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Thread: Is this Urban Fantasy?

  1. #1
    Searching for Wonderland jallenecs's Avatar
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    Is this Urban Fantasy?

    I have this really bizarre story idea that's been floating in my head for a few months now. Under normal circumstances, it would be considered a straightforward Urban Fantasy/paranormal romance: independent, capable woman pits herself against the supernatural, meets up with mysterious wizard with dark powers and great cheekbones, and sparks fly, at least when Death isn't waiting around every corner. You know, the usual.

    HOWEVER! In my mind, the whole thing is set in the Victorian era -- I'm thinking Reconstruction Era Savannah, GA, with occasional forays to the Outer Banks of the Carolinas. Yes, I know, having a female protag in that time period is problematic; I am actually looking forward to that aspect, and have some good ideas on how to have some fun with making it work.

    Obviously it doesn't qualify as contemporary fantasy, being set in the late 1860's. But does it qualify as Urban fantasy? Or is it just something weird? Has anybody read anything similar?

    thoughts? criticisms?
    Blackburn Gaslight Adventures - my steampunk internet audio drama

    Fortuna - my Space Pirates! audio drama

    This is my pen name on Facebook. And this is my pen name on Twitter.

    Blog Post for 06/05/15: Fun Friday: Even More Web Series

  2. #2
    Always learning virtue_summer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jallenecs View Post
    I have this really bizarre story idea that's been floating in my head for a few months now. Under normal circumstances, it would be considered a straightforward Urban Fantasy/paranormal romance: independent, capable woman pits herself against the supernatural, meets up with mysterious wizard with dark powers and great cheekbones, and sparks fly, at least when Death isn't waiting around every corner. You know, the usual.

    HOWEVER! In my mind, the whole thing is set in the Victorian era -- I'm thinking Reconstruction Era Savannah, GA, with occasional forays to the Outer Banks of the Carolinas. Yes, I know, having a female protag in that time period is problematic; I am actually looking forward to that aspect, and have some good ideas on how to have some fun with making it work.

    Obviously it doesn't qualify as contemporary fantasy, being set in the late 1860's. But does it qualify as Urban fantasy? Or is it just something weird? Has anybody read anything similar?

    thoughts? criticisms?
    Sounds interesting to me. I don't know if I'd call it urban fantasy. Possibly, but I don't think that's important. As long as you can identify the broad genre (fantasy) I don't think naming a specific subgenre matters as much.

  3. #3
    The Druid you're looking for Oberon89's Avatar
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    You might be able to swing it into steampunk if you make it a sort of alternate history and add a neat gadget or two—and I think that would be fascinating. Cherie Priest's Boneshaker would be good to take a look at: She has a female protagonist in a steampunk Seattle, where the Civil War in the east has dragged on for a looong time. Editors are on the lookout for smart steampunk these days, so that's something to think about.
    HOUNDED, HEXED, HAMMERED, TRICKED, and TRAPPED are now available from Del Rey. HUNTED comes out June 25, 2013.
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  4. #4
    Searching for Wonderland jallenecs's Avatar
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    I love the concept of steampunk, and enjoy reading it. But I can't quite get my brain to work in that direction. I like monsters and magic (mostly monsters); gadgets, whether steampunk or Star Trek, I just don't grok, not well enough to write about them.
    Blackburn Gaslight Adventures - my steampunk internet audio drama

    Fortuna - my Space Pirates! audio drama

    This is my pen name on Facebook. And this is my pen name on Twitter.

    Blog Post for 06/05/15: Fun Friday: Even More Web Series

  5. #5
    Grumpy writer and editor Absolute Sage Gillhoughly's Avatar
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    Write the story you want to write, the story YOU want to read, worry about the genre afterward. The cart before the horse thing can be counter-productive.

    My agent is shopping my latest proposal, which is urban fantasy/alternate history Victorian. There are airships, but no other radical gadgets, so it's only steampunk by a whisker. I'm having a hell of a lot of fun writing it and figure others will have fun reading it. That's all that matters to me.

    I spoke with her this weekend. Your post with this--

    You know, the usual.
    --reminded me of what she said. "The urban fantasy/paranormal market is still going strong, but with so many books out there it is harder and harder to find a fresh twist on things. Down the road there may well be a saturation point."

    "The usual" is your enemy. Go with your twist.

  6. #6
    Searching for Wonderland jallenecs's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the advice. I am actually leaning that direction myself. Right now, I've never felt more confident about my writing, that I've finally found my "groove," so to speak. And the more I think about it, the more I am sure that researching and writing a post-Civil-War-Reconstruction-Era-cum-monster-fighting-quasi-urban-fantasy story (wow, what a mouthful!) could be a TON of fun.
    Blackburn Gaslight Adventures - my steampunk internet audio drama

    Fortuna - my Space Pirates! audio drama

    This is my pen name on Facebook. And this is my pen name on Twitter.

    Blog Post for 06/05/15: Fun Friday: Even More Web Series

  7. #7
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    I'm doing a steampunk victorian urban fantasy in which Anthony Cornwall must find out who murdered Benjamin Disraeli before whoever did it can bring down the British Empire.

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