DS9 - Where to start?

Discussion in 'Trek Literature' started by theblitz, Jun 20, 2012.

  1. lvsxy808

    lvsxy808 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Interesting - I hadn't thought of that, but it kinda makes sense. Although I tend to lump them in with the Gorkon/KE books rather than think of them as DS9 at all.

    .
     
  2. Thrawn

    Thrawn Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    If you're confused about how things fit together, the flowchart in my signature should help :)
     
  3. Sci

    Sci Admiral Admiral

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    I have never heard this before. In fact, I seem to recall reading in Voyages of the Imagination that The Left Hand of Destiny was itself delayed for quite some time by J.G. Hertzler having trouble putting everything together, leading Marco to bring Jeffrey Lang to the party as co-writer. So I'm a bit skeptical of that.

    And so far as I know, Marco always said that publication order was his intended reading order as editor.
     
  4. Therin of Andor

    Therin of Andor Admiral Admiral

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    Correct. In fact, I broke that news. We had Mr Hertzler here in Sydney for a convention and, for my from-the-audience question, I asked him about the seemingly delay in his books coming out. He was thrilled that I'd even heard about them, and he told the anecdote about how he "wasn't as clever at novel writing" than he'd originally assumed, and how Marco had recently come to the rescue by bringing in Jeffrey Lang to give his work an overhaul. The duology missed the originally-intended publication dates by about a year.
     
  5. theblitz

    theblitz Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    A related question:

    Who is it that decides what is the "correct" on-going history of DS9?
    Does the original franchise control the books and define a path to be followed?
     
  6. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    The editor of a novel series is responsible for overseeing its overall direction and storyline, though the authors come up with most of the actual story ideas -- creating stuff is what they pay us to do, so why should they do it for us? An editor may have a loose plan for the direction of the series, while keeping that plan open to modification in response to the new ideas the authors come up with.

    CBS, the studio that now owns Star Trek, does not "control" or "define" the books. All that CBS Licensing does is vet the books to ensure that they stay consistent with Star Trek canon (i.e. the TV shows and movies). Trek is just one of the licensed properties that CBS Licensing oversees, so it's not like they have time to do the creative work themselves (which is why they license book publishers to do it for them). As for the actual people who produced the various ST television shows, they've all moved on to other jobs (or, in some cases, died) and no longer have any responsibility for it.

    Currently the only people actively overseeing new Star Trek screen production are J.J. Abrams and his team at Bad Robot Productions, and they do oversee the tie-ins to the new movie universe (specifically the IDW comics and the young-adult Starfleet Academy books) rather closely to ensure consistency. But they aren't involved in the creation of tie-in novels set in the "Prime" universe (i.e. the universe of every other Trek show and movie prior to 2009).
     
  7. King Daniel Beyond

    King Daniel Beyond Admiral Admiral

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    As far as I can ascertain from author's comments here, the individual authors are given lots of leeway by Pocket's editors to take the stories wherever they want. But everything has to be given the okay from CBS.

    Those who ran the Trek TV series' aren't involved (although a few authors did write episodes)

    EDIT: Beaten to the punch:p
     
  8. theblitz

    theblitz Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    So "Pocket" essentially licensed rights to create the continuous series of DS9 books?

    Are there other series that contradict this one are is only this one allowed?

    Just curiosity.
     
  9. Thrawn

    Thrawn Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    By choice, the vast majority of recent Trek novels are all in the same continuity (with the occasional mistake here and there, just like the TV show, but nothing egregious.) This includes all the DS9 novels.

    Occasionally, there is a project that, for whatever reason, is chosen to be outside the normal continuity. If I recall correctly, the only ones lately have been the Crucible TOS trilogy (an anniversary trilogy that just focused on TV show continuity); William Shatner's long series wherein Kirk is resurrected after Generations (usually called the Shatnerverse); and the TOS novel The Children Of Kings. Also, New Frontier - a long, ongoing series that started in the late 90s - has a vague relationship to continuity, basically doing its own thing but with some of the other books referring to it. Its last novel seemed pretty out there, though, and might not be reconcilable with the rest.

    Everything in the giant flowchart in my signature is part of the large-scale continuity. You'll see it called the "LitVerse" a lot around here, and the vast majority of it is freaking awesome.

    And if you're worried about all this massive continuity getting overturned, Pocket's license to write Trek isn't going anywhere any time soon, and there seem to be no plans for any screen productions in the Prime universe at all right now. People make a big deal about how Star Wars's EU is technically "canon" while the Trek novels aren't, but in practice it works out to exactly the same thing - both novel series stay consistent within themselves, but can be overwritten by new screen productions at will. Since SW has new screen productions coming but ST doesn't, the ST continuity is probably safer than the SW one, regardless of what label you attach to it.
     
