I have an idea for a Star Trek Novel!

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction' started by marknetprod, Oct 25, 2008.

  1. marknetprod

    marknetprod Ensign Newbie

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    I am looking for other writers/Trek fans willing to help me develop, write, and pitch to Pocket Books an adventure that takes place in the 25th century but ends up on the Enterprise being refitted before ST-TMP. I wish to make this a Scotty adventure, rather than a typical Kirk-Spock-McCoy story. I want to learn all I can about the major refit of the Enterprise and I like to know what kind of time travel element that would make this exciting to read! Please contact me on here and at hudsonman35@gmail.com, help me succeed on this project! I been a Trek fan for over 30 years now, I met George Takei and Nichelle Nichols years ago. I want to write for Star Trek! :D

    Markus McLaughlin
    marknetproductions.wordpress.com
    Hudson, MA, USA
     
  2. BolianAuthor

    BolianAuthor Writer, Battlestar Urantia Rear Admiral

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    Well, a good start would be first, watching TMP, and learning what you can from that of the refit... also, Mr. Scott's Guide to the Enterprise is a great resource on the refit Enterprise.

    As for what time travel element would be interesting, hehe... that is something YOU as the principal author must determine... you MUST, and I cannot emphasize this enough... you MUST have the basic plot outline for the entire story down pat, before you even begin to write anything.

    That's it, for starters.

    I have had the stories firmly set for ALL of my own fics:

    -Star Trek: Entomalians
    -Star Trek: A New Beginning
    -Star Trek: United We Stand
    -Star Trek: Distant Star - "Waking Nightmares"
    -Battlestar Urantia
    -Shades of Gray

    -BolianAdmiral
     
  3. msbae

    msbae Commodore

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    Well, for starters, tell people to put their ideas into this thread instead of making your e-mail public. You just opened yourself up to a LOT of spam.

    Second, I'd like to see the Guardian used more often. However, you might have to pay Harlan Ellison a royalty and he's not easy to deal with...
     
  4. BolianAuthor

    BolianAuthor Writer, Battlestar Urantia Rear Admiral

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    The Guardian(s) were used prominently in my Star Trek: A New Beginning story. :D
     
  5. TerriO

    TerriO Writer-type human Premium Member

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    It's a great idea, in theory, but I've got to ask if you've actually kept up with how the novels have been using Scotty, because that's going to play into your proposal considerably, I think. The only thing that allows me to legally be in here is the fact that I'm not writing Trek fiction professionally anymore, so I'm afraid I can't offer help beyond a bit of advice from my time doing this professionally.

    My best advice? Don't try to propose a story you're emotionally attached to. Because if it even flies (which, considering how serialized things have been lately, there's at the very least a 50/50 chance it won't), you will probably see changes to the proposal from the licensor. I don't think I've ever seen a novel proposal go through without changes in all the time I've been in or around the process.

    But definitely write your outline (often referred to as the proposal) first. Unless you really want to write 100K of novel without a guide, and then reverse the proposal out of the finished manuscript. I've tried that. It's really masochism, IMO.

    Follow the guidelines at simonsays.com. Seriously. I'm not seeing a way that this could violate the "stories we don't want to see" portion of the guidelines, but this is a very basic description at best.

    One thing I highly recommend doing, prove to yourself that you can write to completion a 100K novel before even attempting this. As someone who had to face a lot of doubt about whether I was "ready" to write a novel, proving your ability to write and finish the 100K involved will put a point in your favor before you even start.

    And you'll actually get a hearing if you have an agent. Unsolicited manuscripts aren't exactly flying these days.

    And there you face the tricky part: getting an agent when all you have for them to try to sell is a Trek novel. This is why so many people recommend establishing yourself with original fiction before you try to sell to Trek. Your chances of getting an agent improve the more they see you as someone with more than a Trek novel they can represent.

