You’ve seen the NYT story on steampunk fashion and the spiked article on steampunk values—now Boston Phoenix reporter Sharon Steel has a comprehensive feature on the movement that comes complete with a five-minute interview of Jake Von Slatt of The Steampunk Workshop, in which he explains how he modified his keyboard with old typewriter keys and hooked up an old telegraph machine to deliver an RSS feed in Morse code.
“What’s neat about 19th-century industrial processes is that they are very accessible to tinkering,” Von Slatt says, explaining the aesthetic to Steel. â€œBack then, you didn’t need a vapor-deposition chamber to copperplate something. All you needed was a vat of electrolyte and a battery.”
And when I checked my mail this weekend, I found a copy of Steampunk, a new anthology from Ann and Jeff VanderMeer, the same couple that brought us The New Weird. I haven’t really had much chance to look at it yet, but it’s got stories by Michael Chabon, Mary Gentle, Paul Di Filippo, and Neal Stephenson, not to mention the incomparable James P. Blaylock, so it’s bound to be pretty cool. (Most of those names you’ll recognize from recent appearances in GalleyCat, except possibly Gentle; her A Sundial in a Grave is one of the best science-fiction novels I’ve read this decade, not least of all because it’s set in 17th-century Europe and Japan.)