Spoilers A Lit-verse Grand Finale...What We Know (Spoilers for Entire Lit-verse)

Discussion in 'Trek Literature' started by ryan123450, Nov 8, 2020.

  1. David cgc

    David cgc Admiral Premium Member

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    I've felt the same way. It's been a long time since I did a relaunch re-read (maybe that'll be a project, now that it's a contained unit with a beginning, middle, and end), but after reading the books and seeing how integrated the flashbacks were into the present-day post-Destiny (and post-Fall) storylines, I thought the whole thing probably wouldn't have seemed so slapdash if the books had come out at the same pace as the early DS9 relaunch, instead of spread out over years and years and those blanks were filled in sooner. Though, come to think of it, there were at least six or seven DS9-featuring books (if not DS9 by title) between "The Soul Key" and when "Sacraments of Fire" started filling in the missing period. Even more if you count stories just featuring the Aventine but no one else from the station.

    I agree that NF never recovered from the time-jump and would recommend anyone reading it for the first time to consider "Stone and Anvil" to be the "series finale," but that disorienting effect was the entire rationale for doing the time jump. PAD (and John Ordover? Was he still editing NF at that point?) was very clear in interviews that the reason for the time-skip was the idea that, when New Frontier started, all the characters had unplumbed backstories and hidden agendas and secrets, but by the time we'd gotten to S&A, everyone and everything had been pretty well established. The time skip was meant to shake things up, give the readers new mysteries and questions about what was going on so the series wouldn't get stale and episodic. I don't really think it was successful in that (well, I think the entire concept was flawed and it was a bad idea to try and roll back the clock on a successful series having matured into a new phase of storytelling after its initial installments). I've seen attempts to do similar things work out better; the TV series "Defiance," for instance, radically altered its status quo every season, usually with an accompanying time-skip of a few months or so, but in those cases, it was usually skipping over fairly straightforward developments from the previous shocking season finale, and not upending things in ways that were intended to be apparently inexplicable so the audience would be invested in demanding some sort of explanation for what had happened.
     
  2. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    I see that as a good thing. Fiction is an exercise in imagination and creativity. It's not about arriving at the "right" answer, it's about seeing how many different possibilities people can dream up. I've always enjoyed that about Trek tie-ins -- the opportunity to contrast the very different ways that distinct creators tackle the same narrative concepts.


    It's no wonder that Picard's makers wanted to tell their own story, though. Nobody creative wants to be seen as a mere imitator, or to have any ambiguity about their legitimate authorship of their own work. If there's a pre-existing story that covers the same ground as the story they want to tell, they'd be more likely to avoid it like the plague, in order to keep it from contaminating their own creative process, rather than actively seeking it out for things to copy. Or they might choose to find out what it did so that they could make sure they didn't just copy it (as I did when I read The Autobiography of James T. Kirk prior to writing The Captain's Oath, so I could see how it handled Kirk's first command and make sure I did something as different as possible).

    The point of creativity is to be creative, not just to copy other people's answers. So to expect copying is to have it backwards. The fact that everyone comes up with something different is what's good about creativity.


    Of course they can co-exist in our minds and our hearts, in the same way that the DC Animated Universe and the Arrowverse can co-exist, or that the ten or more different Godzilla universes to date can coexist, or the original and remade Battlestar Galactica can co-exist, or the countless versions of Sherlock Holmes can co-exist. Just because their continuities are different doesn't mean they can't coexist. The human mind can contain more than one idea at the same time.


    Nothing is "nullified" or "killed." None of this is real, so none of it is false. It's just imagined possibilities.
     
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  3. Damian

    Damian Commodore Commodore

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    Yeah, I know. I just figured there might be some things consistent just by pure random chance, not by any conscious design one way or the other.

    For instance, while the novel Federation and the movie First Contact have different visions of Cochrane, there are some things in the novel that could be consistent with the film and Colonel Green's movement that was portrayed in the Terra Prime episodes of Enterprise. The Optimum movement, for example, reminded me a bit of what we saw in "Terra Prime."

    I was just surprised at how virtually nothing is consistent between the two. Like I said, I don't think the showrunners went out of their way to do that. In a way, using your argument, that'd be stifling their creativity for the reverse reasons. While the argument could be made that they shouldn't stifle their creativity by using an already existing continuity, at the same time you could make the argument that they shouldn't stifle their ideas by nixing an idea just because the novels or something else did something similar at some point in the past.

    But I don't think they did anything like that. I suspect if they came up with an idea and learned the novels did something similar they'd still move forward with their idea.