    I apologize for the haphazard nature of the post. I'm in the middle of moving into a new apartment right now, and I saw this as I was taking a break from lifting furniture. Feel free to ask me any questions you may have on the processs. If I don't have the answer, I know several people who might. :techman:
     
  6. hellsgate

    hellsgate Commodore

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    "Star Trek: --------------"

    25th Century Alpha Quadrant. A Dyson Sphere appears suddenly without explanation or hails to neighboring ships. The sphere's hatches open while hundreds of small pod-craft leave the shell of the Sphere and begin firing, taking out several Klingon & Starfleet ships assisting Cardassia Prime to rebuild following the Jem Hadar bombardment. The Starfleet-Klingon convoy cannot track & lock onto that many targets & destroy them simultaneously, leaving the convoy decimated. The podcraft begin to maneuver into landing patterns on Cardassia.

    31st Century Starfleet

    "Chef" Daniels notices the Temporal Incursion & signals for an agent to correct the 'oversight'.

    29th Century Starfleet

    Captain Braddox of the Temporal Vessel Relativity notices the breach & diverts course to intercept.
     
  7. BolianAuthor

    BolianAuthor Writer, Battlestar Urantia Rear Admiral

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  8. Rush Limborg

    Rush Limborg Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Yeah...as I recall, the guidelines forbid time-travel tales.

    However...you've got a good idea. A nice "high-concept", as it were.

    Myself, I'm writing a Trek novel, too--one that violates the guidelines, BTW.:)

    The thing about the guidelines, though, is that they only apply to rookies. Once you're experienced, you're free to try and publish this one.

    Now...I wrote a plot synopsis first. I then left it alone for a while--long enough for me to get new ideas to work into the tale. Then, I re-wrote some of the plot.

    Finally, I started writing.

    As for where to start. Ever heard it said, "Start in the Middle"?

    That's bunk. You wanna start at the beginning of the plot--or a little bit before. Still...start with something that will pull the reader in.

    Something emotionally relevent to the story...but with an undertone of "Hey, something interesting is going to happen."

    When you write, use the synopsis, but take care--it's not carved in stone. If a new idea hits you (a new scene, or a new plot turn, whatever), by all means write it!

    I would use the guideline as your basic agenda--the general idea for your story. If you're stuck, refer to it. It'll help put you back on track.
     
  9. TerriO

    TerriO Writer-type human Premium Member

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    We've all done our Trek novels that violate the guidelines at some point, Rush. ;)
     
  10. Rush Limborg

    Rush Limborg Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Of course. However...they were never our first sales, amen?
     
  11. Mistral

    Mistral Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Frankly, my first question would be-do you have an agent? Second would be-don't discuss details of your story on a public forum-the liability factor could squelch a deal that might otherwise be accepted. Third-do it all yourself. The only way Marco or any other editor would invest the effort in your story would be if they believed you were reliable enough to follow through under a deadline. Fourth-try to land a few semi-pro to pro writing assignments so you aren't just going to an editor/publisher with your ST story-you'll also be bringing some credentials to the table. Oh, and suck up to Terrio, Krad and the other writers. As long as you don't blurt out story ideas in their (online) presence they can give helpful advice. And they love flattery! :lol: Good luck!
     
  12. Rush Limborg

    Rush Limborg Vice Admiral Admiral

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    (Applauds like mad) Right on! Right on! Right on!!!:techman:

    Especially that last point....:guffaw:
     
  13. TerriO

    TerriO Writer-type human Premium Member

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    And let's not use this as a place to trash talk other members of the board, please, Rush. Yes, I'd say that no matter who it was, before anyone starts accusing me of bias. I haven't worked for them since 2006. Sucking up to me is pointless, but I can offer advice on what I did learn while I was working in the line.

    Hate to blow your firmly-held belief, but mine didn't sell at all. I didn't play by the rules very well. :)

    As for what Mistral said, discussing whatever about your idea you're comfortable discussing in fanfic is fine. The writers who are still working in the line don't come here. Discussing it in TrekLit, however, is a bad idea.
     
  14. BolianAuthor

    BolianAuthor Writer, Battlestar Urantia Rear Admiral

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    All I can offer is that personally, I would never collaborate with anyone on a story... as much as the two of you may agree, there WILL come a point where opinions will clash, about where the story should go, or some other aspect, and that will create animosity and frustration.

    If it's a story you created and care deeply about, you have to go it alone... otherwise, be prepared for the finished product to be different than the story you envisioned.
     
  15. Rush Limborg

    Rush Limborg Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Whoa, whoa, whoa...what???

