Tag Archives: LGBT

Review – Infinite Diversity

Review – Infinite Diversity

Infinite Diversity

Background

Infinite diversity in infinite combinations! First of all, Infinite Diversity was created as a means of showcasing LGBTQ stories within the context of Star Trek fan fiction. And while it says some good things, it does not really fit in with canon, personal or otherwise.

Plot

Because Infinite Diversity exists as a more or less anthology, it does not, truly, have any sort of a plot to speak of. Hence the main themes include the colors of the rainbow and any prompts. Most of the stories take place in the Interphases E2 timeline.

Therefore, the prompts and the colors devolve as follows:

  1. Wisdom (Red) – Dave and Frank dye their cabin in rainbow colors as they dye tee shirts for Pride Week. And the last dye job makes them look like serial killers (prime timeline).
  2. Fairness (Orange) – Diana and Preece Ti discuss why choosing each other isn’t unfair at all, even though there are no other choices (E2 timeline, first kick back in time).
  3. Grace (Yellow) – Diana’s funeral, where Jonathan gives the eulogy to cover Diana’s widow, Leah (prime timeline, refers to the Bread story).
  4. Melancholy (Green) – Kelsey cross dresses in private (E2 timeline, first kick back in time but also refers to the prime timeline story, In Memory of Kelsey Haber).
  5. Distance (Blue) – Luke and Preston fight  (E2 timeline, first kick back in time).
  6. Generosity (Indigo) – asexual pilot Christian Harris volunteers for a dangerous mission so others don’t have to (E2 timeline, either kick back in time).
  7. and Perseverance (Violet) – Melissa and Norri try to feed infant Tommy (prime timeline, references Temper).

Music

While the only song is this one, it’s a good one, particularly considering that character Kelsey Haber, in the prime timeline commits suicide. Hence he may very well have been more melancholy than he lets on here.

Story Postings

Infinite Diversity on Ad Astra.

Rating

The story is Rated K.

Upshot

While I feel my heart was in the right place when I wrote Infinite Diversity, it could have used more of a plot.

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Portrait of a Character – Lucas Donnelly

Portrait of a Character – Lucas Donnelly

Origins

I wanted Doug‘s first kill in the Mirror Universe to be kind of a lark, just to see if he could do it. Then, later, when I was writing more diverse characters, I wanted another gay male character. Enter Luke.

Portrayal

Portrait of a Character – Lucas Donnelly
Eric Stoltz as Lucas Donnelly (image is presented for educational purposes only)

Luke is played by actor Eric Stolz. I really love how he has science fiction chops – he had a recurring role on Caprica.

I like this actor, who seemed effortlessly handsome when younger, and now looks like he’s got a few miles on him. That’s okay; that’s reality.

Personality

Aloof, a little bored, and overly artistic, Luke considers making a play for Dave Constantine, in A Perfect Note. But he is discouraged when he learns that Constantine is going to Movie Night with Preston Jennings. But he writes his poem to Dave anyway, although he never sends it. Instead, he reveals to Lili that he wants to write tactical problems for cadets. He ends up sending his poem and a letter to a friend of his, a guy named Kobayashi Maru.

Relationships

Preston Jennings

During the E2 kick backs in time, they end up together. The situation is not the best for either of them. In fact, prior to that, Preston had been approached by Diana as a kind of beard, and Luke was approached by Ingrid, who didn’t know he was gay.

Mirror Universe

In the  Mirror Universe, Luke has the dubious distinction of being Doug’s first kill.

Portrait of a Character – Lucas Donnelly
Mirror Luke (Eric Stoltz. Image is presented for educational purposes only)

In Fortune, Doug reveals that Luke was the Barracks Chief and, therefore, was his superior officer. In a fit of rage, and in order to move up in rank, Doug strangles the man with his bare hands, only to find that being in charge of the barracks was not all it had been cracked up to be.

Quote

“Yanno, I just want a damned perfect note. Something that, that takes care of everything. And if I couldn’t get one, dammit, I wanted to at least send one.”

Upshot

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Portrait of a Character – Preece Ti

Portrait of a Character – Preece Ti

Origins

For the first E2 kick back in time, in The Three of Us, Ebrona needed to have a Science Officer. I also wanted to provide a lesbian character to pair up with a preexisting lesbian character.

Portrayal

Preece Ti is ‘played’ by actress Neve Campbell.

