Tag Archives: List of minor recurring characters in Star Trek: Enterprise

Focus – Xindi in Star Trek Fan Fiction

Focus – Xindi

Xindi fascinate me.
Barking up the Muse Tree | Janet Gershen-Siegel | jespah | Focus Magnifying Glass | Xindi

A focus (unlike a spotlight) is an in-depth look at a Star Trek fanfiction canon item and my twist(s) on it.

In this post, the focus will be on the canon species (or, rather, set of species) from the Enterprise series, called the Xindi.

This species was introduced during the third season of ENT as being the villain species. There were brief sightings in the fourth season, but that’s it. They were new for ENT so of course they weren’t in the earlier series and films, but they didn’t make it into the 2009 film, either.

Canon

In canon, there are five separate species, with a sixth that had gone extinct. The humanoid and sloth (also known as arboreals) were generally the easiest to relate to. The aquatics were interesting and ultimately they were sympathetic. The insectoids were scary but did have some redeeming qualities. The reptilians were nasty but it was eventually just on one person. As a set of species, they were eventually had a rather neat redemption.

Aquatics

I mention this species very briefly, during the course of Concord.

Focus – Xindi
Xindi Aquatic

There is a Xindi Aquatic, working with Section 31, who tells Makan Sinthasomphone and Monisha Padir that there is a corpse on the Genesis planet. But that person only shows up briefly and I didn’t give them a name.

Avians

This species is extinct in canon

Focus – Xindi
Skull of a Xindi Avian

and I don’t mess with that. However, it’s entirely possible that I will eventually write a time travel story where  they are extant.

Humanoids/Primates

Probably the most fully-realized Xindi Humanoids I write are Dayah,

Focus – Xindi
Xindi Primate (Degra)

from Together, and Rellie, from Temper. Perhaps just as oddly is the fact that I have written more fully realized female characters for this species, whereas the best-known canon characters are male.

Dayah is an older woman, who steps up during the confinement in Together. Rellie is a Mirror Universe native and works, in the first alternate timeline, as the manager of the Empress‘s mess.

Insectoids

The most fully-realized characters I have written so far are

Focus – Xindi
Xindi Insectoid

She Who Almost Didn’t Breed In Time, The One Who Fires A Weapon Very Fast and She Who Listens Well.

She Who Almost Didn’t Breed In Time (a wry observation about Lili) is killed by Lili when the NX-01 is boarded. The One Who Fires a Weapon Very Fast is stuck in a lift with Keith Paris in Alien EncounterShe Who Listens Well is a bartender in the nascent Barnstorming series.

Reptilians

My most fully-realized Reptilian

Focus – Xindi
Xindi Reptilian (Dolim)

characters are the chatty teenaged girl Tr’Dorna and the hybrid troubled teenaged boy (he’s also part-human), D’Storlin. Plus there is an unnamed younger male in Achieving Peace, who works in Communications.

I suppose I like my Reptilians as adolescents.

Sloth/Arboreals

I get my best inspiration from this subspecies.

Focus – Xindi
Xindi Arboreal (Jannar)

My first sloth character was Aranda Chara, in The Puzzle, A Tale Told in Pieces. She is a very young child, but the reader still learns that her name contains a matronymic. Furthermore, she has an ill brother and her parents aren’t getting along well. Her mother, the diplomat, Chara Sika, shows up in Achieving Peace.

But the most detailed character is the hybrid (he’s also part-Klingon and part-human), Dr. Boris Yarin. His Russian background also dovetails with the previously mentioned traditional matronymic.

Mirror Universe

As Doug explains in Reversal, the Empress committed genocide on the Xindi, so there are few left of any species. Therefore, the abovementioned Rellie is fortunate indeed to have the position that she does. In Temper, Lili witnesses the death of a Xindi sloth when that woman is examined with a radiation band tester and the examiners find she is from our universe, a condition punishable by instant execution.

Upshot

It went beyond the novelty value of several different kinds of sentient and civilized species from one planet. Hence the idea of bringing these species into time periods they were never originally in, well, that idea proved irresistible. I do hope they are in the next film, as I would hate for this concept to cease. I hope to do a little justice, and continue to keep it alive.

Portrait of a Character – Patti Socorro

Origins

This character is technically Star Trek: Enterprise canon but is never seen on screen. She does not have a first name, or a first initial and, instead, the sole reference to an Ensign Socorro refers to her smell after exercising.

Some introduction, eh?

Portrayal

I wanted an actress who would be decent-looking but not a breathless knockout.