    This kind of reminds me of a South Park episode where Butters is trying to get back at every one and every idea he comes up with someone always tells him "Simpsons did it...Simpsons did it". Eventually someone tells him that the Simpsons have been on the air for so long that they've done everything. Star Trek has been around so long and the extended universe so vast at this point you can't avoid coming up with ideas that someone else may have in the past. I wouldn't sweat it if that occurs, and I don't think the showrunners would.
     
  4. Damian

    Damian Commodore Commodore

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    Yeah, yeah. I know. I was just trying to make the point that the show basically made the novels incompatible with it in every possible way.

    I may have been exaggerating a bit :shrug: what can I say :whistle:


    (Sorry for posting again--I tried editing my prior comment but I guess you can't add quotes when editing a prior comment, or maybe my computer is just giving me a hard time :censored:).
     
  5. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Well, in large part that's because they deal with different subject matters, so there's not much opportunity for overlap. The novels were obligated to avoid anything connecting to the Romulan supernova, while Picard built its whole backstory around it.

    Still, I can think of a few overlaps. The concept of a secret community of AIs watching out for each other is similar to Immortal Coil and its followups, even if the specifics were quite different. Both continuities had Data's consciousness partially survive in some form, and both had Soong technology used to revive a dead/dying character, if not the same character. The canon Riker & Troi started a family around the same time as the novelverse Riker & Troi, just having a son instead of a daughter. And the idea of Romulans having secret names is right out of Diane Duane. (I think I read that they did research on Memory Beta.)

    I think you're limiting yourself by thinking of it in terms of "consistency" rather than commonality. Two works of creativity can use similar ideas while still executing them in different ways, like how the novels and Discovery both featured Section 31 AIs called Control but did very different things with them. So a shared idea doesn't automatically mean a compatible continuity; that's viewing fiction too literally. Each work is building its own version of the reality, so any common concepts are still going to produce different results when mixed with the rest of the ingredients.
     
  6. Thrawn

    Thrawn Rear Admiral Premium Member

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    The Ascendants storyline was basically taken care of in DRG3's novels Sacraments of Fire and Ascendance, which included some time travel shenanigans so that the story could be concluded chronologically after The Soul Key even though the rest of the ongoing DS9 narrative was many years later after the time jump to post-Destiny.

    But as a few other people have said, there are still a bunch of loose threads from DS9; I wonder to what extent Coda will tackle them.
     
  7. Damian

    Damian Commodore Commodore

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    I guess it didn't help that I really didn't start reading New Frontier until years after it had started (I think it was just prior to Treason being released that I really started). And Peter David basically noted at the beginning of the first book after the time jump what they were doing and that there would be no reset back to the 'prior normal.'

    And I didn't have a problem with that. One issue Star Trek has had over the years is keeping the same people in the same position for years. Maybe once you could see that but it happened many times. So having officers in NF move on to other positions after a few years does make sense.

    It was just that I always figured in some later book some of that back story might have been filled in, similar to what DS9 did. After all, there was an opportunity to tell some new stories about the crew splitting up.

    Every thing just felt 'off' after that and they never seemed to recover. There was a pretty consistent, coherent storyline through Stone & Anvil and after the time jump perhaps things got shaken up too much. NF lost that thread after that and it just never seemed to be able to get it all back. I don't think that was just because of the time jump--I actually think that was a symptom, not necessarily a cause. Though I was happy Peter David got to conclude some storylines with The Returned. But he, too, left some story lines that could be picked up on the future (though I doubt that will happen at this point). But the major plot lines, I think, are concluded.

    Anyway, there seemed to be 3 periods in the New Frontier saga. The first period I thought was the best. Then there was the post-Excalibur destruction period, then the post time-jump period. Each lost some momentum. As I noted, I guess some of that is too be expected. But perhaps they shook things up a bit too much.
     
  8. Damian

    Damian Commodore Commodore

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    I could see at least some being incorporated into Coda. Things that were obviously not intended to be incorporated since Coda wasn't conceived of at the time, but still, maybe close enough to be adjusted to be of use. For instance the time travel involved with Kira's friend from the past. And maybe the mysterious moon in some way could be used. There will probably be some lingering threads that get left out though.
     
  9. ryan123450

    ryan123450 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I’ll be comforted by the fact that if the universe were suddenly to be destroyed in a Temporal Apocalypse, everything naturally wouldn’t get tied in a nice bow before the end. So it’s partly to be expected, even if it’s narratively unsatisfying. We’ll just never see what happens with those Andorian transporter duplicates. :lol:
     
  10. Jinn

    Jinn Mistress of the Chaotic Energies Rear Admiral

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    Y'know, if Coda comes a long and explicitely ends the LitVerse in-universe I'll write a fan fiction about what happened to the transporter duplicates! I'll even re-read Fallen Gods :D
     
  11. Damian

    Damian Commodore Commodore

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    While I imagine this will conclude the novel continuity, there's always the possibility that they write a trilogy in such a way that makes it possible to continue. I mean, nobody's actually come out and said, 'this is it, the end....' We're assuming that, and I'll admit the little blurbs I read about the trilogy seem to indicate something ominous is going to happen. It does sound like the end.

