RSS iconTwitter iconFacebook icon

The Trek BBS title image

The Trek BBS statistics

Threads: 141,584
Posts: 5,515,262
Members: 25,156
Currently online: 460
Newest member: jerrlaro

TrekToday headlines

Two New Starships Collection Ships
By: T'Bonz on Dec 26

Captain Kirk’s Boldest Missions
By: T'Bonz on Dec 25

Trek Paper Clips
By: T'Bonz on Dec 24

Sargent Passes
By: T'Bonz on Dec 23

QMx Trek Insignia Badges
By: T'Bonz on Dec 23

And The New Director Of Star Trek 3 Is…
By: T'Bonz on Dec 23

TV Alert: Pine On Tonight Show
By: T'Bonz on Dec 22

Retro Review: The Emperor’s New Cloak
By: Michelle on Dec 20

Star Trek Opera
By: T'Bonz on Dec 19

New Abrams Project
By: T'Bonz on Dec 18


Welcome! The Trek BBS is the number one place to chat about Star Trek with like-minded fans. Please login to see our full range of forums as well as the ability to send and receive private messages, track your favourite topics and of course join in the discussions.

If you are a new visitor, join us for free. If you are an existing member please login below. Note: for members who joined under our old messageboard system, please login with your display name not your login name.


Go Back   The Trek BBS > Misc. Star Trek > Trek Literature

Trek Literature "...Good words. That's where ideas begin."

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old December 17 2013, 06:37 AM   #1
Nathan
Lieutenant
 
Are Trek BBS fans jaded when it comes to Trek?

I always wonder if Trek BBS fans are jaded and truly don't represent the Trek Community at large.

Case in point, just based on comments in another thread about how well received Ex-Machina is, you'd think it was Pulitzer Prize winning, yet Ian wrote in another thread...

"And yet Christopher was unable to continue after "Ex Machina" as full novels because that book hadn't sold strongly enough, so he's revisited the period in sneakier ways, such as an installment of "Mere Anarchy" and within the plot of "Forgotten History". "

I guess since I've been reading Trek for over 20 years, suffice to say there is plenty of crappy books out there (not just Warped, Laertian Gamble, and Romulan War books by Michael Martin) --those tend to get bad reviews on this board.

Even the last 50 books or so written over the past few years, I think there are a lot more shittier books than people admit. Guess if you didn't like Trek books, why would you even bother to surf TrekBBS let alone make a post.

And yeah, I think there are a bunch of EXCELLENT Trek books out there, but I think there a bunch of "I can't believe the author got this crap published." Books. With those I suppose I set my eyeballs on maximum warp to get through the book -- in case I'm surprised that it turns out good.

Guess I am saying that even though I thoroughly enjoy Trek Lit (ie. Vanguard, Lost Era, Destiny, The Fall, DS9 Re-Launch), there is a bunch of shit out there that no one wants to admit or goes easy on it.

I thought SCE was horrible from the get-go. I always thought the characters were so shallow and lacked dimension (even when a favorite author of mine contributed to it, I thought his story fell flat). I mentioned that once years ago and fellow Trek BBS threw the figurative tomatoes at me. But SCE is no more -- I suppose the sales were flat so it was discontinued, yet again Trek BBSers thought that series was awesome...hence my question is that do you think the Trek BBSers are jaded?

Your Thoughts?
Nathan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 17 2013, 07:20 AM   #2
bfollowell
Commander
 
bfollowell's Avatar
 
Location: Evansville, IN, USA
Re: Are Trek BBS fans jaded when it comes to Trek?

By the comments you made, no, I don't think most readers are jaded. But, then again, unless I misunderstood your intention, I don't think you're using the right term.

It sounds as if you believe most of us read crap and think that it's great just because it has Star Trek on the cover. I don't think that's the case but, if it were, I think that would make us biased toward Star Trek, not jaded.

The definition of jaded is tired, bored, or lacking enthusiasm, typically after having had too much of something.

If we were jaded, we definitely wouldn't be thinking something was good when it wasn't; likely just the opposite.

Did I misunderstand what you were getting at?

