Every few years, readers are inundated with new writers or old writers who blossomed at the right moment and are on trend. Just like clothing, food habits and exercise, writing has trends. A few years ago it was vampires who sparkled in the sun along with werewolves and the women who loved them. This is to not discount the holes in our everyday existence which allow the Fae and Faepeople to slip into our dimension, mate with our women, and create hybrids.
I have seen everything from werecats, to weregators and even alternative love among werepeople. I kid you not, it is currently ranked at number 16 among gay romance. But like all trends, you have to understand the genre in order to get ahead of the curve. The newest curve ball that is growing fast is steampunk.
What is this, you ask. I am going to give you the Urban dictionary definition, because to me, it is what is more closely related to this up and coming trend.
Steampunk is a subgenre of speculative fiction, usually set in an anachronistic Victorian or quasi-Victorian alternate history setting. It could be described by the slogan “What the past would look like if the future had happened sooner.” It includes fiction with science fiction, fantasy or horror themes.
There are different types of steampunk.
Medieval Steampunk: Speculative fiction set during the Middle Ages.
Victorian Steampunk: A modern Science Fiction work (post-1930s) that is set in the early parts of the industrial revolution.
Western Steampunk: Science fiction set in the American Old West.
Industrial/Modern Steampunk: Science fiction taking place in the late industrial age, early modern age; i.e. World War 1, World War 2
Examples of steampunk:
Wild Wild West
Final Fantasy 7
The Time Machine
Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow
One of the drawbacks to writing on trend, is that when many see a pattern developing, they jump on board and try their hand. It doesn’t work for everyone, but here is how to make developing subgenres work in your favor.
First, start with a short story treatment of 12 to 15,000 words. Purchase or have someone make you a kick ass ebook cover that represents “EXACTLY” what the book is about. DO the research! Understand the clothing and overkill on your adjectives to ensure you are painting the write picture. Now, write a rocking story with a credible plot. Call your friends over, and hash out what if scenarios. Now get the finished product to a proofreader or an editor.
Publish. Wait two months and read the reviews.
If you are on point, your readers will let you know.
If you are not, then maybe, you can try the next up and coming trend, Cosplay.
- YA 101: Steampunk (jennykellerford.wordpress.com)
- Why don’t we see more ‘Alternate’ Steampunk? (danielottalini.com)
- Steampunk Is Awesome (cszinegh.wordpress.com)
- New Zealander creates steampunk jewellery from junk (steampunkjournal.org)
- City’s tourism holds steampunk photo shoot (steampunkjournal.org)
- Two major new trends in Costuming and Cosplay – Homestuck and Steampunk Robots (Photos) (examiner.com)
- Roses and Vellum: Steampunk 1.02 (gnostalgia.wordpress.com)