Seven Deadly Sins Discuss/ Grade

Discussion in 'Trek Literature' started by JD, Mar 18, 2010.

  1. Lonemagpie

    Lonemagpie Writer Admiral

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    Me neither- like I say, I prefer the tone on here to certain other places!

    Oh, don't worry I get that- it's just that I was aware of the limitation of the Ferengi subgenre when writing it, and tried to get a balance between being true to it (because it is popular, and there I guess I succeeded) and doing something new (which I guess I didn't succeed for you)

    Heh, if only I could mention-

    But no, not yet. Later this week...

    And mine! I was kind of surprised to be asked to do the Ferengi one - I think after On The Spot the editorial staff figured I could be a tongue-in-cheek go-to guy, whereas Dr Who readers will probably tell you I'm more a good villains and nasty action go-to guy...

    Don't be put off that I responded - it's always good to know what works and what doesn't.
     
  2. Lonemagpie

    Lonemagpie Writer Admiral

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    Don't worry, I know exactly what Thrawn means - something you've built up expectations about and had them not lived-up to always seems worse than what you think of something that you came to cold.

    I mean, everybody knows I hate Chakotay, but it's because I thought he showed the most promise in season 1 - which wasn't delivered upon.
     
  3. Nerys Ghemor

    Nerys Ghemor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Well, personally, I ended up liking "Reservoir Ferengi" better than the episode it was based on.

    I don't know why, but everyone raved about how wonderful "Business as Usual" was and I didn't get it...and honestly, I LIKE most Ferengi episodes. I think my problem with the episode was the fact that we didn't get the detailed explanation of the mentality behind it, whereas that WAS provided in your story.
     
  4. lvsxy808

    lvsxy808 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Just finished the book last night. Posting my thoughts directly without reading anybody else... I'll get to that later. So apologies if it's all been said before.

    In general, very impressed. Some better than others, obviously, but that's always the way, and a very strong collection in total.

    Romulans: "The First Peer" (Pride)
    I had coincidentally just finished reading Summon the Thunder immediately prior, which had introduced me to Sarith, Anitra, Vrax and so on. So that was a nice surprise for me to pick right up. I enjoyed how the story tied together TOS, Vanguard, the movies and more while also filling a continuity hole (the short-lived Klingon-Romulan alliance) and hewing well to its theme of pride and hubris.

    Ferengi: "Reservoir Ferengi" (Greed)
    Again, a lot of fun. Dead-on characters, the very enjoyable idea of Brunt going slowly insane with his obsession over Quark while Quark just bobbles along quite happily, but also not shying away from the horrible consequences of their actions. Aww, poor Bijon! It managed the tricky feat of having fun with the Ferengi without making fun of them.

    Cardassians: "The Slow Knife" (Envy)
    Another continuity hole cleverly filled, and another tale excellently told. Garak's appearance was another delightful surprise (and don't tell me it wasn't Garak - that "plain and simple" line was undeniable). I just thought it was a good story until somebody mentioned the Setlik system, and I thought "Holy shit it's the Setlik Massacre!" And then when Enkoa said "I have sources outside the military," it was another "oh shit" moment as the whole thing opened up - I realized Garak had been talking to Enkoa too, and persuading him to attack. I was a little surprised that it was only one ship, and a small one at that, but hey whatever.

    If I understand correctly, Garak's purpose was two-fold. First, he wanted to make sure the invasion of Setlik went ahead because Hanno was blocking it, and used Enkoa and Kein to make it happen. And second, he wanted to test the possibility of a leak in the Obsidian Order - if Enkoa didn't attack, that meant he knew it was only farming equipment not military equipment, and that meant there was a leak.

    I do wonder though... O'Brien was involved in the Setlik Massacre. Garak knows that, as evidenced by his baiting him in "Empok Nor." But do you think Garak would ever admit his own involvement to O'Brien? On the one hand, no never - Garak does not let secrets out. But I wonder if, in the half-ruined emotional state he is in in "The Calling," Garak might want to divulge his sins in the hope of forgiveness?

