Kirk Fu reviews for YOU!

Look,

I think we all can agree creating a book based around the imitable fighting style of Star Trek‘s very own Captain James T. Kirk is a bit on the silly side. But, here’s the thing: If anybody was going to do such a book, I wanted it to be me. I mean, come on. You’ve seen me goofing off here and on social media, making or sharing all manner of Star Trek jokes, pics, cartoons, and whatnot. Remember the American Chopper meme? Coming up with Trek-themed April Fool’s gags like fake book projects or breaking up with Kevin? The idea that the voyages of the Starship Enterprise may have been faked?

And of course, there was Spock of Ages.

SpockOfAges-Poster

Such shenanigans are one of the main reason I bother with social media at all.

So, yeah. I’m the perfect clown to do something like a book about Kirk Fu. What I didn’t count on was the number of people who actually thought this was a good idea, let alone wanted to see it become a reality.

And yet, here we are.

star-trek-kirk-fu-manual-cover

It’s been a long road – as they say – getting from there to here. “There” being when I first pitched the idea to Chris Prince, my editor at Insight Editions, as I was finishing up work on the Vulcan Travel Guide. His initial enthusiasm for the idea was undeterred by the obstacles presented by a fickle publishing world, and he kept bringing up at meetings and wherever else it was appropriate to broach such subjects.

By the time I was given a green light to actually write the book, editor Paul Ruditis was overseeing my efforts. Fate and circumstances saw to it Paul had to move on to other projects while I was still finishing up the manuscript, but he made sure I was left in good hands with the very awesome Holly Fisher, with whom I’d previously worked for the first two Star Trek IncrediBuilds projects. Holly was all about Kirk Fu from the jump, and she did an amazing job corralling not just me but also artist Christian Cornia while punching this thing into the end zone.

What I didn’t anticipate was how much attention the book would get.

To but this in perspective, my books don’t typically attract much in the way of mainstream interest. Yes, Star Trek and other genre news sites, fan sites, and reviewers report on them along with everything else going on in the Trek publishing sphere, and of course the hardcore Star Trek readers who follow what we do – day in and day out, month in and month out – are a treasure. But beyond that? It’s pretty rare for my work to be noticed “out there in the real world.” That changed a bit with the aforementioned Vulcan Travel Guide, which gathered a bit of attention from higher profile outlets like Nerdist.com and even Entertainment Weekly. I don’t mind saying that last one was a pretty big deal for me. That my editors and the marketing group at Insight felt strongly enough to push the book in that direction told me they had real confidence the thing could sell. They keep calling me to write for them, so I guess I’m doing something right.

Which brings us to my latest Insight offering: Star Trek: Kirk Fu Manual.

You’ve been reading about this thing for the last couple of years as we slowly – s-l-o-w-l-y – move ever closer toward publication and now that we’re in the home stretch the marketing team has been going all out. In addition to sending review copies to literally hundreds of outlets well over the book’s on-sale date, they’ve even created what I’m told is the first of two different book trailers. Wanna see? BAM:

See? You’re ready to stretch and warm up and get on with fighting aliens Jimmy T style, aren’t you?

Another surprise this time around is that Insight has given the go-ahead to the various outlets to publish their reviews well ahead of the book’s release date. I’ve already done a handful of interviews, the first reviews started popping up weeks ago, and we’re still two weeks away from publication. As with the travel guides, I can only guess this means my publisher is jazzed about this book and is happy to get the word out well ahead of time so folks can pre-order their copies. In an ideal world, everybody will soon be Kirk Fu fighting, with me and Christian as your guides.

Here’s a rundown of some of the reviews I’ve seen, including some by fans that are just really cool:

TrekMovie– January 31st
Captain Foley/Trekyards – January 31st (YouTube video)
Starburst Magazine – February 4th
TrekToday – February 4th
Trek Central – February 5th
Syfy Wire – February 6th
Borg.com – February 6th
Treksphere – February 12th
The Future of the Force – February 14th
Irish Trekkie – February 14th (YouTube video)
Trek on the Tube – February 14th (YouTube video…and beware the Canon Cop!)
Daily Star Trek News – February 17th (podcast)

These are just the ones I know about.

People are picking up what I’m throwing down, and I’m so totally here for it. I mean, it’s been almost a month since the first reviews started popping up, and here we are flying headlong toward Publication Day and I cannot wait to see this thing in stores. With all of that said, I’m still sorta gobsmacked this book has gotten the traction it seems to be enjoying, and to think: this is my first hardcover publication.

