Jane Austen gets steampunked

“I never expected to end up like this.

“I woke up one morning in a tiny bed, another girl sleeping next to me. There was no heat in the room and the only light fixtures were the burned out candles on the nightstand and the windows letting in the sunlight. My things were missing. My purse, MP3 player, keys, phone, diary—gone. I was no longer in my room filled with posters and books. All of that was replaced with bare walls and a cold hardwood floor. There was no heat in the room and the only light fixtures were the burned out candles on the night stand and the windows letting in the sunlight. And instead of my sweatpants and oversized night shirt was a long nightgown that I rarely wore. Not one of those silky night dresses, but one of those gunny sack dresses from the 1800s.

“I hate unsilky thin fabrics.

“My head raced. I had to be dreaming. I ran to the window and realized I wasn’t. In place of my townhouse neighborhood was a field of green with trees and a gray, cloudy sky. Instead of sounds of sirens and cars on the driveway was a quiet breeze and the twittering of birds. I was really there.”

This is the beginning of my new novel that I intend to finish with the help of Camp NaNoWriMo, or the spring and summertime camp for people on the National Novel Writing Month organization. It’s the very first novel in a Jane Austen inspired trilogy, but this time…

Jane gets steampunked.

My own Elena "Ellie" Benson costume I created.

My own Elena “Ellie” Benson costume I created.

Here’s how it works: A woman from modern day Florida, USA wakes up one morning inside a world called The Country. It’s a sanctuary for women who want to get away from real life in the real world, living in Jane Austen’s time with a Victorianesque feeling to the technologies. After all, it was only years after Austen died when Victoria was crowned Queen of England.

Ellie Benson/”Jane B” shares the same wish with some of the other Austen girls: they want out. Her roommate Marianne makes contraptions to escape. Her good friend Emma House wants to set her up with a man to get out of that world fast.

And the mysterious Mr. Fitzwilliam desperately wants Jane to stay and marry him, despite his “Mr. Darcy” acts of foolish pride.

Either way, Ellie Benson is trapped. Until a time where she can be happy with herself.

Coming soon… my first attempt at a science fiction novel, told in three parts. Northanger Rasberry Royale. Chamomile for Sensibility. Peppermint Persuasion.

I’m starting with Northanger because that’s the fun one. My absolute favorite of all the Austen women is Catherine Morland, for she is one brave soul out to win the heart of the flirtatious Mr. Tilney and expose the horrors of the Abbey. Who doesn’t love that?

It also goes with the creepy steampunk theme of the first novel I’m writing.

Look for a chapter from the novel starting next month!

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