    Klingons: "The Unhappy Ones" (Wrath)
    Though it may seem sacrilege to say it, I feel like this is where it started to slump a bit. Again, a nice hole filled, in which we learned how the lumpy and the smooth Klingons interact. But I just wasn't quite sure of the point of the whole thing, or how the assigned sin of Wrath applied to the situation. I didn't see Wrath leading to anyone's downfall especially. Sorkav certainly had a downfall, but it was racism that led to it. Anyway, it was nice to see Kor, Koloth and Kang's first meeting, and it was fun to see that the Klingon propoganda machine blames the Augment Virus for the war against the Federation. Has it been established how the virus was cured so that K, K & K got their foreheads?

    Mirror Universe: "Freedom Angst" (Lust)
    I suppose it really was all lust that drove this - Kira's lust for Sisko is what set the whole thing in motion. Another hole filled - how Sisko ended up on Terok Nor (on his way to not becoming Emissary). Trill sexual fluidity continues, and I'm very pleased that it was not restricted to titillating faux-lesbians this time. No Ferengis killed though - that breaks the tradition! One of the more middling stories that just didn't exite me all that much. Purely IMO of course. But it was good to see the MU's version of the Orion Syndicate.

    Borg: "Revenant" (Gluttony)
    One of the most terrifying horror stories I've ever read. Incredible work. Again though, I didn't think the Gluttony theme was especially well utilised. That's the trouble when you start metaphor-ificating the Sins - Greed, Gluttony and Lust all start to blend together and become muddy and ill-defined. I had also wondered - all the other stories had been written from the POV of the aliens in question. But how could you possibly write a story from the POV of a Borg? Well, whaddaya know - it was written from the POV of a Borg. They just didn't know they were Borg yet.

    Other thoughts on this story here: http://trekbbs.com/showpost.php?p=3985496&postcount=6

    Pakled: "Work Is Hard" (Sloth)
    Another delight. Such a perfect distillation of the TNG standard. Even the Enterprise sections seemed to feed into the comedy. When you've got Geordi's first line being an entire paragraph of impenetrable technobabble, Worf saying "They have no honour!" about eight times and Troi's hilariously, brilliantly lame "Captain, we have to do something!," how can you not take that as making gentle joshing fun of some of TNG's worst cliches? We've all gotten used to these characters being much more fleshed out thanks to the Lit, but it was great fun to roll that back to when they were pointless and predictable exposition machines. (I just hope all of this was deliberate, or else I've just insulted the author horribly.) I do have to wonder how the Pakled culture can possibly work like that, but that's not Greg Cox's fault - it's "Samaritan Snare"'s.
     
  5. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Isn't racism a kind of wrath? The dictionary defines wrath as "violent, resentful anger." Racism is resentful anger against people who aren't like you, and it often becomes violent.


    See Excelsior: Forged in Fire.
     
  6. Nerys Ghemor

    Nerys Ghemor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Lvsxy808--Check your PM's. I just sent you some thoughts on the Pakled matter.
     
  7. Greg Cox

    Greg Cox Admiral Premium Member

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    Hah! I confess that I wasn't deliberately trying to do a parody of TNG, but I did sit down and rewatch lots of old TNG eps before writing that story, so I probably reabsorbed all the old cliches as well! I'm always trying to capture the tone of whatever I'm adapting. Maybe this time I succeeded too well!

    Fortunately, it was supposed to be a humorous story . . . .
     
  8. Lonemagpie

    Lonemagpie Writer Admiral

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    Aww, ta!
     
  9. Icemizer

    Icemizer Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I found all of the stories to be entertaining with the exception of the alternate universe story. I dont know why but I just didnt click with this story at all. Perhaps I just dont like the alternate Sisko. I am not sure.

