Boosting! THE SEA IS OURS: A New ‪Steampunk‬ anthology, edited by Jaymee Goh & Joyce Chng

the SEA is Ours

Jaymee Goh of Silver Goggles and SFF author Joyce Chng have launched a fundraiser for a new steampunk anthology based on Southeast Asia to be published by Rosarium Publishing. According to their press release, The SEA is Ours was conceived with a specific intent in mind:

Both editors have long been involved in speculative fiction. Joyce Chng is the author of several urban fantasy and Young Adult novels written from a Singaporean perspective. Jaymee Goh, currently a PhD Candidate at the University of California, Riverside, has published short fiction and poetry, including a series of short stories set in a re-imagined Malaysia uncolonized by the West. Both are also consistent critics of the genre’s Eurocentrism. “We felt unsatisfied by representations of Southeast Asia in most of speculative fiction,” Goh says in an interview with Asian American Press, “and felt very strongly that steampunk would be a really great way of talking about the myriad histories in the region.

Very excited to see this book go out into the world, and more details about the book and how to support it can be found after the jump.

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Coming to New York Comic Con! Geeks of Color, Third Edition: Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger

Geeks of Color 2015 logo

Geeks of Color, Third Edition: Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger
Fri. October 9| 6:30 PM – 7:30 PM | Room 1A01

Geeks of Color returns to discuss representation in comics, pop journalism, gaming, podcasting & book publishing and much more. Featuring Shelley Diaz (Editor, School Library Journal), Melissa Grey (The Girl at Midnight), N. Steven Harris (Illustrator, Ajala, DC Comic, Marvel), Tracey John (Narrative Designer & Journalist, Gameloft, MTV), Tatiana G. King-Jones (Podcaster, FanBrosShow) & Camilla Zhang (DC Comics, Marvel). Moderated by Diana M. Pho (Editor, Tor Books).

UPDATE (9/18/2015):  A big welcome to a new addition to our panel: Eric Dean Seaton, a two-time NAACP Image Award-nominated episodic television director.

Geeks of Color Meet-up

Geeks of Color Meet-up! 
Fri. October 9| 1:30 PM – 2:30 PM | 1E03

Want to mingle with fellow geeks of color? How about getting some insider’s knowledge of the industry with some one-on-one honest convos with creators of color?

Come join fellow fans of color and panelists from the Geeks of Color panel in a casual meet-up setting where we can discuss our nerd loves, fandom head canons and an in-depth insider’s look into the world of comics, YA publishing, pop culture blogging, video games & more. Hosted by Diana M. Pho (editor, Tor Books) and featuring Shelley Diaz (Editor, School Library Journal), Melissa Grey (The Girl at Midnight), Tracey John (Narrative Designer & Journalist, Gameloft, MTV), and others!

Full panelist details are after the jump. Hope to see some of our readers there!
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Cover reveal for A. J. Hartley’s STEEPLEJACK


Click to see full cover on

See the full Steeplejack cover reveal on

I’m very excited to launch the cover reveal for this book.  Steeplejack was one of my first acquisitions, and has been in the pipeline for several months. I can’t wait until this book is put out into the world.
I share further thoughts at the link above. Plus, the art is gorgeous.

Book description:

Seventeen-year-old Anglet Sutonga, Ang for short, works repairing the chimneys, towers, and spires of Bar-Selehm, the ethnically-diverse industrial capital of a land resembling Victorian South Africa. The city was built on the trade of luxorite, a priceless glowing mineral. When the Beacon, a historical icon made of the largest piece of luxorite known to exist, is stolen, this news commands the headlines. Yet no one seems to care about the murder of Ang’s new apprentice Berrit. But when Josiah Willinghouse, an enigmatic young politician, offers her a job investigating his death, she plunges headlong into dangers she could not foresee. On top of this legwork, Ang struggles with the responsibility of caring for her sister’s newborn child.

