A long long time ago in a three bedroomed house far away, a young impressionable chap sat down to write a story for his English assignment. It was a fantastic tale filled with action, adventure, mystery…. it was probably awful, but I was eight, so cut me some slack!
The story was relatively simple; it was the tale of a ship, a Starfleet ship, who’s captain was faced with a crisis: He was lost. In an experiment gone wrong the captain and his crew found themselves stranded without any resources or backup as they begin their mission to find Earth. I remember my teacher grading it as ‘derivative’ as she was a bit of a sci fi fan too and could see different elements that inspired it all, including Red Dwarf which she saw as the primary influence for it considering it was a ship stranded billions of light years from earth and there was a hologram on board.
The story was rejected. It’d never work. The dreams of an eight year old ruined.
Then in 1994 I visited the Star Trek Exhibition in Edinburgh and got a peek at the new show coming soon about a Star Trek show that would see it’s captain stranded thousands of light years form Earth struggling to get home. My idea! The idea I was told would never work all of a sudden coming soon! Ok, so in my story they were caught between dimensional rifts sending them through time and space and the captain was based on Sonic the Hedgehog (hey! I was eight!) but at the core of it, the story was the same. They even had a hologram. And all of a sudden I felt validated.
So I started again, this time in high school. A little smarter, well, smart enough not to have a bloody hedgehog for a captain, and started over. This time round based on two separate episodes of Next Generation, expanding on an idea of the Iconian Gateway and finding new worlds. Derivative, I was told. What?! Thats a whole new concept!
Soon after, I started watching Stargate and the penny dropped. Back to the drawing board! But I kept the Iconian idea, but tied it in with Earth and humanity and I couldn’t shake that idea of the team getting lost. So I tweaked the idea, merging them both together. The Iconian gateway stayed and on the first mission the team found an ancient base only for them to be unable to return home; awakening an ancient enemy along the way.
As you can imagine, I was pretty pissed off when Stargate Atlantis happened.
But I persisted and I kept writing no matter what, even when ideas still seemed to come to life elsewhere that I had on paper. No one else was going to rad it, so what did I care? Skip a few years and I was sitting here with twelve half-finished scripts, two cupboards filled with notes and only a few knew about the idea which became an obsession. Without realising it, I ended up with a half-finished twelve part series that kicked off a multi-season show and more notes and sketches than any sane person had.
I published some of it here before the server crash, even found some of the posts I made at the time thanks to the Wayback Machine. And despite the fact that I knew – and still know – it’d never come to anything (it’s just a weird hobby!) I was encouraged to finished it at the tail end of 2013, and spent the next two years tweaking it. In my mind Star Trek would never return to TV, but I had my own fantasy version and that was cool. Nothing to interfere with it and no one to say that it’s wrong.
Then it happened. Star Trek was announced to return to TV. And something happened. For a month I sat in front of this screen tapping at the keybord, tweaking things, fixing things, making bigger holes to fill and balancing out a season full of Star Trek whilst simultaneously trying to organise all the notes on paper and in my head into legible forms. all because I had a very, very bad idea.
I knew it would never be anything more than a strange little hobby. I knew it wasn’t going to be the core of the next generation of Trek and I knew it wasn’t going to be anything special or that I’m the only idiot with an idea. But I had decided, I was going to force someone at CBS to read it.
I did it. I harassed, I hunted, I found who I needed to find and I made sure it was on their desk. I should point out that I’m under no illusion that it won’t end up in the bin. I am not a special snowflake with a visionary idea. CBS is paying people to think for themselves. But it was.. liberating. to finally get it off this desk, for it for some short time to have purpose, however insignificant it was.
And I know it shouldn’t just be taking up space on a hard drive never to be seen. So as bad and awful as the concept is, I’m sticking it all up here. I need to get it out of my head and more importantly, I need to stop annoying my wife with random ideas I’ve had. She’s suffered long enough, now it’s your turn!