Boldly Going (and other adventures with writing and star trek)

7:00 AM


Just in case I haven't flaunted my ultimate-sci-fi-geek status enough lately.

 

Recently, thanks to the little bro, I've been watching a lot of Star Trek: The Next Generation. Honestly? I didn't expect to love it as much as I do, or get as much out of it as I have. Is it a bit cheesy? Of course. Is it perfect? No. Is it always thrilling? Depends on how you look at it. But beyond just enjoying it immensely, I've found myself thinking about some deeper stuff prompted by some of the episodes. 

In fact, they've made me think a lot about my own writing. 

also Data is the most flawless person android ever and I cannot get over him.
(Basically these will just be random musings about things I've learned from this show and want to be more conscious of in my own writing.)

Writing diversely. Ooh, look, a scarier topic, one that I haven't really blogged about before! So here goes. 

I would venture to say that Star Trek: TNG is impressively diverse in the best way. People of all different personalities, races, and backgrounds hold important positions in the running of the ship. There are plenty of women in positions of power who are vital to the crew -- they have different personalities and different skills, but their presence isn't treated like a big deal and they're all strong in their own ways without the fact that they're strong being shoved in our faces. People aren't there to be special. They're just there. That makes me think about how I write diversely, and how I want to write diversely. Which is basically: subtly, and without making a big fuss over it. I very much appreciate and want to copy the whole host of people just being people, being diverse just by being themselves because they all have something different to offer. 

What is exciting, anyway? By our standards now, you could call a lot of the episodes "boring", especially for a sci-fi show. Most of them don't involve relationship angst, or people shooting each other, or epic near-death escapes (well, that last one is debatable). In fact, a lot of them focus on ethical issues, issues that test the crew and the individual characters. They're conflicts that make you think. How do you approach interactions with other cultures and their customs when they conflict with your own? How do you stick to your customs and beliefs while still respecting the strange alien world you're on? When is it okay to kill/is it ever okay? How do you treat people who might not deserve to be treated well? 

Now, I love me a good sci-fi battle. Excitement is good too. Nonstop action is good, too. But I think it's important to not forget the deeper conflicts, the ones that make people think. That's what I want to do it in the end, underneath all that action and shooting people type stuff. 
THINK.
The potential in sci-fi. Oh my gosh, you guys, you can do so much with sci-fi. I think I forget that sometimes. Star Trek is one of those things that makes me remember the exploration, the alien worlds, the traveling through space, the starship crew, the kooky gadgets, the just-plain-odd stuff you can encounter at the very edge of space/time/whatever. This show likes to explore that. I'd like to explore that. It makes me want to write things with more potential than just an alien invasion. What if there were alien cultures to explore? What would that look like?

*desperately fends off the plot bunnies* 


Essentially, Star Trek makes me want to boldy go (see what I did there?) and explore new writing things, new ideas, new ways to stretch what I'm already doing and writing. And that's super cool. 

WELL THEN. Today all you've gotten was a rant. But I'd like to spend more time blogging about the things that I'm into lately, the things I'm inspired by, the things that influence my writing, and this is a big one right now so it seemed like a decent place to start. Do you guys want to see more of this, or no? Let me know allll the information. (And then I'll probably keep doing this anyway because I kind of like it.)

What's inspiring you lately? Tell me all about it.

14 comments

  1. YES you nailed it with the diversity bit. Actually you nailed it with this whole post, but anyway I totally agree. I think most media right now tries too hard to be diverse and undermines its original objective by doing so.
    I get annoyed when something is considered "boring" just because it doesn't have constant explosions, romantic tension, and blood. Most of the best episodes of Doctor Who are the more slow paced, thoughtful ones.

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    1. Exactly! I do love my deeper Doctor Who episodes, but maybe that's just me. Sigh. I'd like to see more diversity that's just...there, y'know? Which was what pleased me so much about this show. They don't make a big deal out of it.

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  2. YES TO ALL OF THIS. Writing diversely is a scary topic, but I think we should all try to do that. I need to do more of that, in all honesty. It's just one of those things that need to happen.

    And, yes, sci-fi has SO MUCH POTENTIAL. I DON'T EVEN KNOW WHAT TO DO WITH IT SOMETIMES, BECAUSE THERE'S SO MUCH YOU *CAN* DO. Which is why my next novel is hardcore sci fi because I want to explore all of that and it needs to happen. x.x

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    1. I'm planning a post totally for diversity because I've been shying away from the scary topic for a while now. xD

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  3. Love Star Trek! Glad your enjoying it, and applying it to your writing.

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  4. Right now, I'm trying to lean in a bit more towards the fantasy aspect of my writing, because the largest influence is this book called, 'Johnathan Strange and Mr. Norrel.' It's a really great read, and I recommend it. The book has that touch of darkness that I sometimes fall short on in my books, and I'm trying to pick up tips from it.

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    1. That book is on my TBR -- I got it for Christmas and still haven't gotten around to it somehow, but my mom assures me it's awesome and she's usually right with things like that.

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  5. You should totally keep doing posts like these! BECAUSE YOU LIKE IT. And because it's awesome. ;D Alsooooo I absolutely love and agree what you said about diversity. *nods* I want to write diverse people just being people. Like issue books are great and all that? But I 100% would rather pick up an adventure where people are just PEOPLE and what makes them different isn't the hugest deal. The adventure is the hugest deal.

    Deeper conflicts are good too. SO GOOD. Agh, all these things we writers must think about. It's hard BUT FABULOUS, TBH.

    ahem. How come I always come to comment on blogs and end up shouting? Who can know. I loved this post anyway, just in case it was hard to tell. ;D

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    1. Right, I just want people to be themselves, y'know? Because technically we're all diverse? *sigh*

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  6. Yay to rants!

    What's been inspiring me, as usual, is animals. Don't ask why, but most my sci-fi and fantasy cultures are based off animal colonies. (e.g. parents never take care of their own young type thing.)

    And, I just watched the LTOR movies, all the Jane Austin and the Matrix movie for the first time. Although I had to live through people freaking out and telling me to go watch them, I'm glad I didn’t at a younger age, I feel like I wouldn't have understood the depth of them. Hoping those will influence my writing, but not too much.

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    1. Ahhh The Matrix is such a great movie. Scared the crap out of me, but it's great. xD

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  7. Yes! I love TNG. XD I think I kind of get the diversity thing, because yeah, it doesn't make a big deal about many kinds of people in different situations, but I also sort of feel like there are a lot of white people and not, like, LGBT+ people or always POC who are more than just African American. But I guess that happens on all of the TV and I should not complain. And I know that it varies from episode to episode. And I know that they do a decently good job in respecting various religions.

    I just have feelings and I have to deal with them. Sorry.

    Your discussion on exciting things is yes! It's so fascinating about how much of the conflict stems from sticking to their ideals throughout the tough times (and sometimes breaking them and getting in trouble) and I love that. I want to do that, too.

    Lovely thoughts on Star Trek, Aimee! :D

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  8. You know, I've never been much into Star Trek, although I think it's just because I was given a poor introduction to it, by the wrong people, in the wrong environments. But lately I've been thinking I want to give it another try. I've recently developed a strong love for planetary sci-fi, and I am deeply stirred by the concepts of exploration and discovery. On that basis alone, Star Trek sounds interesting now.

    Your post here has pushed me over the edge. I definitely want to try Star Trek again. But I know that it's a massive franchise, with lots of different TV series and movies. I don't really know where to start. O.O As a fan of the series, what would you recommend? Or is there no set way to start watching Star Trek? :)

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hey. hey. talk to me. i'm a fan of comments and flailing with you. go for it.