Frozen Skies: Arctic Dieselpunk RPG

British game writer Stephen Hughes has been working for a long time on Frozen Skies, a role-playing game in a dieselpunk/science-fantasy setting. The location is Alyeska, a frozen northern land where human settlers struggle against nature and against non-human indigenes. In a few places there are also precious remnants of an ancient civilization waiting to be discovered.

After checking the game’s Kickstarter page, I have made the following observations:

Grim adventurers? Check
Propeller planes? Check
Sky pirates? Check
Outposts in peril? Check
The Thing from Another World? Check(?)
Lost dark secrets? Check
James Bigglesworth? Well, no, but he would certainly feel at home here.
Tracked ice juggernauts? No, not as far as I saw. Stephen, that’s a void worth filling.

My verdict: This bodes well

Take a look yourself — link to Kickstarter >>>


The Return of Johnny Bornewald

After a long hiatus, I’m finally back to normal fiction writing. A few weeks ago, I began looking closely at the planned stand-alone sequel to the dieselpunk spy adventure The Ice War. After deciding that it would deal with protagonist Johnny Bornewald’s experiences after the end of the Republican Rebellion (after all, every war must end one day), when he is a decorated badly injured veteran living modestly at the German North Sea coast. I soon rediscovered Johnny’s “voice” and the story began telling itself in my mind.

Today I finished chapter 1 with a quote from the Book of Job: “[The warhorse] paws in the valley, and rejoices in his strength. He gallops into the clash of arms. He mocks at fear, and is not frightened.”

Podcast: Funderingar kring ång- och dieselpunk

Summary in English: A Swedish podcast about what is steam- and dieselpunk. My debut in podcasting.

Den gångna helgen var min dotter Elin och jag på Silwersteam, en steampunkkongress i Eskilstuna. Där blev vi ombedda att delta i Fandompodden #49 som tar en titt på företeelserna ångpunk och dieselpunk. Bland annat använder jag Miyazaki-filmerna Howl’s Moving Castle och Laputa som exempel på vad de två genrerna kan erbjuda, och förklarar varför jag gillar att författa dieseläventyr. Länk till podcasten >>>

Artist: Ian McQue

“The Ice War”: Lost and Found

An event in the alternate timeline of The Ice War

In May 1939 the Russian military cloudship Dmitri Donskoi foundered with all hands in the icy wilderness of the southern continent Alba*. Complications caused by the ongoing Republican Rebellion and the impending austral winter delayed search and rescue attempts. When spring arrived five months later, an ice-tracker of the Danish Canopus-patruljen gendarmerie discovered the wreck.

Artist: Mike Doscher. Click on the picture for a larger version.

*Alba: A alternate continent around the south pole, being a larger and more dramatic substitute for Antarctica. It is the location of my dieselpunk spy adventure The Ice Warlink >>>

“The Ice War”: Meanwhile in Europe

The Republican Rebellion is a major 1930/40s European war in my dieselpunk spy novel The Ice War (link >>> ). In the book the Central European front is merely mentioned in radio news bulletins, but developments there cause serious problems for the protagonists during their mission in icy Alba on the other side of the globe. This photo depicts a Republican scout car in the vicinity of a battle in Sachsen (that, is Saxony in the south-eastern German lands) in 1940.

Dieselpunk Engineering Lab

Dieselpunk is characterized by, among other things, fanciful machinery and vehicles. Those gadgets must, however, originate in some place. Well, here it is: the archetypical dieselpunk engineering lab with, where you see Doctor Zarkov being busy with developing the repulsor device. (Those are used in cloudships in my novel The Ice War.)

Artist: Colton Dubell. Click on the picture for a much larger version.