[sticky post]Hello
My regular posts are under another name; I have this journal to comment on fan fiction, mostly Star Trek fan fiction, though I also spent a short time checking out the Heroes universe.

My own Star Trek and Heroes fan fiction can be found at Archive of Our Own.

Because I lived in a TV-free household for several decades, there's a lot of stuff I've never seen.  I saw TOS before moving into that household, and I started watching Heroes in April of 2014, after the no-TV restrictions were relaxed.  I plan to watch TNG and Buffy and Voyager and Babylon 5, all things that my friends have told me I MUST see, years or even decades after everyone else has seen them.  I realize that this makes me strange even in fandoms that are already known for their strangeness. :-)

I have twenty-seven Star Trek stories (mostly TOS), one Heroes story, and one Star Trek essay:

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We're now living in the Mirror Universe
Several months before the election -- back when we all thought there was essentially zero chance that Donald Trump could be elected president -- I read a TOS fan fiction story set in the Mirror Universe.  It included the cute little throw-away detail -- not at all the point of the story -- that the Mirror Universe had diverged from the regular universe in 2016, when Trump was elected POTUS.  "Heh," I thought at the time, "That's cute.  And any people dumb enough to elect Trump president probably deserve to live in the Mirror Universe."

Well, here we are.  How long before agonizers are invented?  How long before assassination is a reasonable and accepted means of advancement?  How long before the people in charge simply bomb any nation that doesn't agree with them into rubble?

With a man like Trump in the White House, this seems far less whimsical and far-fetched than it should...

How come there's never a good ion storm when you need one?  I want to transport back to the real universe!

Happy Everything!

(That "major surgery" was a hysterectomy, and not the nice, modern laparoscopic kind, either; I had the old-fashioned kind where they slice the patient from hipbone to hipbone.  But they didn't find the cancer they expected to find when they opened me up, and no cancer is always a great present. :-)

I made a Starfleet career for The Sims 3
For the past several months, I've been working on a Starfleet career for the computer game The Sims 3. I finished it a week and a half ago and submitted it to the Sims modding site ModTheSims, and today they finally approved and uploaded it.  Whew!  Finally!

You can get the career -- or just read about it -- at this link.

The Sims 3 is what they call a life simulator; the little pixel people eat and sleep and get married and have babies ... and they also get jobs.  There are eleven expansion packs for the game, of which Into the Future is the most recent.  Well, if there's a whole expansion pack devoted to life in the future, it needs to have Starfleet in it, right?  Well, now it does. :-)

Writing the text for the career levels, career opportunities, career events, and so on was more difficult than it might seem at first, because the proper tone for a Sims career is mildly humorous and slightly snarky, whereas the proper tone for TOS is earnest and idealistic, and those tones don't mesh terribly well.  I tried to give Starfleet a Sims spin without totally disrespecting the source material; we'll see how the players like it.

And of course there's a career level called "Redshirt," and of course that level is a bit dangerous:
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I spent a LONG time working on this career -- part of which was spent reverse-engineering the career files enough to figure out how things worked -- and I'm both thrilled and sad that it's all finished, as one often is when a big project is completed.

Anyway, if you play The Sims 3, please check it out!  And even if you don't, but you want to know what I've been doing for the past six months, reading over the post at ModTheSims will tell you. :-)

The moderator who approved my upload told me that I got 109 out of a possible 110 points, so it looks like the moderator liked it, at least. :-)

So, we saw the SpockDoc
Adam Nimoy had advertised the movie in his Kickstarter campaign as a documentary celebrating Spock and Leonard Nimoy, in honor of the 50th anniversary of Star Trek. That was two-thirds of the film.  The final third was a look at the troubled relationship between Adam and Leonard.

The first third of the film -- the part about Spock -- was sorta fun, though I didn't feel as if Adam shed any actual light on the subject.  There was a collection of great Spock moments -- not as good as what you could find in any fan-made YouTube compilation -- a few interviews with Trekkies who felt that Spock helped them in various personal ways, and a few interviews with professional scientists who appreciated Spock.  Neil DeGrasse Tyson was especially notable among the latter, for being consistently adorable, but then, he usually is. :-)

The second third of the film -- the part about Leonard Nimoy -- was, I thought, the best part.  We got clips of Leonard's guest appearances in various TV shows while he was a young man, shots of him in various plays after he became famous, and some discussion of the movies he'd directed and the photographs he'd taken.  There were interviews with his older brother, Melvin, and his wife, with a childhood friend who also became an actor, and with the surviving cast members of TOS and of the reboot movies.  I had never seen Melvin before, and it was interesting to hear him talk about his little brother.

The final third of the film -- the part where Adam talked about his troubled relationship with his father -- blames Leonard's devotion to his work and the consequent long hours, exhaustion, and general non-availability for Adam's various addictions and general dissatisfaction with life.  There's a quite a lot of that -- He forced the whole family to help him answer his fan mail!  The pain!  The horror! -- and then it winds up with a segment whose tone is "Fortunately, Leonard eventually gave up all that acting nonsense and devoted himself to his family, as he should have all along."

So the film has a "happy" ending, by having Leonard give up his various creative pursuits to devote himself to his family.


