The Gearheart – A Free Audiobook

Return of the Q&A and a Challenge!

by on Feb.22, 2010, under News

The Excuse:

So I must admit, real life is kicking my butt right now. Work related issues and child rearing always take priority over the podcast, which is unfortunate for those of you nice enough to listen to me. Here’s the skinny, though: we’re on the last two episodes.  There will be two fifty-minute episodes complete with new music, and the series will be over! I want you to know that I’m not rushing these out the door, because I want them to sound really nice.  This project has been so huge for me over the past year, and I just want to make sure it ends right.


Here’s what I’ll do in the meantime: I’m going to open up the floor to questions and comments. Please post to this thread by 5:00 Wednesday, and I’ll try to answer all of them, if possible.  If you want me to plug your site, be sure and mention your project in your response.


That’s right! I also want to have a challenge this week to go on the Q&A episode!  Post your responses here and I’ll read them on the air!  Here’s the question:

“If you had a steampunk organization, what would you be called?  What would you do?  Most importantly, what would you name your flagship zeppelin?”

I look forward to hearing the responses!

17 Comments for this entry

  • Casey Horn

    As a sculptor working with calligraphy in diferent languages I am drawn to the idea you use, regarding empowering individuals with archain (sp?) energy through the use of written glyphs/symbols. What known language do you see your charachters using or what language does it most closely resemble? Thanks and please keep writing.


  • Ben Hummel

    Just a couple questions

    1) The Seeker organization is described as a secret organization – So the world at large isn’t aware of Magic? If not, What are the implications to the seekers of the recent events in Circeville?

    2) Just listening back to the show, I wondered what is Uncle Miltons knowledge of the seekers and Cog?

    Looking forward to the next show.

  • Nansi

    NOOO!!!! It can’t be over!

    I’m hesitant to ask questions because I haven’t yet listened anywhere past ep. 32 (I am a terrible person).

    On the topic of steampunk organizations? I think I’d like to start a bar/tavern/inn in the real real world that’s all steampunk themed. Perhaps ‘The Jade Pixie’ or something. I think I also like “The Foggy Goggles’. Maybe It could be an attached coffee shop. :) To bad MN isn’t really the best place for that.

    I was just relistening to old gearhearts last night and thinking “damn, I should have written in to these challenges!” crazy!

    All the best of luck to you in your writing and in your parenting!


    P.S. Could you plug my art? I don’t really know how you’d do it. “this is nansi, sometimes she draws stuff” It’s not really a ‘project’. If you can’t I totally understand.

    P.P.S. OH! Question! The Gus story. Are you releasing it as a podcast? How is it going and when will it be out? Maybe you’ve answered these questions previously and I’ve missed it…

  • Jim

    Thanks again for all the effort you put in on this project.
    If there’s one thing we know about governments and beurocracy, it’s that they’re notorious for being unable to keep three things:
    1. Track of taxpayers money
    2. it in their pants
    3. a secret
    If the government knows about the seekers, there has to be some sort of leakage. Maybe even major leakage. Thoughts?

    I understand this story has been around for a long time and has undergone a major amount of growth. Did this growth coincide with growth in your own personal life? Has it evolved along with you or separate from you (as a person)?

    Your wife does an excellent job with the female voices. Was it always the plan to do it this way? Did you consider a full voice cast? Or a simple straight read by yourself? What finally made you decide to do it this way?

    As for the “Challenge”, that’s going to take some thought… hhhmmm…

  • Judah

    First, i just came across the pod book, and of all the ones that i have listened to it is one of my favorites. Kudos, props, and all other congratulations.

    As for the challenge…
    We would be called “The Shadow Dwellers” We would look to overthrow unfriendly dilators, break up crime families, basically be the not so bad guys.
    Our Zeppelin would be green and black and be named “The Fedora”

  • BlaqueSaber

    While I don’t have any questions per say. I’m really thankful to have found this podcast and want to say thank you for such an amazing feat you’ve put together.

    I’m betting that numerous sections and some of the concepts here could be fleshed out and made into squeals such as the peasant king living in the “stream” of a complete ancestry.

    Awesome stuff. I’ve heard rumors about your next project, and it excites me as well. Will we need to find a different rss feed for that?

    Dixon’s Dirigible Depot
    Mobile armory in the sky. We’d stock bullets, rifle slides, scopes, slings, arrows, bows, med kits, maps and more….

  • Ric

    I started listening to your podcast about a week ago, already listened to all the episodes so far, couldn’t wait to hear the next episode. The main question I have is, is there a prequel to this? It seems that there is a lot of backstory I would love to hear about, especially how Jonathan fought the antonello’s and how Slade first awoke in him.
    The other question is about the Seekers, each one of them uses a different sort of magic, is this because they can only use that kind or are they just better at some types than others?
    (I’d also like to know what the glyphs look like, I’ve been imagining them as sort of elaborate celtic crosses (or a similar style not necessarily cross shaped).

  • Judah

    Hey BlaqueSaber, if you cut me a deal on arms, we’ll run the occasional side job for ya.

  • Kyle Dockery

    Organization name would be Kuolema(Death). We would be sky pirates to the core, never letting a government or other organization stand in our way. My flagship would be called Luutarha (Which means Bone Garden for all you non-Suomi speakers out there.) Also, our theme song would be the opener from Firefly.(I know that wasn’t a question, but hey, had to add it.)

