New Description for Seize the Fire

Discussion in 'Trek Literature' started by JD, Aug 30, 2010.

  1. kkozoriz1

    kkozoriz1 Fleet Captain

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    Only as far as it wouldn't be part of some big crossover. To me, Titan has been at it's best when it's dealing with new races, new planets. The first two books in the series, as much as I like M&M, were going over ground we've already seen, follow ups to Nemesis and The Sundered. Orion's Hounds was excellent. Sword of Damocles was also good. Not quite at the level of OH but an enjoyable read. Then came Destiny. A good story although too dark for my tastes. Well written and it had the desired effect of removing the Borg from the table.

    Then we got Over a Torrent Sea, another excellent book from Christopher. Synthesis was a great follow up. A truly alien encounter.

    Now we're back among the familiar faces. The Gorn haven't had a lot of screen time but are a favorite to some. Fair enough but I'd prefer to see something new. Titan should be about first contacts and strange new life. Encountering another familiar race should be the last thing they should do. A random encounter with an established race makes space seem to small, too cozy. So, in answer to your question, no, not really.
     
  2. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    But that's just it -- the Gorn aren't really that familiar. There's a great deal that could still be learned about them.

    After all, the featured aliens in Orion's Hounds were the star-jellies, which we'd seen before in "Encounter at Farpoint." They were familiar in that they had been seen before, but virtually nothing was actually known about them, so there was plenty of room for originality. (Plus the Crystalline Entities came back too.) We know a little bit more about the Gorn, thanks to the Gorn Crisis graphic novel that's apparently considered part of the Pocket continuity, but there's still a lot of potential for discovering new things about them.

    And you're still falsely representing it as "a random encounter." As I already pointed out, it's not random at all, since they're specifically looking for the same thing as one another. So you should know by now that that's an invalid description.
     
  3. kkozoriz1

    kkozoriz1 Fleet Captain

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    Getting right down to it Christopher, I've had enough of death. I read about the loss of your father on your blog and I can certanly feel your pain. While both of my parents are still living they are both elderly and I know that they won't be here much longer.

    In the space of 18 months starting in mid 2008 my father lost two brothers, a niece and my oldest sister. In that same time span we lost a cousin on my mothers side as well as my best friend from high school. Just when we though we were done for a while my father's youngest brother, his last remaining sibling, passed away two days before Christmas last year.

    This all happened during the time that Destiny was released. I was hoping to read to escape but on each page, there was the grim reaper staring back at me. And now, in the post Destiny world I challenge you to find a book that doesn't have the words billions dead in it.

    Why is Titan looking for this tech? To repair the damage. What damage? The planets with billions of corpses on them.

    I'm tryng to work my way through Losing the Peace but it's not going well. The first chapters are of a similar set up of showing how people are affected by Destiny. being reminded over and over and over and over....

    I reread Precipice and there we have a dozen more planets being destroyed. Who knows how many dead there.

    Then we have the latest movie. Let's kill off Romulus and Vulcan. What's a few billion more?

    We've gotten to the point that we need death in the millions and billions to make a point. Who are they? It doesn't matter. They don't matter because they're just numbers. We did know some of them but just so they could be killed off. Tuvok's sone and daughter-in-law for example.

    How much longer are we going to have the spectre of Desting hanging over us? Always. It's not going away. How could it? Of course the effect of Destiny will lessen with time but it will never go away. The galaxy is now a place where the final chapter of Sherman's Planet, introduced to us in the wonderfully lighearted The Trouble with Tribbles, is written in death and destruction. When I watch the show now I'll remember what happened to them in the 24th century. Hughe swaths of TOS we now know end in terror.

    You of course are free to write any sort of book you desire. You're the author. I'm the reader. You create and I consume. However, when the flavour of what I'm consuming becomes unpalatable then, sadly and with regret, I am free to move on. We shall see how the next course tastes.
     