My high school English teacher and guidance counselor so owe me monster apologies.

You’ve pre-ordered your copy, right?

KirkFu

Your Moment of TrekZen*.

Because your off-brand landing party cosplay attempt isn’t complete without a little 2-way comm action.

Remco_Star_Trek_Astro-Wrist_Radios(Click to Biggie Size…if you dare.)

Ah, Remco. Gone, but not forgotten.

We are, of course, talking about that toy manufacturing king of the 1940s, 50s, and 60s. Particularly in that last decade before it closed its doors in 1971, Remco was (in)famous for toys tying into various popular television shows of that era such as the Adam West Batman, Lost In Space, The Munsters, and Star Trek. Many if not most of their toys bore little or even no resemblance to anything you might see on any of the actual shows, you understand, and often were actually the same toys across the different lines…just painted different colors and featuring show-specific decals. In this case, the Star Trek wrist radios might be yellow, whereas Batman and Robin sported their own semi-cool blue ones.

Among those items bearing the Star Trek label were the Astro-Helmet (with non-shattering lenses!) as well as my personal favorites, the Astro-Buzz-Ray Gun, and…of course, the notorious Space Fun helmet.

I mean, come on….

dayton-spockhelmet(I make this shit look good.)

Back in December, StarTrek.com convinced the awesomely good sport Ethan Peck to participate in an “unboxing video” in which he took an original Space Fun helmet out of its box (much to the horror of collectors across the known universe and perhaps other planes of existence) and actually placed it atop his own Spock-portraying head. I am forced to admit Mr. Peck looks far better in his helmet than I do in the one I borrowed from friend Nick Duguid for the above photo.

Much attention and discussion centers around the screen accuracy of any product – toy, replica, or whatever – tying into a film or television series, and that attention and discussion is multiplied times a bazillion when we’re talking about Star Trek. There are those among the fan contingent who want all knowledge of knock-off products such as these purged from all human memory. Then there are anarchists like me, who constantly lobby for some courageous would-be licensing partner to take up the mantle of producing sacrosanct reproductions of these off-kilter toys of yesteryear.

That’s right. Some days, I just want to watch the world burn.

Trek-Never Let Normal-Interfere-With-Awesome

(* = with acknowledgments–and apologies–to The Daily Show)

Back cover copy for my upcoming Star Trek novel Agents of Influence!

Those of you who frequent this space have likely read my occasional babbling about Agents of Influence, my upcoming Star Trek original series novel that’ll be out in June.

I’ve been waiting (im)patiently for quite a while to be able to share the book’s back cover description and at long last I have a green light to do just that. Therefore and without further ado, read on:


For years, Starfleet Intelligence agents have carried out undercover assignments deep within the Klingon Empire. Surgically altered and rigorously trained in Klingon culture, they operate in plain sight and without any direct support, while collecting information and infiltrating the highest levels of imperial power. Their actions have given Starfleet valuable insight into the inner workings of Klingon government and its relentless military apparatus.

After three of Starfleet’s longest serving agents fear exposure, they initiate emergency extraction procedures. Their planned rendezvous with the U.S.S. Endeavour goes awry, threatening to reveal their activities and the damaging intelligence they’ve collected during their mission. Tasked by Starfleet to salvage the botched rescue attempt, Captain James T. Kirk and the crew of the Starship Enterprise must discover the truth behind a secret weapons experiment while avoiding an interstellar incident with the potential to ignite a new war between the Federation and one of its oldest adversaries.


Agents of Influence will be published by Gallery Books on June 9th in trade paperback, eBook, and audiobook formats. Pre-order links appear to be a little jacked up at the moment, but once it’s straightened out I’ll be sure to post those details.

Meanwhile, it’s possible the blurb may prompt some questions. 🙂

Talking Trek with the Worst. Comic. Podcast. EVER!

Hey! I babbled again, and this time I brought my cohort along with me!

Or, maybe he brought me along with him. Hell, I don’t know, anymore.

The important thing to take away from this is Kevin and I ended up doing a joint interview, something that hasn’t happened in a long while. Fate and circumstances see to it I end up doing a lot of these things to promote my solo work, but this time we’re not even pimping anything. Turns out a couple of local friends who happen to have a podcast wanted to talk Star Trek and what do you know? We’re right here in the same time zone. The result? Kevin and I as guests on the latest episode of the….

WORST. COMIC. PODCAST. EVER!

