Tuesday, 2 September 2014

Doncaster Steampunk Rally 2014 - Part One

I spent the weekend of  21-22nd of June 2014 in Doncaster, stopping over at The Deaf Institute for the duration of the Steampunk Doncaster Tiffin In The Park Rally 2014. I travelled over on the Friday evening in anticipation of the event.

As some of you may well know I love all things Steampunk, I wrote an article for my Canadian friend Casey Ryan of Cutting Rooms MRB, entitled  Brass, Leather and Ingenuity: A Steampunk primer by guest Scarlett Flame. This guest blog may go some way to explaining a little about Steampunk, and its origins. While you are there, why not check out Casey's podcasts, and his interesting and amazing guests.

My latest work in progress is set on a Steampunk world, and is due to be released within the next two to three months. The novel is called The Prophecy Unfolds (Dragon Queen). It is about dragons, werewolves, magicians and much more, hope you will check it out when published.

This will be my second published novel and a cover reveal is anticipated, including the ability to preorder the novel via Amazon

I love Steampunk, especially the clothing and  this was the ideal opportunity for myself and all my friends to dress in our Steampunk finery.

This was a fabulous weekend with like minded people, and also an opportunity to admire the amazing and inventive outfits that were worn by those individuals. There were numerous events ongoing in order  to keep people amused, and entertained. These included,  fashion shows, pole dancing, Bartitsu, music, photography and writers workshops.There were also a large number of stalls selling everything from autographed books, jewellry, clothing and artwork, to hats and detailed goods.

My very good friend Malcolm from Steamretro had told me about the event and this was our first face to face meeting. I also had the pleasure of having company for the journey over to Doncaster from Manchester, in the form of Bastian Coll. Bastian had travelled over from Spain for the event. Bastian makes hand made, bespoke furniture, and has a facebook page called Handmade Essence

Steamretro is on Twitter and Facebook too 

I will let the photos and the videos speak for themselves in the main then at the end of my review I have links to the many people and stalls that made this an amazing event.

Amazing selection of sandwiches and cakes were available from the ladies of Vintage Teas of Doncaster

Plenty of gorgeous items to purvey, as I wandered around the numerous stalls at Doncaster

A number of authors also attended this event, myself included. Writer's workshops were also held upstairs near the bar.

This is Craig Hallam author, (shown above) Craig has a blog, and his books are available via Amazon. Craig has a new book due out in September called The Adventures of Alan Shaw, so check out the links above for more details.

Also in attendance were a number of other authors including L M Cooke creater of the series of books The Automata Wars. Her website includes a blog, and videos of the band she is the vocalist for, Crimson Clocks. 

The line up for the band is as follows -  
Linzi sings, writes fiendish words and music, plays violin, guitar and is classically trained.
Jo is also classically trained, plays a demon violin , a belting oboe and sometimes rocks on bass.
Colin plays lithe, trouser-trembling bass guitar as well as lead guitar.
Steve beats the drums that drives everything along.

We had the absolute pleasure to watch, and listen to the band perform as part of the entertainment provided at the rally

Author Gareth Wiles was also in at Doncaster, Gareth can be found on Facebook and Twitter as  @sheepbone. 
His bio on Amazon describes Gareth this way -A  misanthropic streak coaxed Gareth to turn his back on a potential career in teaching teenagers the joys of Shakespeare and instead aid pensioners in the joys of a weed-free garden. Life and death is quick and constant in his world, a world often on the fringe of society. He can regularly be found signing his books at comic cons.

Another attendee at Doncaster was 
an independent small-press publisher, called Tenebrous Texts, working with a small roster of authors and artists. 

Launched on 3rd August 2014 is 'Sorrow Works', a collection of poetry and photographs, taken by Steven C. Davis.

After that is Book 1 of 'The Heart's Cog Imperative', a Steampunk adventure epic by Steven C. Davis and S. J. Stewart, due to be published on 7th March 2015.

Jane Yates is another author I had the pleasure to meet at Doncaster. Jane, a dyslexic, mother, artist, and story teller who yearned for further challenges and found the Open University helped her study. She explored a mixture of physics and other sciences, the environment and technology. This prepared her to get a full degree in Environment and Archaeology from Lampeter University.

Jane is now in Oxford and works at the Pitt Rivers Museum, a museum of anthropology and world archaeology. Her Paradox Child series of YA books features the museum and its objects. Her other books… are steampunk, magic, time travel and YA. 

Jane can be found on Twitter and Facebook,andis a regular contributer on Goodreads

Next up and also another author I met at Doncaster by the name of Alex James. 
Alex is a science-fiction and fantasy author who has Asperger Syndrome, and whose writing focuses on the themes of alienation and empowerment, which give unique qualities to many of his characters. He writes about these themes because they are familiar to him.

For his first novel The Antpod Faction, he was inspired by a condition he has, called Asperger Syndrome, which is a lifelong condition that can affect the way a person communicates and perceives the world. The Roc Isle series was inspired by author R Scott Bakker’s Prince of Nothing trilogy because of the war, military, and dark fantasy elements that were worth exploring.

Alex is currently working on science-fiction superhero and fantasy adventure stories.

I agree with Alex about a unique take on the world and there are inumerable famous people that were also diagnosed with Asperger, including Sir Alfred Hitchcock KBE , Henry Gates, Michael Palin, CBE, and Sir Isaac Newton FRS. To name just a few.

You can find Alex on Twitter, Facebook and Goodreads

Well, so much for part one of this article

Part two to follow shortly

Bye for now




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