Spoilers It’s Official... (probably TV spoilers here too)

Discussion in 'Trek Literature' started by ryan123450, Jan 24, 2020.

  1. JJMiller

    JJMiller Writer Red Shirt

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    We thought the "refresher" was too jargon-y -- Star Wars doesn't need made-up terms for Earthly things to sound otherworldly -- but, yeah, it came back. I think I had found that it was Daley and not Foster who had first brought in "turbolift" -- clearly, a Trek migration -- but again, I think that had gotten back in by the fourth book.

    Besides "flow-walking" we were able to use Force visions to allow all sorts of characters to visit one another in dream sequences. But no, no real time travel before that episode.

    To tie the transition period we were discussing back to Trek on a personal level: it was in part that uncertainty with Star Wars comics in 2013 (where I'd gone from three series the previous year to zero) that gave me time to approach Trek again, where I had first pitched Keith on S.C.E. eons before. The Lucasfilm fiction editor had worked for Simon & Schuster and helped us connect -- and so it transpired that New Dawn was book-ended in my schedule by my Titan e-book and Takedown. (And I'm glad I got that chance -- the books have been a blast to write!)
     
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2020
  2. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    We have something like that in real life. It's called astronomy.

    Or maybe it's called reading.


    The term 'fresher (short for "refreshing chamber") goes back to Robert A. Heinlein's SF in the early '40s, and has been used in a number of SF universes since, including Niven's Known Space (or at least The Man-Kzin Wars) and Diane Duane's Star Trek novels. Star Wars was one of the later adopters, it seems to me. I don't see why it's any more objectionable than other generic science fiction terms like "tractor beam" or "hyperspace" or "deflector shield." (Although I think the specific formation "deflector shield," as opposed to just "deflector," was original to Trek.)
     
  3. JJMiller

    JJMiller Writer Red Shirt

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    My editorial directive at that time was to hew more to terms used in the films as an aid to new readers -- and, I suspect, to the worldwide audience, which was increasingly figuring into distribution.

    I don't have an objection myself beyond feeling that there's a line beyond which flavor terms stop being helpful to a narrative -- and to that end, if an item functions more or less like it does in our world and if its role in the story is minimal, stamping a new monicker on it can yield diminishing returns after a point. Starbuck can smoke a ten-cubit fumarello for a few centons, but after a few pages of that -- well, it takes a very able writer to make sure an immersive experience for the reader hasn't turned into a drowning.

    I think the other words you mention are different, as they refer to unique concepts, some of which have no exact Earthly parallel.
     
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  4. Desert Kris

    Desert Kris Captain Captain

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    The Kenobi book was a story I had wanted to see for a long time, and I was so happy when they announced the book. I really liked that promo piece and I'm another who was disappointed that it didn't end up as the final cover art. The actual novel was different from what I thought it would be, with Kenobi's role in the story, but it still had enough of what I was looking for, and was very enjoyable as a western set in SW. It reminded me of how much I love Tatooine, so it was amazing to settle in with a really long novel that focused on that place.

    As far as terminology that made it's way back into the fiction, I'm kind of relieved that refresher made the transition from the old to new EU. Sorry, lol.
     
  5. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    I guess in the '40, saying 'fresher was necessary as a euphemism for "bathroom." And not just the '40s. Remember how in DS9 they called it "waste extraction" (which is more of a dysphemism)?
     
  6. Damian

    Damian Commodore Commodore

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    Ok, now if you're going to go and use big words.....:rofl:
     
  7. JJMiller

    JJMiller Writer Red Shirt

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    I love the piece too -- it was a poster giveaway at San Diego, and one is on my wall now. It was just an awkward shape for a book -- and booksellers also preferred to see lightsabers on covers, which supposedly helps readers recognize the books from across the room. (He barely uses the weapon in the book, but never mind.) Covers are always and by definition sales pieces, but that sort of thing matters a lot more for hardcovers, which are usually front-facing in bookstores, versus mass-market paperbacks, which rarely are.

    Trade paperbacks are in a middle zone — I'd lobbied for the Enterprise to be on the Enterprise War cover and was delighted to find it was on the spine as well. Covered both ways!
     
  8. Damian

    Damian Commodore Commodore

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    And what was inside was excellent too. I have to admit I had a minor criticism as to how long of a period the book took place over, but Christopher made some good arguments about why that made sense that helped change my mind about that.

    I hope your next book coming up is just as good.

    Still waiting for "Dead Endless" to drop in price a bit more. Ugh. I've read some good things about that novel and I can't wait to get my hands on it, but I'm too cheap to pay more than $13 for a novel :shifty: (except hardback---though I see my Amazon pre-order has dropped to around $12 or 13 on the new Picard novel so that'll be a substantial savings).

    Looking forward to Christopher's upcoming novel but like Dead Endless, I'll wait to see it drop a bit. If someone is really patient some of the older Discovery books are under $10 now---but I'm not THAT patient. :D

    What the Hell, I'm looking forward to all the books this year :beer:.
     
  9. JJMiller

    JJMiller Writer Red Shirt

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    Yeah, I am naturally not one to use a lot of temporal real estate, but it was a case where the length was predetermined — I was asked to show what was happening both at the war's start and its end, along with some TV-related moments that happened somewhere in the middle. But that allowed me to approach it as more of a season than a single episode, and that was an interesting challenge from my perspective.
     
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  10. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    I'm surprised by how often I do tell stories that stretch out over a long time -- The Buried Age, Places of Exile, The Darkness Drops Again, Watching the Clock, the 23rd-century parts of Forgotten History, the collective Rise of the Federation series. It's become something of a trademark of mine, I suppose, without my consciously intending it.
     