WCPE-Logo

And if that logo maybe stirs up some memories from your childhood, go with that feeling.

Ah, Bailey.….

Oh, right. Podcast.

Guided by our hosts, John Holloway and Jerry McMullen, we discuss a variety of Trek-related topics. We bounce around from our writing to our takes on the recent generation of series (Star Trek: Discovery, Star Trek: Picard) and various fannish pursuits like conventions and visits to the super awesome Star Trek Original Series Set Tour in Ticonderoga, New York. But you know it is a podcast focusing on comics, so the conversation does make its way around to the story Kevin and I wrote for the Star Trek: Waypoint comics miniseries back in 2016, and the tons of fun we had working on that.

So, if any of that sounds like an interesting way to wile away an hour or so while you’re sitting in traffic or in line for one of those sweet chicken sandwiches from Popeye’s or whatever, give this a listen:

Worst. Comic. Podcast. Ever! Episode 291:
Talking Trek Dayton Ward and Kevin Dilmore

Many thanks to John and Jerry for having us on their show. We’ll see these guys again in March at Planet Comicon here in Kansas City, and maybe one of these days we’ll find a decent excuse reason to head back to their den of nerdity for another exciting installment!

WCPE-Approved

More Star Trek IncrediBuilds action. This time: the Klingons!

Regular followers of this space know I’ve been writing various things and bits for Insight Editions for the past few years. It started with the Vulcan and Klingon Travel Guides before I was asked about writing for another of their imprints, IncrediBuilds. My mission: write “guidebooks” to go with special, eco-friendly wood model kits they were creating for the 10+ age bracket. I started with books for the original U.S.S. Enterprise and its counterpart from Star Trek: The Next Generation. These were followed with a deviation to another licensed property, Toy Story, for which I wrote the books to go with models of Sheriff Woody and Buzz Lightyear. Both of these were fun because I got to go for an audience that was slightly younger even than that for which the Star Trek kits were intended.

Oh, and it’s possible you may have heard about my coming Kirk Fu book.

Another project I did for Insight/IncrediBuilds last year and which is getting set for release is a return to the Star Trek realm, and this time we’re doing the Klingon Bird- of-Prey!

IncrediBuilds-BoP(Click to Biggie Size)

As with all IncrediBuilds kits, this little guy is designed to be assembled without the need for glue or tape or anything else holding it together. Even though it’s meant for slightly smaller hands, the model has a few itsty-bitsy parts, and the guidebook also includes tips on painting and customizing the model. Once you put it all together and maybe slap some paint on it? For my money this may be the best of their three Star Trek offerings to date.

KlingonBOP-IncrediBuild Model(Click this pic and you’ll get a nifty pre-order link!)

As for the book I wrote, I cover a general history and lineage of this ship class, notable Klingons who’ve commanded such vessels, and battles and other encounters which have involved Birds-of-Prey. There’s even a section about the “H.M.S. Bounty,” the ship captured by Admiral Kirk and his crew in Star Trek III: The Search for Spock and used so extensively in Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home. Finally, I step out of the box a bit for an overview of the ship’s design for the films and how it was used in later movies and TV series episodes, as well as how it inspired designs seen in the prequel series Star Trek: Enterprise and Star Trek: Discovery.

As with my previous IncrediBuilds collaborations, I had a lot of fun writing this one, thanks in no small part to my editor at Insight, Holly Fisher, with whom I’ve worked on all of these to date and who’s been awesome from the jump. It’s always fun to delve into a bit of Star Trek lore and present it in a way younger readers might enjoy. There are already plans afoot for more of these book/model kits, and I’m obviusly hoping Insight will see fit to bring me back for more IncrediBuilds action.

In the meantime, the Star Trek: Klingon Bird-Of-Prey IncrediBuilds kit will be released on or about March 23, and you can pre-order your very own copy (or six) by clicking on this little linky-type thing right here.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’ll be over here putting one of these together. For the children, you understand.

Talking all kinds of Trek with Trekpod!

Yep, you got it. I’m babbling again.

This time, I sit down with host Tony Robinson for a chat on Trekpod, a Star Trek-themed podcast which aims to interview writers, artists, and other creative sorts from all corners of the ever-expanding Star Trek universe.