    I wasn't trying to trash anyone....:confused:
     
  16. marknetprod

    marknetprod Ensign Newbie

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    Thank you for your ideas thus far,

    I don't know how to take down my e-mail, but, so much junk mail goes to that link, so I'll leave it on here.

    I seriously want to write a Trek Novel, if Pocket Books won't buy my idea, I hope some other venue will present itself.

    I have other writing projects so I need an Agent no matter what. I am too stubborn to give up on ALL of my writing projects.

    Is there ONE Scotty Novel I should read that will give me insight into his character?

    I already own TMP DVD and Mr. Scott's Guide to the Enterprise.

    I won't be using Guardian of Forever as a time travel element, the Gateways as shown in TNG is probably what I'm going to work with. I need to know who came up with it so I can write him/her. It reminds me of the Stargate from that SG-1 show.

    Either the 25th or 30th Century would be in the prologue, taking place long after Star Trek X the movie.

    I hope I am not copying Star Trek XI the movie, because I'm not going further back like that film has. I always loved the idea of a story taking place on the Enterprise during the 18 month refit after TOS leading up to TMP. It would be great to bring back Will Decker, Ilia, Xon, Rand, Uhura, Chekov, Sulu, and Scotty as the main characters.

    I need advice and support from the established Trek Authors as I start constructing the Outline/Proposal.

    I been writing for years but I haven't been a success at it, yet. I am determined to have some of my writing succeed however.

    I don't care if I don't make millions but it never hurts to try for it!

    Any help, advice, etc. is welcome. Please list ideas for me to pursue...

    Markus McLaughlin
    marknetproductions.wordpress.com
    Hudson, MA, USA
     
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2008
  17. Mistral

    Mistral Vice Admiral Admiral

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    My only point in saying that was that any idea...modified... by input from amateurs might be susceptible to litigation if the final work was published professionally. Nada mas.

    As for the sucking up part-I meant that in good fun-any of the pros seem willing to give advice IF it doesn't involve hearing details of a story.
     
  18. SLWatson

    SLWatson Captain Captain

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    No, there isn't. I rather wish there was, but most of the novels treat Scotty very inconsistently, characterization-wise and none of them really dive too deep into his backstory. The only two I could venture to say are reasonably done are Kobayashi Maru (47), where he's a puppy cadet, and Vulcan's Glory.

    If there were a good, character-driven, well-characterized novel about Mister Scott... I wouldn't have had to write my own.

    Good luck on your endeavor!
     
  19. Rush Limborg

    Rush Limborg Vice Admiral Admiral

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    As did I.

    Hmm....

    "Engines of Destiny" featured Scotty, TNG era. I have not read it, so I don't know whether to recommend it or not.

    "Crossover" is okay. A good bit of it focuses on TNG-era Scotty.

    As far as I know, the SCE series has some tales that feature Scotty.
     
  20. SLWatson

    SLWatson Captain Captain

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    I've read both.

    Engines of Destiny was awful. DeWeese didn't just butcher Scott's characterization, he butchered everyone's. There wasn't one single character in that book that rang true. No wonder it wasn't published for the longest time... I have NO idea why anyone did eventually. It's that bad.

    Crossover was meh. It had moments of good insight, but the author never managed to shake off the 'must hit every Scotty-cliche-and-stereotype in x-number of pages' problem. You'd have an insightful moment (ie, that he's kind of guarded, really), then some absolutely moronic cliche. I was more irritated by Crossover because it DID have some potential, and the author DID show some good insight, but sacrificed really using it so that he could appeal to stereotypes that many (though not all) TOS fans accept without question.

    Overall, I'll stick that Kobayashi Maru offers an absolutely interesting view of an 18-year-old Scott -- a rather shy, nervous little bundle of energy who's trying to live by someone else's rules until he gets a chance to live by his own. And Vulcan's Glory, just because I love D.C. Fontana and the idea of Scott serving concurrently with Spock for eleven years on Pike's Enterprise.

    There were a few good sets that had him characterized well, mind, but none deeply insightful. The Errand of Vengeance series, for one -- he was shown as being competent, and you could see why he was Chief Engineer of the Enterprise; it managed to draw a well-characterized portrait of Scott without diving into cliches.

    ...and I'm rambling. But hey! There're my thoughts.
     
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2008

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