Steaming with Ciara Knight

Weighted by Ciara KnightI grew up in a world filled with flying machines, cogs and wheels, and corsets. Unfortunately no one else saw it. Teachers told me I had trouble focusing, but they just didn’t understand that my world was much more fascinating than the math equations on the board.

When I learned to read I devoured science fiction, but the worlds never fit into the one I’d created in my head. It wasn’t until September 2002 that I found something close to my alternate reality. Firefly was a little known show on the Sci-Fi network set in a war-torn world with corsets, horses, and cool bronze airships. It wasn’t exactly what I had envisioned, but I fell completely in love with this space opera.

During the first run of Firefly I started researching punk styles and didn’t stop. I’ve gone to DragonCon, read lots of books, and even dressed up in some Steampunk attire myself. Yes, I connect with my inner geek. 🙂

In 2012, I decided to write my first punk style book based on a future war-torn Earth where Slags (people altered with medal appendages) verse Neumarians (people with gifts). Add to it royal clothes, slave collars, and airships and you’ve got The Neumarian Chronicles.

What does Steampunk mean to you?

To me, Steampunk is a subgenre of science fiction based on stories set in the industrialized Western Civilization during the19th century’s Victorian era, or an American western style, or post-apocalyptic future in a fantasy setting that employs steam power.

What is your favorite thing about steampunk or writing about steampunk?

Being a huge fan of world building, Steampunk opens up so many possibilities.  I’m not a Steampunk purist, so I tend to bend the boundaries and stretch into other punk elements.

What is your favorite steampunk accessory?

While I was attending a reader’s conference in Alabama, I discovered this cool old gun in an eclectic little shop. It looks so authentic, and even makes noise when you shoot. Yep, I’m a total geek. 🙂

What turned you on to steampunk?

I loved Steampunk before I ever knew what it was called. Firefly, although not classified as Steampunk, was the one show that drove me to investigate the genre more. You’ll find many Firefly style influences in The Neumarian Chronicles.

Do you have any upcoming Steampunk stories you can tell us about?

Escapement, book one of The Neumarian Chronicles, is being released next month. This is the book of my heart. You’ll discover a post-apocalyptic society full of punk elements.

Here is the official blurb?

Ten years after the great war of 2185 the queen’s reign is threatened by uprisings and fear. In celebration of my sixteenth birthday it is my duty as princess to sacrifice a slave to be initiated into the ruling council, solidifying my mother’s empire. When my own erratic powers surface I’m captured and tried for treason. Slaves hate me, my mother wants me executed, and my only chance of survival rests in the hands of a young man, Ryder Arteres, whose sister I sentenced to death.

Who is your favorite character of all from one of your Steampunk stories?

That is a tough question. Of course, my hero and heroine, but if I dig deeper into secondary characters, I’d have to say Bendar. He was so much fun to write with his unique speech patterns and his touching relationship with the heroine, Semara. He is one of those characters that appear superficial in the beginning, but then you discover how pivotal he is to the story. I love twists!

What’s the hardest thing about creating a Steampunk universe?

I think the toughest thing is to make sure all the laws of your world stay true. Power and technology should match the resources of the world.

What’s the easiest thing about creating a Steampunk universe?

The ability to create and twist gadgets to fit the world the author has created.

What does steampunk allow you to do as a writer that no other genres can?

Show characterization through the utilization of unique gadgets. The reaction of the characters to fantastical elements provides unique circumstances for character development.

What are the challenges and advantages to writing a steampunk story?

If you want a pure Steampunk, it can be tough not to sound repetitive. I like stories that are either pure and work, or merge into other punk genres.

How much research does it take and how much imagination?

In the case of The Neumarian Chronicles, which is based in a post-war setting, I actually consulted an aerospace engineer, natural resources professor, and did countless hours of online research. In the end, I know more than I’ll ever need to about the theoretical use of nuclear and steam power. My main concern was to match power resources with what would be left after a world war.

PRIZE ALERT: Ciara is giving away 2 eBook copies of Weighted (prequel novella to The Neumarian Chronicles) and one free advanced reader copy of Escapement, Book I of The Neumarian Chronicles. (It will be available in early Feb).  All you have to do is post a comment below1

WINNERS:

Rachel V – E-copy of Weighted
Mary M – e-book of Weighted
Sudah won the e-book ARC of Escapement

  1. Liz S January 21, 2013

    Enjoyed your interview very much. Your story looks interesting. I’ll have to check it out.

    0 Likes

    • Ciara Knight January 21, 2013

      Thanks so much, Liz. I hope you enjoy Weighted, and Escapement on February 25th.

      0 Likes

  2. Mary M. January 21, 2013

    Browncoats Unite! I look forward to reading the Neumarian Chronicles.

    0 Likes

  3. RaonaidLuckwell January 21, 2013

    Since I finally read my third steampunk author… I’ve been noticing the complete uniqueness of each one’s world, how each one differs from one another, and the way the author represents it. Though I love listening to Abney Park to put a little “mood” music. LOL

    0 Likes

  4. Michael Vannoy January 21, 2013

    Sounds like a very interesting book. Can’t wait to read it.

