Steampunk Summer: Bestseller Lindsay Buroker on Snow, Courting, and Creating a Series

A couple months ago, I read a great steampunk novella called Flash Gold.  I have to admit, I didn't know how steampunk was going to work in the snow of the Yukon, but it proved pretty quickly that it can and does work, at least when it's written by Lindsay Buroker.  Fresh plot, creative technology, believable action sequences, and enjoyable, relatable characters.

I knew immediately I had to get Lindsay Buroker to answer a few questions for Steampunk Summer.  Running on adrenaline and excitement, I sent her a message with my request and sat back to wait.

Then some interesting things happened.  Lindsay was named one of nine self-publishing authors to watch by marketing expert Jason Kong.  I saw Lindsay's name again, putting her in the spotlight for treating her fans to such cool things as character interviews.

Lastly, I saw Lindsay's name in a little place you might've heard of called the Amazon bestseller list in the steampunk category.  Adding all this to the only two things I knew about Lindsay - that her Facebook following is 100 times mine and she's an imaginative, talented writer - I wondered if my hopes of an interview were pure fantasy.

But like my other guest authors, Lindsay was thoroughly professional and unspeakably gracious to give up some of her free time to answer my questions on her highly successful Flash Gold Chronicles.  A huge thanks to Lindsay and away we go:

How did you decide to set a steampunk story in the Yukon snow?

I was almost in high school before I discovered fantasy as a genre. As a kid, I read tons of American historical fiction (especially if it had an animal in it) and found my way to Jack London (because, hello, wolves and sled dogs… so cool!). I read White Fang, Call of the Wild, and a number of his shorter works, and I guess the Yukon stuck in my mind. When I was thinking up Flash Gold, I knew I wanted to try something set on Earth, and for steampunk that tends to mean the 1800s. I’d always enjoyed frontier stories more than urban settings for my historical fiction, so I guess it was natural to do more of a Western (though maybe something set up there should be a Northern? :D).

(You can see why her stories have a great sense of humor - so does Lindsay.)  I liked Jack London growing up, too.  Did you start Flash Gold as a series, or did it grow into one?

I did have a series in mind, though I wasn’t sure how novellas would do, so I tried to make each one feel like a complete story, too, in case I didn’t get back to the setting for a while.

Do you have the whole series mapped out, or are you following it one novella at a time?

No, it definitely wasn’t mapped out. I figured things would end when Kali finished building her airship and when Cedar’s hunt for his nemesis ended (one way or another!), but I didn’t have a clear path laid out for the heroes to get from A to B.

Your characters have a very real feel to them in their emotions and the way they interact and relate to each other.  How fun was it to write characters who don't fall into the traps of making an instant connection or effortlessly falling for each other?

Thank you. I prefer a love story that develops over time — something that’s necessary, I suppose, if you’re going to make the relationship continue to evolve over a series. I do think it’s more interesting when there’s internal and external conflict that keeps the heroes from getting busy right away. As an author who enjoys sprinkling in humor, I find the awkwardness of the courting ritual fun to play with too. ;)

And fun to read.  In five words, what do fans of Flash Gold have to look forward to in the following installments of The Flash Gold Chronicles?

Five words? Uhmm. “Airship" (seeing Kali’s finished) and a "happily ever after" (or at least happily for now) for the heroes. :) I’m counting that as four words. With explanations. :P 

Just enough of a teaser.  Well played.

I highly recommend checking out Flash Gold, which is only the beginning of Kali's and Cedar's adventures.  (Don't knock the names - you'll fall in love with these characters faster than they fall for each other.)  Lindsay has several other series as well, all with striking covers and very fair prices, I might add.

To learn more about Lindsay and the numerous projects she's working on, visit her Facebook page.  She has links to free books there, too.


  1. Thanks for he interview. I've always wondered why Lindsay is so obsessed with snow. Almost all her books are set in cold, snowy climes. Now I know.

    1. Thanks for stopping by! I'm glad you enjoyed it. I thought the snowy climate was a great break from all the hot, dry, seaside, or mountainous places I read about.