Anyway, to answer your question, and I can only answer it for me, no, I'm not jaded or biased. I've read a lot of excellent Star Trek novels over the years. I've read some crap too. I don't really care what the title is. If I don't like a book, I don't like it. If I do, then I couldn't care less if the bulk of other readers think the title is crap. On the whole though, I think I'm much easier on books and writers than the typical reader. It's not often that I find much that I think is really bad. I guess my standards are just lower than the typical reader. I'm just easy that way.

- Byron
__________________
Underachievement - Because soaring with the eagles requires so much more effort.
bfollowell is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 17 2013, 07:43 AM   #3
otomo
Lieutenant Junior Grade
 
Re: Are Trek BBS fans jaded when it comes to Trek?

I'm very hesitant about labeling someone's creative work "crap". Even if I didn't like it for one of several reasons, there IS typically a reason it was published, and the author did have to spend hundreds of hours, as did the editor to create it.

I read the majority of my star trek novels in my teen years, and I pick one up every few years now. I think as we all age we do become a little bit "jaded" as readers, since we've seen a lot of different prose before, know what to expect, so the next becomes ho-hum. What you've defined as the prior post said, was not jaded but instead looking at things through rose colored glasses.

I think it just depends on what you expect looking into a star trek book. There's a series that's already developed, with characters that are already developed, rules to the universe that are already developed and made for television for a budget of putting aliens in rubber masks. Throwing that into prose automatically is rough for suspension of disbelief. Add in that you can't really "change" the attributes of the main characters too much, you run into a lot of the same problems the comic industry has. So are you expecting the next Stranger In a Strange Land, Foundation or Dragonflight out of a Trek novel? Well, if you are, you're probably going to have a negative opinion of the books.

I view them as a bit of popcorn books, something not to take terribly seriously, but something that brings me comfort in seeing my characters again as I can't see them again (especially in the case of Deep Space 9). Because of that, I'm more inclined to look at the book favorably and probably won't dissect it like I would something by Heinlein or Herbert.

Now then, I'm about 1/4 through Chistopher Bennett's "Only Superhuman", and I can tell you without the constraints of playing in someone else's sandbox, he can take some risks, really worldbuild and make something both entertaining and a little more impactful from a character growth perspective. Not necessarily plugging that but I am reading the book right now and thoroughly enjoying it. With such a hard-worked science fiction novel under his belt, I'd say Star Trek prose is in good hands there. I'm sure some of the others have similar pedigrees.

These guys and gals are good authors, that's why they got picked up. Some of the books will be more to your tastes than others which is colored by how you view your own star trek experience more than anything else. Some of them will be more under a deadline gun than others, but at the end of the day someone worked pretty hard to bring you a brand new star trek episode, and for the most part, it's pretty entertaining. What more can you ask?

But that's just my opinion.
otomo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 17 2013, 10:50 AM   #4
ronny
Fleet Captain
 
ronny's Avatar
 
Location: San Francisco, CA
View ronny's Twitter Profile
Re: Are Trek BBS fans jaded when it comes to Trek?

I don't think jaded means what you think it means.

Are we overenthusiastic about the books? Well, maybe a couple people. I'm not sure if that's the case or if the people who vote and post here for the most part come here because they like the books. I've looked at the published books the last 3 years, because The Trek Collective only goes back to 2011, and it looks like it averages out to half the books each year I like a lot, a quarter are meh and a quarter or less are varying degrees of dislike.

I can see where you might get the opinion you have though. Sometimes when I look at review threads poll stats page I wonder if it's really true that half the books deserve to be 4.00 out of 5.00. Especially when you compare the number of books scoring 4.0 or greater with the number of goodreads books scoring the same. It's like half.

I guess the thing that keeps me coming around to your point of view is the fact that I'm here because I like the books. If I didn't like them as much as I did I wouldn't be here and as I've said previously, I don't like them all. Guess the diff between you and me is I like more of the books than you.
__________________
If you want people to respect your ideas, get better ideas. - John Scalzi

My Star Trek reading progress.
ronny is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 17 2013, 11:20 AM   #5
Therin of Andor
Admiral
 
Therin of Andor's Avatar
 
Location: New Therin Park, Andor (via Australia)
View Therin of Andor's Twitter Profile
Re: Are Trek BBS fans jaded when it comes to Trek?

