Clockwork Tangerine : Blog Hop

Rhys Ford is an absolute favourite at LYLBTB!! We adore her, and her stories. So a big welcome, and a thank you to Rhys for stopping by on her Clockwork Tangerine Blog Tour. Check out Whitney’s review HERE.


Did I request thee, Maker, from my Clay; To mould me Man, did I sollicite thee — Paradise Lost

Hetzel_front_coverTo talk about the origins of steampunk, one should probably go back and look at Mary Shelley, H.G. Wells and Jules Verne, the godparents, if you will, of the genre. Where Wells and Jules were pretty much writing science fiction for their era, steampunk is a look back into their world with a dash of the fantastical and Victorian sensibilities.

The phrase steampunk probably came from K.W. Jeter when he was looking for a phrase to describe his Victorian influenced sci-fi/fantasy. It’s a play on the phrase cyberpunk, a genre pretty much defined by William Gibson and then portrayed pretty well in the movie, The Matrix. Just the first one. Ignore the other two. Really. Just… erase that.

One of my favourite movies actually could be considered cyberpunkish—Bladerunner, a fabulous film about the examination of what it is to be human. In a lot of ways, this is a common theme between cyberpunk and steampunk; especially when a story discusses an alternative creation, the golems of their creators.

Where much of steam- and cyberpunk is defined by the contraptions and environment, I think what draws people to these genres is the imagination of a writer. In the case of steampunk, there is a gritty elegance to be seen in the mechanicals of the genre. It’s taking something that couldn’t have existed in Victorian times and create it using the technology of that era.

steampunk8Keep in mind, there actually was a lot of tech back then. The first computers were invented then and there were leaps and bounds made towards the Industrial age. In a lot of ways, that time period mirrors our own with the development of technology that makes it easier to communicate with someone further away. It makes the world smaller and brings the unknown out of the shadows and into the light.

The what if of steampunk is what I like to write to but most of all, I want to show how the technology and a society with that kind of rapid advancement would deal with the change in its people.

When I wrote Clockwork Tangerine, I first had to create a world and in doing so, gave myself some framework to hang my hat on. My characters were given a society with certain rules they could operate in. This is important because everything they do had to be defined by what they could and could not act on. One thing about steampunk and really all fantasy, AU (alternative universe) and sci-fi, is the ability to change everything about  society and its rules.

In my case, I wanted to leave in as much of the Victorian social restrictions as possible. I wanted to create a maybe-possible world where Marcus and Robin could exist. There are ways around the hard-fast rules, much like there is in life and I wanted to write a romance able to bloom even under the most oppressive circumstances. A rose bush blooming in the cracks of a cement sidewalk. This kind of what we’re going through right now—the breaking of the concrete of our society so beauty may come up from beyond.

steampunk-nortonSteampunk is a vast and fascinating world…worlds really and there are so many really good authors out there—both M/M and mainstream—who can take you places only they can imagine. I hope you like my little peek into that universe. I hope to explore that world more because so much damned fun to write—constrained by only the imagination within a beautifully historical backdrop.

Explore! And enjoy!

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The British Empire reigns supreme, and its young Queen Victoria has expanded her realm to St. Francisco, a bustling city of English lords and Chinese ghettos. St. Francisco is a jewel in the Empire’s crown and as deeply embroiled in the conflict between the Arcane and Science as its sister city, London—a very dark and dangerous battle.

Marcus Stenhill, Viscount of Westwood, stumbles upon that darkness when he encounters a pack of young bloods beating a man senseless. Westwood’s duty and honor demand he save the man, but he’s taken aback to discover the man is Robin Harris, a handsome young inventor indirectly responsible for the death of Marcus’s father.

Living in the shadows following a failed coup, Robin devotes his life to easing others’ pain, even though his creations are considered mechanical abominations of magicks and science. Branded a deviant and a murderer, Robin expects the viscount to run as far as he can—and is amazed when Marcus reaches for him instead.

Available for Pre-order HERE

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I’m Rhys Ford. I am an author and also a reader. You can find me at the following places: Goodreads ~ Twitter Facebook  And at the Starbucks down the street. No really, they’re 24/7. And a drive-thru. It’s like heaven. My books can be purchased, folded and first chapters read at Dreamspinner Press.