Clockwork Carabao

At some point in February (or was it March?), before the craziness began and I was thrown into a den of psychotic little Voldemorts, I had a story in mind that I wanted to send out. It had gone through several revisions, at least three of which changed the entire story itself. I had gone from writing about a girl who’d watched a mechanical bird fall from the sky to a girl’s first time siphoning gases from a volcano. I admit, both are still viable ideas to work with, and more than likely I’d probably get back to them at some point.

But it turns out I was having a bit more fun with Hati and her rather engineer-y mind. And besides, who wouldn’t want to tinker around with a mechanical carabao?

Fast forward a couple months later and here I am, sitting and writing about the anthology my short story is going to be in!

Corie and Sean Weaver at Dreaming Robot Press have been superstars, and after three years of having published the Young Explorer’s Adventure Guide, they’re at it again! Next year, the 2018 Young Explorer’s Adventure Guide is set to be released, with my short story “Clockwork Carabao” as part of the fantastic list of children’s science fiction stories. It may not be my first time having been published by DRP, and certainly not my first time writing about my steampunk sandbox, but it’s always exciting to have the opportunity to see my work in print.

And I swear the covers keep getting better and better!

About the 2018 Young Explorer’s Adventure Guide:

“When I was a child, the school library had a Girls’ Section, which included fairy tales, and a Boys’ Section, which included all the science fiction. Things have changed, of course, but not enough. There is a strong need for science fiction, as opposed to fantasy, aimed at girls, especially in the middle grades. This anthology is an important contribution to the effort to fill that need, and I’m delighted to be a part of it.”~ Nancy Kress, winner of six Nebulas, two Hugos, a Sturgeon, and the John W. Campbell Memorial Award

We’ve got another great collection of 24 stories from amazing authors, ranging from Nebula and Hugo winners to relative newcomers to the field. Our characters are white, black, asian, latino. Human and robot. Everyone belongs here.

Help us make the fourth collection of the Young Explorer’s Adventure Guide a reality.

To participate in the Kickstarter, click hereAny donation helps. We are so close to our goal!

Party up in hurr.

On top of that, to help promote the Kickstarter, we’re having a YEAG author party! Feel free to hop onto the discussion on Facebook. I will definitely be there tonight, June 29 from 6-9 pm EST, posting a few things about life, the universe, and everything. (But really, I’ll probably be doing random posts about writing and steampunk and science fiction video games…)

Click the image to go to the author party page on Facebook!

Come find me on June 29 from 6 to 9 pm EST! I’ll try to be interesting. Key word “try.” (Or, you can just say hello by leaving a message on one of my posts and I’ll have all sorts of warm fuzzies for having your support :D).

Here’s a sneak peek to my short story, “Clockwork Carabao”!

The mechanical carabao was the strangest contraption Hati had ever seen.

By that point in time, she’d already seen much more than a normal young girl with regards to mechanical animals. She’d even made a few of them herself and had been proud of the prize she’d won at the Junior Mechanicking Competition back at floating Rizal. The prize invention, a mechanical kitten that was also used as a pill dispenser, which her father and mother found quite charming, sat at home—a strange, metallic centerpiece on their large dining table.

And yet this carabao was something new.

– “Clockwork Carabao” by Marilag Angway

I wonder what my engineering friends would think of a mechanical carabao…

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Episode 4: Boneshaker by Cherie Priest with Marilag Angway and James DeBruicker

Another Reblog! Seriously, Meg @ La Foi Aveugle is amazing, and kudos to her for taking the time and getting this audio edited!

In this episode, we discuss Cherie Priest’s Boneshaker, a steampunk zombie adventure (yes, you heard me) taking place in Seattle during the American Civil War (yes, you heard me again). Steampunk has always been near and dear to my heart, considering I write in this subgenre so much!

Source: Episode 4: Boneshaker by Cherie Priest with Marilag Angway and James DeBruicker

Judging Book Covers #3: Silk by Caitlin Kiernan

I know, I know. I’ve taken a short blogging hiatus and I come back with a reblog instead, lol! I promise some more updates in the next couple of days, but this is just as important, promise!

My friend Meg @ Le Foi Aveugle has been pretty busy starting up her first podcast, and I’m so excited for her! This particular podcast is all about books, and I had the pleasure of being a guest for these next two episodes. On episode 3, we discuss the book Silk by Caitlin KiernanIf you like podcasts, or, well, like books in general and want something to listen to in the background while you do other things, hop on over to the Judging Book Covers Podcast and have a listen!

Listen on iTunes, Stitcher, or where ever you listen to podcasts: iTunes | Stitcher | Soundcloud | Google Play| Pocket Cast| RSS Feed Word of the Day: Weird For episode 3 I welcome two new guests, James DeBruicker and Marilag Angway! We discuss Silk by Caitlin Kiernan, which is a darker book than the previous two […]

via Episode 3: Silk by Caitlin Kiernan with James DeBruicker and Marilag Angway — Ramblings of Blind Faith

Chasing Volcanoes: A Czech Translation

seaisoursOnce upon a time (re: a year and a half ago), I wrote a steampunk story that revolved around a destroyed Northern Philippines (speculative volcanic eruptions and the like). I sent it out, I squeed about finding a home for it (many thanks to the wonderful editrixes Jaymee Goh and Joyce Chng, and publisher Bill Campbell at Rosarium Publishing for the acceptance!), I squeed again when it got illustrated (by Pear Nuallak), and I practically did a funny little dance in the middle of my living room when it finally, finally, FINALLY got published.