Nathan wrote: View Post
I always wonder if Trek BBS fans are jaded and truly don't represent the Trek Community at large.
I think this bbs probably does represent a snapshot of Trek fandom at large, but certainly not a snapshot of the general TV-viewing and movie-attending public.

Case in point, just based on comments in another thread about how well received Ex-Machina is, you'd think it was Pulitzer Prize winning, yet Ian wrote in another thread...

"And yet Christopher was unable to continue after "Ex Machina" as full novels because that book hadn't sold strongly enough
Well, perhaps people avoid TMP-related novels because they recall that they disliked TMP, especially when compared to other Trek films?

there is plenty of crappy books out there (not just Warped, Laertian Gamble, and Romulan War books by Michael Martin) --those tend to get bad reviews on this board.
I hate "Warped" and "The Laertian Gamble" with a passion, but some reviewers I respect loved both of those novels. The point is, Trek readers as a whole have very broad tastes, but many individuals have very specific, often quirky, tastes. Luckily, there are as many styles of Trek novel as there are fannish tastes. Every novel is someone's first novel. I recall being lukewarm about "Chain of Attack", but it was the first original Trek novel after the high-profile ST IV, and so it is a beloved/nostalgic novel for many fans.

Guess if you didn't like Trek books, why would you even bother to surf TrekBBS let alone make a post.
And if you didn't like Trek, you're very unlikely to pick up a Trek book. There would also be many Trek fans who love TV and film but hate reading for pleasure.

goes easy on it...
Huh? Such as? You really think Trek readers pretend to like some novels?

Would "jaded" fans give novels the benefit of the doubt if they weren't up to scratch?
__________________
Thiptho lapth! Ian (Entire post is personal opinion)
The Andor Files @ http://andorfiles.blogspot.com/
http://therinofandor.blogspot.com/

Last edited by Therin of Andor; December 17 2013 at 11:31 AM. Reason: formatting
Therin of Andor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 17 2013, 11:28 AM   #6
F. King Daniel
Admiral
 
F. King Daniel's Avatar
 
Location: King Daniel Into Darkness
Re: Are Trek BBS fans jaded when it comes to Trek?

I don't think we're giving weak books 'the benefit of the doubt', I just think people's tastes really do differ that much - and the opinions of a hardcore sampling like TBBS is never gonna match up to the casual readers of the real world.

I used to love the TNG TV series until a recent attempt at a rewatch has changed my opinion somewhat - but there are a lot of people here for whom TNG is still the ultimate incarnation of Star Trek. I'm somewhat bewildered by some of the praise they heap on it (TNG is the show TOS wishes it was?) but... each to their own.

And FWIW, I quit on S.C.E. too - they just felt like unimportant filler stories.
__________________
Star Trek Imponderables, fun mashups of Trek's biggest continuity errors! Ep1, Ep2 and Ep3
F. King Daniel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 17 2013, 02:07 PM   #7
zarkon
Captain
 
zarkon's Avatar
 
Re: Are Trek BBS fans jaded when it comes to Trek?

Well

When I look at the polls, the ratings generally seem to trend higher then I would personally give - not always, but generally. I think there's an element of truth in that trek fans who post in a trek forums are more likely to to give higher ratings for trek books then they might critically deserve.

But then there's a strong element of different strokes for different folks to - OP lauds Destiny & the DS9 Re-Launch, which both really didn't do much for me personally. I've seen people argue passionately for Rough Beasts of Empire, a book I absolutely cannot stand.

SCE stories were ok. I kind of agree with you there in that when it first came out I wasn't a huge fan, but it really came together once Tev was introduced.

The styles I tend to prefer seem to be out of vogue at the moment too. I'd like more wide eyed exploration and less political intrigue.
__________________
In defeat, malice. In victory, revenge.
zarkon is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 17 2013, 02:16 PM   #8
Christopher
Writer
 
Christopher's Avatar
 
Re: Are Trek BBS fans jaded when it comes to Trek?

