The proof copy has arrived! We are checking that all the i’s are crossed and all the t’s are dotted. Wait, that can’t be right…
14 high school English class favorites reborn.
14 ‘punk versions you’ll have to read to believe!
What We’ve Unlearned: English Class Goes Punk is the fourth book in the series of ‘punk stories (steampunk, cyberpunk, dieselpunk and more) inspired by classic stories you likely read in high school English class.
As with all of our anthologies, all profits are to be donated to PAWS Lynnwood, an animal shelter and wildlife rescue located in the Pacific Northwest.
Our little band of punks began three years ago today. The group formed as a way to connect writers, readers, artists, and fans of punk fiction. But, not just any one genre. In the words of John Hawthorne, the founder of Writerpunk:
Since March 8, 2014, we have grown to over 650 members, launched a website, published three charity anthologies, won some awards, and–best of all–made several donations to PAWS, an animal shelter.
We would like to express deep thanks to our fans, friends, and family who have supported us. We’re proud of the past three years and are looking forward to what the future brings!
When last we posted, Merely This and Nothing More: Poe Goes Punk was up for the 2016 Indie Summer Indie Book and we were asking for your support. You heard us and answered! Poe took 1st place in the Anthology Category. We were absolutely floored by the support from our readers. But that’s not all–it’s gone on to win two other awards!
Hosted by A Flavor of Fantasy, The Virtual FantasyCon 2016 brought together authors, artists, bloggers, editors, reviewers, publishers, and readers of horror, fantasy, and science fiction books. Not only was the event a blast, Poe was awarded the 1st Place Punk Book.
Finally, Poe Goes Punk won the Literary Valour award for Best Short Story Anthology 2016, a Birds of a Feather Literary Award, which are given to works that “inspire, impact and innovate their genres and their audiences.” We received this beautiful handcrafted artisan trophy.
We would like to express our heartfelt thanks to all those who have supported Writerpunk Press by nominating, voting, or spreading the word about Poe Goes Punk.
In the months since the release of Merely This and Nothing More: Poe Goes Punk, we’ve heard great things about the tales included in the volume. One reviewer commented on our “fresh look at the genius of Poe.” Another wrote, “I believe Poe himself would be thrilled with these retellings of his classic tails. If you’re a fan of his dark work, you’ll find satisfaction in these pages.”
We are absolutely floored by the kind words and very grateful to the readers who have taken the time to leave a review. Click here to see what everyone is saying.
But that’s not all! Merely This has been nominated for a Summer Indie Book Award in the anthology category. The long and short of it is, voting begins on September 1st. Anyone can vote once a day, until midnight on September 11, 2016.
The following blog post from Metamorph Publishing is used with permission.
2016 Summer Indie Book Awards!
The cold of winter is setting in, at least for those of us in the northern Hemisphere of the world. But we at Metamorph Publishing aren’t letting that get us down! We’re already looking forward to a sizzling summer, and we’re here to announce our first annual Indie Book Awards! You heard that right, a summer book awards! The event officially begins on January 1st of each year, and nominations will be accepted through midnight CST on August 1st each year. Voting will begin on September 1st and end on September 10th each year.
“What’s the big deal,” you ask? “There are all kinds of contests out there.” And you’re right, there are hundreds, probably thousands of book awards. But many of them are only for unpublished authors, or authors who only write in certain narrow genres, or for authors who have never published before in a particular genre. Plus, there are plenty of them that charge an entry fee, some of which are prohibitive to authors who publish independently, without the backing of a large and powerful publishing house.
So, we’re hoping to do something different with the Summer Indie Book Awards! Entry is free, and nominations will be accepted from any indie or small-press author, regardless of their current published or non-published state, or what genre they write in. We are accepting donations of print or e-books, author swag or novelty items (bookmarks, pens, keychains, etc.), but donation is not required for nomination. We’re taking nominations from authors as well as from readers, and authors can nominate their own books; we only ask that authors who do so also nominate a fellow indie author. Nominations can be made using this form: http://goo.gl/forms/T1L8sQJGVx, while donations can be made at: http://goo.gl/forms/6DkAK4MeqI.
Feel free to join up with the event on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/events/1099924726693772, and like the official Facebook page of the Summer Indie Book Awards at https://www.facebook.com/summerindiebookawards. You can also sign up for the newsletter at: http://eepurl.com/bL43cf so you can stay up to date with all the latest news! In the pinned post of the Facebook event, you’ll find these links, along with links to a Google Drive folder where you can look and see who’s already been nominated! And any author who is nominated will have access to an official contest nominee badge, that they can use on their book covers or any promotional media, if they so desire.