As political secrets unfold and racial tensions surrounding the Beacon’s theft rise, Ang must navigate the constricting traditions of her people, the murderous intentions of her former boss, and the conflicting impulses of a fledgling romance. With no one to help her except a savvy newspaper girl and a kindhearted herder from the savannah, Ang must rely on her creative intellect and strength to resolve the mysterious link between Berrit and the missing Beacon before the city is plunged into riotous chaos.

Some Advanced Praise:

“A richly realized world, an intensely likable character, and a mystery to die for.“ — Cory Doctorow, New York Times-bestselling author of Little Brother

“With its unique South African-inspired setting, richly-drawn and diverse cast of characters, and unstoppable plot, readers of any age won’t be able to putSteeplejack down!” – Carrie Ryan, New York Times bestselling author of the Forest of Hands and Teeth series

“Smart and socially-aware, from its captivating opening line to an end promising adventures to come, this fabulous debut adds to the growing library of multicultural fantasy and is a loudly resounding success.” —Nisi Shawl, James Tiptree Jr. Award-winning author of Filter House and Everfair, and co-author of Writing the Other: A Practical Approach

“A captivating read! Main character Anglet is a compelling young woman who defies gravity and the constricting rules of her world. Readers will soar with her through murder mystery, romance, and political intrigue in a fresh landscape that riffs on South Africa’s multicultural history but touches our 21st century moment too. A.J. Hartley’s wonderfully plotted prose is full of surprise, insight, and hard-earned joy. I want the next book now!“ – Andrea Hairston, James Tiptree, Jr. and Carl Brandon Parallax Award-winning author

Steeplejack combines a lively and intelligent plot with an intriguing and well-drawn world, and caps all this goodness with a determined and indefatigable heroine. I would read the further adventures of Ang in a heartbeat.” — Kate Elliott, author of Court of Fives

“In Steeplejack, Hartley has created a world so gritty and real I could taste the soot. Once you pick this book up, you won’t be putting it down until you’re done.  Don’t say I didn’t warn you.”  — Maurice Broaddus, author of the Knights of Breton Court trilogy

“You can feel the grit and glory of Bar-Selehm, a many-spired city teetering on the edge of the savannah, and the verge of war.  The perfect setting for a street-smart young woman who is caught between three cultures, yet refuses to be trapped by them.”  – Sherri L. Smith, award-winning author of Flygirls and Orleans

Pre- order

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Islam and Science Fiction: An Interview with Muhammad Aurangzeb Ahmad


Islam and Science Fiction has been a resource in the SFF community for 10 years, and it’s with great pleasure that I got in touch with its founding editor, Muhammad Aurangzeb Ahmad. Since 2005, Islam and Science Fiction‘s goal has been to gather depictions of Islam and Islamic themes in science fiction and spotlight science fiction written by Muslims. Muhammad has even co-edited an anthology about the topic, A Mosque Among the Stars,with Ahmed A. Khan. In our interview we talk about the state of Islam in sci-fi, its global reach in speculative fiction, and much more.

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Call for Submissions — Steampunk Universe

Print from Harmonia Macrocosmica, A. Cellarius (detail) [1660] (Public Domain Image)

Print from Harmonia Macrocosmica, A. Cellarius (detail) [1660] (Public Domain Image)

Sarah Hans, editor behind the award-winning anthology Steampunk World, is currently looking for short fiction for its follow-up, Steampunk Universe.

According to her website, the type of work she’s looking for:

Your story should take place in a non-Western culture. I’d love to have a variety of stories that take place in the diverse cultures of Central/South America, Asia, and Africa.

Your story should contain a character with at least one exceptionality. It should be a major element of the story, providing the character with extra challenges but maybe also special insight or abilities. I want to explore how steampunk technology changes the lives of people with exceptionalities, for better or for worse.  I’d love to see characters who are also members of other marginalized groups (such as LGBTQ characters).

Your story should contain steampunk elements. I get a lot of submissions with steampunk exoskeletons and dirigibles, but not many with spaceships or submarines. I’d really like authors to stretch themselves and instead of just writing alternate history, set the story in a parallel universe or on another planet. Read Tobias Buckell’s excellent story “Love Comes to Abyssal City” for an example.

