Posts Tagged ‘TNG’

I Take Another Turn on Enterprising Individuals

It’s a new year, and that means it’s time for me to make my annual appearance on the Enterprising Individuals podcast, which invites a variety of guests to select and offer critical commentary about episodes of the various Star Trek television series.

For this installment, I opted to discuss The Schizoid Man,” a decidedly problematic season-two episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation. As the show’s host Kaliban sums up so pithily:

“[The episode] starts with a dirty grandpa and ends with targ underwear wrestling. From casual sexism, to marginalization, to troubling implications for the Soong family, this early bit of TNG fluff has it all.”

Why did I want to dissect this episode? Because it’s a vital piece of canon that provides part of the foundation for the saga of Dr. Noonian Soong, his android creation/son Data, and the interconnected history of artificial intelligence in the Star Trek universe, as so eloquently stitched together by author Jeffrey Lang in his 2002 novel Immortal Coil.

Go and listen to our discussion of “The Schizoid Man” on Enterprising Individuals now!

Win a signed copy of the Cold Equations trilogy

The fine folks over at are celebrating their first year of free-to-play streaming service with a special giveaway promotion: a free, autographed copy of all three volumes of my bestselling Star Trek trilogy Cold Equations.

The promotion is aimed at players of the Star Trek Online MMORPG, but if you’re not part of that game just tell TrekRadio that I sent you.

Entering is easy: send an e-mail to between now and February 3, 2013, telling them what you would name your very own Star Trek starship, and why you chose that name. The hosts at TrekRadio will select one winner from all eligible entries received.

Get more details about the Cold Equations giveaway on their website, and stay tuned for news of an upcoming live on-air interview with yours truly on (start polishing up those call-in questions, folks!).


It’s done! So…what’s next?

Hallelujah! It is with great relief that I can report that I have finished writing The Body Electric, the final volume in my upcoming Star Trek: The Next Generation trilogy Cold Equations.

I’ve been plugging away at this project since late last year, and there were a number of times I was afraid I would not finish it on time, thus triggering the much-dreaded publishing crisis known as a “crash schedule.” Fortunately, that has not happened, and I am now in that professional limbo known as being between contracted assignments.

You might be wondering what I will be doing in the interim until another contract comes my way. I plan to keep busy, I assure you.

My next few projects, which I expect will keep me occupied into the fall, will be some screenplays I’ve been cogitating upon for several months. It’s been a long time since I sat down to write a screenplay — over a decade at this point. I feel like working those creative muscles again.

Once I’ve tapped out a few new feature scripts, I have an idea for a new series of original urban fantasy novels. My goal is to plot out the first three books and draft the first manuscript by the end of the year, or end of January 2013 at the latest.

And though there’s no money in it, I’m intrigued by the idea of cobbling together a playset for the role-playing game Fiasco. Just because I can.

Other side projects might also come along during this period of creative exploration. I’m going to play those by ear and see where they lead.

Will any of this pay off? Who knows? But for now I’m just going to enjoy having the freedom to try it.

My next big writing project…

Now that the news has officially broken in Issue No. 39 of Star Trek Magazine, it’s time for me to reveal some details about my upcoming trilogy for Star Trek: The Next Generation, about which I’ve hinted much in the past few months.

The “umbrella” title of the trilogy is Cold Equations. All three books are set primarily in the post-Nemesis era of 24th-century Star Trek fiction — specifically, in early 2384, just over four years after the events of Star Trek Nemesis.

Unlike the Star Trek Destiny trilogy, which was one epic story split across three volumes, Cold Equations will comprise three separate novels that are set during a brief span of time (a few months), and share a cast of characters, a number of themes, and some narrative subplots. While I plan to address some large-scale ideas in the new trilogy, I am not trying to replicate my work on Star Trek Destiny. I am not trying to “top” my previous trilogy; rather, I am trying to tell a different kind of story, one that is more personal while still retaining a sense of high stakes.

Book One of the trilogy, which is written and now with the editor, is The Persistence of Memory, and it will put the Enterprise crew at the forefront of an effort to stop the Typhon Pact from exploiting stolen Soong-type android technology as a weapon of war.

In Book Two, Silent Weapons, Captain Picard and his crew must protect Federation President Nan Bacco when it becomes clear she has been targeted for assassination. However, in the course of their mission, the Enterprise crew discovers that there might be an even greater conspiracy lurking behind the assassination plot.

In Book Three, The Body Electric, the Enterprise crew is brought to the center of the Milky Way by an old friend — Traveler and former shipmate Wesley Crusher — to try to stop a massive sentient machine whose mysterious labors threaten the future of every civilization in the galaxy.

For those who might be curious, part of my reason for choosing to title the trilogy Cold Equations is that each of the three stories hinges on a moment in which one or more characters must make terrible moral or ethical choices, weighing the cost of one life, or a few lives, against those of many more, or deciding how much — and who — they are willing to sacrifice for the sake of victory.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to finish “clearing the decks” of my life by tending to long-neglected tasks, so that next week I can start work on the manuscript for Silent Weapons.