The Future of "Novel-Only" Lines

Discussion in 'Trek Literature' started by historypeats, May 14, 2020.

  1. JD

    JD Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    But didn't New Frontier, SCE, and Titan all start while shows were still coming out?
     
  2. David Mack

    David Mack Writer Commodore

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    New Frontier and SCE did, but that was during the era in which demand for Star Trek tie-ins was strong enough that the line was releasing two books a month plus eBooks on the side.

    By the time Titan debuted in 2005, Star Trek Nemesis had tanked at the box office, Star Trek Enterprise was nearly finished with its final season, and the writing was on the wall.
     
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  3. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    New Frontier was a TNG-adjacent series that came out well after TNG was off the air. SCE was a TNG- and DS9-adjacent series that ran parallel with the DS9 post-finale series, after both shows were off the air, and near the end of Voyager's run. Titan was post-Nemesis and came out around the same time Enterprise ended. So they were all filling voids that had been left by the departure of one series or another. We're kind of on the opposite side of that now, with new shows multiplying and none of them showing any sign of going away and leaving a gap for a book-only series to fill.

    Plus, as Dave says, they came out during the period of peak fecundity in the novel line. A peak like that can't be expected to automatically happen again.
     
  4. David Mack

    David Mack Writer Commodore

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    ^ All of this.
     
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  5. KRAD

    KRAD Keith R.A. DeCandido Admiral

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    "Peak Fecundity" is the name of my next band.........................
     
  6. Sci

    Sci Admiral Admiral

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    I suspect another challenge is that canonical Trek is now going into some of the directions Trek Lit would traditionally have gone in: e.g., a brooding post-series sequel (PIC), a TOS prequel that goes into a wild new direction (DIS), a follow-up to recurring characters from DIS (SNW and S31), etc.
     
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  7. Captain_Oblivious

    Captain_Oblivious Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

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    This whole thread leaves me greatly saddened.

    The TNG relaunch novels were, IMO, the best thing that ever happened to the franchise.
    I would have loved it if Picard were an extension of that line, but c'est la vie.

    I guess wisecracking half Vulcans breaking "unassisted space-flight" records just wasn't going to fly.
     
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  8. Greg Cox

    Greg Cox Admiral Premium Member

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    Actually sounds like it could be a STAR TREK episode title, too.
     
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  9. JD

    JD Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Oh, OK.
     
  10. valkyrie013

    valkyrie013 Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Well, as I read it.. the long spanning jointed books are dead, but books that happen in series, say like alot of TOS books, will still be made.
    What I hope is that there will be more "Side" books that don't deal with mainline stuff, that will likely change by the week with 4 series ( and counting) setting cannon.
    Plenty of settings left, I REALLY like Enterprise Era, and after till Tos/disco era.. More.. frontier, seat of the pants, cowboy time :)
     
  11. TheAlmanac

    TheAlmanac Writer Captain

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    You're just saying that because you wish you were in my new band, Silicon Avatar.
     
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  12. rfmcdpei

    rfmcdpei Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I wish we would be likely to have more books, but I am happy with what we have had. Lulls can be good things.

    Beyond this, it does seem to me that many of the themes and elements of the novelverse will make it into the shows. This happened before, the first time a Trek novelverse was superseded by new material in the 1980 with TNG. If anything, with so many writers involved in the show, the legacy will be that much stronger.
     
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  13. Leathco

    Leathco Commander Red Shirt

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    I dunno about full books, but I can see something like Strange New Worlds with a bunch of short stories that might explain some of the stuff. A short story about stuff like how Icheb was captured, one of the Fenris Rangers missions, the construction of La Sirena, small stuff like that.
     
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  14. Jinn

    Jinn Mistress of the Chaotic Energies Rear Admiral

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    I'd really like to see more short stories, in general, but considering we got like two in the last ten years, I doubt we'll see new ones.
     
  15. Damian

    Damian Commodore Commodore

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    As much as it pains me I believe all future novels will only be of 2 types. Original series novels and books tied to currently run series. I don't think we'll even see any new Kelvin-verse novels after these 2 we got this year (that were basically holdovers with revisions anyway), at least unless and until a new movie comes out in that line. And books tied to currently running series would seem obvious. I actually think Christopher's recent novel taking place post-TMP was probably a bonus, I'm not sure we'll see many movie era books in the future.

    I too will miss the relaunches and novel-only series. I thought we were on to something with the Vanguard-Seekers novels. And there is still plenty of places to go in New Frontier. And as far as the 24th century pretty much all of the 24th century relaunches have been totally upended by Picard. Other than maybe some very minor plot points almost nothing in the novel-verse can co-exist with Picard at this point. And S&S is just not in the habit of continuing novel series that don't jive with the current on-screen canon. The only series that could potentially continue is Enterprise because I don't recall anything major contradicting those novels. But I just don't see it happening because of another factor. What will sell more books for S&S? Books based on a current running series or books based on a series that ended 15 years ago?

    In a sense, the current Star Trek-revival is the worse thing that could happen to the novel-verse, for those fans that have enjoyed the novel-verse. When there were no shows on the air they were there to fill that void. Well, that void is full of new shows now and tie ins to those shows. So they no longer need to continue older book lines to fill the void. But at the same time the current Star Trek-revival is the best thing to happen for Star Trek as a whole. It keeps it alive. In entertainment if something is not moving it's dead. For about 10+ years, outside of 3 movies, the tie-ins all kept Star Trek alive, kept it moving. In a sense the tie-ins became the primary focus of Star Trek for quite a long time. They kept Star Trek from dying. The reward for that is new canon-shows that are now the primary focus and tie-ins have returned to their place as a secondary focus.

