Already have my bags packed for my early morning flight to Cincinnati for the Steampunk Empire Symposium. My schedule is under the cut — hope to see some of you guys there!
Firstly, I already mentioned it on Facebook & tumblr already, but I’ve been nominated twice for 2013 Steampunk Chronicle Reader’s Choice Awards. Last year, I was honored to win four awards and that was enough ego-bloating for one year. XD Again, thank you, Dear Readers, for thinking of Beyond Victoriana’s work for a second year in a row.
This year, I’m up for both Best Multicultural Steampunk and Best Politically-Minded Steampunk. My fellow nominees — Magpie Killjoy (better known as the founder of Steampunk Magazine), Balogun Ojetade, Steampunk Emma Goldman, and Jeni Hellum — have also done extensive work in their own right too, and I’m pleased to see the community recognizing the growing number of influential steampunks who are doing things that can impact the substance of our subculture. I encourage you to check out all the nominees and cast your vote before April 12th.
This weekend, I will also be heading out to Pennsylvania for Steampunk@Gettysburg with The Copper Claw. For this convention, I’ll be putting down the PowerPoint and taking up my bow and arrows as a performer and not an educator (though I’d still be educating too, I think. Like in stage combat. Or shooting imperialists for fun and profit. That sort of thing.)
More details about my schedule & other news after the jump.
I’m a believer in stronger fandom participation = more representation and vice versa. Often (especially when flipping through pics of steampunk events) fan spaces appear to be whitewashed. Well, fans of color are here, we love stuff, but sometimes, conventions seem intimidating. But why? An oft-heard response I get from fellow fans of color is that, “Well, I don’t want to be the only one there.” (or “I’m not sure if people like me are welcome.”) Also, it all comes down to stats: minority households in the US have significantly lower median incomes than white households. So many fans of color just can’t afford it.
I’m not saying that convention-going is the only way to participate in fandom (that would be the most ridic thing to say, especially since I’m writing here from the Internetz!) But I do want everyone to have more opportunities to share, to network, to engage with people from all walks of life. And sometimes, the best way to bond is in meatspace and not just through the wires (ex. far less flamewars erupt IRL in my experience, when people can actually sit down and discuss things). That’s why organizations like Con or Bust are a great initiative to help fandom as a whole by enabling people to gain different con experiences. They work by raising money through auction-style bidding on donations, with all proceeds going to help sponsor PoC to attend SF/F cons.
More about them from their website:
Con or Bust began as a response to RaceFail ’09, when people of color expressed the desire to help each other attend WisCon (a prominent feminist SFF convention). We ran an auction and took donations, and through the generosity, hard work, and good will of a lot of people, raised enough money to help nine fans of color attend WisCon (2009 final report). Subsequently, the Carl Brandon Society agreed to take over the financial management of Con or Bust, allowing it to become an ongoing project.
This year, I donated several books that are being auctioned off. Other cool things have been donated too: story/manuscript critiques by SF/F editors and authors, graphic novels, clothes, & BUNCHES of signed swag!
So, if you can, please stop by and take a look (and place a bid — things start cheap!) to help out the greater SF/F community. The annual Con or Bust fundraiser is going on from now until Sunday, February 24th.
This October, I’ll be kicking off the first two weekends doing the con thang once more– the first being OctopodiCon, from October 4th – 6th in Oklahoma City!
6:00 – 7:00 – Steampunk in Anime
A media presentation about different steampunk animes and how each anime incorporates its steampunk elements. We will conduct a powerpoint presentation, show video clips, and encourage audience discussion about how steampunk manifests itself in anime. We will talk about several series and films including Fullmetal Alchemist, D.Gray Man, Last Exile, Steamboy, Samurai Seven, Steam Detectives and more! We’ll also discuss the history of the steampunk aesthetic in Japan and why it is so popular.
2:00 – 3:30 Envisioning a Better Steam Society: Beyond Victoriana (with Lucretia Dearfour)
One of my standard discussion panels and race, class, and gender, in the nineteenth century, in steampunk today, and what we can do to make steampunk a more positive movement concerning social justice issues.
4:00 – 5:00 Scriptorium signing
I will be signing a very limited number of copies of Fashion Talks: Undressing the Power of Style for those interested. But I will also be holding an impromptu Q & A about steampunk in publishing for those interested and giving away stuff from Tor.com and Tor Books.
10:00 – 11:30 – Steam Around the World (with Lucretia Dearfour)
Beyond Victoriana, what steampunk possibilities exist? Come join us as we take you on a trip around the world to see how steampunk manifests in the minds of those who don’t think within an Eurocentric context, whether they blend Western influences, or use recognizably steampunk elements within a distinct flavor outside of Europe. We will also approach the ethical challenges that come up when engaging in multicultural steampunk and discuss matters of race, privilege, and cultural appropriation.
