DTI: Watching the Clock by C. L. Bennett Review Thread (Spoilers!)

Discussion in 'Trek Literature' started by Thrawn, Apr 18, 2011.

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Rate DTI: Watching The Clock

  1. Outstanding

    97 vote(s)
    59.5%
  2. Above Average

    44 vote(s)
    27.0%
  3. Average

    13 vote(s)
    8.0%
  4. Below Average

    3 vote(s)
    1.8%
  5. Poor

    6 vote(s)
    3.7%
  1. Julio Angel Ortiz

    Julio Angel Ortiz Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Re: Star Trek: DTI: Watching The Clock Review Thread

    This would be fairly awesome and made of shiny, explosive WIN.
     
  2. Plaristes

    Plaristes Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    Re: Star Trek: DTI: Watching The Clock Review Thread

    Well, there's still time to add a reference to "The Counter-Clock Incident," since one wasn't included in WTC. :evil:
     
  3. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: DTI: Watching The Clock Review Thread

    Not on your life. Stupidest episode ever. (Although there are certainly other TAS references in Forgotten History.)
     
  4. EliyahuQeoni

    EliyahuQeoni Commodore Commodore

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    Re: Star Trek: DTI: Watching The Clock Review Thread

    Is there any chance of a mention of "Yesteryear"? Its an overall good episode, but I never really understood the temporal logic behind it and what the "original" time line would have looked like. I'd love to see what you make of it.
     
  5. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: DTI: Watching The Clock Review Thread

    Ohhh, I'd say there's a pretty good chance it will be mentioned... :D
     
  6. EliyahuQeoni

    EliyahuQeoni Commodore Commodore

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    Re: Star Trek: DTI: Watching The Clock Review Thread

    I almost wish I hadn't asked! I want this book NOW!! :)
     
  7. GHS

    GHS Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Re: Star Trek: DTI: Watching The Clock Review Thread

    Chris, the lines near the end of the book about Hamron travelling back to the 22nd century and getting chased down by - presumably - Archer's crew was a welcome addition and I can't wait to see that book, if and when it happens. I am surprised that that isn't the followup WTC book you;re writing. Do you hope to tell that story personally or was it written towards anyone in particular expanding upon it later?

    One other question. There were two SNW stories featuring Daniels; Cabin E-14 (set in Archer's time) and Dawn (has Daniels interacting with the TNG crew) , neither of which I've read recently. Were you familar with them when you started WTC and/or have any feeling that they should be compabile with the events of your book or were too far off the makr to worry about contradicting?
     
  8. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: DTI: Watching The Clock Review Thread

    Neither. Part of writing in a shared universe means being aware that other writers may have plans of their own totally independent of anything I plan or wish to do. Left to my own devices, I would've been happy to wrap up Future Guy for good and all. But I gathered that if Enterprise had continued, its makers might have revealed that Future Guy was involved in the Romulan War. So I figured that some other writer might have an idea to do something with that premise, or might want to do some other story dealing with Future Guy in the Enterprise timeframe. So I wanted to leave room for them to do so, just in case.


    I didn't really consider those at the time. I found them both interesting but had uncertainties about their temporal logic. If I'd thought of it, maybe I could've reconciled them, but I didn't really remember them.

    Anyway, my interpretation was that Daniels was assigned to the 22nd century and Jena Noi to the 24th.
     
  9. DigificWriter

    DigificWriter Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: DTI: Watching The Clock Review Thread

    Christopher: I just finished the book, and need to give you some MAJOR props and appreciation for your skills as a storyteller. I haven't had an opportunity to read any of your previous Trek Lit offerings and therefore can't judge WtC in relation to them, but have to say that the book has just joined the DS9 and Vanguard novels (as many as I've read) on my list of the best Trek Lit I've EVER read. I've never seen "Trials and Tribble-ations", the episode that introduced the DTI and the characters of Lucsly and Dulmur, but still had no trouble becoming engrossed in the agency's exploits and connecting with their characters.

    I also really enjoyed the new characters that you added to the pantheon of Trek lore, especially Jena Noi and Shelan, and was extremely saddened to see the latter written out of existence.

    Speaking of Jena Noi, though, naming the character in part after Jen Scotts of Power Rangers Time Force was a stroke of brilliance, and I could very easily see the beautiful and talented Erin Cahill bringing Noi to life in live-action.

    I'm now eagerly awaiting the second DTI book, Forgotten History, in May, and seriously hope that there are more DTI adventures to come beyond that book at some point, even if there aren't currently plans in place for said books.
     
  10. Edit_XYZ

    Edit_XYZ Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Re: Star Trek: DTI: Watching The Clock Review Thread

    DigificWriter

    If you enjoyed 'Watching the clock', I recommend 'The buried age', 'Orion's hounds', 'Ex machina' by Christopher Bennett (indeed, all his books are written in a similar hard-sfish style).
     
