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Old October 15 2013, 03:24 PM   #40
Therin of Andor
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Re: Peter David comic book story

JD wrote: View Post
So did Arnold actually have any professional training to be doing any of this stuff? Because it sounds like he was literally some dude off the street who happened to be friends with Rodenberry, and was just handed the job.
I have no idea if Richard has university training as a "literary/creative" analyst", but one of his jobs was to read proposals and manuscripts and pass his comments back to GR, and write memos to the licensees. How much training does that need? He was a fan with a very good memory for Star Trek trivia, and that's what GR wanted. It's not a talent that many professionals with "literary/creative analysis training" necessarily have, or would be interested to cram. And having RA around meant they didn't have to keep diving into Bjo Trimble's "Star Trek Concordance" every few minutes.

I have to wonder if perhaps they wouldn't have been better off with someone with some kind of literary/creative analysis training.
RA wasn't the only port of call re the tie-ins. He was reading things so that GR didn't have to read the whole thing himself. GR was simply too busy. Media tie-ins are bought and read by 2% of the general audience.

We know he did the vetting of tie-in manuscripts after Susan Sackett and others got too busy to do it. Susan is a professional writer, but she wasn't when started off in Trek - as GR's secretary, with a teaching degree behind her.

The proposals and manuscripts were already being examined by the licensees' editors and the representative of then-Paramount/Viacom Consumer Products. RA didn't have to be creative, just advise on problems he perceived. (He made some enemies doing that, certainly, but it was a group of angry writers and supporters who started publishing quotes from his memos on the Usenet and GEnie electronic bulletin boards. Normally, fans wouldn't have been privvy to such internal information.) I believe RA also looked at the scripts and Paramount's media releases, and again found many, many errors that others didn't.

Margaret Clark and Paula Block started out as Star Trek fans too, you know. I assume they've had training as editors, but perhaps not. Many, many professionals playing in the Trek sandbox - writers, actors, makeup artists, SPFX people, etc - got their start as enthusiastic, amateur fans who were in the right place at the right time, or knew someone who knew someone.

I've been a professional editor myself - I did it for five years - with no specialist training in that area whatsoever. (I still don't know or use all the correct markup symbols.) I was employed because I knew the topic being covered, not because I knew literary/creative analysis. And I received many accolades for the work I did, even increasing circulation from 2000 to 3000 copies over my time there.
Thiptho lapth! Ian (Entire post is personal opinion)
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Last edited by Therin of Andor; October 15 2013 at 03:38 PM. Reason: more
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