Portrait of a Character – Preece Ti
Neve Campbell as Preece Ti (image is provided for educational purposes only)

I like this lovely actress who has aged well on screen – a good choice, I feel, for a species that dies young.

Personality

Smart and kind, Preece Ti might be a little too clever by half. By the time the storyline advances to Everybody Knows This is Nowhere, it is revealed that a powerful source of fuel and the means to capture, refine, and utilize it, were kept from Captain Archer during the first kick back in time. While he rightfully blames Ebrona for the deception, at least some of the blame should be shouldered by Preece Ti.

Relationships

Diana Jones

Preece Ti’s only known relationship is with Diana Jones, who works in Science and eventually becomes a kind of nurse. In Infinite Diversity, it’s revealed that Preece Ti isn’t really Diana’s first choice (Diana feels she is settling), but Preece Ti is definitely attracted to Diana.

Mirror Universe

Portrait of a Character – Preece Ti
Neve Campbell as Mirror Preece Ti (image is provided for educational purposes only)

There are no impediments to Preece Ti existing in the Mirror Universe. As someone who is already deceptive in our universe, she would likely kick it up several notches, and become truly ruthless.

Quote

“We do not know your dances. Are they man-woman only?”

Upshot

Like a lot of the characters in the E2 timeline, Preece Ti was glossed over at the end there. I’m not sure when I can pick her up again, but I might at some point write that Ikaaran ship’s history before encountering the NX-01.

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Review – Red

Review – Red

Red plays on the color and on Norri’s hair. Because this character has the least amount of development of all of the main characters in the In Between Days series (even Pamela Hudson has more depth and detail to her), it works to give Norri her due. And, again, the title plays on words as well, putting the color together with mortification.

Background

Barking Up The Muse Tree | jespah | Janet Gershen-Siegel | Norri | Red
Norri D’Giorno

Hence for a prompt about embarrassment, I went with not only the color of your face but the color of Norri Digiorno‘s hair.

I had some hints about the first meeting between her and Melissa Madden in Fortune, but had not written it. The opportunity presented itself on a silver platter, so I went ahead with this sweet little story about love at first sight.

Plot

As Norri vacations on Ceres just after graduating from Oklahoma State with a BA in English Literature, pilot Melissa hangs out at a hotel bar with her pilot friends.

Barking Up The Muse Tree | jespah | Janet Gershen-Siegel | Norri| Red
Norri

So Norri is checking out Melissa, big time. Melissa is playing it a little cooler. Finally, when Melissa’s friends leave, she crooks her finger just once, and Norri comes running. And, as Norri herself says on her deathbed in Fortune, she (Norri) never left. This love, much like the loves throughout the family and the series, is eternal. She really means forever.

Story Postings

Rating

The story is Rated K.

Upshot

It was an irresistible story to write, to get these two crazy kids together for the first time. For the main characters of In Between Days, their first meeting and first ‘date’ are the most normal.

This one was a joy to write, and hopefully readers find it a joy to read as well.

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Review – An Announcement

Review – An Announcement

An announcement to the family – a big one.

Background

Barking Up The Muse Tree | jespah | Janet Gershen-Siegel | Norri| Red | An Announcement
Norri (Red)

This was a Star Trek fanfiction prompt about family. Rather than have Leonora come out, I decided to instead have her announce that she had met someone special. That person is Melissa Madden. Leonora is, of course, happy.

Plot

Barking Up The Muse Tree | jespah | Janet Gershen-Siegel | Catherine Bell as Melissa Madden (image is for educational purposes only) | An Announcement
Catherine Bell as Melissa Madden (image is for educational purposes only)

In Fortune, I had rather vaguely established how the two women had met (and then more detail is offered in Red, which was written much later), but not the aftermath.

This was a good chance to show that scene, particularly since I already had a bit of background of Norri’s father disapproving to some extent. While Dino isn’t necessarily homophobic (albeit some people read him that way), the way I see him is that he’s a bit huffy that his little girl is growing up perhaps a bit too fast. After all, her brothers, Alex and Phil, have not yet declared their love for anyone. So this statement of hers changes everything and upends his world a bit.

Hence I feel it is more that Dino is a bit blindsided by the declaration. Belinda, his wife, sets him straight, and the story ends with a promise to have Melissa over, and soon, so that she can meet the family. There is even a brief reference to her brother Phil’s violin playing, another shout out to Fortune.