  11. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: DTI: Watching The Clock Review Thread

    Why, thank you.


    Doesn't really look the part. I wrote her with Salli Richardson-Whitfield in mind. Freema Agyeman could also work, or maybe Marsha Thomason. (I think there was someone else I've seen in recent months who occurred to me as a possibility, but I've forgotten who.)
     
  12. Pavonis

    Pavonis Commodore Commodore

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    Re: Star Trek: DTI: Watching The Clock Review Thread

    Is it common now for authors to cast actors in their minds while writing? I know readers often do so, but didn't expect authors to worry about "casting".

    As for WtC, I really enjoyed the first time I read it last year, and am eagerly looking forward to Forgotten History.
     
  13. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: DTI: Watching The Clock Review Thread

    It depends on the author, I'm sure, but it's a long-established practice. For instance, C. C. Beck and Bill Parker, who created Captain Marvel for Fawcett Comics back in 1940, modeled him on actor Fred MacMurray. Though it's probably become more common as TV and movies have become more prevalent.

    I find that choosing actor templates for my characters helps me distinguish them, give them different voices and attitudes when I write their dialogue, so they don't all come out sounding like me. So it's a useful tool. As a lifelong animation buff, sometimes I just cast a particular actor's voice in a role even if the face I visualize is very different.

    Sometimes I create a character without a particular actor in mind, but then I'm watching a show with an actor who reminds me of the character and I can't help seeing/hearing that actor in the role. In WTC, I initially imagined Dr. Vard as a composite of bits and pieces from various Doctors in Doctor Who and Jena Noi as Freema Agyeman, but since I was watching Fringe and Eureka at the time, John Noble and Salli Richardson-Whitfield "took over" those characters in my mind. The brain works by association, so it's easy for similar images or concepts to get linked together, and once the link is made, it's hard to unmake it.

    But I figure all characters are based on some templates, whether it's people from the writer's personal life, teachers they knew once, actors they've seen on stage or screen, or whatever.
     
  14. DigificWriter

    DigificWriter Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: DTI: Watching The Clock Review Thread

    Hmm. I stand by what I said, though. You throw some prosthetics on Erin, and I think she'd be perfect as Noi, even if you had a different actress in your head when you created the character.

    The reason I think Cahill would be a perfect Noi if you threw some prosthetics on her is because her characterization reminded me very much of a combination of both Jen and Alex.

    I also got a very Alex-esque vibe from Ducane (which was more than likely unintentional, since the character wasn't someone you created from scratch).

    I'm going to delve back into Titan now, and since I've already read half of Taking Wing and am a fairly fast reader, it probably won't be that long til I'm on Orion's Hounds. Now that I've got a taste for the way you write from WtC, I can't wait to see what you did with the Titan characters and its unique mission.
     
  15. JD

    JD Admiral Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: DTI: Watching The Clock Review Thread

    ^Orion's Hounds is the best Titan book we've gotten so far.
     
  16. DigificWriter

    DigificWriter Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: DTI: Watching The Clock Review Thread

    I forgot to add that I know Pazlar had a small role in WtC, but I want to see how Christopher handled the character in her earlier days aboard Titan.
     
  17. dispatcher812

    dispatcher812 Commander Red Shirt

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    Re: Star Trek: DTI: Watching The Clock Review Thread

    I am about 25% through this and I must say I am not a fan. I almost did not purchase this just becasue of the concept itself. I am not a fan of time travel stories. This book contains way too much technotalk that just confuses me. I can't keep things straight. I will NOT be purchasing the next book in this line and may not even finsih this one.
     
  18. King Daniel Beyond

    King Daniel Beyond Admiral Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: DTI: Watching The Clock Review Thread

    In fairness, if you don't like time travel or technobabble, and started reading a book about time travel from the technobabbliest author on the plant, what did you expect?
     
  19. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: DTI: Watching The Clock Review Thread

    For what it's worth, neither am I. I wrote Watching the Clock as an alternative to the usual approach to time travel stories -- one that contains as little actual time travel as possible and is more about dealing with its consequences on the everyday, linear world -- and the "technotalk" is an attempt to sift through the usual nonsense that makes time travel stories so frustrating and impose some actual logic on the concept.
     
  20. Admiral_Young

    Admiral_Young Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: DTI: Watching The Clock Review Thread

    Indeed. Also I would understand the criticism if DTI: Watching the Clock were written in a dry type of way, but Christopher's style of writing is hardly anything like that. Granted, some of the techno talk can be a bit confusing, but I've never had any problem following what Christopher describes in any of his novel. I don't consider myself a huge tech guy either. Christopher has a very fluid style that is mostly easy to follow and the books of his that I've read are pretty well paced IMO.