  4. JD

    JD Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Yeah, but the Gorn are one of two races that will be appearing in the book. We've never seen or heard of Hranrar or the Hranrarii and judging by the back cover it sounds like they will be playing just as big a role as the Gorn.
    EDIT: I think it's also worth pointing out that we have heard about two of post-Typhon Pact books, and neither of them even mention Destiny or even the Pact in the catalog description.
     
  5. kkozoriz1

    kkozoriz1 Fleet Captain

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    You mean other than this part?
     
  6. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Well, DTI: Watching the Clock is only post-Typhon Pact in publication order. In story terms, it mainly takes place between Destiny and Typhon Pact. And inevitably it acknowledges the events and aftermath of the Borg Invasion, but not as a central or overriding focus by any means.

    (And kkozoriz1, he said post-Typhon Pact. He was referring to DTI and Indistinguishable from Magic.)
     
  7. Thrawn

    Thrawn Rear Admiral Premium Member

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    You know, this is all totally valid, and awful and stuff. But it has nothing to do with Titan running into the Gorn.

    I get that you don't like the current direction of TrekLit, and I get that you have lots of totally valid reasons for doing so. But it seems like every time we refute something, you come flying with some totally left-field argument. We were talking about the odds of Titan running into the Gorn, and you come back with this emotional rant about death. Just pick something.

    Or alternately, give up on TrekLit and stop posting. It seems like you have so many reasons to be pissed off that you can't even remember them all at the same time.
     
  8. kkozoriz1

    kkozoriz1 Fleet Captain

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    My mistake.
     
  9. JD

    JD Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Oh, my bad. I thought you said something about it taking place after TP but you must have been talking about Destiny.
     
  10. kkozoriz1

    kkozoriz1 Fleet Captain

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    It fed off of Titan running into the Gorn specifically because of the after effects of Destiny.

    It's not exploring for exploring sake. It's cleaning up after a war beyond our imagining. And it will continue on and on again.

    Wy does this seem so similar to teh B5 spinoff "Cursades"?


    "Does anyone remember when we were explorers?" -- Picard


    Nice to know that having valid reasons for disagreeing with the direction of Trek lit means I should give it up and get off the boards. Real nice.
     
  11. Sci

    Sci Admiral Admiral

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    You know, I understand wanting to escape. There's absolutely nothing wrong with that. We all need to escape life sometimes, especially when horrible things have happened to us.

    And I am very, very sorry to hear about your family.

    But Star Trek is not, and has never been, escapism. Certainly, some Star Trek stories are basically escapism. "The Trouble With Tribbles" is a prime example of a light-hearted adventure from TOS that can rightly be called escapism, for instance.

    But by the same token, TOS's most famous and acclaimed episode is probably "The City on the Edge of Forever." And what is "City" about, if not the inexorable march of time, the inevitability of death?

    Star Trek has always been, in part, about how we cope with death. This has always been a part of the Trekverse, and it will never stop being part of the Trekverse.

    And it is inappropriate to be angry at Star Trek for not being the pure escapism you want it to be when it has never been that.

    You wanted to escape from the topic of death? Then you shouldn't have been reading novels whose back covers made it explicitly clear that they were going to be about death and destruction.

    I mean, seriously -- the opening quote of Destiny Book I was, "War always finds a way," from Bertolt Brecht's Mother Courage and Her Children. What kind of book did you think you were picking up?
     
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2010
  12. Thrawn

    Thrawn Rear Admiral Premium Member

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    ^ In all fairness to the guy, that's not quite a realistic argument. Star Wars has freaking "Wars" in the title, but I still read that for escapism, until it just got (in my obviously arguable opinion) stupid and repugnant. If he feels like Destiny crossed a similar line, I don't blame him. For me, Star Wars crossed such a line that I haven't read any since.

    This just seems like a strangely picayune thing to be arguing about. If even being reminded of some prior event in any way is enough to piss you off, why have the conversation at all? I mean, I'll argue to the death my reasons for loving something, but bottom line, it's an opinion; if he doesn't agree, he doesn't agree. But it was the most major thing to happen in the Litverse ever, and wanting books to ignore it is just silly.

