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Old December 25 2011, 07:09 AM   #278
Kirsten Beyer
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Re: Before Dishonour....seriously?!

MatthiasRussell wrote: View Post
Thanks, Christopher. That was very insightful and interesting. Hopefully Kirsten will chime in, too. This inside information is all very fascinating
Alot of this has been answered in other threads but here's the basic story...

After Christie completed her books, it is my understanding that she became too busy with other work to continue. And yes, John Ordover had left by this time so the ongoing Voyager saga became Marco's responsibility.

The first thing that happened was in 2003. Voyager's 10 year anniversary was coming up and to celebrate it, rather then picking up the relaunch story at that point, Marco decided to do a trilogy set within the run of the series and an anthology of short stories. Those became The String Theory Trilogy and Distant Shores, both of which I contributed to.

Because of that project - and remember it is a matter of years, not months when we're talking about this many books between inception and publication - it was 2006 before Marco contacted me about continuing the relaunch. We met at Comic Con in San Diego that year (I did't go to Shoreleave) and over lunch discussed where I would take the series going forward. At that point I knew I wanted the ship to return to the Delta Quadrant. With so many other big ships in the AQ it felt to me like no matter what we did with Voyager it was always going to feel like they were picking up everyone else's crumbs. What made the series so unique to me was the vast potential for truly unexplored stuff in a place we hadn't already filled with tons of interesting species and planets. So we needed a good reason for that to happen, and I had a few, but none of them made it into the final version. At that time, there was no fleet. I was told at that meeting, however, that Before Dishonor was in the works and that Janeway would be killed in that book. Not killed and saved by the Q. Just killed.

After that meeting I went home and drafted a rough outline of a trilogy to pick up after Spirit Walk and move Voyager foward. I sent it off and waited almost a year without hearing anything.

Shortly before July 2007, my next Shoreleave, Marco got back in touch and let me know that the reason my stuff hadn't been picked up yet was because this massive game changing trilogy called Destiny had been in development and he had decided that before Voyager moved forward, the impact of Destiny had to be taken into account. I was sent outlines for that trilogy and when Marco and I met at Shoreleave in 2007, I was given the galleys of Before Dishonor so that I could see exaclty how the whole death of Janeway had been handled.

At that convention, Marco and I discussed in great detail how BD and Destiny would affect Voyager. We were still determined to send them back to the DQ and investigating the fallout from Destiny seemed like a no brainer. But still, at that time, there was no discussion of a fleet.

Again I went home and took several months this time creating a very detailed outline of another trilogy taking Voyager from Spirit Walk to post Destiny, and integrating what I know knew of Janeway's death from BD. This was also the point when I went back and re-read every single book post Spirit Walk where any Voyager character had been used and set up my timelines so that I was clear on who I could work with when.

It was probably six months after I presented those outlines that Marco finally called again and said we were ready to go with the new books, but there were a few problems. First, about a third of what I had created he didn't want to use just yet. Second, he gave me two books, not three, to tell the entire story. So another month went by with me working with all of his notes on the outlines I had done, scrapping what I couldn't use and basically hammering out what became Full Circle. It was also around this time that the collaboration between all of us working around Destiny began with frequent exchanges of emails and manuscripts. This way, we were all able to do what we could to make all the books as cohesive as possible.

So maybe April of 2008 I had a completed outline for FC and a rough idea for Unworthy and that is when the fleet and Admiral Batiste were actually born. For those playing the home game, that's well after BD was written and published and about a year before FC was released.

As to the question of why Janeway was killed in a TNG novel, I also answered this in the Bring Back Janeway panel questions.

Essentially, between Spirit Walk and Full Circle, we had several years of many of the Voyager characters popping up in the novels of other series. The feeling at the time with the editors was that they weren't being used elsewhere, so why not bring them in? My feeling was...just how hard are you trying to make my job? But that's part of the fun of being a media tie-in writer. Looking back on it now, it might seem weird that Janeway was killed in a TNG book, but when it was happeing, it was merely a continuation of the status quo for all of Voyager's characters. It was only when FC became a definite project that the characters again became more unique to just Voyager.

So there you have it.

Merry Christmas everybody.

Kirsten Beyer
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