Adam says that his ex-wife -- with whom he is good friends -- told him that there was too much of HIM in the movie.  He asked the movie's editor -- he told us during the introduction before the film that this was a woman he hired specifically because she knew nothing about Star Trek -- and she told him that putting so much of himself into the movie was a good thing.  Judged just as a movie, the editor is probably right, because the last third adds a bit of drama.  Judged as a film touted as a celebration of Spock and Leonard Nimoy, however, I'm afraid I have to agree with the ex-wife.  And even more than Adam's injecting so much of himself into the movie, I object to his making "Give up your career and devote yourself to your family" the point or moral of the story he's telling.

So now I'll talk about the movie in more detail, by part:

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Although the movie certainly wasn't all bad and in fact had some lovely moments, overall I thought that Adam Nimoy made a rather self-indulgent film.  Of course, the poor guy did lose his father recently, so one can forgive a certain amount of self focus ... but this isn't the movie I thought I was funding, and I was heartsick at the "moral" Adam gave us.

Do Star Trek fans want to see the movie?  Yeah, you probably do ... but I think you'll enjoy it more if you go in with lowered expectations.  I trust I have lowered them sufficiently. :-)

Going to SpockDoc
Adam Nimoy – Leonard Nimoy's son – is making a movie that's supposed to be partly a celebration of Spock and partly a celebration of Leonard Nimoy, in honor of the 50th anniversary of Star Trek. It's called For the Love of Spock, though Adam frequently refers to it as "SpockDoc."

He got the funding for the movie through Kickstarter, and if one backed his kickstarter at the appropriate level, the perk is a backer-only showing, a few months before the movie actually comes out.

Those backer-only showings are happening in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, and Boston.  (Boston isn't that big of a city, but since it's Leonard's hometown, he had lots of ties here, and Boston remained special to him even 60 years after he'd left it.)  I backed the kickstarter at the appropriate level, so Norman and I are attending the local backer-only showing of the movie tomorrow (Monday).

I read Adam Nimoy's autobiography and was decidedly underwhelmed.  He LOOKS  a great deal like his father, but his essence is completely different.  His autobiography made it clear that he had a great deal of resentment towards his father and towards both Spock and Star Trek for taking up so much of his father's time and attention.

When Adam was soliciting funds for the kickstarter, I told him that I'd read his autobiography, and while I sympathized with the challenges involved in being the child of a celebrity, it wasn't clear to me that HE was the right person to make a movie celebrating either his father or Spock.  He replied by thanking me for being one of the twelve people who actually read his autobiography :-), and by saying that he and his father had had a rapprochement in the years since his book was written, and he was now in a very different place.

It was the right answer, but I'm still a little nervous about what we're going to see tomorrow.  You've probably heard all the stories about Leonard's goodness, how he wasn't just a fine actor but also did a variety of ethical things, when no one else (e. g. Shatner) would.  So not only do I admire Spock, but I've come to admire Leonard Nimoy as well, and as more than just an excellent actor.  I'm really hoping that the movie isn't going to sneer at my love or trample all over it.

I guess I'll see, tomorrow!

Glad that March is coming
I've been sad all month; as soon as the calendar turned to February, it became The Month When Leonard Nimoy Died.

I feel rather embarrassed about this, since middle-aged women aren't supposed to take the death of an actor quite this hard; that's more like something a teen-aged girl would do.  But we feel how we feel, and knowing that he's no longer in the world makes me sad.

I hope next  February, I won't be quite so torn up by it.  He did have a good, long life and did get to do a great many wonderful things.


Book Review: The Autobiography of James T. Kirk
Short version:  The author knows a lot of facts about James Kirk but understands nothing of his heart or soul.

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For a recent Star Trek novel where the author DOES understand the characters, I recommend Dave Galanter's Crisis of Consciousness.  In fact, that probably deserves a review of its own, but two posts in one day is already a lot. :-)

Are we nuts?
Background:  I'm working on a Starfleet career for a computer game called The Sims 3, so yesterday and the day before, I spent the day knee-deep in computer code.  My husband, Norman, is a professor of computer science at a nearby university.

At dinner last night, I had trouble hearing Norman, and he asked me if I had my hearing aids in.  The answer was that I had one in my right ear but didn't have one in my left ear (because the left ear itches a lot).  I was chewing -- we were eating dinner -- and I didn't want to talk with my mouth full.  So I held up one finger next to my right ear, making a one and made a circle with my thumb and forefinger next to my left ear, making a zero.

Norman looked at me.  "You just answered me in binary!"

Norman and I have been together for thirty years.  It's possible I'm losing the ability to communicate with normals ... assuming I ever had it. :-)

I'm usually so very verbal that I joke that an analysis of my DNA would show me to be made of words, rather than of the usual chemicals.  But fill my head with computer code for a couple of days in a row, and I guess my mind starts to adapt to its new circumstances. :-)

Which Star Trek Character Are You?
I have a PhD in Clinical Psychology, so I guess I should have expected this.  My #1 and #2 seem like an odd combination, but then, I am a rather odd combination of things. :-)  The test seemed to weight that training in clinical psychology over everything else I said; I would actually have expected the numbers for #1 and #2 to be a lot closer together.

Your results:
You are Deanna Troi
Deanna Troi
Jean-Luc Picard
James T. Kirk (Captain)
An Expendable Character (Redshirt)
Geordi LaForge
Beverly Crusher
Will Riker
Leonard McCoy (Bones)
Mr. Sulu
Mr. Scott
You are a caring and loving individual.
You understand people's emotions and
you are able to comfort and counsel them.

Click here to take the "Which Star Trek character am I?" quiz...


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