All submissions are due June 1, 2016. More info can be found  here.


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JordanCon & International Steampunk Symposium Schedules

For the latter half of April, I’m doing back-to-back conventions (wheeee!) Check out my schedule for both below.

And, as always, if you are an author/agent looking to have a meeting, please contact me.


Click to view convention website.


Query Letters
5:30 PM Madison
Description: A discussion over what to include in your query letter and how to approaching publishers and agents as a newer author in general.
Panelists: Diana Pho, Michael Livingston

The Maharaja of Sweden hosts Sci-fi Mashups
10:00 PM Washington
Description: Join the Maharaja of Sweden as he serves chai and discusses the great stories that blend cultures. Explorers, subjects taken out of context, subversions of culture, misplacement of values, subjegation, historical inaccuracies, and twists of time. Confederates with atom bombs? Musketeers with airships? Amish Zombies? Where does it end?! And should it…
Panelists: Diana Pho, Peter B. Slayer, Emilie P. Bush

JordanCon Annual Pitch Critique
2:30 PM Madison
Description: Get practice on those first crucial moments with an agent or editor. No stakes, just honest feedback.
Panelists: Diana Pho, Saladin Ahmed, Harriett McDougal

Turning Feedback into useful Critique
11:30 AM Madison
Description: So people have read your work and told you what they thought. Now what?
Panelists: Diana Pho, Saladin Ahmed, Jim Hodgson, Anthony Taylor

2:30 PM Madison
Description: Prophecy, Thematic Hints, Ominous Portents, and everything in between. Come here some great ways and reasons to Foreshadow.
Panelists: Todd McCaffrey, Anthony Taylor, Diana Pho


Cincinnati, OH, April 24 – 26th. Click to view website.

Last week to pre-register!


Writer’s Workshop Part 1–Hemingway Happy Hour
6 PM in the Pompeii Room
Description: Mingle with fellow writers and other publishing folk. Hosted by Emilie P Bush

Safer Spaces for Steampunks: Addressing Harassment in Fandom
8pm in the Naples Room
Description: Join us in an upfront and forward-thinking conversation lead by Ay-leen the Peacemaker (Diana M. Pho) on how to create safer spaces in fandom against harassment, with a particular focus on sexual harassment awareness, reporting, and prevention tactics. All genders and orientations are encouraged to attend.


Writer’s Workshop Part 2–The Boiler Room
10:00 am in the Pompeii Room
Description: Discussion of the craft of writing with Emilie P Bush & Ay-leen the Peacemaker (Diana M. Pho).

Beyond Victoriana: Multicultural Steampunk
7 pm in the Naples Room
Description: How does multicultural steampunk look Beyond Victoriana? Updated & expanded since its previous presentation at the Steampunk Symposium.

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AnomalyCon Schedule

Denver, CO from March 27 - 29

Denver, CO from March 27 – 29

Just around the corner is my first convention of 2015 AnomalyCon. I’ve never been to Colorado before, so I’m looking forward to escape the NY cold a bit for some Rocky Mountain air. Below is my programming line-up. If anyone can bring me a coffee or brownie (no, not *that* kind) during one of my 4-hour paneling stints, you will earn a gold star for the weekend.


Developing Character through Costuming
Fri 5pm Fashion
A discussion of the Who behind your costume and developing character through design. M. Unruh, Ay-leen the Peacemaker.

Sexuality and Gender Identity in Fiction
Fri 6pm Safety/Sexuality (Fiction)
A discussion of the good and bad ways that mainstream fiction is exploring gender identity and sexuality, and how we can do better.
Panelists: K. Seibert (M), Ay-leen the Peacemaker, A. Rogers, M. Tanzer

Closing the Loop
Fri 7pm Writing
Editing and re-editing and outlining and reviewing and getting your book out to an agent…you have so much to do now that you’ve finished your first novel draft. Where do you go from here?
Panelists: B. Dornbusch, S. Chambers, J. Brawner, Ay-leen the Peacemaker