    0 Likes

  5. bn100 January 21, 2013

    The research sounds fascinating.

    bn100candg(at)hotmail(dot)com

    0 Likes

  6. Jen M January 21, 2013

    I love finding new authors 🙂 Enjoyed your interview and blurb from your book sounds really interesting…reading a book is always a chance to experience an adventure in another world.

    0 Likes

    • Ciara Knight January 21, 2013

      Jen M, that is exactly why I love to read. There is nothing better than escaping to another reality. 🙂

      0 Likes

  7. Melissa Robitille January 21, 2013

    Sounds like an interesting book. I love reading books with solid world-building.

    0 Likes

    • Ciara Knight January 22, 2013

      World-building is my favorite aspect of writing.

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      • Melissa Robitille January 23, 2013

        Mine too – right now I’m working on a sci-fi series my best friend insists is space opera and an urban fantasy / mystery series. :c)

        0 Likes

  8. Shawna January 21, 2013

    Sounds great! Adding this to my TBR list!

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  9. Shawna January 21, 2013

    Oh! Already had it! Need to get to it! :p

    0 Likes

  10. Carol January 21, 2013

    It’s so interesting to find out what various authors research when they are setting up their steampunk novels. They are more different than I would have anticipated. You’re the first I’ve read who researched the capabilities of steam power.

    0 Likes

    • Ciara Knight January 22, 2013

      The one thing I wanted to be real in the book (theoretically) is the types of power utilized for the various machines. It is such an important post-war concern.

      0 Likes

  11. Rosemary K. January 21, 2013

    I loved H.G. Wells and Jules Verne when I was younger, Now we have Steampunk as a genre. I couldn’t be happier.

    0 Likes

    • Ciara Knight January 22, 2013

      Rosemary, it is so awesome. I loved H.G. Wells and Jules Verne, too. Hope you enjoy The Neumarian Chronicles.

      0 Likes

  12. […] Steampunk Coffeetime Romance […]

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  13. Michael Di Gesu January 22, 2013

    Hi, Ciara,

    I STILL LOVE your Weighted cover… How exciting to have a cool new story coming out next month. SO looking forward to reading it.

    I always enjoyed Steampunk, even before it was labeled. One of may all time favorite movies is YOUNG SHERLOCK HOLMES…. which has many of the treasured Steampunk elements.

    I am intrigued by this genre and I might just have to write a story in Steampunk. But I need to read more stories. Thankfully we have authors like you Ciara….

    All the best!

    0 Likes

    • Ciara Knight January 22, 2013

      I love great stories with Steampunk elements. I think the new Sherlock Holmes has a lot of them, too. Thanks so much for your kind words, Michael.

      0 Likes

  14. Sudha January 22, 2013

    I really enjoyed reading Weighted! I’m not a big fan and don’t like much steampunk, but I hope I like this! It seems so hard to write. I really want to read Escapement and hope I like the steampunk in in. I can’t wait to see Escapement’s cover!!!

    0 Likes

    • Ciara Knight January 22, 2013

      If you enjoyed Weighted, you should like Escapement. It is a continuing story, just from Semara’s perspective. 🙂

      0 Likes

  15. Sudha January 22, 2013

    Also when’s this giveaway end?

    0 Likes

  16. Southpaw January 23, 2013

    Ciara, you were right, this site is awesome! Love reading your interview too.

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  17. Dorothy January 23, 2013

    Liked your interview and I’ll be locking forward to reading your books.

    0 Likes

  18. Tina Christopher January 23, 2013

    Yay, Firefly!! Great interview;)

    0 Likes

  19. deniz January 23, 2013

    Great interview! I’m just starting to explore this genre myself…

    0 Likes

  20. Ciara Knight January 23, 2013

    Tina – Go Browncoats!!

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  21. Michael Offutt January 23, 2013

    I can’t wait for Escapement. I’ll probably be buying that one on day one.

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  22. Rachel V January 30, 2013

    I loved Weighted and I can’t wait for Escapement.

    0 Likes

  1. […] Steampunk Coffeetime Romance […]

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  2. Southpaw January 23, 2013

    Ciara, you were right, this site is awesome! Love reading your interview too.

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  3. Rachel V January 30, 2013

    I loved Weighted and I can’t wait for Escapement.

    0 Likes

  4. Liz S January 21, 2013

    Enjoyed your interview very much. Your story looks interesting. I’ll have to check it out.

    0 Likes

  5. Mary M. January 21, 2013

    Browncoats Unite! I look forward to reading the Neumarian Chronicles.

    0 Likes

  6. RaonaidLuckwell January 21, 2013

    Since I finally read my third steampunk author… I’ve been noticing the complete uniqueness of each one’s world, how each one differs from one another, and the way the author represents it. Though I love listening to Abney Park to put a little “mood” music. LOL

    0 Likes

  7. Michael Vannoy January 21, 2013

    Sounds like a very interesting book. Can’t wait to read it.

