Why Steampunk is the Little Black Dress of Speculative Fiction

Steampunk is a weird, niche little genre, when you think about it. Merriam-Webster defines it as “science fiction dealing with 19th-century societies dominated by historical or imagined steam-powered technology.”

That’s pretty darn specific. It’s not like the post-apocalyptic subgenre restricts its stories to the 23rd century, or space opera specifies the power source that spaceships have to use.

The boundaries of steampunk seem pretty restrictive at first glance, so it’s not surprising many authors bend and break the rules. Steampunk has branched out and evolved as creators and fans innovate, which brings me to the strength of the genre:

Steampunk goes well with anything. Continue reading Why Steampunk is the Little Black Dress of Speculative Fiction

The Ghost Machine is live! (Again)

Haven’t felt a chill run up your spine in a while? Missing the ghostly whispers in your ear? Is there a lack of menacing metal automatons in your life?

The Ghost Machine hasn’t been for sale over the past few months as Silver Empire Publishing prepared it for a grand re-release, and release day is today, my friends! The Ghost Machine is back online, ready to give you haunted castles, airship battles, and a heroine solving mysteries while wearing a frilly Victorian nightgown (as gothic heroines do).

If you’ve already read it, this new release doesn’t have any changes to the actual content. But if you’re curious or are one of the readers who’ve emailed me about why it’s not available for purchase, now’s your chance to download a copy for your Kindle or Kindle App. Continue reading The Ghost Machine is live! (Again)

Where are my steampunk books?

My apologies if you’ve clicked the link to buy The Ghost Machine or Clockmaker recently and found that the books have vanished from Amazon. They’re unavailable at the moment–but don’t worry, they’re not gone for good.

They’ve been picked up by a publishing company and are getting ready to be republished–yay!! I’m thrilled that they’re getting a second chance and a bigger opportunity to reach new readers. As they move closer their re-release dates, you’ll hear the news here first, and if you’re waiting to buy them, thank you in advance for your patience!

Favorite Book Quote Art

I’ve posted before about how I love making book aesthetics, but if you follow me on Twitter, you know I’ve also got a thing for throwing together images with quotes from my novels. #BookQW (Book Quote Wednesday) is my favorite hashtag. Authors posts quotes from their books based on a weekly prompt, and it’s cool to see snippets from novels and novellas of all different genres.

I’ve been doing it for a while now and have made dozens of images, some of them better than others. Here’s a roundup of my personal favorites. Continue reading Favorite Book Quote Art

7 Favorite Book Aesthetics

I’ve become a little obsessed with book aesthetics.

You may have noticed this already if you follow me on Twitter, where I’m all over #ThursdayAesthetic every week. If you’ve never checked out that hashtag, you really should. It’s full of gorgeous imagery, and I’m blown away by the talent of the author community. Every week, one of the hosts announces a theme, and writers create an aesthetic based on it for their books.

I’m not that good at it, but I don’t let that stop me. 😉 Practice makes perfect, and I like to think I get better every week. Either way, I have a lot of fun, and I want to share some of my favorites that I’ve made so far. Continue reading 7 Favorite Book Aesthetics

Creating a Book Cover: The Ghost Machine

A good cover alone doesn’t make a good book.

I’d wager there are plenty of books out there with gorgeous covers that were quickly forgotten because the story inside didn’t live up to the captivating image on the front. But on the flip side, amazing stories go overlooked everyday because the cover is ugly or bland.

A cover has a critical job: to get readers to pick up the book.

As an indie author, I have complete control over my covers. This is great, because I won’t end up in one of those situations where the publisher chooses an inaccurate or just plain bad cover, and the author can’t do anything about it. This is also terrible, because I’m a writer, not a designer or marketer, and I don’t always know what type of cover will sell best. And I pay for the cover up front, so if the book doesn’t sell, I don’t get that money back.

What I’m trying to say is this: trying to figure out the best cover for your book can be… stressful. Continue reading Creating a Book Cover: The Ghost Machine

Book Review: Cold Stone & Ivy

You know that feeling when you finish reading a certain book? When you just have to tell everybody how awesome and amazing it was? You’re a reader, so you know what I mean

I finished Cold Stone & Ivy: The Ghost Club by H. Leighton Dickson a little while ago. I was in a bit of a reading slump beforehand, and boy, did this novel shake me out of it. Take a look:

Cold Stone and Ivy Cover

Book Description

Jack the Ripper gave her his heart. Now he wants it back.

The year is 1888, the clockwork British Empire is crumbling and young writer Ivy Savage has literally received a heart in the post. Terrified, her father sends her north to a strange sanitarium in Lancashire where the brilliant but unpredictable “Mad Lord of Lasingstoke” makes his home. Continue reading Book Review: Cold Stone & Ivy