I am Lexi, Lexi Orchestra.
As for this, this is not my first blog.
I keep numerous blogs/journals, both online and offline, for multiple purposes. (I like to see myself as a multi-faceted individual. Sarcasm much?) But since I've begun this one here, and this will probably last me a whole year at the very least, I believe decorum dictates that I should introduce myself while offering whimsical details about my life and state my reason for being so obnoxiously honest about my purpose here.
This blog waits on me for a two-fold reason: One, I need someplace to document my research creatively. Offline I have a softcover moleskine look-alike for my research where I note down summaries of important essays and interviews as well as my interpretation and readings of the steampunk movement. But that is not enough. Steampunk is a movement, not merely a literary form or a reformation of aesthetic. It has dynamics and a freedom of creativity that I have never seen anywhere else. I want to emulate that bold spirit for adventure and invention in my academic thesis, and for that to happen I want to think about what I'm reading creatively. And two, I want to be part of this. I can't attend SteamCons due to geographical barriers, my Oriental-steampunk story is still an ungathered mass of fleeting thoughts and ideas in my mind, making Neo-Victorian outfits isn't really my forte either. Nonetheless, I want to contribute; to be part of this---whatever this is.
So this is what I'll do: Every weekend starting from now I will post a letter here to Coppélia about my findings and musings throughout the week. It will invariably contain quotes and extracts from academic essays, but I will also try to include comments I see in forum discussions that are thoughtful-provoking and sometimes completely random. It will also include a quote either from a book I'm reading or from goodreads.com of the kind of humour that I enjoy, because, after all, that is the kind of things I share with my friends.
And before I sign off, a list of minor confessions so that you can know this poor writer a bit more:
1) I'm a postgraduate student, currently working on my MA thesis on steampunk for young adults. The themes I'm interested in are (re)invention, technology/technics, time, and the art/aesthetics of steampunk. I'll be using a combination of texts and films to emphasise the significance of visual moving images to the aestheticism of steampunk. Some notable texts and films I will definitely mention are Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld, The Alchemy of Stone by Ekaterina Sedia, and Fullmetal Alchemist: the Movie directed by Seiji Mizushima.
2) I'm a tea-drinker, but I cannot tolerate the smell of chamomile or other kinds of herbal tea. Instead I drink a lot of Earl Grey, Jasmine, and Ooloong. I love china tea sets. When I have the money I'm going to have a whole cabinet dedicated to the tea culture, filled with Oriental and Western styles of china and clay tea sets, all kinds of tea leaves, and a collection of tea spoons from around the world.
3) I believe in what the imagination can do. As Ursula Le Guin once said, without imagination, a person is just an eggplant. I'm a romantic that way. But that does not mean I cannot separate fantasy from reality. In fact, I believe when a person has a clearer grasp of what his/her fantasy is, or how his/her imagination works, the individual also becomes a keener observer of the real, concrete world. And most importantly, your imagination is something that no one can take away from you. It is, however, something you can lose, and I admit, this is what I fear.
I think three confessions are enough, about the present, the past, and the future.
Till the weekend, my fellow steampunk adventurers.