Steampunk Theater
Fri 8pm Fiction
What’s out there? What good could Steampunk do in theater?
Panelists: Ay-leen the Peacemaker, A. Rogers, S. Rahmsdorff


Overcoming Barriers
Sat 10am Safety/Sexuality
Brilliant authors talk about breaking out of the stereotypes to be successful in art and fiction. Panelists: Ay-leen the Peacemaker, A. Rogers, J. Koyanagi, M. Mohanraj

With All Due Respect: Multicultural Fashion
Sat 11am Fashion
Steampunk isn’t just about Victorian England! Dive into costuming from every angle and discuss cultural respect without appropriation.
Panelists: Ay-leen the Peacemaker, A. Rogers, M. Unruh

Author Free-For-All
Sat 1pm Main Events
Don’t miss this wild answer to every question you never thought to ask your favorite authors! Twitter meets steroids.
Fellow authors: S. Chambers, C. Doctorow, K. Seibert (M), J. Nye, S. Litore, G. DeMarco, J. A. Owen, M. Tanzer, M. Mohanraj, J. Koyanagi, Ay-leen the Peacemaker, L.J. Hachmeister, T. Heermann

Coming Out in The Geek Community
Sat 2pm Safety/Sexuality
Sometimes we forget that not everyone is accepting, or that the community is there to support us. We’ll talk about our coming out stories, and about the help available to you if you need support.
Panelists: K. Seibert, L.J. Hachmeister, Ay-leen the Peacemaker, A. Rogers, M. Fowler

The -Gater Phenomenon
Sat 3pm Safety/Sexuality
What does it mean to be a gatekeeper? What does Gamergate even mean? Why do things like Gamergate happen, and how can people not caught in the crossfire help with these problems?
Panelists: Ay-leen the Peacemaker, A. Rogers, J. Koyanagi, A. Peter, S. Schafer

Cosplay is Not Consent
Sat 5pm Safety/Sexuality
What does this tagline mean? What kinds of expectations are we overlaying on male versus female cosplayers, and what is appropriate at a convention?
Panelists: Ay-leen the Peacemaker, A. Rogers, G. Feiner, C. Rose (M)


Responsible Fandom
Sun 12pm Safety/Sexuality

Encouraging diversity through fandom and consuming problematic media responsibly.
Panelists: J. Koyanagi, Ay-leen the Peacemaker, M. Fowler (M), C. Rose

Becoming Uncomfortable
Sun 2pm Sexuality/Safety
Difficult Conversations to expand our understanding of community. Being willing to ask–and answer–the hard questions.
Panelists: T.A. Fowler, L.J. Hachmeister, Ay-leen the Peacemaker, A. Rogers, M. Mohanraj, C. Rose (M)

Attendees can check out their full schedule here.


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“They’ll Rue the Day a Metanatural Visits the Raj”: Gail Carriger’s Prudence

Lady Prudence Alessandra Maccon Akeldama—better known as “Rue” to her friends and quite deservingly so—is causing havoc all over London society. It doesn’t help matters that she’s related to the three most powerful supernaturals in the British Empire: daughter of the werewolf dewan Lord Conall Maccon and preternatural Lady Alexia Maccon, and adopted daughter of vampire potentate Lord Akeldama. On top of that, Rue possesses her own unique abilities; she is a metanatural (or “skin-stealer”), who can temporarily take the powers of any supernatural she touches.

Lady Alexia thinks its high time for Rue to put a stopper on her wild behavior, and Lord Akeldama wants to send her on a mission to acquire a new variety of tea leaf. Thus begins plans to send Rue off to India in a dirigible of her own naming—The Spotted Custard—along with a slapdash crew of the best and brightest (though some members are also the most irksome to Rue). What awaits in India, however, is a revelation that could possibly change the geopolitical balance of the entire Empire.

[For love of Queen, country, and a good cuppa. Mild spoilers. Read on]

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“Breaking Mirrors” — Guest post on Jim C. Hines’s Blog

Many thanks to Jim for letting me participate in his “Representation in SF/F series”. All posts in this series will be collected as part of Invisible 2, and all proceeds from the sale of this collection will go toward Con or Bust and other diversity initiatives in fandom.

