Took a while to wrestle it to the ground, but Phantom of the Louvre has been posted. All the other tales in the collection flow (some directly, some not so much) from this story. This is longish for a short, but the right length for this story. Be interested to hear what anyone else thinks.
The first iteration - May 2013 - vexed me to no end. Over coffee the Mrs. asked 'what bug was up my nostril' (not exactly, but you get the idea). I told her I was floundering in the search to bridge 'searching the building' and 'finding the interlopers'. Without a pause, she brightly suggested I add an orange cat, cause they fix everything. Worked like a hot damn. Had fun finishing it - and hey, there are airships and orange cats…
What a rush!
Over the last six weeks, [CORRECTION: SWMBO says it's a good thing I wasn't an accountant - "last ten weeks"] I've posted nine shorts - NOT written, just final edits and posting. For at least a couple, iterations dating to 2013 are on the hard drive. Most were in near-final form by 2015.
So, what's the feeling? What's the rush?
The reason I write is to tell the stories that keep bubbling out of my imagination. I don't expect to ever make a dime from them, but I get to TELL them. Frankly, a telling isn't completed until someone hears/reads it. I am grateful that "scifistories.com" exists as a place for the reading part to happen - thanks Lazeez.
After sitting on them for years, these stories are seeing the light of day. And that is a rush, at least for me. There is still a couple dozen to finalize and move forward. After that, who knows. But for now, I'll just sit back and enjoy both the feeling and the rush.
Crowbar's 1970 release hit the big times in '71, the year they finally threw me out of high school. And the song is still right on. Funny that the grandkids don't connect the skinny radical with wire-rims and wild hair to the pudgy old gramps who patiently takes them to test (fifth time lucky for one of them) for their learner's. If they only knew …
So, I've set up this series to organize the current run of steampunk shorts. While some are directly related to another story, reading order is not critical. That PL## jazz is just the order they would have had in a published collection.
Too bad I can not figure how to include the cover for the set - a lot of work (and fun!) went into putting it together.
Anyway, I will try for weekly releases of these stories. Hope you enjoy them. hhj
The Flight of the Wicked Flea has been posted. It is the second of twelve stories with a common background. Many will end up here in the next few months. Anyone have thoughts on the value of setting up a universe for them?
These steamer stories are denser than my later writings, and may take some patience to read. Happy to answer questions or provide more info on stories or the world-building that supports them.
Like many, my first exposure to the possibilites in a radical reshaping of the past was "The Difference Engine". My long time goal of writing science fiction turned to telling steampunk tales. Eventually I did.
Most of my complete and near-complete stories are 5-8k words, dense, sometimes over-detailed, and too often home to trivia only a history geek might smile at. These tend to be a grittier than the gaslight stories that rather crowded the market in days past.
Many have suggested that steampunk has had its day. Disagree? Interested in me posting a few? Two things: readers will need to invest some effort and patience in consuming the stories; and I will need some sort of feedback (more in depth than "good story", please. Voting will not be switched on). So, whatcha think?