  11. Damian

    Damian Commodore Commodore

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    I guess the difference was I noticed it more in The Enterprise War, as it was a continuous story that took place over a year. There are books that take place over longer periods but not always a continuous period.

    But still, The Enterprise War was hardly the first Star Trek book that took place over more than a few weeks or months. That's one of the reasons I realized my criticism was a bit unfair.

    And I always felt reading that book BEFORE seeing season 2 actually enhanced seeing it for the first time because it gave me a bit more context for what Captain Pike and Spock went through during that year (though I realize technically it's not canon). I also admit as a continuity junkie it was nice to see JJ Miller tried to salvage Desperate Hours. It's nice that you guys try to look out for each other in your books
     
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  12. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    By the way, since we've been talking about the differences between the Novelverse and the new Picard canon, it occurred to me to wonder just where the flashback scenes we've gotten in almost every Picard episode (and Short Treks: "Children of Mars") fall chronologically in relation to the novel continuity. So far they've all been overlapping the date of the synth attack on Mars or shortly after it, and fortunately we have an exact date for that, First Contact Day, April 5, 2385. Of course, we know the continuities become incompatible 4 years earlier in 2381 -- when the Borg Invasion occurred in the novels and when the impending supernova was detected and Picard became an admiral in the new continuity (at least according to the offscreen backstory). But I was curious to know where the scenes we're actually seeing onscreen overlap with the novel timeline.

    As it happens, April 5, 2385 falls during my own chronologically last work in the book continuity (aside from flashforwards/time travel), DTI: Shield of the Gods, specifically 2 days into the 9-day gap between Chapters IV and VI (Ch. V is set in the past). Otherwise, it's about 2/3 of the way through the one-year gap between Cold Equations and The Fall. So nothing we've seen onscreen so far is simultaneous with events seen on the page in the book continuity as far as I know, though it comes quite close.

    This has been another... Useless Fact.
     
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  13. Damian

    Damian Commodore Commodore

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    Don't feel bad. I'm a wealth of worthless knowledge. :rommie:

    I can't bake a turkey but I can tell you what year Phil Collins joined Genesis and that for a time Cliff Barnes was a partner at Ewing Oil with Bobby and JR (believe it or not).

    But just reading the first chapter of "The Last Best Hope" I already see Picard has charted a much different course than the current litverse, without even seeing the show. The only two things I have seen that are consistent thus far is Worf being Picard's exec and Bajor has joined the Federation. Not sure if Una McCormack included that as a nod to the litverse or not--though since she has written for the relaunches I wouldn't be surprised if she put that in there as a slight nod.
     
  14. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    At the moment, speaking only as a fan and not a writer (I'm still waiting for my next assignment), I'm operating under the working theory that the Litverse is still viable up through maybe mid-2380; the earliest book that's definitely out of contention, as far as I know, is another one of mine, Greater than the Sum. Although of course that could change any week, depending on what more gets revealed about the past.
     
  15. AJ Hawker

    AJ Hawker Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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  16. AJ Hawker

    AJ Hawker Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Exactly how big are the spreadsheets, post it notes, white boards or whatever else you use to keep track of all things in the Trek timeline? It must be huge!!!
     
  17. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Yeah, my current chronology is a spreadsheet, which is generally easier to work with than the word-processor document it was before that (and many frequently altered pencil-and-paper versions before that). For convenience, it's broken down into five smaller pages for different timespans, as well as pages for Kelvin, Mirror Universe, and other alternate timelines. I've now moved the books from 2381-onward to a separate Novelverse page.

    I also usually have individual chronological scene list files for my novels, to help me keep track of their timing. It's a habit I got into starting with Ex Machina, because in editing that book I discovered a major chronological discrepancy -- I'd written two scenes in one plotline as if they were immediately consecutive even though the scenes in the other plot that had to go between them spanned a couple of days -- so I created a scene list for that book to help me figure out how to fix the error, and from then on I started keeping scene lists to make sure I wouldn't screw up the chronology again. As it happens, though, I didn't need a scene list for Shield of the Gods because I specify its dates in the novella itself.
     
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  18. Damian

    Damian Commodore Commodore

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    I can see you watching the first episode of Picard and realizing everything from 2381 onward was now a separate timeline. Much like Chief Brody on seeing the shark on Jaws for the first time.

    "We're going to need a bigger spreadsheet" :lol:
     
  19. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Well, I expected that months ago. As soon as I heard that Jonathan del Arco was in the show, I thought, "Well, there goes Greater than the Sum." And of course any Borg presence at all in that time was incompatible with Destiny.

    In fact, what I'm finding surprising now is how much of the novel continuity is not affected. Pretty much everything prior to GTTS still seems compatible, at least for now. And it seems the Picard tie-ins might even be staying consistent with it; The Last Best Hope has Worf captaining the Enterprise and Bajor in the Federation, and Memory Beta says that Picard: Countdown mentions the Imperial Romulan State.
     
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  20. Damian

    Damian Commodore Commodore

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    Hmm, well the season is young.

    It's still possible not all of "Destiny" might be overwritten. From what I've read so far there's been no signs of an active Borg collective. If that holds true you could potentially say all Borg still collected by the hive mind were taken in by the Caeliar, and they just left freed Borg unaffected. It's a slight change but it doesn't negate the whole shebang necessarily (unless the Borg as a collective have appeared or have been noted to still be a threat).