    The Titan story makes sense, it is primarily about exploration, and there's no reason at all for the writers of that series to want to avoid any mention of the generally-adored Destiny. I just think it's a weird thing to complain about.
     
  13. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    But you're missing the point. A story about life going on after death and tragedy IS NOT A STORY ABOUT DEATH. It's simply a story that's honest, that isn't in childish denial and pretending that nothing bad has ever happened to anyone. It just makes no sense to assume that any story that even alludes to the Borg Invasion is somehow wallowing in misery and despair. On the contrary, the current state of the Federation is one of healing, of restoration. That's not a morbid or depressing subject. Take it from me. The days after my father died were full of joy as well as sadness, because it wasn't just about loss, it was about healing and renewal. My family and I weren't sitting around bawling all the time; we actually had pretty good times together. Acknowledging the existence of a tragic event is not the same as wallowing in it.


    So what if it does? That's just acknowledging the reality. To do anything else would be unhealthy. But that doesn't mean everything is horrible and hopeless, because the tragedy is past. Like I said, it's not healthy to pretend a tragedy never happened, but simply acknowledging its existence doesn't mean it dominates your life.

    To me, stories showing that the Federation survives and is recovering and rebuilding in the wake of something so horrible are very optimistic and positive.


    Rather, the planets that can give billions of survivors new homes and new hope. Planets that can recover from great destruction and be renewed.

    But Losing the Peace takes place in the weeks immediately following the Borg Invasion, so naturally that has to be its focus. Seize the Fire takes place more than a year after the Invasion. To expect them to treat the subject identically is not logical.


    How is that the books' fault?


    No, we don't "need" it. There's no death toll of billions in DTI, though there are one or two things that create the risk of it.

    Your complaint would be valid if it applied to TOS. Nomad killed four billion Malurians before the start of the episode, and something like eight Enterprise crewmen, yet everyone was laughing and joking at the end of the story. The space amoeba from "The Immunity Syndrome" wiped out billions in the Gamma 7A system as well as the crew of the Intrepid, but at the end of the episode, Kirk forgets all about it and goes back to talking about shore leave. Talk about mass death not mattering. The books are nowhere near as callous, because they actually face the consequences of death. They don't just forget about it by the final scene.


    Of course it won't. But I already countered this several times. Just because you acknowledge the existence of tragedy doesn't mean you're telling a tragic story. You don't seem willing to let yourself understand that. You seem to think that the only way a story can be positive is if it pretends nothing bad has ever happened.


    Well, be realistic -- it's not as if most of the people who were alive during "The Trouble With Tribbles" weren't already dead anyway by 2381.

    But that's the problem. You're obsessing so much on this one element, even when it's a minor element of the story, that you're not letting yourself "taste" what's actually there.
     
  14. Sci

    Sci Admiral Admiral

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    I just don't see how you can pick up a book whose back cover promises death and destruction, and whose opening quotation is from one of the darkest and most depressing anti-war scripts ever written, and reasonably expect it to be escapism.
     
  15. kkozoriz1

    kkozoriz1 Fleet Captain

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    It wasn't just Destiny. I knew what I was getting into with that. Perhaps I should have left it for a while but when you've got books that everyone is raving about just sitting there unread, you want to read them. And I'm a fast reader so I got through them relativly quickly. It's not like it took me a month to get through them.

    Part of the problem as I see it is that now all the TNG era books are referencing the same thing at the same time. Perhaps not New Frontier but I've given up on that a few books ago. It used to be that you could read TNG and not worry what was happening in DS9. Not any longer. They're now joined at the hip by crossovers.

    We had Destiny in 2008. Typhon Pact coming out in 2010. Another crossover in 2012? Since they seem to sell well, will we be having more? Put that together with fewer books being published and the stand alone story becomes even less common. If you read the threads about "what's the reading order" you may start to wonder if people will simply pass on Treklit if they think it's too hard to get into. It doesn't matter if the perception is true or not, it can still act as a barrier.

