What's the worst non-canon decision in the history of Trek?

Discussion in 'Trek Literature' started by F. King Daniel, Jul 3, 2021.

  1. Burning Hearts of Qo'nOs

    Burning Hearts of Qo'nOs Commodore Commodore

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    I was not a fan of killing all of Shar's new loved ones (if I'm remembering this correctly).
     
  2. DarKush

    DarKush Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I think I've read Datlow's anthology years ago.
     
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  3. Greg Cox

    Greg Cox Admiral Premium Member

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    "So, what are we going to call the Alien Sex book?"
    "Um, how about . . . ALIEN SEX?"

    Sometimes that's just how it works. There's something to be said just titling your movie SNAKES ON A PLANE if that's what it's about. :)

    Oh, one more story: I actually resisted titling the third Khan book TO REIGN IN HELL because that struck me as "too obvious." But John Ordover convinced me that I was overthinking it: "The reason it's so obvious, Greg, is because it is the perfect title for this book, obviously."

    And he was right.

    Meanwhile, there was also some discussion and debate about whether to call it EUGENICS WARS 3 or not? And I recall that the subtitle went from "The Lost Years of Khan Noonien Singh" to "The Exile of Khan Noonien Singh" to avoid confusion with the other recent "Lost Years" cycle of Trek novels.
     
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2021
  4. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Marco Palmieri was reluctant to go with the title Orion's Hounds for my first Titan novel, for fear that people would be confused that it didn't have any Orions in it. I was glad when he had second thoughts and decided to trust the readers' ability to understand a mythological allusion.

    On the other hand, I have a harder time getting my more poetic title ideas past Ed Schlesinger. I wanted Typhon Pact: The Struggle Within to be called The Courage of Conscience, and I wanted The Captain's Oath to be called A Star to Steer Her By.
     
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  5. The Wormhole

    The Wormhole Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    A Star to Steer Her By would have been a cool title.
     
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  6. David Mack

    David Mack Writer Rear Admiral

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    I've had pretty good luck when it comes to choosing my stories' titles. Even if my first choices didn't make the cut, I've had a good run of picking more marketable second titles.

    When Marco Palmieri first met with me to talk about his plans for what became Star Trek Vanguard, he wanted to call the series No Man's Land. Aside from being overly gendered, it struck me as too wordy to make for a good series title. After a few rejected possibilities, I pitched VANGUARD as the series name, made my case for it based on the word's many definitions (and the fact that they all applied, to one degree or another) to the series. That won him over. As far as the titles of the individual Vanguard novels, I don't know if Dayton and Kevin had any issues, but all of my first-choice titles ended up being used.

    But it is fun to look back on the rejected working titles of some of my projects. Among them: SCIONS (became the Destiny trilogy), KINDRED (became the Cold Equations trilogy), ETERNUM (became the Coda trilogy), SCORCHED EARTH (became Desperate Hours), and ROOT OF EVIL (became Titan: Fortune of War).
     
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  7. Dayton Ward

    Dayton Ward Word Pusher Rear Admiral

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    We wrestled with what to call the second Vanguard book. I think Marco finally suggested To Summon the Thunder and I countered with chopping off To.

    My original title for From History’s Shadow was Aliens Among Us (carrying on from “The Aliens Are Coming,” the SNW story that was my first foray into this area), and I was hoping to go with a cover that evoked a tabloid magazine. I ended up pitching FHS as an alternate title and liking the cover they opted to go with.

    I think the rest of my/Kevin’s and my titles made it through on the first go, but it’s entirely possible I’m forgetting something.

    The one that had me second-guessing things was Drastic Measures, but only because Dave changed his title from whatever it was originally to Desperate Hours, setting off a conversation with James Swallow about his book absolutely having to follow the “D_____ ______” convention.

    Dubious Intentions
    Devious Agendas
    Dumbass Titles
    Etc.

    :biggrin:
     
  8. JD

    JD Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    That '70s Show originally had a different title, it was some kind of '70s reference I can't remember, but while they were working on it, everyone just called "that '70s show" so they decided to just make that the official title.
     
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  9. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Even Deep Space Nine was originally a placeholder until they came up with something better, but it stuck. That seems to happen a lot.
     
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  10. DGCatAniSiri

    DGCatAniSiri Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    In video game land, the central continent of the setting of the Dragon age series is called Thedas as a shortening of “The Dragon Age setting.” They were using it as a placeholder and it just stuck. One of those things that reminds me "make sure you actually can like anything you use as a temporary title, because you might be stuck with it."

