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Posts Tagged ‘Steampunk’

DUCK AND COVER!!!!

In Uncategorized on September 16, 2012 at 5:48 pm

We’ve got a cover….

What do you think? I think it’s SOOOO spunky!

And the Steamduck RISES!

In Uncategorized on June 27, 2012 at 2:23 pm

Kevin and I have been working hard. Plotting, planning, rhyming, drawing…. We have a frame for a new Coal City Stories book, and the plan is good. Take a look:

I know. Kevin does FANTASTIC work. So charming.  He really sold me on that ice cream parlor font. Before I get all into what’s coming next, I want to take a second and thank ALL the folks – and especially the kids – who have made HME such a success. Now, before the media swarm…. Here’s today’s announcement press release:

Press release June 27th 2012

Author Emilie P. Bush and illustrator William Kevin Petty are proud to announce the release date of the follow up to their bestselling children’s book Her Majesty’s Explorer: a Steampunk bedtime story.  On October 10, 2012, the waddling hero of HME – Steamduck – returns with another adventure in Steamduck Learns to Fly! 

 In this new tale, the plucky mechanical duck discovers that REAL birds do more than swim. He turns to his old friend and maker – the Otter – to learn a few things about flying. They try and fail with propeller contraptions, hot air balloons and more. Despite all the mishaps, the pair eventually defy gravity and take to the sky.

“With the success of Her Majesty’s Explorer, we thought long and hard about where we wanted to go with our darling characters. Steamduck has quite a following, and we wanted to make sure he was true to his heroic nature. Kevin is a pilot, and a huge fan of flight history, so we went with those ideas for our second Steamduck story,” says Emilie P. Bush.  “So, as he tries and fails with many different types of flight, he never gives up, and he never stops learning.”

Fans wanting to keep up with details and sneak peek images from Steamduck Learns to Fly! can follow the project on Facebook – as Steamduck has his own fan page. http://www.facebook.com/pages/Steamduck/108061409309296

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Working through the stoopidest rhyme scheme ever….

In Uncategorized on March 13, 2012 at 10:37 pm

As a writer, especially one who deals in fanciful worlds, one has to make rules for their universe and then STICK WITH THEM.

I find, most of the time, that it works out better that way, you have to get more creative than usual to keep up with the limitations of your world. Chenda’s world has no radios – so communication is often slow and a bitch. My rule and I had to live inside them.

Children’s books go the same way. Kevin and I have a bit of a loose rule for stories that no one can solve the hero’s problem for him. He’s got to save himself – more or less. It’s a good rule; kids can connect to that. It’s better if the hero grows and learns that he had it in him all along to do what must be done. And then I was stoopid, STOOPID, StOoPid and added a CRAZY rhyme scheme with the latest one I am writing.

14 line stanzas: the internal rhyming for lines 1 and 2, double internal rhyming in the first half of lines 3-14 with rhyming end couplets.

For example:

Opening lines -

What the world knows of mechanical ducks is they paddle through streams and in lakes.

And the waddling tales of mechanical ducks are for splashing while trailing through wakes.

Pattern for other lines:

First they inspected  through parts disconnected until they found just the right things:

flaps and a motor, two skids and a rotor, a scoop of cogs, sprockets and rings.

Uh, huh. That’s rough, but since I’m 3/4ths done, I guess I am stuck with it.

She sat all alone as her brains turned to stone and the rhymes dribbled out of her ears.

Hope Kevin can sketch, as my marbles I fetch, Oh, these rhymes are a pain in the rear.

The Last Day…. We LAUNCH at Dawn!

In Uncategorized on February 28, 2012 at 12:15 am

Tuesday – We Launch.

