Steampunk inspiration and resources

Want to Help Shape My Kickstarter Campaign?

I am getting ready to submit my Kickstarter project to the powers that be for review. Everything I have been reading advises running the proposal by friends and family, and I wanted to include my readers in the discussion as well. I have pasted my project description below, which does not include all the information about contribution levels, rewards, etc.

This is the most important part of my Kickstarter project profile so any feedback would be appreciated! I am hoping to launch the campaign sometime next week, the trip would be in August and the zine would be out by the end of 2014. I have the rough sketch of the sticker design finished but nothing that is ready for the web just yet.

An important part of this project is the chance for backers to suggest content and places to visit. I am also not going to use any advertising, but I will be offering a chance for people to submit “shout-outs” to people, bands, books, etc at one of the contribution levels.

Project Description:

I found my way to Steampunk in 2009, and I just keep finding more and more to love!

In case you don’t know, Steampunk is an aesthetic that draws from Victorian futurism, classic science fiction and the endless imaginations of designers, builders, artisans, illustrators and authors all over the world. It has its roots in Victorian-era England, and today’s London is rife with opportunities for Steampunk inspiration and exploration.

Join me on my journey to find London’s steamiest spots!

And along the way you will get access to articles about the history and technology of the Victorian era to get your gears going, plus beautiful photos and reviews of attractions, fun facts and biographies about some of Steampunk’s favorite figures like Charles Darwin and H. G. Wells, and more!

I am and American who will already be living abroad after a summer on an archaeological dig, so the biggest piece of my travel expenses (getting across the pond) is already taken care of. With your help, I will be able to explore London for one month and send you tons of information that is relevant to Steampunk and the Victorian era that can help deepen your knowledge and connection to this amazing genre.

Here are just a few of the places I would take you to…

The Victoria and Albert Museum
The Home of Charles Darwin
The Tower of London
The Piccadilly Market for steamy antiques
The former site of the Crystal Palace (Great Exhibition)
Tea rooms and pubs with a Steampunk or Victorian themes
The Queen’s Gallery for Longitude Punk’d
The Kew Bridge Steam Museum (Formerly the London Museum of Water and Steam, newly reopened)

and so much more!

So why do I think I can pull this off?

I started a Steampunk blog, www.forwhomthegearturns.com, in 2013, so I have already been thinking, researching and writing about Steampunk under my pseudonym, Phoebe Darqueling for awhile. Check it out if you want to know more about my style and the writing I have already done.

My background is in Art History, Anthropology (BA) and Museum Studies (MA), which gives me a strong foundation for writing about a cultural phenomenon with artistic expressions. I am also a great lover of science fiction, both classic and contemporary, and so I have a grasp of the literary side as well as the artistic side of this unique genre.

What You Get

  • In-depth articles on H.G. Wells, Sherlock Holmes, Jack the Ripper, Charles Darwin, Around the World in 80 Days, Egypt in the Victorian Era and Victorian Ghost Stories. I call these kinds of articles “Sourcebooks” and I have already done some for the blog. Here are a couple you can check out: https://forwhomthegearturns.com/2013/11/22/steampunk-sourcebook-captain-nemo/ and https://forwhomthegearturns.com/2014/03/04/steampunk-sourcebook-hellboy/
  • Interviews with London-based authors like Bia Helvetti (new book launching in September!), Chris Wooding (Ketty Jay series) and more
  • “My Day at the Piccadilly Market” and “My Weekend at the Asylum” feature pieces
  • Exclusive reviews of Victorian-themed pubs and tea houses
  • Exclusive Steampunk London Map
  • Exclusive museum and exhibit reviews to help shape your own visits!
  • And a chance to suggest content! If there is a site I just have to visit or a subject you just need to know more about I will do my best to add backer-driven content whenever possible. Got a band I should see? Or are you an artist with a steamy side? Are you hosting a cosplay event that you think I should attend? Let me know!

Plus I have lots of fun rewards like stickers, die-cuts and original artwork to offer my backers!

You can check out the Rewards page for more details, but in short I have stickers, die-cuts, original artwork to offer in addition to the final zine publication. I am not going to include any advertising, but you can also get a “shout out” into the zine for any individual, books, band, artist, business, etc that you want (including your own!).

You can go to http://www.ForWhomTheGearTurns.com/original-artwork/ to see pics of my own artwork.

What You Pay For

I can get myself to London and I have already sold some of my art to pay for my room and board while I am there, so I am just looking for that last push to make the finished product into something really polished and worth reading.

  • Admission Fees and Oyster Card– Going to museums and getting around the city is expensive, so I need your help to get me in to all of the museums and events that I am going to report on.
  • Cover Art by Lost Bohemian– I want this publication to be both informative and eye-catching, so I have commissioned cover art by an artist friend.
  • Text Editing and Layout- It is always good to have a second pair of eyes look over anything you write, and the layout needs to be handled by a pro because of all the images. My brother is an amazing photographer and designer and he will be handling the layout and photo editing. You can check out his work at http://www.dansheldonphotography.com
  •  “My Other Car is an Airship” Bumper Stickers- Printing and Shipping. I have designed a steampunk sticker and I want to offer it both to backers as well as being a gift for the people who help me along the way while I am in London.
  • Fees for services- Kickstarter, WordPress and Amazon Business

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