Posts Tagged ‘Doug Drexler’

Feliz quinceañera, Star Trek Vanguard

Fifteen years ago saw the premiere of Harbinger, the first book in the Star Trek Vanguard series, which I co-created with Pocket Books senior editor Marco Palmieri.

What was Star Trek Vanguard? Dayton Ward sums it up thusly:

Vanguard as created by editor Marco Palmieri and author David Mack is a series of books that served as a “literary spin-off” of the original Star Trek television series. Running in parallel with the original show, Vanguard was set aboard a space station in a hotly contested area of space called “the Taurus Reach.”

In the years that followed, I wound up alternating writing privileges on the series with Dayton and his hetero life-mate and frequent writing partner Kevin Dilmore. This, among other things, led to them becoming two of my closest friends, with whom I shared the most artistically satisfying creative endeavor of my career to date.

Photo of Dayton Ward, Marco Palmieri, Kevin Dilmore, and David Mack
The Vanguardians of the Galaxy: from left, Dayton Ward, Marco Palmieri, Kevin Dilmore, David Mack. Taken at Shore Leave Convention, July 2011.

Marco, who left Simon & Schuster after editing the fourth Vanguard novel, subsequently returned to the saga as an author, contributing the novella “The Ruins of Noble Men” to the Vanguard anthology volume Declassified. And acclaimed international best-selling thriller author James Swallow took Vanguard into the Mirror Universe with his short story “The Black Flag,” in the anthology Shards and Shadows.

Furthermore, we had the amazing good fortune that all of our series’ cover art was created by the brilliantly talented Doug Drexler. Every single one of his covers is worthy of being enlarged to billboard size and plastered onto the side of a skyscraper.

Dayton has done an amazing write-up about Vanguard — what it is, how it came to be, and what it has meant to all of us who were fortunate enough to work on it. I doubt I could improve upon it; I would only end up paraphrasing it. So I’ll just say, go read his excellent tribute to this series we built with love, sweat, and imagination.

If you’ve never read the Star Trek Vanguard saga, here is your guide:

Star Trek Vanguard Bibliography

Harbinger – David Mack
Summon the Thunder – Dayton Ward & Kevin Dilmore
Reap the Whirlwind – David Mack
Open Secrets – Dayton Ward (story by Dayton Ward & Kevin Dilmore)
Precipice – David Mack
Declassified – four novellas by: Dayton Ward; Kevin Dilmore; Marco Palmieri; and David Mack
What Judgments Come – Dayton Ward & Kevin Dilmore (story by Dayton Ward & Kevin Dilmore and David Mack)
Storming Heaven – David Mack (story by Dayton Ward & Kevin Dilmore and David Mack)

There also are a few additional stories that, while not essential to enjoying the main “saga,” might be of interest:

Distant Early Warning – Dayton Ward & Kevin Dilmore (a Star Trek: Starfleet Corps of Engineers story and Vanguard prequel)

In Tempest’s Wake – Dayton Ward (sort of a coda to the Vanguard series)

The Black Flag” – James Swallow
(Included in the anthology Star Trek: Mirror Universe – Shards & Shadows)

You can also load up on SPOILER-FILLED, behind-the-scenes goodness with my Vanguard Finale page.

Dayton, Kevin, and I have agreed that we have no intention of ever re-opening the toy box that was Star Trek Vanguard. From the outset, the saga had been planned with a clear beginning, middle, and ending, and ultimately we hewed fairly closely to that original plan. What’s more, we ended the saga on our own terms, by design rather than by necessity, a privilege one is rarely afforded in the world of media tie-in writing.

Sometimes I daydream of seeing Vanguard as a new Star Trek TV series. But then I remember that it likely would never be as good on the screen as it is in the theater of my imagination, and I’m content to leave it where it is.

As Pennington wrote at the saga’s end, “Let the world forget; I’ll remember.”