Carey Mulligan as Patti Socorro
Carey Mulligan as Patti Socorro

Therefore, I chose British actress Carey Mulligan. Mulligan has some sci-fi cred, having been in an episode of Doctor Who.

Personality

Brittle and withdrawn, Patti is as luckless as Lili O’Day when the Enterprise is thrown back in time the first time, during the E2 stories (Reflections Down a Corridor). I write her as a Crewman (in canon, she’s an Ensign) and so, when Lili and Patti are the only two unclaimed women left, they are referred to by Chang and the others as the Ensign and the Crewman. No one has to be told who the Ensign and the Crewman are.

Because she is more vulnerable than Lili, Patti is targeted, and Chang, Hodgkins, Brown, Curtis and Kemper attack, with Haynem helping but not taking part in the actual attack. This incident colors life on the NX-01,and Sandra Sloane is also implicated as a helper.

In the second kick back in time, Patti stays safe as the situation does not get anywhere near as out of control. For a while, she and Lili room together.

Relationships

William Slocum

Because the herd has thinned quite a bit, Will feels that he can approach her. He makes his move before the attack, but is there afterwards to try to help her heal a bit. He’s somewhat inept, however, and eventually they divorce during the first kick back in time.

Derek Kelby

In the second kick back in time, Derek (a canon character who does not have a canon first name) and Patti wed. This time, she is not the penultimate woman chosen.

Mirror Universe

Patti doesn’t have a Mirror Universe counterpart yet.

Carey Mulligan

I think a Mirror Patti would have to be considerably more assertive. She’d probably also have to be competent – but not necessarily overly so – in order to be on the Defiant. After all, Empress Hoshi doesn’t like a lot of female competition.

Quote

“I don’t, well, no one, has the time for me to hang around and recover from this. Those guys have to be caught.”

Upshot

This Navigational Crewman has been really put through the ringer by me. Maybe a Mirror version will fare better.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Review – Detroit Rock City

Review – Detroit Rock City

Background

Loomis
Loomis

For the first fan fiction challenge on Archer’s Angels, I decided on a theme called “A Thousand Words”. A few images were gathered up and, because a picture is worth a thousand words, people were asked to write up to a thousand words about a particular image. For Star Trek: Enterprise, this is the image that was chosen. This is the character Loomis from the canon Carpenter Street episode.

I decided he needed an ending to his story.

Plot

At the end of the canon episode, Loomis is hauled away in handcuffs, screaming about “lizard people” and a “chick with a ray gun”. At that point, the murders of various people from the Blood Bank are being tied to him. It looks like he’ll be going to jail.

Review – Detroit Rock City

In my story, he is never found competent enough to stand trial in the first place. Hence, instead, he is sent to a psychiatric treatment facility intended to evoke the film One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest. It is not a pleasant place to be.

While there, he stands in the medication line with a small cast of characters, including Lakeisha (meant to evoke Lakeisha Warren Crusher, from Crackerjack), Ogden (a lot like Big Chief in Cuckoo’s Nest) and Phyllis.

At one point, a new doctor, Morgan (meant as an ancestor to both Dr. Cyril Morgan and Dr. Pamela Hudson), begins to speak with him, as he protests that he is, indeed, sane. Morgan reminds Loomis that it might be boring at the facility, but if he’s found competent, he’ll be heading to the State Penitentiary, where things are even worse. Loomis accepts this, and takes his medication without incident.

Story Postings

Rating

The story is rated K.

Upshot

This twitchy character needed, I felt, a little closure. In some ways, I’d like to revisit him, although I’m unsure how to accomplish that without repeating myself. As of the writing of this blog post, this is the first chronological story in the In Between Days series. Concord and Crackerjack have scenes that take place earlier, and Richard Daniels goes to earlier times as well, but this is the first in-history story where all of the action occurs so early. The day it takes place, in fact, is the day that I originally posted the story.

Will I go back to this era? Possibly, but I’ll have to think of how to do that, as the HG Wells series was all about time travel and I’d rather not have yet more time travel in a future series. However, there’s no reason to not add some fill-in stories for Daniels, Crystal Sherwood and others, plus Eleanor can also talk about our time period.

Review – Demotion

Review – Demotion

Background

I wanted a story that would nicely bridge between Star Trek: Enterprise canon and the beginning of both E2 kick backs in time. There was a prompt about going AWOL, so the opportunity presented itself, and I decided to dovetail with the canon Hatchery episode.

Heroes and Villains

Review – Demotion
Corporal‘s insignia

There have been so many slash stories written about Major Hayes, it’s not funny. But I have never seen him as gay, so I wanted to riff on that a bit, and see what it would be like for Hayes to be mistakenly confronted with homosexuality. Furthermore, I wanted the person doing the confronting to be nasty about it. It wouldn’t be a little question, gently asked. Instead, it would be accusatory. It would be like an inquisition. In short, I wanted it to be like Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.

