Again, another one from last Christmas.
Oh, hi. Back again I see? No, no. Don’t worry about those rope ladders, we’re not being invaded.
No, today, we have an interesting guest for you, Miss Heather Hiestand, writer of romance and steampunk stories such as her latest, Captain Andrew’s Flying Christmas. No, she’s not one of Santa’s elves but she’s could help him get around. *Points to roof* see, she’s all about early air travel—yes, almost like the contraptions my former master (yes I had one, centuries ago) tried to get me up in. Sorry. I think I’ll stay Earthbound.
Either way, I’m sure, should Santa show up early, he and my guest would have much to talk about. Anyway, she’s here to share a bit of history with us. Heather, you have the floor.
The story behind the Story
by Heather Hiestand
I adore Christmas stories and do my best to devote at least a couple of weeks in December to reading them each year. Being a writer, I also get ideas for holiday stories too. “Victoriana” my first published romance (and Christmas story!) came to me in complete form in a dream. It’s in the Holiday in the Heart anthology available electronically and in print. Last year, I wrote “Christmas a Go-Go” for Ellora’s Cave under my Anh Leod pseudonym and then this year published “Victoriana Adventure”—the January sequel to the original “Victoriana.”
This summer, I had bronchitis and it interrupted the flow of the Victorian-set Christmas romance novel I was writing. By the time I was well again, my toddler had given up napping and my free time was gone. I decided my brain needed something shorter than a full-length novel if I was going to ever get any writing done again (Tot playing at my feet quietly while I write? Not so much.) and I noticed there weren’t too many steampunk romance Christmas stories out there. Since I’ve already co-written one full-length steampunk novel, I thought I was just the writer to add to this sub-sub-erm-sub? genre.
The original idea came to me about a year ago, and the kernel was a girl finding a ladder waiting for her at her attic window. Above? An airship, with a life of possibility. Below, all the responsibilities of being a housemaid at Christmastime.
London, December 24, 1892
Linet Fenna shivered in her attic bedroom as she stared out the open window. Downstairs, all was merry and bright with evergreen branches, mistletoe and handmade garlands festooning trees and mantles. Under the eaves here, wind blew through a crack in the undecorated wall and rustled in the chimneys above.
A fever had made the first housemaid take to bed just after breakfast and Linet, the second housemaid, had been run ragged all day by her demanding mistress and her ever-arriving family. Now, finally done with work, she just wanted to stare at the stars and dream.
“Close the window,” Ann-Marie said, coughing from her iron bedstead in the darkest corner of the room.
“In a minute.” Linet took one last breath of chilly air and had her hand on the sill when she heard a metallic chugging in the distance. The sound came from outside, and wasn’t likely to be Father Christmas.
What are you stuffing into stockings this Christmas? Leave me a comment below.
One commenter will win an electronic copy of my sweet holiday romance, “Victoriana.”*
Heather Hiestand is the author of seven novels as well as many novellas and short stories. Her imagination keeps her entertained with romance, mystery and futuristic/fantasy story ideas, many of which eventually become words on a page. She lives in Washington State with her husband and son. For more information, see her website at http://www.heatherhiestand.com.
Captain Andrew’s Flying Christmas Blurb:
Housemaid Linet Fenna would rather be an air pirate than a servant. When she finds the ladder to an airship dangling outside her garret window on Christmas Eve, 1892, she ascends to the skies above London on her late father’s flagship dirigible, the Christmas. The new captain is someone she never expected to see again, a dangerous, sexy foe. Is the Fenna family nemesis offering Linet her heart’s desire or a dastardly trap?
Captain Andrew’s motivations are as foggy as the coal-soaked sky. Prime Minister Gladstone’s Blockaders, a horde of automen and a teenage girl named Hatchet want Linet to fail in her quest to discover what happened to her missing family, but she is determined to have a happy Christmas.
You can get Captain Andrew’s Flying Christmas at the follow places:
I love this premise, don’t you folks? Oh the romance of the Victorian age… 😉 Don’t forget to leave her a comment or question for a chance to win a copy of Captain Andrew’s Flying Christmas! Thanks for being with us, Heather, good luck with Captain Andrew–I mean, with your book about the Captain– (why is my minion looking at me like that? I didn’t say a word.) Have a great holiday!
*Giveaway has ended