Aximili-Esgarrouth-Isthill, Andalite Prince from the Animorphs series, and one of my childhood book buddies. Taken from the ceiling of my childhood bedroom wall.

Junot Diaz—rightly so—gets quoted often in the representation convo. One of his truth bombs stuck with me:

“You know, vampires have no reflections in a mirror? And what I’ve always thought isn’t that monsters don’t have reflections in a mirror. It’s that if you want to make a human being into a monster, deny them, at the cultural level, any reflection of themselves. And growing up, I felt like a monster in some ways. I didn’t see myself reflected at all.”

But here’s another truth valid in my life: when I didn’t see myself in a mirror, I smashed it and saw myself in the pieces.

Read the rest of the piece here.

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International Women’s Day 2015 Giveaway



March 8th marks International Women’s Day; this year’s theme is “Make it Happen!” What does it mean to “make it happen?” There are various examples cropping up today. Google created a doodle to emphasize jobs that had discriminated against women in the past (and present) and our need to recognize equality in all industries.

Bread and Roses Strike

Striking workers parade through the streets of Lawrence, Massachusetts, during the 1912 Bread and Roses strike. (Lawrence History Center). Click for source.

For me, the theme resonates with the song “Bread and Roses”, best known as the anthem during the Bread and Roses textile strike in Lawrence , MA in 1912.  The lyrics are especially inspiring because it is more than personal self-determination  and will that can make something positive “happen”. Greater equality is linked to solidarity across all genders. It is not just women fighting for women, but a call for everyone to fight for each other, because in the end, we are all affected by oppression.  International Women’s Day I also associate with the motto: “lifting as we climb”– that individual success is only as impactful as the amount of support and success you give to others in turn.

I first heard “Bread and Roses” in undergrad, for it’s my alma mater’s official song and sung during commencement as graduates and alumna carry a laurel wreath through the campus grounds. There is something particularly uplifting to see a line of women across all backgrounds united in song (and inevitably, drawing a chorus from the watching crowd as well).  You can listen to a rendition of “Bread and Roses” and read the lyrics below.

As we come marching, marching in the beauty of the day,
A million darkened kitchens, a thousand mill lofts gray,
Are touched with all the radiance that a sudden sun discloses,
For the people hear us singing: “Bread and roses! Bread and roses!”

As we come marching, marching, we battle too for men,
For they are women’s children, and we mother them again.
Our lives shall not be sweated from birth until life closes;
Hearts starve as well as bodies; give us bread, but give us roses!

As we come marching, marching, unnumbered women dead
Go crying through our singing their ancient cry for bread.
Small art and love and beauty their drudging spirits knew.
Yes, it is bread we fight for—but we fight for roses, too!

As we come marching, marching, we bring the greater days.
The rising of the women means the rising of the race.
No more the drudge and idler—ten that toil where one reposes,
But a sharing of life’s glories: Bread and roses! Bread and roses!

This year, we’re also celebrating IWD with a giveaway sponsored by Corset Story. Readers have a chance to win a prize package containing a pair of their Black Lace Ribbon Arm Warmers and their Steampunk Feather Fascinator. We have two sets we are giving away.


corset story lace arm warmerscoset story steampunk fascinator

Here are the rules for entering.

1) The giveaway will be open to all followers of Beyond Victoriana worldwide. Participants can enter between now and midnight, EST (-5 UTC) on Saturday, March 14th by commenting on this post with the name of a woman from history that inspires you and why.

2) Participants MUST leave their email address in the comment form.

3) Two (2) winners will be selected on Sunday, March 15th via the Random Number Generator and contacted via email. Those selected will have 24 hours to reply with their mailing address and contact info or else a new pair of winners will be selected.

And that’s it. Have fun folks!

UPDATE: Many congrats to Andrew Aulenback and dinenwen for being the winners of this giveaway!



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