I've been enjoying Steampunk lately and it's inspired me to make my next book a solarpunk book.

By solarpunk I mean, obviously, a society that runs on renewable energy rather than oil and coal, AKA carbon burning.

One obvious (at least now) aspect of solarpunk, as opposed to steampunk, is that a renewable energy society is not a fantasy. It could happen and it's going to happen.

One disadvantage of solarpunk, as opposed to steampunk, is that it's going to happen. You therefore eliminate a lot of the fun fantasy and Victorian-era retro fun that you get with steampunk.

I'm going to try and hit a sweet spot between the genres. I'll make the story post-apocalyptic, where the world had to abandon carbon burning before it was fully ready to switch to solar. In this situation, the electrical grid has partially collapsed, so people's use of renewable energy will be limited and rough. That will bring us to a place where a lot of Victorian technology and culture will be useful again as people deal with a lack of cheap energy. Nigh shirts and stocking caps, anyone?

I think it could be a lot of fun, and yet at the same time still push us in the direction that we need to move in. A win-win.


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