There’s a new Nyssa Glass book coming out soon! And to celebrate, I got the chance to ask author H. L. Burke about her steampunk series!
Nyssa and Ellis. Did you base them off of anyone?
They’re kind of “combination” characters. Pretty much all my romantic interests have a little bit of my husband in them because it keeps them interesting to me. Ellis has his easy going personality, sense of humor, and intelligence. However, Ellis also got my sense of playfulness and absolute fascination with his beloved from me. I identify with him a lot. Nyssa actually reminds me a bit of my daughter, if she were a teen, practical and sarcastic but kind hearted and determined to do the right thing, but I didn’t realize this until after I wrote her.
Why Steampunk? What draws you into this type of world?
It’s pretty. That’s a lot of it. I love the aesthetic. Nyssa was originally conceived as a deconstructed “adventure game.” I play a lot of computer games where the character is dropped in a world and has to find their way out by solving puzzles, and I kind of went backward from that premise. Steampunk, with its complicated gadgets, makes for a lot of really cool puzzles/obstacles. Myst kind of has a little bit of Steampunk feel, and that series has always been a lot of fun.
Why did you decide to write a Christmas theme novelette?
Nyssa’s stories are so fast paced that they haven’t really given me a lot of time to stop and play with the characters’ relationship. Nyssa and Ellis have a blossoming romance, so I wanted to give them a story that was all about them being in love … and Christmas with its expectations for a new couple and sentimentality provided the perfect framing device for this.
Will we see more of Nyssa and Ellis in the future or do you plan to stop with Electric Heart?
I don’t want to commit to more after Electric Heart because some of the happenings in that story mess with ongoing premises. If it does continue a lot will be different. I did have a fun idea where Nyssa and Theo start a school for other orphan children with the intent to teach them mechanical trades … but they end up fighting crime like Batman. It’s a cool idea, but I’ve got a lot of projects buzzing around, so it is hard to say if that one will win my focus next.
Can you tell us anything about Electric Heart?
Nyssa Glass and the Electric Heart brings the series full circle. We go back to New Taured, and the characters have to face some unresolved issues from their pasts. I also separate Nyssa and Ellis early on in the story and make them carry their own halves of the tale … which they do not like at all, but since they are my characters I can torture them if I want to.
Pre Order Nyssa Glass’s Clockwork Christmas – Available on September 26th