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Descent by Ken MacLeod

DESCENT Ken MacLeod

Author of 2013 Arthur C. Clarke Award-nominated Intrusion tells a science fiction story for the twenty-first century – what happens when conspiracy theorists meet Big Brother?
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THE LASCAR’S DAGGERGlenda Larke

The start of a brand new epic fantasy trilogy from the author of the Stormlord series – full of scheming, spying, action and adventure.
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Kate-Locke-profile

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Your playlist for a Victorian-punk Fantasy novel

Artwork for Emilie Autumn album Opheliac - the perfect soundtrack for the Immortal Empire series by Kate Locke, which starts with GOD SAVE THE QUEEN

Album artwork for Opheliac by Emilie Autumn. Image from emilieautumn.com

I don’t know about other authors, but for me the process of writing a book has always included music. Music provides so much inspiration for me, can really help in capturing the tone or feel of a scene – or an entire book! There are songs that have come to be so associated with one of my stories that I can’t listen to them without thinking of the characters the lyrics have come to represent.

I came into my teens in the 80s – I do not feel that old! – the decade of the music video. I remember seeing ‘Thriller’ for the first time, and staring slack-jawed at the TV as this amazing story played out in front of me. Aha’s ‘Take On Me’ is still one of my all-time favorite videos. The merging of music and story took hold of me and refused to let go.

The first book I ever wrote (I was 12 so be kind!) was about a rock band. OK, it was about Duran Duran, but I changed the names. Over 300 pages of angst and music – I even wrote lyrics, which were awful. To this day, if a song grabs my attention I’m going to think of a story to go along with it – my own little music video playing inside my head. It doesn’t matter if it’s Nine Inch Nails, Bon Jovi or Alice Cooper, if it catches my attention, I’m going to find the plot and play it out in my head.

God Save the Queen - a vctorian punk urban fantasy novel by Kate Locke - and perfect to go with Emile Autumn's album OpheliacSo, it shouldn’t surprise you that the Immortal Empire has a soundtrack behind it. As I plotted and planned, and then began to write, I actually embarked upon a quest to find the the perfect music. I wanted something that was modern, but would make me think of the Victorian Era as well. Then, I discovered Emilie Autumn and I knew I’d found my soundtrack. Not just my soundtrack, but a target audience. At this point I wasn’t certain my weird little book would be of interest to anyone, but then I visited Emilie’s fan boards and realized that there were people out there who would like this sort of book.

I could ramble on and on about music and how it inspires me, and how I’m making a jacket to wear to Emilie’s next concert in New York with all the glee of a 14 year-old dying her bangs to match John Taylor’s, but I think I’ll share some of my playlists with you instead. Here are just a few songs (in no particular order) that I listened to while writing these books. Will they make you think of various scenes or characters in the Immortal Empire? Oh, I’m not going to list songs from LONG LIVE THE QUEEN – I don’t want to give anything away!

God Save the Queen - a vctorian punk urban fantasy novel by Kate Locke - and perfect to go with Emile Autumn's album Opheliac God Save the Queen:

Believing in Vampires: Hierosonic

You Look So Fine: Garbage (I can’t help it, this song just screams Vex and Xandra to me)

Misery Loves Company: Emilie Autumn

Opheliac: Emilie Autumn

Mad Girl: Emilie Autumn

The Lunatics Have Taken Over the Asylum: Collide

Blood on My Hands: The Used

Buried Myself Alive: The Used

Strange: Tokio Hotel and Kerli

 

The Queen is Dead - a vctorian punk urban fantasy novel by Kate Locke - and perfect to go with Emile Autumn's album OpheliacThe Queen is Dead:

Fight Like a Girl: Emilie Autumn

Broken: Belly

Do You Love Me Now: The Breeders

I Want My Innocence Back: Emilie Autumn

Cherry Lips: Garbage

You Had Me: Hannah Fury

People Are Strange: Johnny Hollow version

Head Like a Hole: Nine Inch Nails

Kings and Queens: 30 Seconds to Mars

Feathers: Coheed and Cambria

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