This isn’t news for anyone who knows or follows me, but I’m going to emphasize it anyway: I’m all about the Star Trek.
If you’re stumbling across me for the first time, I’ll recap. I started watching Star Trek in the early seventies when I was in the second grade. I went for it hook, line, and sinker, and have never let up. Right away I started buying books and blueprints, and after four and a half decades my collection has grown to ridiculous proportions. Along the way I also had the great fortune to transition from regular fan to a professional relationship with the franchise thanks to the Strange New Worlds short-story contest. And that tipped the first domino in a whole line of freelance opportunities.
It started with my stories “Full Circle” and “Terra Tonight” in Strange New Worlds VII and IX. That got me invited to be a guest at the Shore Leave convention outside of Baltimore. It also brought me to the attention of editor Marco Palmieri at Simon & Schuster, which led to a short story, “Among the Clouds,” for The Sky’s the Limit, the Star Trek: The Next Generation twentieth anniversary anthology, and a short novel, Honor in the Night, in Star Trek: Myriad Universes: Shattered Light. Somewhere in there I wrote some nonfiction articles about Trek for Paul Simpson, then editor of the official Star Trek Magazine. My final fiction contribution as a writer was an ebook exclusive, The More Things Change, for editor Margaret Clark. About the time that came out, I started doing freelance copyediting of the novels, which has continued to the time of this post, over four years and counting. This body of work led to a freelance gig with Modiphius, publishers of the new Star Trek Adventures role-playing game. It started with kicking backstory ideas around with Trek novelist Dayton Ward and has continued with reviewing supplemental game materials, ensuring the necessary level of continuity with canon—the various series and movies—required by CBS, which licenses the franchise. I’ve also been a writer guest at the amazing Star Trek Original Series Set Tour. I wholeheartedly recommend all Trek fans to make the pilgrimage to James Cawley’s labor of love in Upstate New York, it’s well worth the trip.
That’s just the professional side of the equation; there’s also the personal side, the friendships and acquaintances made with so many fellow writers and fans over the years—too many to name without fear of forgetting someone. And it’s an exciting time to be a fan, professional or otherwise, with multiple TV series on the air or in development and more books and merch coming out all the time. For an old-timer, who lived through the seventies before Star Trek: The Motion Picture, before Star Trek: The Next Generation, and long before DVDs and on-demand viewing… those were the desert years, with oases few and far between, not like today’s cornucopia of Trek.
And even after all these decades, I’m still all in!
PS: I’ve recently started a Star Trek: The Next Generation rewatch that I’m Tweeting about briefly, just one tweet per episode so far. And I’m slowly reading all Star Trek comic books from the beginning, which I’m posting about over on the blog for Generations Geek, the podcast cohosted by myself and my daughter.