Review – Demotion

The story opens with Corporal Daniel Chang combing his hair and otherwise getting ready for an assignation with Sandra Sloane. He’s guarded T’Pol, and he’s fine with that, but then he’s asked to guard her again and he decides he’s had enough. Ignoring Hayes’s orders, he instead goes to Sandra’s quarters, and is close to the door but hasn’t hit the chime or knocked yet.

Review – Demotion
Private’s Insignia

Hayes, nearby, calls him by name and tells him to report to the galley for KP duty as a punishment. Lili and Jennifer are walking by, and they see what’s happening, so they turn to go a different way. They come back quickly, though, when they hear the sound of fabric being torn.

Story Postings

Rating

The story is rated K.

Upshot

It’s a quick story, with fewer than 800 words, but I feel it nicely conveys what I wanted. I had to establish Chang and Sloane as problem children before either kick back in time, and I think Demotion does that.

Recurrent Themes – Members of the Press

Recurrent Themes – Members of the Press

The press should survive.

Background

Barking up the Muse Tree | Janet Gershen-Siegel | jespah | DNA | Members of the Press

Oh, the press! I suppose I have a bit of a love-hate set of feelings for them. However, they are, of course, necessary in a democracy. Yet they can be awfully intrusive. I well recall reading about Princess Diana’s death, from a car crash after a chase (and horribly hounding) by paparazzi.

So I’m kind of ambivalent when it comes to the Fourth Estate.

Press Appearances

Rona Moran

In Soldiers’ Marriage Project, and in Flight of the Bluebird, Rona is gossipy. It’s her job; she’s a gossip columnist. She is also over the top. However, she’s sensitive to people, and doesn’t take advantage of her sources and connections, and doesn’t belittle anyone except for her third ex-husband, Maurizio D’Angelo. And she even apologizes to him at the end of Flight of the Bluebird.

Craethe

He is a Daranaean reporter, seen in Take Back the Night.  Keeping with that species’ sexist ways, he mainly asks the crew of the NX-01 about their marital statuses and whether they have children. He gets a bit of a shock to learn that Erika Hernandez is a captain. He’s also shocked that Jonathan has never married, Malcolm is a father but isn’t married to Lili, and Phlox has three wives who each have three husbands. Lucy is another bit of a shock for him, that she is unmarried, has a daughter and she’s the one working, whereas her ex is the one at home taking care of their daughter.

Craethe reports on Mistra’s trial, back to an unnamed anchorman in the studio. There is also a nameless field reporter who reports on the protests that go on outside the trial. He even meets the Alpha’s Prime Wife, Dratha, and comments on her smell (e. g. her beauty) rather than her intelligence.

Troy Scott

In Where the Wind Comes Sweepin’ Down the Plain, he’s an anchorman in an alternate timeline and reports on a riot at what turns out to be where Otra is being kept. He comments on footage that contains an image of Anthony Parker with an axe.

Martha Fernandes

In Reflections Down a Corridor, she is seen reporting on the news from 2037, including a sideline interview with one Corporal Phillip Green.

Upshot

No doubt there will be more reporters and newscasters in my Star Trek fan fiction’s future, as the news, and the free reporting thereof, are an essential (yet sometimes abrasive) element in any democracy.

Portrait of a Character – Daniel Chang

Portrait of a Character – Daniel Chang

Origins

The character is canon, albeit he does not have a first name. Therefore, I selected the actor’s own first name.

Portrayal

As in the original, Chang is played by Daniel Dae Kim.

Personality

Portrait of a Character – Daniel Chang
Daniel Chang (Daniel Dae Kim)

In canon, Chang is a Corporal. But he always rubbed me the wrong way. And so I have added a disobedient streak to him.

Subversive and, sometimes, downright mean, Chang is the villain, particularly in the E2 stories. But there is a background to his behavior.

In Demotion, Chang’s mouth and his penchant for going AWOL at the worst of times leads to the action depicted in the title. This story, a prequel, dovetails with the canon Hatchery episode. I also wanted to address how thoughts that Jay Hayes might be gay would affect him and could be spun out as a part of my fanfiction. Plus I wanted Dan to be resentful.

Dan really gets to be resentful in the E2 stories. Both kick backs in time occur not too long after the events in Demotion, so he has plenty of reasons to be angry. During both kick backs, he is insubordinate and often gripes about the mistakes that have led to injuries, damage and worse during those two alternate time lines. Furthermore, during the first kick back in time, Dan behaves extremely badly. It would be a major spoiler to reveal what happened, but suffice to say that Dan, while not a killer, is very nearly as bad. Deciding what to do about him is a major issue for Captain Archer.