For this installment, Tony and I discuss my “secret origin story” and how I came to be someone who writes Star Trek stories on a weirdly regular basis. We also talk about other writing projects with which I’ve been involved over the years, collaborating with the various writers in the Star Trek writing stable, and working as a consultant for CBS. There’s also some time spent chatting about my early days as a Star Trek fan, my military background and how it informs my writing, and even the time I spend volunteering at the National World War I Museum and Memorial here in Kansas City. The interview runs about 45 minutes, if you feel like sticking it in your ears:

Trekpod Episode 004: Dayton Ward

TrekPod-Dayton
Many thanks to Tony and the crew at Trekpod for having me on the show. I had a nice time chatting and look forward to doing it again sometime.

Star Trek: Inflexions trading card set from Rittenhouse, with words by me!

When I decided I wanted to have a go as a full-time freelance writer, I adopted an unofficial motto: “Have Words, Will Write.”

What does that mean? Basically, when it came to writing I was up for pretty much anything, even (and especially) if it meant wading into areas of writing beyond novels, short stories, magazine pieces, and web content. I wanted to try new things, and hopefully expand my skill set. That first year when I went full-time freelance saw me take on new clients who employed me for a variety of projects from the Vulcan travel guide to branded Twitter content. These led to things like the IncrediBuilds kits and other cool little projects. My goal is to be the kind of writer an editor could call on no matter what they wanted me to do because they’d know when they heard my name, “Yeah, that dude can get shit done.”

Which is (I hope) why I was recommended to the good folks at Rittenhouse Archives to write the copy for their newest set of Star Trek trading cards, Star Trek: Inflexions.

StarTrekInflexions

Rittenhouse has been in the Star Trek card game for a lot of years, now. I don’t collect cards like I did when I was a kid or even as I did into my 20s and 30s, but I do have a couple of their sets. For example, I was (and remain) particularly taken with the set they did for the animated Star Trek series. So, when Rittenhouse head honcho Steve Charendoff came calling and described what he had in mind, I knew this was something I had to try.

I have no shame admitting there was a bit of a learning curve. Writing good copy for a space as confined as the back of a trading card is a definite skill, and I dare say there’s also more than a bit of art to it. However, my experience writing the aforementioned branded Twitter messaging actually helped in this regard. I ended up writing copy for the 100 cards that form the Star Trek: Inflexions base set, with factoids and infonuggets about all of the main cast members from each of the first five live-action Star Trek series (original series through Star Trek: Enterprise). Along the way, Steve and I had discussions about what topics we should cover and how best to present them. While I didn’t pick the images used on the front of the cards, I did suggest a few based on some of the bits I was writing. Steve was very patient with my questions and I enjoyed the collaboration, making this a fun experience for my first time out.

StarTrekInflexions-Autos

In addition to those cards, Rittenhouse also piles on a number of extras and bonuses such as autographs (including some rarities from their “vault”…see below), sketch cards, “painted portrait” cards, and all sorts of other Trek goodness. I think there may be twice as many extras/bonuses as there are base cards! To get an idea of what I mean, check out the set’s complete checklist.

StarTrekInflexions-Autos2

Star Trek: Inflexions was released earlier this week, and should now be available at or through your local hobby shop and other venues who sell these sorts of cards.

Many thanks to Steve and the rest of the crew at Rittenhouse Archives for inviting me to play in their sandbox for a bit, and to friends Paula Block and Terry Erdmann for recommending me in the first place!

Happy 40th Anniversary, Star Trek: The Motion Picture!

“Mister Scott, an alien object of unbelievable destructive power is less than three days away from this planet. The only starship in interception range is the Enterprise. Ready, or not, she launches in twelve hours.”

TMP-40th
Can ya believe it? Forty years ago today.

Warts and all, it’s still an indelible part of my childhood. I remember standing in the lobby of the theater waiting to go into the auditorium, and looking at the ginormous display they’d erected. The brand-new Enterprise in all its glory, along with monster-sized heads of Kirk and the rest of the crew, including the weird-looking bald lady who was intriguing to my 12-year-old brain on a level I couldn’t quite fathom at that point.

I’m oversharing again, aren’t I?

At the time, 12-year old me didn’t think Star Trek: The Motion Picture was as good or entertaining or fun as the original series. Like 2001: A Space Odyssey or Close Encounters of the Third Kind to name a couple of examples, I only learned to appreciate it much later. For whatever the hell my opinion’s worth, it remains the one Star Trek film that really tried to be something other than an expanded episode of its parent television series. It was a flawed yet noble effort, and it paved the way for the juggernaut that became and remains “the Star Trek franchise.”