    0 Likes

  8. Ciara Knight January 21, 2013

    Thanks so much, Liz. I hope you enjoy Weighted, and Escapement on February 25th.

    0 Likes

  9. Ciara Knight January 21, 2013

    Yay, Browncoats!! I feel like we should have a secret handshake. 🙂

    0 Likes

  10. Ciara Knight January 21, 2013

    That is one thing I love about Steampunk, the worlds are so unique.

    0 Likes

  11. Ciara Knight January 21, 2013

    Yay, Michael. thanks for giving it a try.

    0 Likes

  12. bn100 January 21, 2013

    The research sounds fascinating.

    bn100candg(at)hotmail(dot)com

    0 Likes

  13. Jen M January 21, 2013

    I love finding new authors 🙂 Enjoyed your interview and blurb from your book sounds really interesting…reading a book is always a chance to experience an adventure in another world.

    0 Likes

  14. Ciara Knight January 21, 2013

    It was a fascinating process.

    0 Likes

  15. Ciara Knight January 21, 2013

    Jen M, that is exactly why I love to read. There is nothing better than escaping to another reality. 🙂

    0 Likes

  16. Melissa Robitille January 21, 2013

    Sounds like an interesting book. I love reading books with solid world-building.

    0 Likes

  17. Shawna January 21, 2013

    Sounds great! Adding this to my TBR list!

    0 Likes

  18. Shawna January 21, 2013

    Oh! Already had it! Need to get to it! :p

    0 Likes

  19. Carol January 21, 2013

    It’s so interesting to find out what various authors research when they are setting up their steampunk novels. They are more different than I would have anticipated. You’re the first I’ve read who researched the capabilities of steam power.

    0 Likes

  20. Rosemary K. January 21, 2013

    I loved H.G. Wells and Jules Verne when I was younger, Now we have Steampunk as a genre. I couldn’t be happier.

    0 Likes

  21. Ciara Knight January 22, 2013

    World-building is my favorite aspect of writing.

    0 Likes

  22. Ciara Knight January 22, 2013

    Yay! I look forward to your thoughts.

    0 Likes

  23. Ciara Knight January 22, 2013

    Thanks for your support. Let me know your thoughts when you are done.

    0 Likes

  24. Ciara Knight January 22, 2013

    The one thing I wanted to be real in the book (theoretically) is the types of power utilized for the various machines. It is such an important post-war concern.

    0 Likes

  25. Ciara Knight January 22, 2013

    Rosemary, it is so awesome. I loved H.G. Wells and Jules Verne, too. Hope you enjoy The Neumarian Chronicles.

    0 Likes

  26. Michael Di Gesu January 22, 2013

    Hi, Ciara,

    I STILL LOVE your Weighted cover… How exciting to have a cool new story coming out next month. SO looking forward to reading it.

    I always enjoyed Steampunk, even before it was labeled. One of may all time favorite movies is YOUNG SHERLOCK HOLMES…. which has many of the treasured Steampunk elements.

    I am intrigued by this genre and I might just have to write a story in Steampunk. But I need to read more stories. Thankfully we have authors like you Ciara….

    All the best!

    0 Likes

  27. Sudha January 22, 2013

    I really enjoyed reading Weighted! I’m not a big fan and don’t like much steampunk, but I hope I like this! It seems so hard to write. I really want to read Escapement and hope I like the steampunk in in. I can’t wait to see Escapement’s cover!!!

    0 Likes

  28. Sudha January 22, 2013

    Also when’s this giveaway end?

    0 Likes

  29. Ciara Knight January 22, 2013

    I love great stories with Steampunk elements. I think the new Sherlock Holmes has a lot of them, too. Thanks so much for your kind words, Michael.

    0 Likes

  30. Ciara Knight January 22, 2013

    If you enjoyed Weighted, you should like Escapement. It is a continuing story, just from Semara’s perspective. 🙂

    0 Likes

  31. Dorothy January 23, 2013

    Liked your interview and I’ll be locking forward to reading your books.

    0 Likes

  32. Tina Christopher January 23, 2013

    Yay, Firefly!! Great interview;)

    0 Likes

  33. deniz January 23, 2013

    Great interview! I’m just starting to explore this genre myself…

    0 Likes

  34. Ciara Knight January 23, 2013

    Glad you checked it out. It is cool! 🙂

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  35. Ciara Knight January 23, 2013

    Yay, good luck in the drawing. 🙂

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  36. Ciara Knight January 23, 2013

    Tina – Go Browncoats!!

    0 Likes

  37. Melissa Robitille January 23, 2013

    Mine too – right now I’m working on a sci-fi series my best friend insists is space opera and an urban fantasy / mystery series. :c)

    0 Likes

  38. Michael Offutt January 23, 2013

    I can’t wait for Escapement. I’ll probably be buying that one on day one.

    0 Likes

  39. Ciara Knight January 25, 2013

    You are so sweet, Micheal! I hope you enjoy it as much as Weighted!!

    0 Likes

  40. Ciara Knight February 4, 2013

    Thanks so much, Rachel. Twenty-one days until Escapement releases! 🙂

    0 Likes

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