In early 2011, I made a life changing decision. Even though I wasn’t retirement age, the attraction of the world of full time work and a career in education had lost its appeal and I decided to spend some quality time at home doing the things I wanted to do!
I have always had stories in my head, but had only written a little novella when I was eleven years old and a short story when I joined a local writer’s group about twenty years ago. I had been an avid reader across many genres, including romance, as well as spending many years creating dry and dusty submissions for school funding.
Last Easter, I decided to enter the Romance Writers Australia Valerie Parv Award competition and excitedly wrote the first three chapters of my virgin foray into the world of romance.
I was delighted when I received some wonderful feedback, however those first three chapters sat on my desk until the 50k in 30 days sprint a couple of months later, while I wrote a little Steampunk novella which was my first submission to a publisher. I had seen a competition call and until that time I had never heard of steampunk.
So I did some research and discovered the wonderful world of Steampunk. Oh what bliss…my love of history and my vivid imagination allowed to combine in writing stories about sassy heroines and sexy heros! What more could a writer ask for?
So I entered the competition, but alas to no avail.
However I did then submit the story to five publishers and …wait for it… was offered four contracts within a week!
Winter of the Passion Flower was published in March 2012. The sequel – Summer of the Moon Flower -21st December 2012 and two further steampunk stories are planned for release in2013.
What does Steampunk mean to you?
Steampunk is warm, sassy and larger than life. The new direction of steampunk + romance and a historical setting allows a steampunk author to play with familiar settings and time periods. Steampunk romance has the potential to offer something familiar, yet different. Authors can stretch their creative wings. Sassy heroines can stretch the Victorian dress codes and sexual limitations…
What is your favorite thing about steampunk or writing about steampunk?
The creative license it gives me and my sassy heroines!
What is your favorite steampunk accessory?
My directional perambulator!
What turned you on to steampunk
My love of history and research and I just stumbled upon it one day
Do you have any upcoming Steampunk stories you can tell us about?
Summer of the Moon Flower will be released on 21 December
Viennese couturier versus the Knights Templar in a quest for immortality…
Sofia de Vargas continues the quest of the the de Vargas family to find botanicals to improve the human condition. Her research into the properties of the alpine moon flower to produce an elixir of immortality results in a fight for her life.
Is Dougal, Earl of Cumbrae who imprisons her on his isolated Scottish island, her sworn enemy…or her saviour?
Who is your favorite character of all from one of your Steampunk stories?
Dougal, Earl of Cumbrae is a good and righteous man…and extremely sexy!
What’s the hardest thing about creating a Steampunk universe?
Nothing… I love it all. Perhaps the time to undertake the research. I keep my historical facts as accurate as I can…and many more
What’s the easiest thing about creating a Steampunk universe?
I love dreaming up alternate devices.. directional perambulators, Astrolaberors for time travel
What does steampunk allow you to do as a writer that no other genres can?
Freedom.. no formulaic writing!
What are the challenges and advantages to writing a steampunk story?
Challenges are to keep it fresh and new. Advantages-being able to create my own new worlds.
How much research does it take and how much imagination.
80 percent imagination, 20 percent research!
Then back to my contemporary romance I madly wrote at night in the sprint room of the Australian Romance Writers’ Association, and we raced together against the whip. I made some wonderful friends in the process and was delighted to meet them all at the conference in Melbourne in August, 2011.
Best of all I finished my whole romance novel!
Fast forward to Easter 2012. That contemporary romance Holiday Affair has culminated in the realization of a dream come true. Picked up by the amazing Entangled Publishing where I have my very own personal publicist, and then…
No 1 in the Amazon Kindle store for Hot New Releases and six months in best seller lists!
Follow your dreams… persevere… and your dreams will come true if you believe in yourself!
Check out Annie’s Steampunk books:
- Winter of the Passion Flower –out now
- Summer of the Moon Flower (Dec 21 2012)
Watch for these books in the future:
- Inventions, Alchemy and other Wicked Adventures –Book 3 of the de Vargas series (July 2013)
- Smugglers, Spring Blossoms and other Brass Things -Book 4 of the de Vargas series (December 2013)
PRIZE ALERT: I will give away an e-copy of my new release Summer of the Moon Flower
Just post a comment to be entered to win!