“Cyberpunk is a subgenre of science fiction in a near-future setting. Noted for its focus on “high tech and low life,” it features advanced science, such as information technology and cybernetics, coupled with a degree of breakdown or radical change in the social order.”
Thank you Wikipedia. I define this word first because dieselpunk got its name from cyberpunk. “Dieselpunk is a lowbrow art genre that combines the aesthetics of diesel-based technology influenced by the interwar period to the 1950s with futurist postmodern technology” (Thank you again, Wikipedia). It might be called “Decopunk” sometimes, but this is the same thing and just denotes a difference in tone.
For some time I’ve wanted to do something set in a world that was our own with an alternate history. Maybe the Roaring Twenties and the Prohibition era is still going on on today and maybe the Depression never happened. Huge changes like that as a backdrop for another story entirely.
Every time that I think of a new story and characters I have to hold it up to this other stuff that I want as a setting and decide if this is the place those people finally fit. I did it with the story that started out as Keep Austin Safe and I’m doing it again now with whatever the Hell I’m going to call this.
My natural reaction to going into a story like this is to say that “it’ doesn’t fit”, but something is telling me that it does and that this might be an interesting thing to put in a world where people still have to frequent speakeasies and someone might call a woman a “dame”. I have characters and part of the action down and the more and more I look at it I’m just feeling like this might be the chance to finally do this when before I was just throwing shit at a wall to see what sticks.