Friday, 22 May 2009

Steampunk fiction: The Time Machine of Guam

As has been pointed out elsewhere, there is an increasing awareness of steampunk literature, in the mainstream. However, there remain undiscovered delights in the clouds of the aethernet. I am endeavouring, as part of this Journal, to bring to wider attention little known works and works-in-progress which may be of interest to those outside of the sphere of influence of the behemoths known as Amazon and Google.

One such interesting site belongs to a fledgling author, whose name, due to the vagaries of the aethernet, may or may not be Ben Orchard.

Writing since a teenager, he admits his disorganisation, but, along with other short stories, continues to develop the concept central to his main story of The Time Machine of Guam. The Time Machine itself is not a conventional time-machine as generically understood, as the author states himself:

"The basis for the story is that at some point an empire is founded and called the Empire of Guam. The founding of this empire is done using the Time Machine, and the results are that most everyone ends up living in massive clock-work cities where the houses and shops are built on the gears and cogs of the clock-works, the people use the chains and pulleys that connect the cogs as transport, and all this is powered by massive steam-driven technology. Of course WHY this clock-work assembly exists or what purpose it serves is something that will be revealed in the story itself."
A fascinating concept, not wholly unrelated to Jay Lake's Mainspring, and it is to be hoped that the author will be able to complete this undertaking. Developments will be followed with great interest...

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