Majority of tie-in literature bad?

Discussion in 'Trek Literature' started by SpaceLama, Jun 25, 2009.

  1. SpaceLama

    SpaceLama Commander Red Shirt

    Jun 25, 2009
    Although I do love some tie in stuff (like KRAD's Gorkon books), it seems to me that a lot of tie in lit pushes believability and milks the setting.

    I.E. about a million apocalyptic borg invasions, genesis waves, et al, that leave the quadrant looking much the same afterward, and are often thwarted by a handful of people. Thats kinda the definition of 'fanwank'. I guess we can blame Voyager for turning the borg from a seldom-used terror device, into an everyday disturbance.

    Although I hear the latest USS Aventine novels have changed that tendancy a bit, and the new MMO is making the galaxy a bit different - the Pocketbooks Trek novel universe kinda has a reputation in my mind as not evolving naturally, and often pushing internal believability within the setting, by repeatedly having a small set of people 'save the galaxy'.

    Maybe Star Trek lit should be a bit tighter directed?

    Maybe it should aim to be more like non tie-in science fiction lit?

    <Story Ideas Removed by Moderator>
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 25, 2009
  2. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Mar 15, 2001
    There's only been one apocalyptic Borg invasion (preceded by two relatively minor incidents), and it's left the quadrant looking profoundly different, as will become evident in further upcoming novels. It was thwarted through the combined efforts of many people.

    It's true that there has been a tendency to overuse the big, galaxy-shaking crises over the past decade, but I kind of think Destiny is going to be the final word on that for a while, since how do you top it?

    That's what Trek literature has been doing ever since Marco Palmieri became its editor. I've written most of my Trek novels using the same creative sensibilities I would've used in writing an original SF novel, allowing for the looser science of the Trekverse. In fact, my latest Trek novel is largely based on an unpublished original SF novel of mine.

    Uhh, the Klingons have been the Federation's allies for over 30 years in-story, aside from a couple of seasons' worth of DS9. The Romulans became the Federation's allies during the Dominion War, and relations since then have been mixed.

    Okay, you really haven't read Destiny, have you? Or the series of novels following it that are pretty much entirely about exploring the fallout of its events?
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 25, 2009
  3. LightningStorm

    LightningStorm The Borg King Commodore

    Aug 30, 2004
    Kansas City
    SpaceLama, welcome to the board hope you enjoy your stay.

    FYI, specific story ideas are not permitted in the Trek Lit forum because we have several professional authors that post and read this forum regularly and there are various legal considerations with that.

    So, I have edited those parts out of your post.
  4. shanejayell

    shanejayell Captain Captain

    Feb 4, 2009
    BC, Canada
    Uh, yeah.

    Go read the Destiny trilogy and the latest Voyager book. And the Titan books. Then we can talk, I think.
  5. JD

    JD Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Jul 22, 2004
    Arizona, USA
    Dude, have you actually read any of the stuff that you are talking about? It sure doesn't sound like it to me.
  6. Turtletrekker

    Turtletrekker Vice Admiral Admiral

    Aug 23, 2003
    Tacoma, Washington
    Well, there's nothing quite like an uninformed opinion...
  7. Sxottlan

    Sxottlan Commodore Commodore

    May 7, 2001
    Stealing Lu Bu's Horse
    To be honest, I was expecting more destruction in the Destiny trilogy than what we got.
  8. Dimesdan

    Dimesdan Living the Irish dream. Premium Member

    Oct 12, 2007
    The Republic of Ireland
    You sir are talking out of your arse!

    Go and actually read the books and you'll find that every single one of your points is either slightly or gastronomically off.

    Oh and welcome to the board :bolian:
  9. Deranged Nasat

    Deranged Nasat Vice Admiral Admiral

    I find the majority of 21st century Trek literature thoughtful and professional. Dismissing fiction because it is media tie-in is a mistake made by many, and somewhat insulting to the authors who work hard and to a high professional standard to write them. To complete a "Star Trek" novel often takes tremendous amounts of research into a variety of fields, and with the tendency towards continuity nowadays, the aftermath of other stories is also often taken into consideration.

    Others have beaten me to this point, but there was only a single apocalyptic Borg invasion, there won't be another (that much is pretty much certain) and the consequences and aftermath have been dealt with by several novels with an entire series in 2010 built out of one of the developments.

    As for believability, I've heard many people at one point or another compain that "it's always one major crisis after another in Star Trek", as though this is unbelievable. I have never understood this argument. Look at real life: there is always a crisis or three brewing on this planet. If one nation hasn't suffered a major earthquake or tsunami, then another has a deadly epidemic or there's a war brewing between another two nations. There'll be coups and famines and civil wars and genocides and floods, all legitimately considered major crises. This is only one planet. If in reality one planet can be such a constant source of problems, why would an entire galaxy be any different? If anything, it's more believable that Starfleet spends a great deal of time zipping around putting out fires.
  10. SpaceLama

    SpaceLama Commander Red Shirt

    Jun 25, 2009
    I think some people over reacted to what I said. Its just my opinion. If you find any truth to it, hopefully it was constructive. If not, please disregard it.

    @Deranged - I respect any author, but I have read tie in fiction for years, mainly Star Trek, but also some Star Wars, etc, and I notaced that pattern. I havent read the latest Destiny books, but the synopsis and talk about them, suggests that they are similar. Part of my reason for creating this thread, is to try to determine whether they are worth getting. So far, I havent heard any compelling reasons.

    Its a pity part of my post got deleted, because one of the things I asked there was specific to the post Destiny novels i.e. (spoiler tags didn't work for some reason).

