Airship Pirates and Formatting!

The title refers to the results of the poll last week.  There was definitely less voting last week but more viewers than normal, which is odd.  I will focus on that subject more in a little bit.

In book news, the manuscript completely finished and edited.  It now goes through the joys of formatting, yippee!  The Kindle formatting does not look too cumbersome, and a friend of mine is helping me with that (Hi Rose!) so it might be done before the one that goes to my publisher.  My publisher on the other hand needs the document in a VERY specific format, as once you send it that way, it goes through a computer program and spits out your e book in the various formats that it can publish in.  Due to the same attributes that allows it to publish in so many formats there can be no deviancy from its 96 page style manual, so that one is going to take a little longer to be done!  The good news is there is a certain amount of crossover from what both Kindle and my publisher want so next time I can start off with that format and not have this issue next time as much.

The next good book news is I got the first draft of the cover, and I am seriously impressed!  The artist is working on the second draft (I only had a few minor caveats) now.  It’s a mixed media piece, and does indeed feature a large floating island.

Now to go more into Airship Pirates as per the poll.

This book is vaguely modeled on the Renaissance era when the Medici family was creating all sorts of art and through commerce basically ruling Florence without actually being nobility.  In real life there were few pirates then (more privateers than anything else like Sir Francis Drake who is not horribly out of that time period) and there are other issues that would hurt the historical accuracy of this book.  Thankfully however, this is a fantasy book with floating islands and airships that fly solely due to the magical wood they use, so I am not exactly bound by history.

In the novel when the devastating events that you read in the first chapter happens (if you have not done so already go to the top of the page this blog is on, and click “Sample Chapter” and read it and then come back) some of the survivors hide in the world of air piracy in order not to die like the House Nemeni.  Although some of the floating islands can be large enough to have river commerce occur on the surface of the islands, most actual commerce happens between the various floating city states by airship.  Each noble family in this world has some ways inherited by them to break the Grand Laws of the universe, and one of them allows them to alchemically change wood, so it has different properties than normal.  That’s how the Bleedshot in the opening chapter is created.  The most highly prized wood however is cloudwood.

For whatever reason this wood allows a ship to rise, no matter how much weight is put in it.  You can anchor yourself to an island, but as long as the ship stays on the edges of an island it will remain floating.  If pushed into the center of an island or flying to close over it, it may slowly sink to the ground, but it would not crash.  Since this wood works regardless of weight, the only limit of what ships made of cloudwood can carry is how big the structure is.  This has caused some of the banking and other houses to make giant floating castle like citadels in the sky that have a cloudwood structure inside and a marble structure outside.  This is done mainly for intimidation or security, but does give them a rather large blind spot underneath them.

Some bastards of noble families and some Artists can shape wood or marble with their bare hands, and this allows pirates who have members form those families to “carve” a way into these ships or citadels with their bare hands, if they get close enough.  The most famous Pirate is a “Captain Bloodeyes” who has gained his moniker from forcing blood to mist around his eyes in a mask like form during combat, which inspires about as much fear into your opponents as setting your own beard on fire would.  There is only one Captain Bloodeyes at a time, and it is rumored to be a title passed on as opposed to just one person (otherwise, he has been alive for about 200 or so years, which is doubtful considering the life expectancy of a pirate).  The actual book will go more into how they do it (which includes clockwork grappling guns, creative cannon use, and overall rapier sharp wits) but I wanted to give you a small taste of what they do and what it is like this world.  There are islands known to harbor pirates, and if some of the larger noble families were to ever find out extinction would probably be upon them quickly.

Now onto my next poll:

What would you like me to write about next?  Here are my choices –

a) Ok, you said your artist was awesome, so do something about her.  Give her an interview, show any of her art relating to this series, highlight her work however you can.

b) So I here you are talking to other authors.  Give them an interview, I want to know some of the people you have been talking too, and more about what they do too.

c) Reveal more about the world. There was some votes about the Allmother, go into that more.

d) I am stupid and want to hear you complain about formatting more.

Also I got some email about people impressions about the book who had never read it before, but I would love to see some in the comments to other than those who participated last time.  I am looking at you Dave. 🙂


About mdkenning

E-book clockpunk fantasy author View all posts by mdkenning

5 responses to “Airship Pirates and Formatting!

  • Bethany

    I wish I could vote for all four options… even the “I am stupid” one.

  • Lady Rose

    grammar nazi wants me to point out that B. “So I here you are talking to other authors. Give them an interview, I want to know some of the people you have been talking too, and more about what they do too.” has the wrong hear. that said, any and all options are acceptable… well ok I know way more than I ever thought I would about formatting, for me I want everything else.

    That said, thanks for the shout out 🙂

  • amkenning

    SO EXCITED! The cover looks so good and I’m counting down till I finally get to read the rest of it.

    GO ahead and give the artist a shout out. She deserves it for the good work.

  • Shannondoa

    The cover art you showed us was amazing so I would love to see your shout out for the artist. After that I want to see more about the Allmother. When the Allmother is addressed then lets see an interview… I really don’t want to read about formatting problems unless the issues will cause a delay.

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