Also, I will be presenting at NYCC on the publishing side of things on Saturday, October 13th–
Ladies Who Steam: The Publishing Industry on Women in Steampunk
Time: 1:30 PM – 2:30 PM Location: 1A01
The steampunk subgenre has attracted lots of attention–especially for women writers. Join Tor editor Liz Gorinsky, Orbit Books art director Lauren Panepinto and authors Leanna Renee Hieber, Anina Bennett, and PJ Schnyder to talk about what steampunk offers for the ladies. Moderated by Ay-leen the Peacemaker of Tor.com.
Steampunk 203: A DIY Workshop
Friday, 5:30 PM – 9:30 PM
Workshop 2 (BCC 343-344)
In this workshop, you will learn the beginnings of making steampunk gear all on your own! Learn from a real artisan crafter, Thomas Willeford of Brute Force Leather and leave with your very own steampunk ray gun!
Saturday, 9:00 AM – 10:00 AM
Panel 6 (Hilton Key Ballroom 1-6)
The Fantastic Made Real! Retro-futurism and the merging of the technological and industrial is a common theme in anime. The uneasy merger of technology and culture, and the variable progression between the two, offer a way to explore very human themes in contrast to cold, hard mechanics. This panel explores Steampunk in anime, literature, art, fashion, and science.
Hope to see some readers there!
A couple of cons coming up this month, and a special announcement:
In two weeks the revolution returns to Nashua, New Hampshire: the Steampunk Industrial Revolution will be telegraphed from June 8-10. From what I’ve heard, the theme is “Year of the Dragon” and the convention is preparing for an inter-dimensional beast to who visits this realm once every twelve years…with the smoldering threat coming from the heavens, can enough clockwork gadgets and a pirate ship bar be enough for this weekend? Yup, immersive storytelling strikes again at this con, and I’m looking forward to it.
The con schedule isn’t up yet, but I know that I’ll be doing my standard panels, plus a couple new in-character ones (you’ll have to come to see what they’re about…) — and hanging out with cool folks such as Guest of Honor Dr. Grymm, The Wandering Legion of the Thomas Tew, Jake von Slatt, Mr. Saturday & Sixpence, Platform One, and many, many more musicians, entertainers and other ne’er-do-wells!
I’ll be hanging around this weekend, presenting two new events:
Plus, news from the ivory tower: I am very excited to announce that Fashion Talks: Undressing the Power of Style is now available for pre-order on Amazon.com!
Waaaaay back in 2009 (!), Jaymee Goh and I co-wrote an article about the imperialist — and postcolonial — leanings in steampunk fashion, our first academic venture together. Now, the anthology it is included in — Fashion Talks: Undressing the Power of Style from SUNY Press – can be pre-ordered on Amazon.com and will pub in September! Fashion Talks is all about the roles race, class, gender, and sexuality play in everyday style, and the other chapters range from Lolita and goth to hijabs and stripper shoes to emo and hipsters & more. If you are into fashion, pop culture, politics, and how all three collide, this book is for you. Read the description after the jump.
Note: This review is cross-posted with permission from the Airship Ambassador.
When AetherFest’s chairmen, Pablo Vazquez and Cameron Hare, invited me as a guest to AetherFest in San Antonio, Texas, I instantly thought of three things:
“The stars at night
Are big and bright,
Deep in the heart of Texas!”
And finally this:
Oops, wait, wrong city.
Just a quick post to announce the three winners for our Peter & the Starcatcher ticket giveaway! All from New York:
Congrats to the winners and thanks to everyone who entered!
Note: This is Part 2 of a two-part series about S.J.’s steampunk adventures in Florida. Read Part 1 here.
The main event was Saturday night. Opening with Cog is Dead, an intermission performance by local artist Perego, the audience was thoroughly warmed up for headliners Abney Park. This was my first time seeing the “quintessential” Steampunk band live, and I was really impressed with how the band’s energy fed into the audience and vice versa.
Note: This is Part 1 of a two-part series about S.J.’s steampunk adventures in Florida. Stay tuned Wednesday this week for the rest!
When I first heard there was going to be a Florida Steampunk convention, I had two reactions. The first was “Yay! Home state representing.” Second was, “What on Earth would Florida Steampunk be, exactly?” Would it be corset jumpers and flip-flops? Solar blocking monocles and Mecha-Gator surf boards? There was only one way to get an answer, and it was to check it out myself.