I’m asking you all to help us.  Kevin and I are hoping to make this book an Amazon Bestseller tomorrow. We think we can do it, with help from our friends and ALL of the Steampunk Community. If you fancy our little mechanical man and his trusty bathtub ducky, show your support. Buy it from Amazon, tweet to your friends, maybe change your Facebook picture to Steamduck, help us get the word out in any way possible. It’s a great story, and if we can generate just a little bit of solid buzz right off the bat, we will be set. Like Mary Poppins said, “Well begun is half done!”

So let’s begin….

THE LINK TO AMAZON:  http://www.amazon.com/Her-Majestys-Explorer-Steampunk-bedtime/dp/0984902805/

… and Kevin and I thank you.

Feel free to use either of these images on your Facebook page, or as any avitar that is yours to play with:

Thanks for your support

Her Majesty's Explorer - COVER

Here are the links you might want to share:

The Launch Page:  http://www.facebook.com/events/347525985265865/

The Her Majesty’s Explorer Facebook Page: http://www.facebook.com/HerMajestysExplorer

The blog: http://coalcitysteam.wordpress.com/

The Video Book trailer: http://youtu.be/kHb3Wpe3F2o

The Tease Read by Captain Robert of Abney Park: http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=2931604900935

Chenda and the Airship Brofman: http://www.amazon.com/Chenda-Airship-Brofman-Emilie-Bush/dp/1449542549

The Gospel According to Verdu : http://www.amazon.com/Gospel-According-Verdu-Book-Brofman/dp/1461026466/

AMAZON UK Kindle link: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Her-Majestys-Explorer-Steampunk-ebook/dp/B007AV8LVC/

AMAZON GERMANY Kindle Link: http://www.amazon.de/Her-Majestys-Explorer-Steampunk-ebook/dp/B007AV8LVC/

Amazon Italy Kindle edition: http://www.amazon.it/Her-Majestys-Explorer-Steampunk-ebook/dp/B007AV8LVC/

Amazon France Kindle Edition: http://www.amazon.fr/Her-Majestys-Explorer-Steampunk-ebook/dp/B007AV8LVC/

6-days to LAUNCH! Where I recognize those who have supported my struggle…

In Uncategorized on February 22, 2012 at 4:44 pm

People tell me Will Smith said this, but I don’t know for sure. Frankly, it doesn’t matter.  What does matter is that I sure as shootin’ believe it.  And I remember… I remember every little thing as if it happened only yesterday…. (Sing it, Brother MEAT!).

So now, in a moment of calm, the moments before the rush and rage of the upcoming convention, the whirl of what I hope will be the BEST launch of a Steampunk children’s book ever, I want to remember the people who have ALWAYS been in the struggle with me, and especially because they believed in me and my Steampunk writing. You can see the H.M.E. BLURBS down below, and I will remember those who gave a bit of their time to blurb or review…. I will never forget.

But first: Tony, baby. Love you. Trish, my muse of all work. Mom. Dad. Librarians both. Thanks for having STACKS of books and magazines  around. All. Over. The place. William Kevin Petty for having the talent of an artist with the mentality of a soldier. Theresa Curtis – THE BOMB DIGITY and in a hurry, too. YOU got the job done. Bambi and Sam, who take the kids off my hands so I can get some things done. Phil, for thinking MYLAR, not CLUNKER. The Gang at Three Blind Mice – who let me park my butt at the bar and write for hours on end, and expecially to C.J. who had the coffee waiting for me even before I stepped through the door and kept it hot and full. Priceless. Dan Dougherty, I can no longer live without your counsel, especially about being Amazonian; Dan Carroll: same. Our biggest fan – Penelope Dreadfulle. Kev’s mom for catching and pitching the packages. Barry Reese – who STILL does original cataloging. David Tyburg and Alexander Stadler of The Extraordinary Contraptions. Valentine Wolfe. Al Gore for inventing the internet. Broad Universe for being the best decision I ever made as a writer. Kathryn Hinds and Arthur, too. Patti – who came back from the dead. V. Q. Talloolah . Bill-Bill.Fett. SPC. Gretchen. Jah. Diana. OM Grey, Airship Archon. Kevin Steil and Airship Embassy. Captain Robert. Parliament & Wake. The Steampunk societies in Portland, Seattle, New York, Louisiana, Kansas City, Chicago, and throughout the interwebs.  I will never forget.