(I did another funny dance at the local B&N soon after I saw it on a scifi anthology shelf…but I swear I didn’t cause that much of a scene!)

And while I am grateful that this particular story went out into the world amidst critiquing eyes and steampunk enthusiasts, I am still wonderfully surprised at the feedback over “Chasing Volcanoes.” I certainly didn’t expect to get an email about it–and the rest of the The Sea is Ours anthology–being translated into Czech. The fact that the title of said Czech book IS a translation of “Chasing Volcanoes” has gone above and beyond any expectation I have with the stories I’ve written.

But there you go. It’s happened. I’m squeeing again. I’m writing about it again.

Thanks to Jan Kravčík at Gorgon Books, “Chasing Volcanoes” has got a Czech coating. And honestly, that cover is beautiful. While I know nothing in the Czech language (well, correction, I now know what “Kroceni Sopek” means), I am truly astounded–and excited–at the increasing readership, both for my story (because honestly, why wouldn’t I be excited that my work goes out there?) and for the wonderful fellow Southeast Asian authors I’ve shared the anthology with.

Now, if only I’d known about this translation BEFORE I’d gone to Praha last summer. I suppose maybe next time (because there most certainly will be a next time!) I visit Prague I’ll try to find my way into a bookshop.

Anyway, for the Czech readers out there, watch out for Kroceni Sopek, coming to you in a few weeks!

Writing Wednesdays #6: Prompt Exchange

Of course it’d be me who ends up with a romance prompt. Leave it to my writing voldies to drag a kissing story out of me. And then make me end it in a TRAGEDY.

I’m getting way too ahead of myself, though.

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This week, I had the writing voldies think up different prompts, which would then be thrown into a hat (or, in my case, a basket), and then they would randomly grab a prompt written by either themselves or by someone else. To keep it interesting (since I have no idea whether their prompts would be vague, obscene, or uninspiring), I added some of my own.

Amusingly enough, a bunch of my own prompts got picked out of the basket, and I was right glad that one of my voldies had to do a poem about cookies. Right. Glad.

Anyway, I ended up with one of my eighth grader’s prompts. And I spent a great deal of time telling her how much I hated her for having me write a bad romance. With a tragic ending.

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Write a romance story that ends in a tragic event. What happens to the girl/boy that is left behind? What do they do after the tragedy? Or are they both dead?

Oath and Blood

“Better return that,” the knight warned, her dark eyes narrowed into dangerous slits. “I can see your scrawny shadow from all the way over here.”

The thief chuckled. “I should be flattered to be watched by you of all people.”

The knight grunted. “It’s my job, you cretin. Put it back.”

The “it” in question had been a priceless heirloom handed down from one Mage King to another. Strangely enough, while the artifact itself–a ring of potentially combustive power–had tons of magic, it couldn’t be protected by magic. Which explained why Cala was stuck guarding the Ring while the rest of her mates were at the new queen’s coronation.

How could she even explain what San was thinking?

“I trust none but the Queen’s Champion, Cala, you know that.”

Sure, Cala had seen the logic to that. The problem with guarding the most sought-after relic in the kingdom was that many thieves would test the waters and attempt a theft in the middle of the coronation. Guards would be too focused on the new Queen San, and rightly so.

The Ring was too tempting, though. Not even the most notorious thief could stop himself from its attempted pilfering.

Cala could take on any thief. She knew the one standing before her, much more than she knew the queen. And Cala knew this thief’s weakness.

She knew it because it was her weakness, too. Sort of.

“Come here, you felon,” Cala growled.

Corvin complied, taking the lady kngiht into his arms and placing a gentle kiss on her nose before crushing his lips onto hers.

Breathless didn’t even cut it. She was definitely in trouble.

“I’m sworn by blood oath, love,” Cala said. “You shouldn’t have come.”

“I know,” he whispered. “But it was time. And you were worth it.”

Cala was no delicate flower. Yet she couldn’t stop her tears. She pulled him down again for another kiss. She didn’t want it all to end. It would, though. It had to. She could feel the blood oath tugging at her, compelling her to do what she did not want to do.

“It’s fine. Do it,” he whispered, softly, sadly. “I forgive you. And I–”

The blade went through, silencing Corvin before anything else could be said.

Cala watched her lover slowly fall, and she looked at the Ring. The Mage Ring that needed protecting.

Damn the queenshe thought. Damn her and the bloody throne and the blood oath.

Damn the magic from preventing her to take her own life.

She looked at the ring again and shifted her stance. She could hear another thief coming.

It would be a long night ahead.


On a lighter note, the same eighth grader ended up with my “fairy princess wants to be an astronaut” prompt, and she totally drew the fairy princess character!

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I cannot with my writing voldies sometimes.