MFT Guest: Interview with Cindy Spencer Pape

Today we have Cindy Spencer Pape who is the author of Steam & Sorcery. I’m super excited to have her on for the My Favorite Things Event!  

Also you could win Steam & Sorcery, along with other Carina Steampunk titles at the giveaway post.  You can get extra entries by commenting on this post.  

First of all, thanks to Candace for having me here today. I love the “My Favorite Things” as a premise for a blog. It’s so upbeat and cheerful. Since books are also one of my very favorite things, I’m delighted to be here.

I thought it was an excellent way to celebrate the coming of summer and my birthday (the end of June) by celebrating ‘my favorite things’!  

Can you tell us a bit about yourself and Steam & Sorcery

I live in southern Michigan with two college-age sons and one husband. Also two oversized dogs and a rescue iguana. My professional background was in wildlife education, but now I write full-time.  

You can find me online here: 

Website: http://www.cindyspencerpape.com 

Blog: http://cindyspencerpape.blogspot.com/ 

Newsletter group:http://groups.yahoo.com/group/cspapenewsgroup/ 

Twitterhttp://twitter.com/CindySPape 

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/pages/Cindy-Spencer-Pape-Books/102207923194253

Steam & Sorcery is book 1 of the Gaslight Chronicles at Carina Press, and is a little bit of everything: historical romance, science fiction, fantasy, horror, and steampunk. The books are centered around the Order of the Round Table, the descendants of Arthur’s knights, who are still hard at work defending Queen and country from threats like vampyres and rogue wizards.

Here’s the official blurb:

Sir Merrick Hadrian hunts monsters, both human and supernatural. A Knight of the Order of the Round Table, his use of magick and the technologies of steam power have made him both respected and feared. But his considerable skills are useless in the face of his greatest challenge, guardianship of five unusual children. At a loss, Merrick enlists the aid of a governess. Miss Caroline Bristol is reluctant to work for a bachelor but she needs a position, and these former street children touch her heart. While she tends to break any mechanical device she touches, it never occurs to her that she might be something more than human. All she knows is that Merrick is the most dangerously attractive man she’s ever met—and out of reach for a mere governess. When conspiracy threatens to blur the distinction between humans and monsters, Caroline and Merrick must join forces, and the fate of humanity hinges upon their combined skills of steam and sorcery…

The description really makes the book sound amazing! 
 
Did you have to do any type of research for your novel?

I actually did do quite a bit. Most of the details are historically accurate, except where I specifically tailored them to have changed based on the technology that bloomed after the invention of Charles Babbage’s Analytical Engine (computer.) So the technology is different, and some of the social attitudes have modified to reflect that, but the clothes, social structure, and even some of the events, like the Crystal Palace Exhibition are authentic to 1851.

That really is awesome!  I love it when authors try to stay historically accurate.  But to be honest, I really don’t know when they aren’t unless it’s something blatantly obvious.  I did get in a long discussion about the Analytical Engine with my brother a couple weeks ago.  I was surprised at how far technology really went in those days.  In the Steampunk books I tend to never know how much is really realistic.
 
Did you have any say when it came to your book cover? 

At Carina, we fill out a pretty extensive form, then we sit back and let the cover wizards do their work. I must say, I’d have had Caroline’s hair up. She tries so hard to be a proper governess. But I love that they included her glasses. I also love the overall look they’ve given my Gaslight Chronicles series.


What’s your favorite book turned TV/movie adaption? 

Much Ado About NothingIt’s hard to pick just one. I love the Kenneth Branagh/Emma Thompson version of Much Ado About Nothing, and Thompson’s take on Sense and Sensibility.I really liked SyFy’s The Dresden Files, though I do wish they’d stuck closer to the books.

The Dresden Files - The Complete First SeasonI think I have a hard time with a lot of the book turned to movies because they are almost always way different.
 
What made you decide to write Steampunk?  

I love everything about it. I’ve always liked mashing up genres, so mixing SF and historical romance, both genres I love, was a natural for me. I also added fantasy and horror elements, along with a little King Arthur. Blending all of that was just plain fun.

I agree!  It’s like a mixture of all my favorite elements in a story!  Love it!


Names are very important to a story, but not always easy to come up with.  How did you come up with the names of the characters in your story? 

 Most of the women in this series have names that come from my family history or my husband’s. Merrick is just a name I’ve always wanted to use for a hero, and here was the hero it suited perfectly. As to the children, I just picked historically appropriate names I thought suited the characters.


If you could meet any author, dead or alive, who would you most want to meet? 