  10. ATimson

    ATimson Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    There's pretty much three distinct generations of eBooks from S&S:

    1) 1979 - ~2000: Older titles that were scanned/OCR'd. These aren't going to look particularly good on any platform, and are going to be the prone to errors.

    2) ~2000 - ~2009: Titles with electronic sources that were released for MS Reader, Mobipocket, and Palm eReader. These should have clean text on both Kindle and ePub, but the ePub version is likely going to have formatting errors (it looks like S&S converted the ePubs from another format rather than recreating them from the digital source files) that won't be present in the Kindle version (since Kindle is Mobipocket).

    3) ~2009 - now: Titles with electronic sources that were released for Kindle and ePub. These should have clean text and formatting on both platforms, but the ePub will look nicer (thanks to the custom fonts and better formatting).
     
  11. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    The publisher Simon & Schuster, whose imprints include Pocket Books and Gallery Books, has an exclusive license from CBS Studios (which is owned by the same conglomerate) to publish prose fiction based on Star Trek. It's had that license since 1981, when CBS Studios was still called Paramount (to put it simply). That means that, most of the time, it's been the only company allowed to publish novels or stories based on ST, although there have been a couple of small exceptions; briefly in the late '90s, the revived Amazing Stories magazine obtained a license to publish short fiction based on The Next Generation and Voyager, and just recently Star Trek Magazine published an original short story based on the Star Trek Online computer game. Pocket/S&S used to have the license to ST nonfiction as well, but now that license has gone elsewhere.

    There is also a separate license to publish ST fiction in comic-book form, and this has been held by many publishers over the decades: Gold Key in the '60s and '70s, Marvel Comics following the release of the first movie in 1979 (plus a separate daily comic strip from the LA Times Syndicate), DC Comics in the '80s and '90s, then Malibu (exclusively DS9), then Marvel, then Wildstorm. IDW has held the license to do TOS, TNG, and eventually DS9-based comics for the past several years, and for a while TokyoPop had its own license to do TOS and TNG comics in manga format, but they're out of business now so it's just IDW anymore.

    As far as contradiction goes, all tie-ins have to stay consistent with the canon (the shows and movies), but there's no requirement that all Trek tie-ins be consistent with each other, even within a single publisher's line. Pocket maintains an overall continuity among most of its novels as a matter of authorial and editorial choice, but there have also been novels that were intentionally kept separate from that continuity. And IDW has no overall continuity among its comics; all the ones written and illustrated by John Byrne are interconnected with one another, but the rest are all standalones and aren't always consistent with one another, and a couple have even tied into the Pocket continuity while others have conflicted with it.
     
  12. theblitz

    theblitz Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    @Thrawn
    That is one awesome list.

    Think I am gonna need the lifespan of a Vulcan to catch up. :)
     
  13. Thrawn

    Thrawn Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Haha, thanks.

    Don't feel like you have to read all of it. The middle three columns are probably best read together, but even then you could skip everything before Destiny, and just Destiny and its follow-ups make an outstanding set of narratives on their own. And everything else comes in pretty standalone chunks.

    Read what sounds interesting. Anything you need to know from prior books will be explained to you. And if you want to learn more, THAT'S where the flowchart comes in :)
     
  14. JD

    JD Admiral Admiral

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    If you are interested in checking out some of the pre-IDW comic books, a few years ago a company called GIT Corp released a DVD containing almost every comic released by Gold Key, Marvel, DC, and Wildstorm. It doesn't have a couple of X-Men crossover issues, but I think those are the only non-IDW comics not on the disc.
     
  15. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    The TokyoPop mangas aren't included either. Also, the Klingon language variant of Starfleet Academy #18 is missing, despite the box claiming it's included.
     
  16. ryan123450

    ryan123450 Commodore Commodore

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    Hmmm. I have that disk and I wasn't aware there were other X-Men issues. I wonder what the problem with including them was?
     
  17. JD

    JD Admiral Admiral

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    I would assume the license only included Trek.
     
  18. ryan123450

    ryan123450 Commodore Commodore

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    There is one Xmen crossover issue included though. I wonder if the missing ones in question were published as Xmen titles instead of Star Trek titles.
     
  19. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    No, neither of the X-Men crossovers is included in the Star Trek: The Complete Comics Collection DVD-ROM, at least not the edition I have.
     
  20. JD

    JD Admiral Admiral

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    Nor the one I have.