Today, I am please to welcome Marriane de Pierres, the author of numerous Science Fiction stand-alone books and novels, including Parrish Plessis and Sentients of Orion. Marriane is here to talk about the origin of “Cowpunk”, so please give her a warm welcome.
For me, the desire to blend SF with a Western was simply about combining two genres that I love. I’d already had a trial run in short story form, and fooled around with a digital comic, however, the biggest hurdle entering into the novel process was Firefly. I mean … Joss is boss. Whedon did such a superb job with his short-lived series, that any story for the next hundred years that is even vaguely in the same ball park (whatever the format – TV, film, book, game), will compare poorly. It’s like Cyberpunk and Neuromancer. Iconic texts cast a very long black cloud and by the nature of their influence they attract poor derivatives. They are black holes for mimicry and crap imitation. They are also destroyers of similarly good stories that perhaps lack the execution or some intangible, inexplicable X factor. They are to be worshipped. And avoided.
I remember getting to the final episode of Firefly and thinking … Damn! He beat me to it. Would I have loved to write a flat out Western Space Opera? Hell, yeah! But instinct told me to veer away, and I’m glad I listened. Not only because of the inevitable comparisons, but because it made me explore other options which led me down another interesting path.
Consequently, Peacemaker turned out to be a mythical, near-future, urban fantasy, crime-based Western (say that quickly!). It draws as heavily on the notions of mythology, as it does on Western conceits and crime tropes. The science fiction is understated, the fantasy element a slow burn and the mystery full bodied. If you roll with it, you’ll find a cheeky but thoughtful yarn and a protagonist who’s as stubborn as she is anti-social. Don’t get in Virgin Jackson’s way. She’s all about saving the last remaining wilderness on earth.
A woman who’s single minded. Thank heavens for that!
ABOUT THE BOOK
When an imaginary animal from her troubled teenage years reappears, Virgin takes it to mean one of two things: a breakdown (hers!) or a warning. Dead bodies start piling up around her, so she decides on the latter. Something terrible is about to happen in the park and Virgin and her new partner, U.S. Marshall Nate Sixkiller, are standing in its path…
Virgin Jackson is the senior ranger in Birrimun Park – the world’s last natural landscape, overshadowed though it is by a sprawling coastal megacity. She maintains public safety and order in the park, but her bosses have brought out a hotshot cowboy to help her catch some drug runners who are affecting tourism. She senses the company is holding something back from her, and she’s not keen on working with an outsider like Nate Sixkiller.
Marianne de Pierres is the award winning author of the acclaimed Parrish Plessis,Sentients of Orion and Peacemaker science fiction series. Marianne is an active supporter of genre fiction and has mentored many writers. She lives in Brisbane, Australia, with her husband, three sons and three galahs. Her Night Creatures series, Burn Bright, Angel Arias and Shine Light has been very popular among young adult fiction readers. Marianne is also the Davitt award-winning author of the Tara Sharp humourous crime series under the pseudonym Marianne Delacourt.
To find out more about Marriane and her books, visit her websites www.mariannedepierres.com, www.tarasharp.com.au, www.burnbright.com.au and www.glitterrose.wordpress.com. You can also follow her on Facebook or via Twitter ( @mdepierres )