Blending Steampunk and Paranormal Romance
There’s something inherently fascinating about bringing two distinctive things together to create something new. Take Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. Chocolate, perfect in its own right and deserving of a food group all its own. Peanut butter, the staple of probably more than half of the school kid lunches in America on every given day. Both all on their own fantastic, but when put together, well, the angels sing.
That’s what blending steampunk and paranormal romance is for me as a writer, and it’s why I wove them both into THE HUNTER. I love both as their own thing, but when merged into one story, it’s simply irresistible. It also makes my steampunk world a little different bend than most. Yes, of course there are the wonders of science, the mad genius, the spirit of adventure, but there’s also a darkly mystical side to my world. My heroes in the Legend Chronicles, three brothers named after their father’s favorite guns, are supernatural hunters in the Wild Weird West.
Winchester, Remington and Colt have been trained to hunt down and destroy the Darkin that threaten humanity. So while regular people go about their daily lives, these guys don’t bat an eye-lash when it comes to fighting down demons, slay shape-shifters, battling hell-hounds or going up against ghosts. They just do it with some fantastical steampunk help, such as Colt’s clockwork horse, Tempus, Sting Shooters (that are steampunk, Tesla-coil-powered tasers) and the specially designed Darkin-killing bullets perfected by their inventor friend Marley Turlock. They know that while ordinary people might not see the ending of the world coming, they are the first, last and only defense in making sure humanity survives.
Part of what I love about steampunk is the essence that anything was possible if you were just curious, adventurous or determined enough to make it happen. It’s accepting that we can be more, do more, than we ever thought possible by reimagining the past as it could have happened. I love the clothing, the elegance and intricacy that was part of the Gilded Age. I’ve a bit of a Victoriana nut with a strong love of tea, and I’m a maker in my own right. I sew, design, paint, and can my own home-grown fruits, veggies, sauces and soups, when I’m not out tackling my herb garden. For me steampunk is like the peanut butter. It’s gritty, it’s brown, it’s got a specific flavor you won’t find anywhere else and you know it when you taste it.
With paranormal romance, I’m just as fascinated by the things we can’t see that still influence us. Most of my writing tends to take a paranormal path, likely because when I was little my mother did things like pretend we had elves in the tree stump in the back yard. They even talked under my window one night—which I later found out in my 20s was due to a tape-recorder. She made my brother and I believe in the magic all around us and I still have that rose-colored tint to how I look at the world today. But if there’s one thing about the paranormal I’ve learned, it’s that there’s balance. Dark must have light to survive and vice versa. And with paranormal romance, the ending is always sweetly satisfying. You know the good guys win and that love can conquer all. Paranormal romance is like chocolate. It’s dark, it’s varied, the subtle changes and flavors are nearly endless and when done right it can be an experience you can’t get enough of.
So when it comes to blending steampunk and paranormal romance, it’s not just about the fantastic inventions or goggles, nor is it about the balancing act between the dark and light forces of the paranormal world and the power of love. It’s a bit of both, blended together to create a flavor of fiction that’s something familiar but also completely different. That’s what I’ve tried to accomplish in my Legend Chronicles series, but you may have to taste it yourself to find out.
About the Legend Chronicles
The HunterLegend Chronicles 1
Zebra, November 1, 2011
Mass Market Paperback, 352 pages
They’re the Chosen—Winchester, Remington and Colt—brothers trained to hunt down supernatural beings using the latest steam-powered gadgetry. It’s a hard legacy to shoulder, and it’s about to get a lot more dangerous…
A Devil Of A Job
Colt Jackson has gotten his name on many a wanted poster with success in the family business: hunting supernaturals across the frontier. Lately, though, there’s a sulfur stink in the wind and the Darkin population is exploding. A rift in the worlds is appearing. To close it, Colt will have to do the unthinkable and work with a demon to pass arcane boundaries no human alone can cross.
Except when he summons his demon, he doesn’t get some horned monstrosity: he gets a curvy redheaded succubus named Lilly, who’s willing to make a bargain to become human again. He also gets Lilly’s secret expertise on the machinations on the dark side of the rift. And her charm and cleverness help to get them out of what his silver-loaded pistol and mechanical horse can’t. Of course, when all hell breaks loose, he might have to sacrifice his soul. But what’s adventure without a little risk?
In 2005 she was selected as one of eleven finalists for the American Title II contest, the American Idol of books. She is married to the first man she ever went on a real date with (to their high school prom), who she knew was hero material when he suffered through having to let her parents drive, and her brother sit between them in the backseat of the car. They currently live in a Victorian house on a mini farm in the Pacific Northwest with their two children, three cats, an old chestnut Arabian gelding, an energetic mini-Aussie shepherd puppy, several rabbits, a dozen chickens and an out-of-control herb garden.
You can find her online on Twitter, Facebook, at her Website or blogging with the other Lolitas of STEAMED!
What: One commenter will win a Mass Market Paperback copy of The Hunter (Legend Chronicles 1) from The Qwillery.
How: Leave a comment answering the following question:
Paranormal Romance, Steampunk Romance, or any kind of Romance?
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Who and When: The contest is open to all humans on the planet earth with a mailing address. Contest ends at 11:59pm US Eastern Time on Friday, November 18, 2011. Void where prohibited by law. You must be 18 years old or older to enter.
*Giveaway rules are subject to change.*