So, yeah, I have a soft spot for this flick.

Several years ago, I wrote about it for Tor.com as part of a “Star Trek movies” theme week they did, covering a bit of its troubled production and what I at least think I saw in the (sorta) finished product at the time, and why it’s managed to still grab my attention every so often in the years since:

Tor.com – “Star Trek: The Motion Picture – Big Ideas Worthy of A Return”

And if that’s not enough, check out this poster, which is just painted in Awesome:

The film also features what I still consider to be the best Trek film score to date.

Star Trek: The Motion Picture was also the beginning of Simon & Schuster’s association with Star Trek publishing, which continues to this day. They observed this anniversary in their own way this year, re-issuing Gene Roddenberry’s novelization of the film in a slick new trade paperback edition as well as enlisting frequent Star Trek book narrator Robert Petkoff to provide an all-new unabridged audio adaptation of the novel. I hadn’t read the book in decades so I was eager to revisit it via this format. Listening to it back in October when didn’t provide quite the same level of excitement as I got from reading the book for the very first time back in 1979, but it still brought back a lot of memories about the anticipation I had for the film.

Related
Star Trek.com – Simon & Schuster and 40 Years of Star Trek Publishing

Throughout 2019, I’ve been anticipating celebrating this particular Star Trek milestone. I wondered if they might bring the film back to the theaters as had been the case for a number of other films observing anniversaries this year (Alien, The Shawshank Redemption, and Forrest Gump are just a few titles that got my money when they were the subject of event screenings at local theaters). When I heard they were adding this to that list, I plunked down coin so fast it made light bend. Kevin and I took in that screening back in October and yes – the Enterprise has never looked better than it does as depicted here, displayed on a huge movie screen the way it was meant to be seen.

Happy Birthday, Star Trek: The Motion Picture, you imperfect yet strangely lovable beast, you.

StarTrek.com: 40 years of Star Trek publishing at Simon & Schuster!

PocketBooks-TMP-StoreDisplay.JPG1979: The human adventure – on the screen and on the page – really was just beginning.

For those of you new to this neck of the woods, you may or may not know I write – among other things – Star Trek novels. A bunch of ’em, in fact. Been doing it for a long time…long enough I’m beginning to feel a little self-conscious about how many years we’re talking.

(Narrator: “It’s something like 20. Damn. This dude is old.”)

Shut up, narrator.

Anyway, yes. I’ve been writing Star Trek novels for a long time but it’s compared to how long Star Trek novels have been getting published, I’m just getting warmed up. Indeed, Star Trek publishing has been active in one form or another since the days of the original series being in active production in the 1960s. Several publishing houses have added various tomes to the Final Frontier’s ever-expanding library, but one publisher in particular stands apart from the rest, as much for the longevity of their relationship with Star Trek as the width and breadth of the titles they’ve offered: Simon & Schuster.

snw-coverNow, sure, I’m here to be a bit of a cheerleader for S&S, because after all I’ve had a lengthy and prosperous relationship with these folks. The house’s Pocket Books imprint, which for decades oversaw the publication of hundreds of Star Trek novels and other books, gave me my start. The Strange New Worlds writing contests were responsible for my first paid professional stories. The first novel I wrote for publication was a Star Trek novel, and Pocket was also the publisher of my first original science fiction novel, The Last World War. Those initial successes paved the way for numerous other opportunities, and I’ve been fortunate enough to be able to ride that wave ever since.

And all of it thanks to Simon & Schuster and a publishing program which began forty years ago.

Trek-TMP-NovelizationOkay, so it began more than forty years ago…these things take time to get up and running, you know. However, the fruits of that labor started showing up in stores in the fall of 1979 as part of the leadup to the release of Star Trek: The Motion Picture. S&S had acquired a publishing license which would take over from rival Bantam Books, who to that point had been publishing their own Star Trek novels as well as adaptations of original series episodes. Though new original novels would not begin hitting shelves until 1981, owing to the remaining time on Bantam’s existing agreement, S&S was still able to kick things into gear by rolling out an ambitious publishing effort designed to capitalize on the new, big-budget Star Trek movie. While Gene Roddenberry’s novelization of the film’s script was arguably the highest-profile item on a slate featuring fifteen titles, there were quite a few really coooooool books released as part of this package.

Looking at you, Spaceflight Chronology.