Nathan wrote: View Post
But SCE is no more -- I suppose the sales were flat so it was discontinued...
You have to consider the context there. It was an experimental e-book series that came along a few years before the Kindle and Nook came out and thus before e-books really took off in popularity. So it was never going to be more than a niche product anyway. If anything, it's impressive that it lasted as long as it did.


otomo wrote: View Post
Now then, I'm about 1/4 through Chistopher Bennett's "Only Superhuman", and I can tell you without the constraints of playing in someone else's sandbox, he can take some risks, really worldbuild and make something both entertaining and a little more impactful from a character growth perspective. Not necessarily plugging that but I am reading the book right now and thoroughly enjoying it. With such a hard-worked science fiction novel under his belt, I'd say Star Trek prose is in good hands there.
Really nice to hear. Thanks!


Therin of Andor wrote: View Post
I think this bbs probably does represent a snapshot of Trek fandom at large, but certainly not a snapshot of the general TV-viewing and movie-attending public.
Well, it's unlikely to be a truly statistically representative sample of the fanbase, because it's limited in size and self-selecting (and thus biased in favor of those fans who are more inclined to be active online and more motivated to participate in discussions). At most, it's a snapshot of online Trek fans who are of the right age range to be into bulletin boards (rather than tweets or tumblrs or whatever's trendy these days) and like to read books.


Case in point, just based on comments in another thread about how well received Ex-Machina is, you'd think it was Pulitzer Prize winning, yet Ian wrote in another thread...

"And yet Christopher was unable to continue after "Ex Machina" as full novels because that book hadn't sold strongly enough
Well, perhaps people avoid TMP-related novels because they recall that they disliked TMP, especially when compared to other Trek films?
Yup, the attitude in the sales/marketing department is apparently that the TMP era doesn't sell.
__________________
Christopher L. Bennett Homepage -- Site update 11/16/14 including annotations for "The Caress of a Butterfly's Wing" and overview for DTI: The Collectors

Written Worlds -- My blog
Christopher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 17 2013, 03:14 PM   #9
JarodRussell
Vice Admiral
 
JarodRussell's Avatar
 
Re: Are Trek BBS fans jaded when it comes to Trek?

Nathan wrote: View Post
I always wonder if Trek BBS fans are jaded and truly don't represent the Trek Community at large.

Case in point, just based on comments in another thread about how well received Ex-Machina is, you'd think it was Pulitzer Prize winning, yet Ian wrote in another thread...

"And yet Christopher was unable to continue after "Ex Machina" as full novels because that book hadn't sold strongly enough, so he's revisited the period in sneakier ways, such as an installment of "Mere Anarchy" and within the plot of "Forgotten History". "

I guess since I've been reading Trek for over 20 years, suffice to say there is plenty of crappy books out there (not just Warped, Laertian Gamble, and Romulan War books by Michael Martin) --those tend to get bad reviews on this board.

Even the last 50 books or so written over the past few years, I think there are a lot more shittier books than people admit. Guess if you didn't like Trek books, why would you even bother to surf TrekBBS let alone make a post.

And yeah, I think there are a bunch of EXCELLENT Trek books out there, but I think there a bunch of "I can't believe the author got this crap published." Books. With those I suppose I set my eyeballs on maximum warp to get through the book -- in case I'm surprised that it turns out good.

Guess I am saying that even though I thoroughly enjoy Trek Lit (ie. Vanguard, Lost Era, Destiny, The Fall, DS9 Re-Launch), there is a bunch of shit out there that no one wants to admit or goes easy on it.

I thought SCE was horrible from the get-go. I always thought the characters were so shallow and lacked dimension (even when a favorite author of mine contributed to it, I thought his story fell flat). I mentioned that once years ago and fellow Trek BBS threw the figurative tomatoes at me. But SCE is no more -- I suppose the sales were flat so it was discontinued, yet again Trek BBSers thought that series was awesome...hence my question is that do you think the Trek BBSers are jaded?