    But.....you never know. :beer:
     
  12. David Mack

    David Mack Writer Commodore

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    I'll just leave y'all this link to the "Big Mood – Oblivion’s Gate" playlist on Spotify and let y'all decide what it means. ;)
     
  13. JWolf

    JWolf Commodore Commodore

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    Given that this phase of the litverse is coming to an end, will we still be able to have a new interconnected litverse?
     
  14. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    History shows that such things generally only thrive in periods when the source series is no longer in production. Now, the interconnected universe is being built by the TV shows, and the books' job is to follow their lead, as it has always been.
     
  15. Damian

    Damian Commodore Commodore

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    Well, I guess that probably answers that question :lol:
     
  16. Damian

    Damian Commodore Commodore

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    I'd guess probably not the extent we have had over the last 20 years. There is a little bit of interconnection. The Enterprise War, for instance, referenced Desperate Hours a bit. The last Picard novel also made some passing references to The Last, Best Hope. So I'd guess you'd still see some of that continue. And Christopher is continuing his movie era novels that are interconnected and since there are no shows right now that take place during that period, there's probably little chance of anything affecting his novels to a great degree. Strange New Worlds will be the next 23rd era show but since that will likely be around 20 years pre-movie era I don't think it will affect his novels all that much.

    But as far as an ongoing novel continuity probably not as long as the shows are on the air. If we ever run into a dry spot in Star Trek productions again, the novels may one day again pick up the slack until something new comes along.

    The only exception might be Enterprise. I know I keep bringing it up, but that's the lone relaunch continuity that as far as I can tell has not really been affected by any new shows (it probably helps that the nearest ongoing show, Discovery, was still a century away--well, at least at the start).
     
  17. USS Firefly

    USS Firefly Commodore Commodore

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    Lets hope that happens fast..... Joking of course...sort of :)
     
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2021
  18. The Wormhole

    The Wormhole Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    With Star Trek back on TV and most of the books coming out in the foreseeable future being tie-ins for the new shows, they will be targeting the casual fans/readers and therefore either not interconnected, or with limited interconnectivity.
     
  19. DS9Continuing

    DS9Continuing Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Honestly I'm feeling the same way. Even as one of the most obviously DS9R-obsessed members on here, I'm ready to let it go. I'm working on my "season 14" adaptations now, turning the "slipstream arms race trilogy" (ZSG, PoN, RtD) into 22 episode-length scripts. It's a natural ending point, and I'm happy to leave it there. We've had our fun for 20 years, and it was great, but it's not what it was, and all things must pass anyway.



    My example was wondering why they couldn't have named Riker and Troi's daughter as Natasha instead of Kestra. It would have still been an homage to a deceased character, it would have passed unremarked by those who didn't know it came from the books, but it would have just been a nice nod to the books while not really making any difference to anything in the long run. They didn't have to do it, obviously - it just would have been nice.



    The only one of the dangling DS9 threads I can think of that might fit into what they're doing is the issue of the Dominion refugees led by Weyoun being brought into the Alpha Quadrant and seeking asylum in the Federation. I could see that being a big enough event in the TrekLit version of the TrekVerse to require some addressing.

    (Of course, there wouldn't be so many dangling DS9 threads if DRG3 could get to the bloody point once in a while.)

    One thing that was pointed out to me by the Tor.com DS9R reread was that both the series' first book Avatar and its last book Original Sin involved Rebecca's importance to the Bajoran religion. I'm sure it wasn't intentional, and I don't really like what DRG3 did with it anyway, but it's kinda nice that the Avatar storyline lasts literally the entire length of the DS9R line in that sense.

    .
     
  20. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Wouldn't have worked, though, because Tasha was born around the same time as the late Thad Riker, give or take. Kestra came along much later.

    Also, I concede the criticism someone made of my choice some years back, that Will and Deanna weren't really close enough to Tasha Yar that they were likely to name their firstborn child after her. I chose the name as a tribute to my cat Natasha who had recently passed away at the time, which I freely admit was self-indulgent. So I wouldn't have expected them to follow my lead.

    But hey, Discovery has used both "contact specialist" and "cosmozoan," so that's two of my coinages that have made it into canon. I'm happy with that. (Well, I didn't actually coin "cosmozoan," but I introduced it into Trek usage.)