    Christopher, I know that just because a story references Destiny doesn't mean that it's about Destiny but it does serve to remind me about it. As the scale of destrution is so much greater that what we've seen before, it would be crazy to expect it not to be referenced. The problem is that the stories pretty much have to refer to it in some way from now on. In Universe, this event should be referenced on a daily basis for decades to come. It's that big. All the World Wars we've had pale in comparison. I was hoping that Titan could be a series that referenced it a little less. Out of sight, out of mind if you will.

    A story that's uplifting and hopeful from now on does so under the shadow of Destiny. If they rise so high it's because of how far they fell.

    In regards to death tolls, you say that we don't "need it" but then mention that there's the threat of such in DTI. Do we really need threat of that scale to make us concerned? Is not the threat of death of one or a hundered or a thousand not sufficent? Must the threats now be of planetary scale? Yes, TOS did have occasions where there were casualties in the billions but not all in one episode and not from one cause. Let's not forget that the Dominion War ended recently in the TNG era. I don't recall if we ever got casualty figures at the end of the war but it must be in the tens of billions at a minimum with the toll on Cardassia.

    I know what you mean about the time after a death also having times of joy and healing. The same thing happened at each of the funerals I atteneded in that year and a half. And yet, each time it got a little harder to smile. A little more difficult to tell a joke. Because it was more that one death. It was a series of them in a relativly short time.

    Destiny is less like one persons funeral and more like 9/11 raised to a much greater magnitude. I was working in Las Vegas at the time and there wasn't a lot of smiling or joking going on. People were in a state of shock. The shock of teh Borg incursion would be much greater. A much larger death toll in a relativly short time. This is not something that people are going to get over quickly. People are going to be nervous about reaching outwards. Afraid of what else is there that can hurt them. Not everyone is going to feel the same way of course but pulling back in fear after being hurt is instictive, even on a society wide basis. As is lashing out in anger. These are not feelings that are going to go away in a few months or even a few years. Look at the uproar over the so called "Ground Zero Mosque" which is not even a mosque and not at ground zero. But, it does make a convient target for hat and fear and anger even nine years after the fact.
     
  16. BrotherBenny

    BrotherBenny Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I'm actually surprised there hasn't been much mention of anti-Federation sentiment from Earth in the post-Destiny books, like a resurgence of Terra Prime or something on a greater scale.
     
  17. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Why would there be anti-Federation sentiment? The Federation saved countless lives and is the most important power in the rebuilding process.

    And why on Earth of all places? Earth was essentially the only founding world of the Federation that was completely spared from bombardment.
     
  18. BrotherBenny

    BrotherBenny Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Why Earth, and why the Federation? Because there are always idiots with misplaced blame who may have lost families on those worlds. I never said it would be logical, but such crap always pops up after a big event like that.

    Or maybe I'm just a pessimistic cynic.
     
  19. ares93

    ares93 Commodore Commodore

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    well not on earth, i agree on that point. but in truth, the federation was basically the reason the borg launched their assault. if they had been a bit more careful, none of it would have happened. maybe not letting picard & co run around and getting themselves i all kinds of trouble. :lol:
     
  20. TerraUnam

    TerraUnam Commander Red Shirt

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    The anti-Federation stuff will be dealt with in Path of Disharmony I believe. A significant portion of the Andorian people seem to have having second thoughts about the Federation because:

    1) Their population is declining and Federation science has been unable to stop it.
    2) They suffered a huge population loss in Destiny that only made (1) worse.

    So there seems to be a whole lot of irrational anger and emotional reasoning circulating on Andoria.

    Alpha Centauri was also spared, IIRC, but since that's a human world, it doesn't change the "humans got off" script that much.

    I can see T'Ryssa Chen, a Human-Vulcan hybrid being the target for quite a few insults when dealing with the Andorians. She personifies pretty much everything that the Andorians don't have and desperately want and was aboard the Enterprise during Destiny to boot.