  • Kyle Dockery

    Also, I’ve been considering something quite like what Nansi said, steampunk tavern/pizzeria. I don’t know if I have a name picked out, I think it would be Doc’s or something, but I do know that The Gearheart would play every monday at 6pm. Gonna be really sad to see it go, but I can’t wait for your next project.

  • James Keeling

    How you ask? How do I ever manage to find crew for my zeppelin “The Scarlet Corset” for the truly insane and dangerous adventures we have found ourselves on? Well, take a seat, buy the round, and allow me to regale you. Barkeep, another!
    Down by the docks lad, that’s where ya wanna be. That’s where the spelunkers of the skies are to be found. Find you a nice drinking establishment; none too clean mind you, but neither should it be the bottom of the barrel. That’s where I go. Approach the door, adjust your duster and shake off the excess rainwater. I tell you true, ain’t no better waterproofing than engine grease, bar none. With a healthy jaunt, enter and sidle up to the bar.

    “You’re a flyer I see” they would say to me. “Aye, and truly so,” I would reply. The indented rings which my goggles leave about my eyes be a tell more obvious than the copper circlet of wedlock upon a finger. A digit, which in my case, shall remain forever unadorned, cause The Scarlet Corset, well lad, she be my mate, my lover, my companion, and with her only, may I truly escape these bound and chained streets. But back to my tale.

    Now that you’re at the bar, get yourself a pint of the best local ale they’ve got. Always drink the local lad, it builds rapport and opens more doors than it closes. This here is when I would go into me spiel.

    Invariably, someone will ask what brings me to those particular parts. To the room in general I would sound heartily, “In my zeppelin, the Mighty Scarlet Corset, I proselytize the ignorant. I spread the truth of steam, the power of the gear. There ain’t nothin’ like the hiss of power from a steam engine, that’s primal power true enough.” I would exhort the crowd, raising my clenched fist into the air. “It’s water what powers a man, as the High One himself designed it. And water what will take us into the next age and beyond!”

    A general murmer of consensus always follows this proclamation. They now be primed.

    “Would ye believe that there exists, to this very day, in this modern age of ours, villages without the blessings of modern steam driven wells, without the machinery to efficiently till their fields or mine their copper?”

    “Nay, it cannot be so!” they would exclaim in horror, that such poor individuals would be forced to endure such an accursed existence.

    “I bring with me, aboard my lady the Scarlet Corset, pipes, gears, cogs, and all manner of technology. All she can be laden with, all for the furtherance of a good deed done to those less fortunate than you or I. But we don’t go it alone. With us ride a few ‘daring souls’, souls with the knowledge and will to see those provisions put to good use. Those who wish to ply the skyways and seek fortune across the horizon. The crew of the Scarlet Corset!

    “I have had scholars fly with me, artisans, pipefitters, and a few with the mechanical genius to spread the word through deed and action. Aye, even royalty has flown beneath my flag.

    “Some are with me but a short time, others much longer, but any who leave take with them the kind of satisfaction that may only be gained by putting your hand to the wheel and your shoulder to the capstan.

    “I’ll not lie, it’s a hard tack at times, and occasionally, dare I say often, we find ourselves alee and beset upon by those with less than noble intentions, but the Scarlet Corset, well, she be ready for those times right enough.”

    Now laddie, it’s about this time that I reel in the net.

    “That my friends, is what brings me to this here fine establishment this very eve. It seems I have a berth or two aboard the Scarlet Corset. So if ye have a fire in your boiler that screams for adventure, and a yearning thirst you cannot slake, well, then I be nothing here, but your humble servant, Xavier Hawthorn, Captain of the Scarlet Corset.

    “So what do ya say lads and lasses? Are ya up to the challenge?”

  • Johnnie A

    My question is something that I’ve always wondered about; the creature that Jonathan meets in the vision in Episode 9, the creature with the strange snout. Was that creature based on the ancient Egyptian deity named Set, who was always depicted as a human with a the head of a strange creature with a long, trunk-like snout. Set was the god of the storms, darkness, destruction, decay and chaos, so are the similarities a coincidence or was it deliberate?

  • Ashley

    My question is unrelated to the story so far. I’d rather hear about what you’re working on next, if you have any other stories or projects you’re thinking about, etc.

  • Nansi

    Yes, Johnnie A! I was also going to ask about the creature thing! Set didn’t come to mind, but now that you mention it, it makes a lot of sense. I was just more wondering what it was in general. I found it fascinating, but really hard to visualize

  • JohnFrost

    While I’m sad the new episode isn’t up yet, I’m even sadder to realize that when it does get finished, we’ll be another step closer to the end of Gearheart! Say it ain’t so!

    I found your answers on the last Q&A show to be really fascinating, especially how the Gearheart has evolved over the years. I’d like to know what some of the inspirations you drew from to create your world are, or what are those things that you think had at least a subconscious effect? For me, a lot of the tropes in Gearheart have a very manga/anime feel to them (I’m particularly reminded of Full Metal Alchemist). I also felt a little hint of the Wheel of Time when I first started listening, though faint enough that that could be just my own projecting.

    I, too, was going to ask how you picture the glyphs. I always pictured them as kanji.

  • Gill_smoke

    I already posted my questions in n email previously, but seemed to miss the cut off to be included. Accordingly I’ll leave my Challenge response out too.

  • Nycteris

    Oh! I would defnitely call my organization The Aspect of Oil, because they would be slippery and hard to trace. We would run around removing the magic potential of evil mages, and leaving them broken shattered powerless wrecks. Um, in a nice way. And our zeppelin would be called the Battenburg. (Based on the cake!)

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