Monday, August 6, 2012

Why I Write Dieselpunk

The short version: I'm sick and tired of medieval Europe.

I'm probably pretty different from a lot of the people hopping on the Steampunk bandwagon right now, who love the gadgets, the fashion, the retrofuturism. But that's not what I like about Dieselpunk.

I came to Dieselpunk first through the Final Fantasy series, and the first one I ever played was Final Fantasy VIII, followed by Final Fantasy VII. Both are very Dieselpunk, and while I didn't have a word for it at the time, my first reaction is “this is so...different.”

Then I got to Final Fantasy IX, and I hated that one. I've realized I don't like Steampunk for the sake of the steam – it was the story that was lackluster, and without a story, you've got nothing.

Moving on to Final Fantasy VI (III in the US originally), and it's back to the mashup of technology and magic that drew me to the series in the first place.

And I think that's where my love of Dieselpunk really comes from – that juxtaposition of elements that don't seem like they should mix. Because anything goes, really. (Which is why I laugh at people trying to pigeonhole Steampunk and it's relatives.) You don't have to be doing something retro, you can do secondary world and make up you own whole world, and it doesn't have to be permanently stuck in the dark ages. I have multiple times looked at a story I'm working on and gone “You know what this story needs? A giant mechanical dragon.”

Or a mechanical tiger, or spider, or a character with a mechanical arm after it's amputated. Or a giant flying aircraft carrier. And how does it work? Powered by magic, of course.

So you can take that “you know what would be awesome?” and bridge that gap in suspension of disbelief with your fantasy element.
                  -Lindsay Kitson, The Dieselpunkette


  1. Well, I'll be darned if you didn't just potentially solve some problems for me. LOL Thanks!

    I wanted to thank you for the very kind comments on Adam Heine's blog a few weeks ago! Sorry it took me so long to respond. *__* I've moved some stuff around and achieved a good balance thanks to you all. :)

  2. Havemercy sounds like a book I could wrap up in on a hot day in the AC and forget the world outside even exists. I think after the story I am currently reading I will purchase a copy to fill my day with this one and get back to you with my review of it. Thanks bunches for the reviews I too am tired of the cookie cutter stories.