    Oh yes before I forget one technological thing I caught in the Cardassian story. Early on they are being attacked and say they must fire the torpedoes blind since sensors are down.. A page later we find the the torpedoes have smart software programmed to find the silhouettes of thousands of enemy ships. Umm guess firing blind is not a problem if the torpedoes have sensors even when the ship doesnt.
     
  10. KRAD

    KRAD Keith R.A. DeCandido Admiral

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    The whole story was built around wrath. I wasn't trying to make it be a "downfall" exactly -- I wasn't taking the "deadly" part of the title as seriously, I guess :lol: -- but wrath drove the entire story. Krov toward Gahlar, Malvak toward both Sorkav and Gahlar after Krov was killed, the workers regarding how Malvak was treated, Kang toward Sorkav and Kobyk (and regarding the QuchHa' state), and so on. There was anger all over the place....


    Seemed a logical thing. :)


    As Christopher said, that was covered in Star Trek: Excelsior: Forged in Fire by Mssrs. Martin & Mangels.
     
  11. DevilEyes

    DevilEyes Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I finally got the book today! It was quite a wait, since it had been "temporarily out of stock" on amazon.co.uk for a long time...

    So far I've just had the time to flip through the pages to see the 'historian's notes' to the stories. I have a question, the Borg story is supposed to be set "in early 2380 after the fall of the Romulan Star Empire (Star Trek Nemesis) and concurrent with the Enterprise (NCC-1701-E) encountering the former Starship Einstein (Star Trek: The Next Generation--Greater Than the Sum)." I haven't read any of the TNG relaunch books yet. Is it necessary to have read GTTS to be able to enjoy the story, or should I leave that one for later until I've read those TNG books?
     
  12. Thrawn

    Thrawn Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    It actually works better if you haven't, in my opinion.
     
  13. Greg Cox

    Greg Cox Admiral Premium Member

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    I haven't read GREATER THAN THE SUM YET, but I found the Borg story nice and creepy.
     
  14. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Well, then I'm out of luck... ;)
     
  15. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    I thought you succeeded in showing something new there. It was intriguing to see that Brunt found killing morally repulsive, but for a very different set of moral reasons than a human would have. It reminds me of what Quark said to Sisko in "The Jem'Hadar" (I think) -- that for all humans' attitude of ethical superiority over the greedy, deceitful Ferengi, they've never been as violent or warlike as we've been in our history. And Brunt's attitude here helped illustrate why that is.

    The big surprise was Brunt ending up with Pel, who represents something he's always despised. He's becoming far more like Quark than he could ever stand to admit.
     
  16. Lonemagpie

    Lonemagpie Writer Admiral

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    Following up on that speech is pretty much why I wanted to look at the Ferengi attitudes to violence. I also knew that if I was going to have an alien character take a certain moral view, I wanted it to be different than the usual human/Western one.

    Like repels like- they both see themselves as the epitome of a good Ferengi, and they're probably right...
     
  17. toughlittleship

    toughlittleship Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I finally got Seven Deadly Sins and "Reservoir Ferengi" is clearly the best of the bunch.

    There were a few continuity errors I noticed in the other stories, such as O'Brien being referred to in "Work is Hard" (set more than a year since he moved to DS9) and "Freedom Angst", where Janel is apparantly killed by Bokar, whereas in "Saturn's Children" he was mentioned to have been killed by the Alliance.
     
  18. T'Ressa Dax

    T'Ressa Dax Captain Captain

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    I read that as referring to when O'Brien was on the Enterprise, not as him currently still being on it.
     
  19. toughlittleship

    toughlittleship Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Unfortunately not, Geordi mentions he left O'Brien in charge of engineering.
     
  20. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    The continuity issue I noticed in "Freedom Angst" is that, going by Ezri's birthdate listed on StarTrek.com, she would've been around 15 years old at the time of this story. Though that's not a canonical date. But I suppose people in the MU might have to grow up pretty fast. And maybe Trill mature differently than humans.
     

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