In the second E2 kick back in time, Dan is not as monstrous, but he still behaves in a rather nasty manner. He meets his end in an uncomfortable fashion, but has a chance to be at least a bit of a hero. In that story, Dan shows he has a heart. He’s not simply a one-dimensional bad guy.

The Shell Shock story also references Demotion, when Dan (along with Malcolm, Tristan Curtis, and Josef Kastle and Derek Kelby from the NX-02 Columbia) is suspected of a crime. Dan’s poor behavior comes back to haunt him and he remains under suspicion longer than most because he is so uncooperative and nasty.

Relationships

The only relationship I have written for him is from the first E2 kick back in time, when he and Sandra Sloane accidentally conceive a child. Their daughter, named Kimberly, is an eventual ancestor of the people who the people from the second E2 kick back meet, including Charlotte Reed-Hayes Archer. Kimberly barely knows her father, but is able to tell him, eventually, that she forgives him. As for Sandra, there is no love lost between her and Dan and, when she takes up with Brooks Haynem, Sandra leaves Dan far behind and never looks back.

Mirror Universe

I have never written a Mirror counterpart for Dan, but he is not, explicitly, a dead man on the other side of the pond. Hence he may eventually show up there.

Portrait of a Character – Daniel Chang

He might be carefree, or even obedient and almost conventional.

Quote

“He was unprepared. And that gets you killed around here.”

Upshot

Bad guys need to exist, otherwise stories aren’t that interesting. There needs to be tension. There must be conflict. For me, Daniel Chang provides it in spades.

Portrait of a Character – Esilia

Portrait of a Character – Esilia

Putting a face on a woman who never got one.

Origins

Karyn Archer
Karyn Archer

We have absolutely nothing on Esilia in Star Trek: Enterprise canon, save that she was Ikaaran and married Jonathan Archer. Their only known descendant in the canon E2 episode is Karyn Archer. Hence Esilia and Jonathan had at least one son together. After that, there’s nothing.

There are no log entries, no pictures, no voice recordings, no lore. There are no images of full-blooded Ikaarans anywhere. It’s possible that Karyn’s notched nose comes from some other ancestry. It is canon that other species were taken aboard in order to help assure that generational ship‘s survival.

Portrayal

Portrait of a Character – Esilia

Because Karyn is dark, I figured Esilia might be dark as well. Karyn has Asian features, but those might come from Hoshi Sato or Daniel Chang being in her ancestry. But I wanted her to be somewhat darker for another reason, and so I hit upon the idea of Courteney Cox. Cox is a beautiful woman, to be sure, but she is also good at playing neurotic.

For me, Ikaarans have a damned good reason to be neurotic – they don’t live for very long. But Esilia gets a very different chance, and that’s really only because I decided on two kick backs in time instead of just one. Esilia is a part of the second kicking back. Hence the If I Had to Do It All Over Again ficlet, while it refers to Esilia, is actually a misnomer. That ficlet really belongs to Esilia’s predecessor from the first kick back in time, Ebrona.

Personality

Where Ebrona (also played by Cox) is somewhat cautious, Esilia only starts out that way. This has to do quite a bit with Phlox‘s medical abilities. In the fourth of my four E2 stories, he manages to cure the genetic time bomb ticking inside all Ikaarans, known as the decline. Given a reprieve on life, Esilia makes the most of that.

Relationships

Jonathan Archer

Portrait of a Character – Esilia
Esilia (Courteney Cox)

Esilia’s only known relationship is with the captain. Much like Ebrona, she is the First Officer on her vessel and, as such, is thrown together with Jonathan quite a bit. So much company creates a familiarity that makes falling in love a lot easier. For Ikaarans, the gift of a living thing (animal or plant) is the equivalent of a marriage proposal, so Jonathan gives her a living gift for that very reason.

With a new lease on life after the decline is cured, Esilia and Jonathan have a happy and fulfilling marriage.

Quote

“I accept your living gift, and all that it entails. I will love you until the decline takes me.”

Upshot

For a character with no background, no past and no more than the barest of sketches, I like to think that Esilia now has some depth.

Inspiration – Aging

The Mechanics of Creation and Destruction

For every one of us (except, perhaps, for canon characters like Q and Trelane), aging is inevitable. So why is it so hard to confront and accept sometimes?