20,000 Leagues Under the Sea [Illustrated]Wow, again it’s hard to pick just one. Maybe Jules Verne?  Lewis Carroll? Jane Austin? Mark Twain with his wicked sense of humor?

What is your favorite thing to do other then writing? 

Reading, of course.  I also love the outdoors, especially in summer, and swimming is my favorite form of exercise, though cruising thrift shops is a close second.

Reading and thrift shops!  You sound like my kind of gal!

If you could have a super power what would pick?

Healing seems to crop up in a number of my books, so I think that would be my first choice.

That’s a new one!  But I love it!  That would be a great power, but I think I’d feel awfully responsible for healing everyone I could so I’d be spending all my time doing that.  


What can we see from you in the future?  Is there anything you can tell us about? 

Midsummer DreamsWell, the next Gaslight Chronicles story, a novella called Photographs & Phantoms, is already out at Carina Press, and is a FREE download. I also have a new book out at Ellora’s Cave, titled Midsummer Dreams. In August, Carina will release the third book in my Urban Arcana (paranormal romance) series, Motor City Wolf. I also have the next Urban Arcana and a Christmas Gaslight Chronicles novella under submission to Carina, so I’m keeping my fingers crossed. This fall, I’ll hopefully be wrapping up my Holiday Hearts series at Ellora’s Cave with a Halloween story.

You’ve been busy!
Thanks for stopping by Cindy! 

Again, thanks so much for inviting me to come play! It was great fun chatting with you.

In case you missed me mentioning it above, you could win this book and several other Steampunk books, just head over to the giveaway post.  You can earn extra entries by commenting on this post as well.

This is just the beginning of this great event!  For the schedule of The Favorite Things event check out the schedule post.  And make sure you head over to My Bookish Ways to see what she has going on today as well!
Thanks for subscribing!
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Comments

  1. Great interview!

    I hadn’t heard of this series before. I’m kind of new to the whole steampunk genre so it’s good to hear about more books to check out. This sounds really good though! I haven’t heard of a story centered around the knights of the round table.

    Will definitely be checking out. Thanks for the interview and info! :)

    ~ Sarah ♥ I’m Loving Books

  2. Cindy,

    Congratulations on your new series. I’ve heard a lot of great things about Steam & Sorcery today at Long and Short Romance were the theme was about Steampunk. Just thought you’d like to know. Your book was the buzz or new reads to check out.

    I wish you the very best!!

  3. I got Photographs and Phantoms just yesterday for my Kindle app. But I am really looking forward to Steam and Sorcery. The description sounds like lots of fun. I haven’t heard of this series, but I definitely want more. Thank you so much. By the way, that Midsummer Dreams cover is WOW, just WOW!

    Extra entry-
    Already posted here:
    http://www.candacesbookblog.com/2011/05/mft-steampunk-giveaway-of-5-books-open.html?showComment=1306295462231#c2880773944478190760

  4. Cindy,

    Are you feeling cyber stalked…it’s me again! =D First, you know I’m totally hooked after Photographs and Phantoms. The Gaslight Chronicles is my new must have!!!

    Oh, and I TOTALLY love Much Ado About Nothing (so did my husband). Even have it on DVD.

    Congratulations, and I wish you much success.

    ReneeRearden(at)yahoo(dot)com

  5. Wonderful interview! Cindy you and Steampunk were two forces of nature destined to meet. I’m calling Steampunk a force of nature because it has the power to revise history and time travel. You can’t beat that!
    XXOO Kat

  6. Congrats on your Best Book win Cindy!!! :) and thanks for the interview :)I always love getting a peek at the author behind the awesome lol. I’m very new to the steampunk genre so I look forward to reading yours!

    (and this is my extra entry into the contests pleaseeeee) lol

  7. I love the title of this book – steam and sorcery just go together, don’t they?!
    This is my extra entry in the contest:)
    jwitt33 at live dot com

  8. I recently read “Photograph and Phantoms” and I loved It. I can’t wait for more!

    extra entry for giveaway

    Morganlafey86(at)aol(dot)com

  9. I’ve really enjoyed the work you’ve done in other genre’s Cindy, so looking forward to your Steampunk :).

    extra entry to win

    pams00 @ aol.com

  10. I’ve had Photographs and Phantoms on my Kindle waiting to be read for a while now. I almost always download anything that’s free if it looks interesting. I can’t wait to see how Cindy does steampunk. Plus, she’s a prolific author and that’s really exciting!

    Extra entry!
    mnchapm2@mail.usf.edu

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