Your Thoughts?
This is the place where Trek fans come together that spend time on the Internet to talk about Trek. Yes, it's a very special subgroup of the fandom, and in no way representative.
JarodRussell is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 17 2013, 09:38 PM   #10
Therin of Andor
Admiral
 
Therin of Andor's Avatar
 
Location: New Therin Park, Andor (via Australia)
View Therin of Andor's Twitter Profile
Re: Are Trek BBS fans jaded when it comes to Trek?

King Daniel Into Darkness wrote: View Post
I just think people's tastes really do differ that much
Exactly!
__________________
Thiptho lapth! Ian (Entire post is personal opinion)
The Andor Files @ http://andorfiles.blogspot.com/
http://therinofandor.blogspot.com/
Therin of Andor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 17 2013, 11:31 PM   #11
Relayer1
Rear Admiral
 
Relayer1's Avatar
 
Location: The Black Country, England
Re: Are Trek BBS fans jaded when it comes to Trek?

Slightly. I've slogged through the long stretch of TOS novels while awaiting the 24th century 'The Fall' series which is much more to my taste. Now it's here they are sitting there unread as I've started on the Game Of Thrones novels instead.

It's happened before, but I'll get some enthusiasm back sooner or later...
__________________
Soon oh soon the light, Pass within and soothe this endless night, And wait here for you, Our reason to be here...
Relayer1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 18 2013, 12:02 AM   #12
BillJ
Admiral
 
BillJ's Avatar
 
Location: Covington, Ky.
View BillJ's Twitter Profile
Re: Are Trek BBS fans jaded when it comes to Trek?

I don't know whether Trek novels have left me behind or I've left them behind but anymore I have little enthusiasm for the novels outside of TOS. The relaunches have just moved so far away from the TV series that I really don't recognize them anymore.

But jaded? I don't think so.
__________________
"...the most elementary and valuable statement in science, the beginning of wisdom, is I do not know." - Lt. Commander Data, "Where Silence Has Lease"
BillJ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 18 2013, 05:19 AM   #13
David Brennon
Lieutenant Commander
 
David Brennon's Avatar
 
Re: Are Trek BBS fans jaded when it comes to Trek?

Nathan wrote: View Post
Case in point, just based on comments in another thread about how well received Ex-Machina is, you'd think it was Pulitzer Prize winning, yet Ian wrote in another thread...

"And yet Christopher was unable to continue after "Ex Machina" as full novels because that book hadn't sold strongly enough
Christopher wrote: View Post
Yup, the attitude in the sales/marketing department is apparently that the TMP era doesn't sell.
That is really unfortunate too, as it was one of my favorite books you wrote as well as one of my favorite settings. I also read somewhere that it was one of the projects you always wanted to do, so it's sad that you don't get a lot of opportunities to play in that setting.
__________________
Captain David Brennon
Commanding Officer
USS Hartington
David Brennon is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 18 2013, 06:38 AM   #14
JD
Admiral
 
JD's Avatar
 
Location: Arizona, USA
Re: Are Trek BBS fans jaded when it comes to Trek?

I really don't think the people that post here are overly positive, I think it's just that people like different things. There are going to be a lot of situations where you find youself baffled by how much people seem to love something that you don't like. For instance I can't stand Adam Sandler but there are people who love him.

There have also been plenty of times on here where I have seen people have been very open about there dislike of stuff. Just look at the threads for Michael A. Martin's last few books, or Rough Beast of Empire or Revelation & Dust, lots of negativity there.

I'll admit, I tend to be pretty happy with most of the stuff I read, but I also tend to only read stuff that I've researched beforehand to find out if it is something I'll like.

I think the positivity on here has more to do with the quality of the writing in the current novels than it does attitude of the posters.
__________________
They say a little knowledge is a dangerous thing, but it is not one half so bad as a lot of ignorance. - Terry Pratchett, Equal Rites
JD is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump



All times are GMT +1. The time now is 08:37 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.6
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
FireFox 2+ or Internet Explorer 7+ highly recommended.