    I’ll agree with The Wormhole above, I like A Star to Steer Her as a title, especially given that it's already rooted in Kirk's character. A little more personal to the character, as opposed to the broader feeling that The Captain's Oath offers.

    While Coda fits, I gotta say, I'd kinda like to have seen Eternum have been the trilogy's title.
     
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  11. Damian

    Damian Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Kind of agree with you there. I'm not a huge fan of Coda. In music it's something tacked on to the end. It kind of makes it sound like an afterthought to me. But at least each individual novel has it's own title.

    In any event I don't get too hung up on titles. As long as what's in the book is good, that's what's most important. I'd rather have an awesome book with a lousy title then vice versa :techman:

    I am a bit more interested in cover art. I always liked scenes from space and with ships. It's especially helpful when a cover depicts a ship described in the novel but not seen on screen before. Authors usually do a good job describing things, but it's sometimes helpful to have that visual on the cover. Nowadays the covers do a better job accurately depicting something from the novel. The older novels, esp. from the 1980's, could be inconsistent. Even my favorite Star Trek novel of all time, Chain of Attack, depicts Kirk and Scotty as they appeared in the original series, while the Enterprise is from the movie era (the book takes place during the 5YM by the way).
     
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  12. David Mack

    David Mack Writer Rear Admiral

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    That's not what the word means, at all:

    co•da (kō’də)
    n.
    1. Music The concluding passage of a movement or composition.
    2. A conclusion or closing part of a statement.

    It has nothing to do with being "an afterthought."
     
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  13. Damian

    Damian Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Sorry. I used to play percussion for my church choir and in hymn a coda is sometimes a passage tacked on at the end, and many times it's skipped, esp. if you don't get through all the verses. So my thoughts on the word coda are probably colored by that. Still, whatever I think of the title, it will not affect my opinion of the books.
     
  14. DarrenTR1970

    DarrenTR1970 Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    The Borg being the result of the merger of the crew of the NX-Columbia and Caeliar after being time-displaced and thrown back both in time and space to the Delta Quadrant.
    There's something about that that just feels too 'small-universe' for me. I'd much rather their origin have been left unexplained.
    For that matter, the whole 'We have to get rid of the Borg, so we're going to merge them with their ancestors and send them off to a higher plane of existence'.
    Maybe just destroying the transwarp network hub and leaving them in the Delta Quadrant as a looming threat would have been better.
     
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  15. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    That would've just been another routine story with an inconclusive ending. The whole idea was to be the ultimate Borg story, not just another episode.
     
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  16. David Mack

    David Mack Writer Rear Admiral

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    So, basically, the entire Star Trek: Destiny trilogy, one of the best-selling sets of Star Trek novels of the last 20 years. You're officially off my holiday greeting-card list. ;)
     
  17. casey

    casey Commander Red Shirt

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    I get the small universe aspect of it, but I loved the story and the caeliar so much that it didn't matter to me. I was so engaged in that trilogy that I read a good chunk of both books two and three before leaving Barnes and Noble.

    For me as long as the story is very well done small universe syndrome doesn't bother me too much, and, not to diminish any of the other wonderful books and authors, that was, for me, the most engaging and interesting story in Star Trek for the last 20 years or more. And the caeliar have been my favorite aliens. I would love to see more of them. I can only imagine how they and their catoms would look with Discovery's budget.
     
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  18. Enterprise1701

    Enterprise1701 Commodore Commodore

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    Hmm. Has anyone here recently read a novel or somesuch that contained both an "epilogue" and a "coda"? I am trying to think of how those words would be used in tandem if at all.
     
  19. DGCatAniSiri

    DGCatAniSiri Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Yeah, I'm bothered by a lot of use of small universe syndrome, like I could name particular offenders within, say, the Star Wars universes (the Legends line and Disney), but Destiny worked for me, if for no other reason than thematic - if you ARE taking the Borg off the table entirely, I can accept that it's also featuring the origins as well, which all tied together with the present storyline.

    I wouldn't necessarily have been okay with it if, say, it had been established at some point prior to Destiny, or had happened in a standalone story, something like that. But with the overall story of Destiny being the finale of the Borg, it felt fitting to also explore their origin.

    If the Borg get a serious use in future screen Trek, I fully support an alternate origin for the Borg, and I have a few ideas on the subject myself. But based in the narrative Destiny offered, I could roll with it, despite my usual issues with small universe syndrome.
     
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  20. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    The catoms would probably look a lot like the "programmable matter" in DSC season 3. A rose by any other name...