A special Thanks YOU! to Cindy MacLeod and William, who have ALWAYS given me the feeling that I am Queen of the Steam-geeks from the day they met me. I will never forget.

The eternal backers who have supported me all along: The Texas, Ohio, Oklahoma, Mississippi families. Christy Seelye-King, Bragg MacMorrichai, Baron Karl, Barbara Barth and the rest of the Gwinnett County Writers Guild, Chris Horne and the Crossroads Writers Conference, Kora, Rachael, Doreen, Aloysius, Christine, Eric, Whisper, Amy, Whitney, Jeri, Darrin, Jessica, Laura, Lynn, Anthony, Roger, Tracy, Mike, Kate, Beth, Jason, Katrina, Bridie, Missy, Hal, Lori, Rhonda, Austin, Pam, Rocky, Zoe, Heather, Mary, Ashley, Neil, Matt, Hugh, Paige, Sarah and so many more that I just don’t have time to type.  I will never forget.

Finally, thanks to those who took the time to review and blurb:

 “The illustrations are adorable!”  ~ Beyond Victoriana Blog

“I did enjoy Steamduck.  A wonderful whimsical story so real you might feel a little seasick. But in a good way.” Jenny ~The Bloggess

“St John Murphy Alexander marches the young reader through the excitement of exploration and duty, and lulls us with the tender familiarity of a comforting bedtime routine. The story is curious and intrepid, yet ready to be tucked in for a good night’s sleep.” ~ Nancy Overbury, Overbury Ink.

“St. John Murphy Alexander, “Her Majesty’s Explorer,” is literature’s most charming mechanical man since L. Frank Baum’s Tin Man.” ~ Jim Barnes Independent Publisher Magazine.

“I just finished reading Her Majesty’s explorer to Chloe (9 years old) and Isabella (just 6). They both loved it, and both wished they could have their very own Steamduck.”  Captain Robert of Abney Park.

“Utterly charming” ~M.K. Hobson, Steampunk Novelist

“This is the perfect childhood book for steampunk parents to introduce their children to the steampunk subculture. I use that term loosely. Steampunk has managed to increasingly wedge its way into popular culture and this book drives that opening wider and opens it to the youngest of readers.” John Iwasz, ComicBooked.com

“My syn­apses have always fired for a bot in uni­form…” ~ S. J. Chambers, co-author of The Steampunk Bible

“Three cheers for Her Majesty’s Explorer!” ~ Leisel Hindmann, Steampunk Blogger

“A story that is sweet and dreamy-a perfect bedtime story and a great introduction for children to Steampunk.”  ~ Benito, Corral, Betwixt Book Reviews.

“Absolutely charming.  It is the Dr. Seuss of Steampunk, and… I LOVED it.” ~ DJ Doctor Q, The Artifice Club and The Steampunk Chronicle.

I will never forget what you all have done for me.

It’s like Tolkein said – and the SCA improved on –  I hear, and shall not forget that which is freely given – Fealty with love….” and maybe you know the rest.

THE LINKS:

The Launch Page:  http://www.facebook.com/events/347525985265865/

The Her Majesty’s Explorer Facebook Page: http://www.facebook.com/HerMajestysExplorer

The blog:http://coalcitysteam.wordpress.com/

The Video Book trailer: http://youtu.be/kHb3Wpe3F2o

The Tease Read by Captain Robert of Abney Park:http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=2931604900935

Countdown – 9 days to LAUNCH – Steamduck’s baby photos

In Uncategorized on February 19, 2012 at 1:27 pm

Awww... How adorable!