New cover revealed: A Ceremony of Losses

As visitors to, a few other fan blogs and discussion boards, and my Facebook page already know, the cover art for my next upcoming novel has finally been released to the public. Now that I’ve let have its 24-hour exclusive “first look,” I am proud to present here, for your enjoyment and edification, the final cover for Star Trek: The Fall, Book III: A Ceremony of Losses, by Emmy™ and Academy Award™-winning CGI visual effects artist Doug Drexler.


This book is scheduled for publication on October 29, 2013. Look for it wherever new books are sold.


Star Trek magazine: Vanguardian Goodness!

I don’t often shill for Star Trek magazine unless I have an article inside its gloried pages, but I’m going to make an exception for Issue No. 35, the “Starships and Space Stations Special” edition.

The reason: In addition to articles about the visionary work of folks like Franz Joseph and Matt Jefferies, it has an in-depth feature about designer Masao Okazaki‘s development of Starbase 47, aka Vanguard, for the Star Trek Vanguard book series.

The piece is chock full of early concept sketches by Masao and unused digital cover art by Doug Drexler, as well as looks at the exterior and interior schematics of the Archer-class scout ship U.S.S. Sagittarius (which was invented for the Vanguard saga) and a short primer for the series.

Even better, Issue No. 35 also has an excerpt from Marco Palmieri‘s novella “The Ruins of Noble Men,” which is part of the recently released anthology Star Trek Vanguard: Declassified, and the anthology is reviewed in the same issue.

This issue is a Vanguard fan’s dream come true. Get your copy of this issue soon, before they’re all gone!


Eye Candy on The Drex Files

Snurched from the LiveJournal of Dayton Ward

The regular updates on Doug Drexler’s blog continue to wow me. Among his latest posts are cool on-set photos from the set of Battlestar Galactica‘s combat information center, or CIC; and a high-definition CGI render of the classic Enterprise that he and his associates had prepared in the hope that it might be used in the new Star Trek film.

Alas, Doug’s vision of the Enterprise didn’t make it into the new feature film, but it makes a lovely wallpaper:


Full resolution: 1280 x 800 pixels

Meeting the Drex-man

Every now and then something happens to remind me just how lucky I am to do what I do for a living, and to live in New York City. A few weeks ago, I had one of those moments.

On Thursday, April 2, I stopped in to the Pocket Books office to chat with my editor, Margaret Clark. Fortuitously, when I arrived at her office, there was another visitor already there: Doug Drexler, the acclaimed and Emmy-winning CGI artist.

Clockwise from left: Star Trek books editor Margaret Clark, noted CGI artist Doug Drexler, and mildly crazed-looking author David Mack.
Clockwise from left: Star Trek books editor Margaret Clark, noted CGI artist Doug Drexler, and mildly crazed-looking author David Mack. (Photo courtesy of Doug Drexler)

Many of you probably know Doug from his work on such series as Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Star Trek: Voyager, and Star Trek: Enterprise; or, more recently, on Battlestar Galactica and Caprica.

Less well known is the fact that Doug is the artist who brings to life the amazing cover images for the Star Trek Vanguard novels. In the photo above, if you squint hard enough to give yourself eyestrain, you can almost see some details of the cover-art-in-progress for my recently completed novel, Star Trek Vanguard: Precipice.

It’s still being tweaked, but I assure you: when it’s done, it’s going to be very cool.

An “Inside Baseball” look at Vanguard station

Doug Drexler, an acclaimed and award-winning CGI artist who has lent his impressive talents to such series as Star Trek Enterprise and Battlestar Galactica, also has rendered the cover art for the first four Star Trek Vanguard novels.

In a recent post on his blog, Drex Files, Doug talks a little about working with designer Masao Okazaki’s original designs, and how they ended up inspiring part of the remastered version of the original-series episode “The Ultimate Computer.”

It’s fun reading, as is the rest of Doug’s blog. Give it a look!