    I've gone a bit off track, but Trekkies, even those that pay no attention to tie-ins, owe all those that worked on tie-ins a debt of gratitude for all their work for those 10+ years. They kept Star Trek alive and moving when there was almost no on-screen Star Trek. Would Star Trek have seen a revival if there wasn't something new coming out during those dormant years? I don't think anyone could really say for sure.
     
  16. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    :whistle:


    Only the stuff from 2380 onward. No reason that should affect TOS, say. And conceivably pre-Nemesis novel continuity could still be referenced in new books, at least as long as it doesn't get contradicted by new shows/episodes.
     
  17. DS9forever

    DS9forever Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    It's a bit disconcerting for me that for the first time in my life there are no DS9 novels planned.

    Looking forward to DS9: Too Long a Sacrifice from IDW in the summer!
     
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  18. Scout101

    Scout101 Admiral Admiral

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    It's certainly disappointing that the DS9 line just came to an abrupt end; seemed like they were building up to something they won't be able to finish. VOY also still had some room to explore, but thankfully there's at least enough notice that hopefully Beyer will be able to tie things up in decent shape. No reason Christopher's two projects, post-TMP and post-ENT couldn't continue, aside from limited slots and increasing series to try and tie into. A little annoying that it looks like the existing TNG line will probably peter out without dealing with the Hobus situation (and whatever situation Taurik found out about, if it was different than that), but can't see them doing too much more with Picard that differs from the new show, so that entire ~15 year-ish line is sorta screwed.

    I get the business side, but situation is disappointing that it's all coming to an end (the serialized big-universe that was being played with by the book series). Extra annoying that a contract renegotiation robbed us of a year of books, as well; it ate a lot of the time that series could have been wrapped up if people saw the writing on the wall and that the new series coming out meant the death of the existing book lines. Would be nice to see a couple books put out to cap off those runs, but unlikely at this point.

    Not unlike what happened with the Star Wars line after the new movies started back up. Decades of plots, and then one day they just stopped in favor of a new continuity. No wrap-up or closure, just dropped the line for the new stuff. It was a good time to get off that train, haven't bought a star wars book since the Legends continuity was abandoned.
     
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  19. Damian

    Damian Commodore Commodore

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    Hmm, I wonder if the whistle is because you have another post-TMP novel planned or that you sneaked a post-TMP novel by the PTB's (though admittedly that'd probably be hard to do I would think). I'd love to think there might possibly be future movie era books out there (esp. post-TFF era novels---I know, beating a dead horse here but I can't help myself ;) ).

    There were a few little tidbits in McCormack's Picard novel that could be considered consistent with the existing novel continuity. Worf being Picard's first officer at the start (before being promoted to Captain), and some of the Cardassian references seemed consistent with the existing novel continuity (and some of that was even post-Destiny). But so much happened after 2380 in the novel continuity that probably 90% of the continuity is overwritten by Picard. But someone else can do what McCormack did, and maybe will do with future Picard novels. Make little references to some prior novel tidbits. It's a nice little touch I think.

    Yeah, everything just halted. And now that everything is in trade format that probably makes it less likely we'll ever see novels based on the older spin-offs at this point. There probably isn't much of a market for a $16 DS9, Voyager or Enterprise book at this point. We're probably fortunate the PTB's didn't decide to abandon the last Voyager book altogether.

    The only outside possibility I could see is using e-books to continue the older relaunches. It's interesting there have been no e-book only releases since the books started back up. But of course S&S & CBS would have to be willing to allow stories that may not be consistent with current canon (except for Enterprise) and you'd have to have authors willing to write those.

    Yeah, and even David Mack's last TNG novel at least ended in a sort of finale--with the crew continuing it's mission of exploration and it ended on a positive note I thought. Perhaps he thought there was a possibility that might be the last TNG novel (at least in the relaunches) and figured he'd give it that 'feel'.

    And Beyer will obviously will probably close out Voyager in some fashion.

    I'd love to see one final DS9 novel to tie up the major loose ends there. DS9 arguably started the whole relaunch idea to begin with, it almost seems right that DS9 should be able to close it out.
     
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  20. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Hardly that much. Looking at my shelf, I'd say that the content from c. 2376-79 takes up a comparable amount of space to the content from 2380-86. Remember, the DS9, SCE, and Gorkon lines spent years of real time chronicling '76 alone, whereas the post-Nemesis TNG, Titan, and Typhon Pact novels have had some massive time jumps between books. And that's not even counting the parts of the novel continuity set in the 22nd and 23rd centuries.

    By my count, out of my own 16 Star Trek novels, 6 novellas, and 5 novelettes, the only ones that fall in the part of the timeline affected by Picard are Greater than the Sum, Over a Torrent Sea, Typhon Pact: The Struggle Within, and the entire DTI series except for Forgotten History (which has a couple of references to post-NEM continuity, but those can be glossed over). So about 3/4 of my contributions to the novelverse are still valid. There's a lot more out there than just post-NEM.