The last couple of days, we’ve been sharing our history – Kevin and I. We thought it only fair to share Steamduck’s history as well. Here is a rare baby picture of Steamduck. Enjoy! Tomorrow – Why Animal Butts are HILARIOUS.

Until tomorrow…

LINKS!!!!

The Launch Page:  http://www.facebook.com/events/347525985265865/

The Her Majesty’s Explorer Facebook Page: http://www.facebook.com/HerMajestysExplorer

The blog:http://coalcitysteam.wordpress.com/

The Video Book trailer: http://youtu.be/kHb3Wpe3F2o

The Tease Read by Captain Robert of Abney Park:http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=2931604900935

Chenda and the Airship Brofman: http://www.amazon.com/Chenda-Airship-Brofman-Emilie-Bush/dp/1449542549

The Gospel According to Verdu : http://www.amazon.com/Gospel-According-Verdu-Book-Brofman/dp/1461026466/

11 days to launch – The books of my childhood AND YOURS!

In Uncategorized on February 17, 2012 at 9:23 pm

Yesterday, in the day 12 countdown post, I commented about how I loved looking for The Gold Bug in Richard Scarry books. That got me to thinking about a questions I was asked this week in an interview:

What would you have loved about Her Majesty’s Explorer:  a Steampunk bedtime story if it had been given to you as a child?

Here’s what I said:

My first blush answer to this question was a glib, “My parents reading it to me.” That’s what kids love – their parent’s Big. Fat. Quantity time. But it’s more true than that. Kids love to have a part of what their parents do. I see a lot of people at conventions who HAVE kids, but leave them at home for any number of reasons (sometimes mommies need to get away, wear a corset and get their drink on, ya know? No mommy wants their kid to see THAT.) Like I said, there are some aspects of Steampunk that very small kids just won’t understand. BUT, there is a theory of development out there that says it is VITAL for kids to go play in their parents closets in order to become adults. They need to dress up in the hats and scarves, and in our case, goggles and boots, in order to LEARN to become adults. They play at being like their parents. That being said – I think the parents get as much out of sharing a Steampunk picture book with their kids as the children do. I’ve gotten several comments from reviewers who have said they shared it with a child (ones of their own, a niece / nephew, or the kids of friends) and were thrilled to finally be able to share this aspect of their lives in a way that the child could understand and get excited about. The kids REALLY feel that joy of connection coming from the grown up, and that makes them want to do more. My daughter wants to dress up as an airship pirate, because *I* dig the scene. She bops with Captain Robert and Abney Park because I play it on my laptop. Now, she has her OWN book – and it connects her to mommy.
I have a feeling that this story will be what some adult Steampunks show their own parents to show the gentle side of the movement… or to their “other” friends…. or their co-workers.  (The WHOLE interview will be on M.K. Hobson’s blog on the 28th – and I will get a link up about that in time, but let me plug her right-here-right-now! Read her novel The Native Star. It is one of the BEST Steampunk books I’ve ever read – a very American tale as well. Go on; I’ll wait…)
This Q&A got me thinking about my favorite children’s books:
  • Like I said, anything by Richard Scarry
  • Who’s Mouse Are You? (Wacky / creepy book in shades of orange)
  • How High is UP? (A quite book in shades of blue – but some of my FAVORITE images – ever)
  • The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats
  • All the Dr. Seuss EXCEPT Cat in the Hat
  • The Light in the Attic and Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein
  • The Snowman by Raymond Briggs (It has no words – only pictures!)

Alternatively, books I hated, and still do:

  • The Bernstein Bears (It’ s the primer for gender roles)
  • The Cat in the Hat
  • Curious George (He always get’s rewarded for doing the wrong thing.)

I’m glad my list of likes is twice the length of hates. So, what’s on your list?

12 days to Launch: Hide and Seek and going in circles

In Uncategorized on February 16, 2012 at 3:46 pm
Hey! Where is THAT in the book?