    Here is at least one person who seems to confirm what I suspected about the new novels. Anyone else have any counter point?
  11. thew40

    thew40 Commander Red Shirt

    Aug 7, 2003
    The Planet Akron in the Ohio Sector
    Which books have you read?

    Trust me . . . a year ago, I probably would have agreed with you. I mean, outside of the DS9 Relaunch and The Lost Era, I wasnt exactly thrilled with Trek Lit. But then I read Destiny and it's made me want to re-read a lot of books and has me actually EXCITED to go back and read what I earlier dismissed.

    Read "Destiny." It's genius.
  12. Therin of Andor

    Therin of Andor Admiral Admiral

    Jun 30, 2004
    New Therin Park, Andor (via Australia)
    You haven't read enough people saying the trilogy is bloody good, status-quo-shaking, pure entertainment?
  13. Deranged Nasat

    Deranged Nasat Vice Admiral Admiral

    I apologise if I am misunderstanding your points, but I'm confused. You suspected there to be more destruction than Sxottlan is suggesting we got? You suggested the "Destiny" and post-"Destiny" books sounded "different" from how you perceive the majority of Trek books. Since you perceive them to be unrealistic crisis after unrealistic crisis, what is it about less destruction in "Destiny" that appeals to you? An apocalyptic war with less destruction seems an odd thing to like. Surely you either want no apocalyptic war, or an apocalyptic war where the destruction is at a believably high level and handled with dignity and soberity? Again, I apologise, but I'm not sure what you mean here.
  14. SpaceLama

    SpaceLama Commander Red Shirt

    Jun 25, 2009
    I am not sure what you mean either - I was pointing to less destruction as being potentially unrealistic.
  15. SpaceLama

    SpaceLama Commander Red Shirt

    Jun 25, 2009
    Thanks. I might give them a go then. If its really improved that much in a year or two.

    My favorite series are Lost Era and IKS Gorkon, although Ive read a lot of other stuff, like Genesis Wave, Vanguard, Section 31, Errand of Vengence, Errand of Fury, Vulcan's Heart and various other books, some of which disappointed me somewhat. The comics have been pretty good - the quality of tie in comics for Star Wars and Star Trek suprises me. KRAD is my favorite author.
  16. Deranged Nasat

    Deranged Nasat Vice Admiral Admiral

    Well, "Destiny" is not unrealistic then. Spoilers:
    Deneva, Risa, Coridan, Regulus, Khitomer, the Mempa worlds: all totally wiped out, and that's only major planets. Dozens of worlds were annihalated, whole civilizations destroyed. Vulcan, Andor, Tellar, Qo'noS, the Rigel worlds: massive damage, cities vapourized, millions dead. Much of Federation, Klingon and Romulan space in ruins. Overall (very conservative) death toll: 63 Billion. 40 percent of Starfleet gone. Massive widespread trauma among survivors. The Borg attempted to wipe out everyone and everything in Human-explored space.
  17. Jbarney

    Jbarney Captain Captain

    Feb 16, 2009
    Between 2273-2278
    I haven't read Destiny yet either, but from what I have heard about it, its pretty awesome. I am saving it, and many of the novels that lead into it, for a time when I can get into them undestracted.

    I think one point you make deserves further discussion, and from what I have seen of the responses to your original post I think Christopher may have been the only person to really give a good answer to one of your legit concerns.... the idea that a small group of characters save the galaxy/universe/multiverse.... may have been over used at one point in trek lit.

    I am not sure how many times its been done in the trek universe and maybe a different thread would be the best place to explore all of the instances, but the galaxy spanning/Federation saving/universe rescuing plots were overdone for a little while. The Enterprise crew (or other crews) saving reality from distruction was something used a little to often. This is not a major complaint on my part about the literature I am just agreeing with a point brought up.

    However, there is also a mountain of trek stories out there that have very little to do with saving the universe or galaxy changing implications. If you are just getting into trek lit then I would say you should pickup as many of the SCE books as possible. It explores trek beyond what was established on screen and creates a nice little line of stories that were really enjoyable. The "A Time To " Books were specifically written to lead into Nemesis and while they do have some great political stuff in them, don't over do it. I don't believe any of the Stargazer books dealt with anything "big" and there are a lot of individual stories over the course of years of trek lit that are great stand alone books that don't have the crew (or crews) doing things far reaching.

    Pick up Troublesome Minds. That is a good example......
  18. Deranged Nasat

    Deranged Nasat Vice Admiral Admiral

    Hmm, yes, I overlooked that bit in my responses. You're right, I'll give SpaceLama that: same characters saving the day over and over is stretching belief a bit. However, recent books have made an effort to address this, in my mind. For one thing, the multitude of series and characters we have now helps! :)
  19. SpaceLama

    SpaceLama Commander Red Shirt

    Jun 25, 2009
    Correct me if I am wrong, but:

    I hear that at the end of the series, the borg are assimilated by another cybernetic species, and fly away to places unknown. This sounds like a cheap deus ex machina way of getting past the inevitable fallout that would have resulted from the collapse of the collective - instead of trillions of starving drones flooding the galaxy with crime, slavery, petty states, etc, all the sociological fallout that would have happened in real life is avoided.

    I have the feeling that the Federation's losses, like in previous series, will not matter after a while - it will just be a name-drop thing. I hope I am wrong.
  20. Deranged Nasat

    Deranged Nasat Vice Admiral Admiral

    Based on "A Singular Destiny", "Full Circle", "Over a Torrent Sea", "Losing the Peace" and the planned "Typhon Pact" series next year, I think it's safe to say "Destiny"'s aftermath is being given the attention it deserves. Read the books. :) The situation is far, far more complex than "Borg fly away, everyone is happy, let's get on with normal life" :). The losses are simply too big to be brushed off, and I can assure you it hasn't been.