Author Topic: Musings on reviving Frontlines (aka TNC Rambles)  (Read 480 times)

Offline TNC

  • Board Legend
  • Posts: 10,651
  • Stuck in the middle of nowhere...
    • View Profile
Musings on reviving Frontlines (aka TNC Rambles)
« on: December 03, 2016, 01:56:44 AM »
A while back I made the statement on dA that I was abandoning my Trek fan-fic project due to the recent guidelines CBS/Paramount released for fan-films out of the concern that there might be overlap with written fan-fiction.  Recently, through a combination of playing Star Trek Timelines, binging Star Trek Online, and the 50th anniversary, I’ve begun to think about reviving Frontlines more and more.  Obviously any progress would have to be in a cautious wait-and-see mode, perhaps waiting to see if CBS/Paramount go after any other written fan-fic projects before trying to post anything of significance.

Of course another reason for abandoning the project was that I started in 2005 and haven’t done any story writing since 2009 (which was mostly editing) and that in the last two or three years I’ve begun working on backstory elements, coming up with names for unnamed characters, character backstories, etc.  In the process I’ve backed myself into the corner of having to rewrite quite a bit of stuff in order to fit with the new timeline.

For reference, here's the old versions I posted here years ago and here's the last timeline update I made.
There’s the easy stuff like changing Voyager-A to Helios but pretty much the whole battle at DS9 has to be changed because I added in Taskforce Gamma.

Also various fiction mediums have changed in the 11 years since I started writing.  Shows like nuBSG, SGU, Breaking Bad, Game of Thrones, and The Walking Dead, have come out and changed things.  Plus the Kelvin Timeline shook up Trek.  So I might need to up the game some…

But anywho, I have some thoughts on reviving Frontlines (or not).

Option 1: Art project only
I could just keep my idea to simply scrap the story and focus on finishing any designs.  This would be the easiest option, but there would be that lingering feeling of leaving things unfinished… 

Option 2: Finish the story
Get back to work and finish the story with the necessary revisions made from working on backstory stuff the last few years.  Probably wouldn’t be that hard if I could get out of my funk.

Option 3: Novelization
This is probably the most difficult idea.  Obviously it would involve converting the story into novel form and trying to get it published.  This way I could avoid any threats of lawsuits.  Converting the existing scripts into novel format probably wouldn’t be that hard.  The tricky part would be deciding how much material would go into each book (I’m assuming I’d have to write at least two novels to get everything in, maybe more).  The main concerns I have with this is I don’t know what kind of conditions CBS/Paramount put on Trek novel authors.  Are there things I can’t do?  How much “executive meddling” will there be?  Would I have to make edits to fit it in more with the Prime Timeline (i.e. blow up Romulus)?

Of course, if I do start working on it again, there’s the issue of just how long it should be.  I originally billed it as a “virtual miniseries” but at one time I predicted 20-40 “episodes” to finish the story, and that’s probably low balling it. That doesn’t sound very mini to me (maybe limited run would be better).  The obvious idea would be to do time skips every now and then.  But I’ve got another idea…

Format Conversion
To shorten the story down and cut down on potential time skips, I’ve thought about converting it into a war documentary format.  I could basically boil it down to a few big stories that focus on the different campaigns (i.e. Alpha Quadrant campaigns, Beta Quadrant Campaigns, etc.) or something similar.  I could probably also cut out bridge dialog scenes and focus on the action stuff, with some sort of narration over the action and character interviews.  The problem here is figuring out how to write this out.

Then there’s one big concern I have started thinking about lately…

We ain’t getting any younger
Originally I had a very minor role for Spock; however, with Leonard Nimoy’s death I decided to cut Spock out of the story.  Not too big a deal since his role wasn’t that big.  But what if, God forbid, Patrick Stewart were to die soon?  Picard’s a major player in the story and I don’t know if could/would want to do it without him.  Now obviously as a written story I don’t need actors, but out of respect for the actor I would feel the need to cut the character (similar to how SG-1 killed off Hammond after Don S. Davis died, rather than just never having the character appear or be mentioned again).  The obvious thing to do would just be finish the story ASAP; however, as Anton Yelchin’s tragic death shows, anything can happen at any time.   One potential solution would be to push the story further into the future and just cut out any of the canon characters.  This way I could also put it back in the Prime Timeline, and replace the Romulan Empire with the Romulan Republic from STO (or something similar).  Though this might mean replacing some TNG era ships, which means coming up with more ship designs, which means more drawing…
“Battle is not a simulation. It’s blood and screams and funerals.” – Capt. Georgiou – Star Trek: Discovery – “The Vulcan Hello”