinking about writing next (if at all)?

A steampunk alternate history of the Final War of the Roman Republic, which is tentatively titled FUMO IRACUNDIA AEGYPTUM (translates to THE STEAM FURY OF EGYPT).

* Favorite book? Favorite video game?

I have several favorite books, so that's a difficult question to answer because it depends on genre. For example: my favorite Dean Koontz story is WATCHERS, I love everything that comes from Terry Pratchett's brilliance, and my favorite Stephen King novels are the Dark Tower series. See my problem?

My all-time favorite video game has to be Super Mario Bros. There's no competition for that game's place in my heart. Heck, it's the reason this blog is named what it is.

* Ninjas or pirates? (Yes, that question).

Ooo ... well ninjas are silent but deadly, so they have that going for them. But pirates have the whole ocean-going thing going for them. And they have cannons.

I propose a middle way -- the Ninja Pirate!

This was a lot of fun, folks. So much so that I'm probably going to repeat it when I get to 100 posts. Well, so long as I get more entertaining questions from my loyal readers.


Adam Heine said...

Cool. Thanks for doing this. Reading these answers has been very interesting.

And yes, Terry Pratchett is awesome.

Stephanie Thornton said...

Is it bad that I didn't know the title of your blog was a Super Mario Reference? Now I totally get it!

My dad owned an arcade when I was growing up so I was big into video games and pinball, but I have to say, Super Mario Brothers is one of the best. The only other game I'd put above it is Zelda. I love Zelda.

Joshua McCune said...

I hate getting stuck in a chapter -- you've got all this momentum and then ,Emeril Lagasse style, Bam! -- hello, wall.

Super Mario Bros was great -- I still remember playing #3 at my neighbor's and loving it when I could eat that leaf and fly (but now I'm wondering if that was a subliminal drug message).

L. T. Host said...

I miss SMB-- all the magic seems to have gone out of it for me. But I haven't tried playing the newer ones, to be fair. But I'm not a strong video game player, anyway.

And yay! So glad you like hazelnuts!

Also: can't wait to hear more about the new project :)

Matthew Delman said...

Adam --

Going Postal and Making Money are easily two of my favorites in his Discworld series.

Stephanie --

That's OK. I kept the title as a purposely vague reference.

Confession time: I've never played Legend of Zelda. Ever.

Bane --

I know right? Everything's flowing, flowing, flowing and then you get a giant whoopee pie on the windshield and you have to stop. So annoying.

Well the Japanese are a very interesting people. Who knows? It might be something to do with the reefer.

Matthew Delman said...

L.T. --

Once I finish critting MSes and the first draft of CaN, then you'll end up hearing more about FIA. Scout's Honor.

Oh yeah ... did I mention I actually was a Boy Scout?

Susan R. Mills said...

The ninja pirate sounds awesome. Please write about one. Please.

Adam Heine said...

I like Moist von Lipwig's stories as well, but I think my favorites are the City Watch stories. Like all of them.

You've never played Zelda? ?? ? If you get a chance, pick up any recent Zelda game, pretty much on any system. With the exception of Zelda II, they all follow the same basic, super-awesome formula.

Gary Corby said...

I think you may be my long lost brother. I adore cashews.