Dystopian Steampunk YA Novel


I am currently seeking an agent for JABBERWACK. It’s a completed, unpublished 105,000 word YA steampunk dystopian adventure romance. JABBERWACK looks at issues of peer pressure, bullying, conforming and sexual identity through the lens of steampunk YA fiction.

The novel focuses on the adventures and fractured heart of Ellie Darkbrow, a sixteen-year old digger used to a harsh life of starvation, gruelling labour and clan feuds down in the Pits, deep beneath the steam-fuelled city of Victorion. This is a stand-alone novel that could be expanded.

Set almost fully underground, JABBERWACK creates a brand-new world filled entirely with young adult protagonists facing dangers which inspire them to question who they are and what they want out of life. Opening with Ellie teetering on the brink of an abyss at the start of a race for survival, the story charts her progress from independent loner to unwilling hero and, finally, to an influential young woman no longer wary of love, belonging and taking a stand.

As a reader I’m influenced by the storytelling and world-building of Neil Gaiman and Philip Pullman, the terse, exciting fantasy of Paul Hoffman and the sophisticated handling of young adult emotions by Alan Garner. I love the clever YA work of Suzanne Collins and Veronica Roth, and hope this novel will have something of the hearts and souls of these writers.

My Steampunk YA work has been published in TIMELESS, an anthology from  PUGALICIOUS PRESS. My speculative fiction has been accepted by a number of publications including the CONQUEST THROUGH DETERMINATION steampunk anthology (PILL HILL PRESS) and the national British comic 2000AD. A complete list of fiction sales and writing competitions won can be viewed in my bibliography.

As the founder and editor of Mookychick.co.uk, a site for alternative teenagers and young women with over 7,000 Facebook fans, I have a strong YA community base and love to be part of a hive mind that discusses its YA reading preferences on a regular basis.

If you’re a grazing reader who loves strong YA heroines and the dark things in life, I’m happy to send you the first chapter, just for fun! Simply email editor@mookychick.co.uk.

ARTWORK CREDITS: If you look closely you’ll spot River Phoenix. And bang in your face is haunting photography from photojournalist Steve McCurry. Illustrated artwork by marcelgomessweden.

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Shannon A Thompson

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