Winners in each genre will receive a prize (hopefully we’ll get enough donations for this), beginning with the 1st place winners. If we get enough prizes donated, we’ll go next to 2nd place winners, and then to 3rd place. Regardless of the prizes, winners will get a high-quality winner badge, stating their place and the genre of the book. These will be of high enough resolution for authors to use on their print books, if they want to!
But it’s not only the winners that will benefit from the Summer Indie Book Awards! All nominated authors will have the potential to reach hundreds, if not more, of new readers (readers often have a preferred genre, and while they’re voting for their favorite author, will come across others they may not have tried yet), and reach a huge new audience through the social media forums! And best of all, it’s meant to have fun, to reach out and network with other authors, potentially forming long-lasting relationships. And readers will benefit from having a wealth of new books in front of them, as well as a vast amount of new stories to immerse themselves in.
Though we’re using Facebook and other social media as a platform to reach more authors and readers, none of these social media outlets are affiliated with the awards. They are hosted strictly by Metamorph Publishing.
We’re getting geared up for our online release party. Starting on June 4th at 7:00 a.m. (PDT) some very talented authors, editors, and designers will be gathering to meet readers, play games, and discuss the anthology. The Ultimate Release Festival may be an online event, but you can score some real, hold-in-your-hand prizes. We’ll have games and giveaways throughout the two day event.
Why two days? Because we have a lot to celebrate!
Two members, Nils Nisse Visser and Lia Rees, put together our first ever face-to-face book launch at The Yellow Book, a steampunk pub in Brighton.
In addition to selling several copies, the festivities were attended by Peter Fawn, founder of the Edgar Allan Poe Society of Prague. He not only purchased a copy for himself, but also one for Susan Tane of the Baltimore Poe Society. We are beyond excited that copies of Merely This and a poster designed by Lia Rees will be added to two of the largest Poe memorabilia collections in the world.
“The Poe Society of Prague has at it’s core, over 15,000 items relating to Mr. Poe, including first editions and rare articles, but the main part of the collection focuses on the influences that Poe has had across all aspects of 20th Century popular culture.” (Edgar Allan Poe Society of Prague homepage)
That’s not all! In the days following the release, several reviews from readers appeared on Amazon and Goodreads. From the UK to Spokane (and several stops in between), copies of Poe Goes Punk are finding homes. Check out some photos of some of our contributors, the book, and some Poe swag.
It’s finally here! After more than a year in the making, Merely This and Nothing More: Poe Goes Punk has hit the (virtual) shelves.
Available on Amazon (print and ebook), Merely This and Nothing More offers 21 tales that represent a variety of punk genres. In addition to the more familiar Cyber and Steampunk, we’re bringing you Bio, Deco, and Dieselpunk stories inspired by the works of Edgar Allan Poe.
You can check out what reviewers have said on Goodreads about our third anthology of punked tales and watch the book trailer below to see what’s in store for our readers.
But that’s not all. Join us on June 4th for an online release party to celebrate. You’ll have a chance to play trivia games, win prizes, and meet the people who made this book a reality.
As always, profits are to be donated to PAWS Lynnwood, an animal shelter and wildlife rescue located in the Pacific Northwest. An awesome collection andhelp animals at the same time–what could be better? If you find out, stop by the release part and let us know!
If you couldn’t tell, we’re pretty excited to share our newest release with the world–help us spread the word!
We have author William J. Jackson with us for this week’s Friday Night Interviews. William, who has two books out, writes alternative history, punk genres, and more. Read on to see his insights on his take on how people view history and what makes attracts people to alternative history stories.
Can you tell us a little about yourself and your background?
I was born in southern Delaware and moved to South Jersey as a kid. In both places I grew to love nature, quiet, imagination and reading. Also, I may or may not be a robot.
What is your life like when you aren’t writing?
I drive for a living for Lyft, birdwatch, read, ingest comics, and try to understand what’s going on in the world. That last one…zoiks!
How did your life as a writer begin?
I began typing at three, and books got me wanting to write. Tabletop RPGs in ninth grade opened the door. From there I learned what works, what doesn’t, and later formed the basis of the Legacy Universe (The Rail Legacy).
Do you have a favorite genre to read or write?
Science fiction, but that typically ends up as a Star Trek novel. Lately it’s leaned toward the punks and the odd cozy mystery.
Can you tell us a bit about some of the people that influence you the most?
So, dead people. HG Wells, silent film stars. Seeing old movies and things were more interesting than anything in the present to me. Only when it mothballs to the past do I like it.
Have you always been interested in punk fiction or is this a recent development in your life?