So, as fans celebrate the 40th anniversary of Star Trek: The Motion Picture this month, I thought it would be appropriate to also take a look at the beginnings of Simon & Schuster’s Star Trek publishing program. The results of my latest stroll down Memory Lane can be found in this new piece just published over at the official Star Trek website:

StarTrek.com: Simon & Schuster and 40 Years of Star Trek Publishing

SimonSchuster-TMPcollage

Launching as a tie-in to the film, S&S’s Star Trek publishing efforts continue to this day. Indeed, Dead Endless, the latest Star Trek: Discovery novel and written by Dave Galanter, will be published by S&S’s Gallery Books imprint on December 17th.

Shameless aside on our way out: Star Trek books make great gifts for that Trekkie on your holiday shopping list. Just sayin’.

Dorothy “D.C.” Fontana, RIP.

The Star Trek world has suffered another heartbreak with the loss of Dorothy Fontana, who passed away on December 2nd after a brief illness.

DC-Fontana-TradingCard
Already an accomplished television writer by the time she met Gene Roddenberry in 1963 while he was producing a new series called The Lieutenant, Fontana stayed with him when he began pitching Star Trek to different studios the following year. Hired by Roddenberry as his production secretary when he landed at Desilu Studios in 1964, Fontana was there from the very beginning with the first Star Trek pilot, “The Cage.”

WrittenByFontanaWhen the series was finally greenlit after the production of a second, better received pilot episode, “Where No Man Has Gone Before,” Fontana served as the show’s story editor. Roddenberry asked her to write an episode from one of the story ideas included in his series “writer’s bible.” The idea she chose would become “Charlie X,” the first of eight teleplays she would contribute to the original series. One of those, “Journey to Babel,” along with her own “This Side of Paradise” and Theodore Sturgeon’s “Amok Time” provided us with vital backstory key to understanding not just the character of Mr. Spock but also the Vulcan people and their civilization.

And this is really just the tip of the iceberg. Following her tenure on the original show, she wrote scripts for numerous television series throughout the ensuing thirty years, including genre shows like Logan’s Run, Land of the Lost, Buck Rogers in the 25th Century, The Six Million Dollar Man, and Babylon 5. In 1973, she returned to Star Trek as script editor for the animated series, where she also contributed a script for one of that show’s most popular episodes, “Yesteryear,” which offered even more insight into Spock, his family, and the planet Vulcan.

Along with fellow Star Trek alumni David Gerrold, Robert H. Justman, and Edward K. (“Eddie”) Milkis, Fontana joined Gene Roddenberry in the fall of 1986 to develop Star Trek: The Next Generation. Fontana co-wrote with Roddenberry that series’ first episode, “Encounter At Farpoint,” for which she received a Hugo award nomination. She wrote or co-wrote three additional scripts and provided another story while serving as associate producer for the new show’s first thirteen episodes. Her final contribution to televised Star Trek was a collaboration with writer Peter Allan Fields for “Dax,” a first season episode of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine.

Beyond television, Fontana wrote a well-received and fan-favorite Star Trek novel, 1989’s Vulcan’s Glory. She also collaborated with writer Derek Chester on the storylines for several Star Trek video games as well as the 2008 comic book miniseries Star Trek: Year Four. The comic would be her final contribution to Star Trek. After largely retiring from screenwriting in 2006, she most recently served as a senior lecturer at the American Film Institute.

From my earliest days as a fan watching the original series, I knew the name “D.C. Fontana.” As I grew older and my appreciation for the show expanded in various ways, I became more interested in its production and behind-the-scenes stories, so I learned more about the woman behind the initials. Yes, Star Trek was created by Gene Roddenberry with the able assistance of producers Herb Solow and Bob Justman. However, along with writer-producer Gene Coon I consider Dorothy Fontana to be absolutely instrumental to the shaping and caretaking of the series during its formative years, laying the foundation upon which stands everything that followed. The width and breadth of her impact on Star Trek cannot be understated.

As someone who’s enjoyed the privilege of contributing in some small way to the universe she helped create, I’ve taken much inspiration from her (and other writers of the original series in particular). From her and her colleagues, I learned a great deal about what makes “a Star Trek story,” and I try to keep in mind the lessons they imparted every time I sit down to write my own such tales. So far as I see it, Star Trek as we know it would not exist if not for her efforts. Her influence and indeed her legacy continues to inform and guide even the newest iterations of the franchise to this day.

Rest in peace, Ms. Fontana, and thank you.

DC-Fontana

Dorothy Catherine (“D.C.”) Fontana
March 25, 1939 – December 2, 2019