1.- The interviewee
Jenny Schwartz is an Australian author, happily abusing her history degree by writing steampunk. Her setting for “The Bustlepunk Chronicles” is also her hometown, Perth. There’s a lot of history in Perth and a tradition of tall tales. Steampunk fits right in!
2.- The interview
2.1.- About Australia, Steampunk literature… and Steampunk Jewelry, of course.
Dear Jenny, we would like to thank deeply your time and interest. Let’s go ahead with the first question!
Q.- You studied Australian Social History at Murdoch University in Perth. Taking this into consideration your interest about historical fiction makes sense, but what why has specifically Steampunk -and not any other uchronic genre- attracted you?
A.- I joke that writing Steampunk lets me correct history’s mistakes. But if that was all I aimed at in my stories, I’d be writing “alternative history” fiction and not Steampunk. The appeal of steampunk is its anachronistic and punk edge. You can explore the issues of today in a time distant enough to allow for some romantic re-imagining.
Q.- Jenny, you are our first Australian interviewee. What can you tell us about the Steampunk scene in Australia and its evolution through time?
A.- Lots happens in Australia in a disjointed kind of way, so summarising is tough. I’d say we’re enthusiastically exploring questions of identity and history. We love the social aspect. Activities range from participation in events such as the Katoomba Winter Magic Festival to formal balls. Professor Von Explaino has a list of happenings and groups.
Q.- You are very active not only in the Australian Steampunk scene, but also in the international. In fact you will be coordinating the weekly #steampunkchat on Twitter at 9pm Fridays (New York time) this summer. Why staying updated regarding the international Steampunk activity is so important for you?