Before they had names I loved mashing genres. Let’s keep in mind the original punks were pulps and superhero comics, which freely used other genres to tell tales.
What it is about the punk genres that inspires you as a creative?
The ability to discuss basic human issues, technology and the things of the past people would rather avoid. If you take a gander at how people view history, it’s all nostalgia or all horror. Really it’s both, so I need to showcase it. Steampunk especially. As fun as it is, many treat it as if only tea and attire ever mattered. We can use punks to not only cry ‘Gee Whiz!’ at the world’s imagined, but to learn from history, imbibe its lessons and use it to show us how to light the future.
Of all the various *punk genres and subgenres, which one would you like to live?
Ah…as an asthmatic with acute allergies, and being multiracial…let’s go with cyberpunk. Sucks? Yeah. But they have antihistamines and AC. There’s a real adventuresome outlook lol.
2015 was a busy year for you–two books published just a few months apart! Would you tell us a bit about them and that process?
Both are in the Legacy Universe, where an alien element mutated a Missouri city, but each book is set forty years apart. An Unsubstantiated Chamber is in that city, the Rail, in 1886, and begins to tell the tale of the Rail’s darkest days. Anybody in history class ever get told about the Rail from 1884 to 1905? Look at it that way, as history and you have dusted off a time confessing what happened in those days after Heroes were slain by the government. The other tale, Perilous Ping, is a short story in Asia. The Sky War has come, and far from the Rail a new hero will be made, very reluctantly. I like writing things in different orders, not unlike George Lucas starting Star Wars in the middle of things. As time passes I get to fill in the historical gaps.
Your stories fuse steampunk and superheroics. What inspired this blend of genres?
Loving superhero comics and understanding they inspire. It did for me as a kid looking for role models in a world where men primarily pursue cash and pleasure. Superheroes, done well, teach hope, law, right, camaraderie and bravery. But while searching for the next RPG story to run, I came up blank wanting to generate my own hero universe, but divergent from Marvel and DC. A dream as simple as a steam locomotive passing by me clinched it. Victorian Justice Society! Then it hit me, as many things in comics bugged me (no one stays dead, retconning). Why not make time pass, and show how the legacy of the first Heroes not only changes things, but how it rises and falls.
You often urge readers to know their alternate history. For those who may be unfamiliar with the term, can you give us the William J. Jackson definition of “alternate history”?
I’m glad you asked, because I watch a movie, right? I exit the theater, and hear kids talking about say, Star Wars. They begin comparing scenes in the film with actual events, what they know of history, etc. But! Come to the average Joe with a direct history question and the eyes roll. People react like they’ve been transported back to high school exam time. Humans relate better, in a way, to heavy subjects indirectly. Know alt just, and either way, you suck up some history. Then, the person is more open to real history.
What are the challenges of writing alternative history?
Research. Also, research! It takes time from writing, so often it is as frustrating as it is instructive.
You’re active on Wattpad. What has your experience been like?
Great! I never thought Down Jersey Drive-shaft would get over 600+ eyes on it thus far. And as my first dieselpunk story I worried how that community would view it. For those who read it by the way, it’s about to go down! Just saying…
How did you end up getting involved with the Writerpunk group and Writerpunk Press?
The Duchess of Deco, Dame of Diesel, Holly Gonzalez! She pointed the way, and I’m grateful getting a nod from a great writer like her to join Writerpunk.
What anthology are you helping with or hoping to help with? What inspired you to work on this specific project?
Writerpunk is doing one taking punk versions of classic literature. I just joined up when word went out, AND just finished Kafka’s The Metamorphosis. Boom. Talk about timing. My tale will be the atompunk version, starting similar, then taking a left turn at kaiju-infested Albuquerque. Also, Scribblers Den is on its second anthology, Den of Antiquity, the connective tissue being short stories contain a Den, inn, etc. Jack Tyler. Scribblers Den, thesteampunkempire.com. Sign up, y’all. We discuss it all there, especially the craft.
What you have taken away from working with Writerpunk Press and the Writerpunk Facebook group?
A welcoming invite first off, and willing to take everyone’s ideas when questions are posted. I like that. But then, artists are more democratic than other folks.
Do you have anything else you want to tell our adoring public or add to this interview in any way?
Read indie. Review indie. Tell your friends about punk genres, indie authors. Drop info at small bookstores.
William J. Jackson is a dreamer, writer and fine purveyor of alternate worlds. He waxes and wanes between realities, bringing back tales of hope and daring for the bored, gray masses. Swing by Twitter, Facebook, or his blog to find out more about his work.