The seek and find page from Her Majesty's Explorer

My kids are all about the bedtime story, and, for me, the best bedtime stories are the ones I can read with my kids, then I can leave while they explore the book on their own.
I hope that parents will read Her Majesty’s Explorer: a Steampunk bedtime story to their kids and then leave the light on a while for the kids comb through Kevin’s very detailed images a second time or more. It’s a pleasant way to wind down.
When I planned out the structure of the main story, I wanted it to be a circle. Kids are all about going around in circles. So, St.John Murphy Alexander marches for weeks, goes home and washed up for bed, the story comes back around again to his dreams, where he has visions of marching for weeks and weeks. The story naturally takes the reader right back to the beginning.
The Seek & Find page encourages them to take a look again. I read my own book with my kids (really a thrill that they want it again and again) and point to the pictures there and ask, ” Can you go back and find the eagle? Where is the picture frame in the book?” – and so on.
I recall growing up with the Richard Scarry picture books, and in each two page spread was hidden The Gold Bug.  My sister and I spent HOURS looking at Richard Scarry illustrations searching for that little bitty thing!
Like I said – for simple creatures – kids like detail and to do things over and over again. We all know what happens when a kid is left alone in the car for a second – they climb up into the front seat and flip all the knobs and switches and play with the mirrors and stick quarters from the coin drawer into the CD player. Kids can turn ANYTHING into an exploration and experiment. Children and adults connect to Steampunk on THAT level. Together. For grown ups, we talk about the subversive nature of Steampunk – the class and gender bending in costumes, making contraptions and so on, but it really brings out the play in us – the KID in us – to craft costumes and play with the test tubes, cogs and grease.
I hope that this book is a start for Steampunk parents. But, don’t take my word for it. Here’s a review on ComicBooked.com – from John Iwasz, as he talks about kids and books and steampunk! A great review for HME, and an interesting couple of thoughts on involving kids in the world of Steam.
Tomorrow – Favorites! and Blasts from the past. Until then, don’t forget to check out:

13 days to launch: Guess what is in my hot little hands?

In Uncategorized on February 15, 2012 at 1:08 pm

It’s here… Our book is HERE!

The proof copy, the very first copy of the book, arrived well after 7PM yesterday (who knew that Brown delivered so late?).

There is something trilling and magical about tearing into the cardboard and holding a REAL book with your name on it. Lives were nearly lost in the tidal wave of my glee when the the proof copy of Chenda and the Airship Brofman, my first novel, came. Now – receiving my third book,  I have to say the thrill is no less, So, if you live in my neighborhood, are one of my friends, my favorite barista, or happen to be at the gas pump at the same time as me, getting me to NOT show you the book will be the trick.

OK – so what else came yesterday? Here’s an excerpt:video.php?v=2930770480075&saved

14 days to LAUNCH – THE VIDEO BOOK TRAILER!!!

In Uncategorized on February 14, 2012 at 3:03 am

Happy Steampunk Tuesday to you all! Two weeks to launch and we have a GREAT treat. Here it is, the best first glimpse of Her Majesty’s Explorer: a Steampunk bedtime story.  50 seconds of happy!

What do you think? Does it make you want to see the rest of the book? I hope so.

I’d be a total nutjob not to make a shout-out to Alexander Stadler, who plays with Atlanta’s most popular Steampunk band The Extraordinary Contraptions. He’s been a great supporter of the book, so much so that he recorded and offered up the lovely music in the video. How cool was that?

Also – a new review has come in from TotusMel’s WunderKammer – she totally recommends the book! Read her review!

In other blurbs, DJ Doctor Q, says, “Absolutely charming.  It is the Dr. Seuss of Steampunk, and… I LOVED it.”

If you have not done so – show support for our launch by clicking JOIN at the Facebook Launch Page – it will remind you when THE day comes, and it helps keep the ball rolling by generating interest. Invite your friends as well, please and thank you. If you would like to review the book – I have digital ARCs to send – please contact me and I will be happy to send one right out…

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