Story Postings

Rating

The story is Rated K.

Upshot

In particular, to get Norri in front of more readers, I think the little story works pretty well. At some point, I’ll write their first dinner together, I imagine.

Review – The Way to a Man’s Heart

Review – The Way to a Man’s Heart

The Way to a Man’s Heart turns an old trope on its head.

Background

Review – The Way to a Man’s Heart

As a sequel to Detached Curiosity & Idle Speculation, I wanted to follow Frank and Dave a bit in their relationship.

While the story was written considerably later than There’s Something About Hoshi, this story takes place earlier than that one.

Plot

Barking Up The Muse Tree | jespah | Janet Gershen-Siegel | The Way to a Man's Heart
The Way to a Man’s Heart

The premise was a ship-wide (and, most likely, Starfleet-wide) celebration of diversity.

This included all sorts of nods to non-mainstream expressions of sexuality. Several films are mentioned, including Personal Best, the film that inspired me to cast Mariel Hemingway as Eriecho. Because of the mentionings of films, Chip shows up. Hoshi also announces the revival of the book club, a feature of the E2 stories.

In order to do something nice for his new beloved, Frank Todd asks Lili to make a special dessert for Dave Constantine. When Lili realizes that Dave likes blueberries, and recalls that the recently-deceased Jay Hayes did, too, it sets off a fit of crying.

Frank performs an act of kindness when he sees how much Dave loves the blueberry pie that Lili has baked. Remembering that Major Hayes was always the last one on the chow line – likely because he had wanted to share some short conversations with her – he vows that, from then on, he’ll always be last in line.

Story Postings

Rating

The story is Rated K.

Upshot

I love this relationship, and I particularly think my treatment of it has improved over the years. Instead of being the slightly campy lovesick guys of There’s Something About Hoshi, the two men are here, instead, more like true partners, even though their relationship is still very new. They will be followed along as I think up new adventures for them, both large and small.

Review – Detached Curiosity & Idle Speculation

Review – Detached Curiosity & Idle Speculation

Background

The prompt was about IDIC, infinite diversity in infinite combinations.

Review – Detached Curiosity & Idle Speculation
Luke Macfarlane as Frank Todd

That is, the urging was to write something featuring a pairing that was not traditional male-female.

I had my two favorite gay men on the NX-01 already created – Frank and Dave, who had been introduced in There’s Something About Hoshi and expanded upon in The Three of Us.

There are two other gay men on board, Preston Jennings and Lucas Donnelly, plus Christian Harris is asexual and Kelsey Haber is possibly bi (main character Melissa Madden definitely is) and is definitely a cross-dresser (I’m still kind of on the fence about Kelsey these days). Plus Diana Jones is a lesbian, as are the Starfleet Rabbi, Leah Benson and main character Leonora Digiorno.

But it was Dave and Frank’s relationship that I wanted to show at its absolute beginning, in the prime timeline.

Plot

Review – Detached Curiosity & Idle Speculation
Jason Patric as Dave Constantine

The premise is that E2 has just concluded in the prime timeline.

Of course, people are talking about what happened, who was chosen, etc. Dave and Frank realize that they were together. But they only know about the second of two kicks back in time, so they just think it was some sort of a mutual decision. However, the reality of the first kick back is that Dave approached Frank after Frank rather loudly and angrily came out.

Be that as it may, things are a little different. The ship is not generational and they are not desperate. But that’s all right. There is still an attraction there.

Review – Detached Curiosity & Idle Speculation

And, as the title says, there was some mental meandering that went on, on both sides, as to who was available and who was interested. For a minority sexuality, not only are there questions of attraction and availability, there are also questions of wiring and preference. After all, even if Dave had the biggest-ever crush on Frank, if Frank was only interested in women, it would not have happened. Hence, the moves are cautious and a little tentative.

But they happen all the same.

Story Postings

Rating

The story is Rated T.

Upshot

I have read slash online, and I have to say that so much of it is either out and out PWP (porn without plot) or angst-filled hurt/comfort or unfulfilled adolescent-style longing that it makes me wonder about genuine romance between either two men or two women.

Who writes gentle slash? I suppose I do. I love this story, love how it came out (wordplay intended) and am very pleased that it’s in my own personal fanfiction, and it’s even got a sequel. Viva Dave and Frank!