Story Ideas

When I first started writing Reversal, Aged McCoy from the Deadly Years I was a bit upset at the prospect of aging. Of course, the alternative is far worse. Hence I decided to confront aging head on with certain elements of that story.

  1. The main aliens I created (Calafans) would exhibit signs of aging that would be the reverse of our own (a play on the story’s title). Hence they would start off bald and sprout hair, they would begin with heavy pigmentation on their extremities that would change to a pattern (somewhat like wrinkles or spider veins) and then to perfect clarity and they would also move from detailed dreams to, eventually, simpler ones.
  2. The heroine (Lili O’Day) would be the same age as me (I was 48 years old at the time). Hence she would show normal signs of aging – parentheses lines around her mouth, hair going white and a bit of sagging. But her age bespeaks of not only wisdom but also that she is a bit underestimated in the looks department, and by many people (e. g. Daniel Chang in Demotion, for one). She still gets her men, Doug Beckett, Malcolm Reed, Jay Hayes, Ian Reed and José Torres, depending upon which stories you read.
  3. The hero, Doug Hayes Beckett, would also be aging, so as to reflect the age of Steven Culp at the time the story was written (55). Doug is, in the Mirror, referred to as the old man, and the reference is a pejorative one.
  4. Beauty and youth would not necessarily be punished, but they wouldn’t necessarily be rewarded, either. Hence Aidan MacKenzie and Jennifer Crossman don’t fare so well in the mirror. Aidan, in particular, fares rather poorly, but he gets some redemption in Brown, Temper and, eventually, He Stays a Stranger.
  5. Richard Daniels in Temper would also be no spring chicken, and the same would be true of two of his love interests, Sheilagh Bernstein and Milena Chelenska. Kevin O’Connor would be over seventy, and Polly Porter would also be over sixty. Older people were absolutely, under no circumstances, to be discarded.

Stories with Aging Characters

Dealing with aging has crept into my writing. Here are some notable examples.

Fortune

Photo of an open fortune cookie
Photo of an open fortune cookie (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In Fortune, Doug, Lili, Malcolm, Melissa Madden and Leonora Digiorno all, eventually, meet their ends. By showing a pivotal moment in later life, and then their last days, I hoped to give the reader some closure and some understanding of the direction in which each of these characters was going.

Biases

Biases is a story of an aging health care worker who ends up caring for an even more aged canon character. In this story, I wanted to touch upon the themes of losing control and compromising.

Equinox

The major characters in Equinox are coming to grips with a major life change. However, the peripheral characters are also dealing with doing whatever they can in order to change their lives. Most have gotten to an age where Starfleet service is more of a burden than a joy.

The Rite

Malcolm and Lili, in later life, prove in The Rite that just because there’s snow on the roof, it doesn’t mean there isn’t a fire in the furnace.

Escape

Escape pulls together older Mirror Universe stories and drags them into the future. The future is never good there, and aging is, inevitably, a sign of weakness. This story is taken up in The Point is Probably Moot.

The Medal

Back in our universe, Neil Digiorno-Madden copes with his own aging body by pushing his physical limits, in The Medal.

A Hazy Shade

Deeper into the future, Jonathan Archer and his wife pay homage to the honored dead from the NX-01, and A Hazy Shade reminds them that it is the winter of their lives as well.

Remembrance

Pamela Hudson‘s eulogy is delivered at Remembrance, reminding the reader that she is the last of the main characters in the In Between Days series to go.

The Point is Probably Moot

The Empress Hoshi Sato is first seen in later years in The Point is Probably Moot.

Shake Your Body

Shake Your Body continues the background theme of Empress Hoshi aging, and not too gracefully.

He Stays a Stranger

Malcolm Reed
Malcolm Reed (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The specter of not only Empress Hoshi’s aging but also Richard Daniels being wiped from existence fuels He Stays a Stranger. Furthermore, Lili and Malcolm are shown dealing with a very particular side effect of aging.

Who Shall Wear the Robe and Crown?

When the Empress passes, the family is surprisingly calm, even as they ask, Who Shall Wear the Robe and Crown?

Crackerjack

Wesley Crusher’s aging, and his telling a story to his eager grandchildren, punctuates Crackerjack.

Upshot

It’s inevitable. Of course, with writing and with characters, they need never age. But I think that misses the point of creativity. Anyone can make a beautiful 24-year-old woman sail through life and get whatever she wants. I think the trick is when she’s 48 and isn’t so beautiful. For that is a much realer depiction of the human condition.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Portrait of a Character – Julie McKenzie

Portrait of a Character – Julie McKenzie

There were plenty of tough women on Star Trek: Enterprise.

Origins

This Star Trek: Enterprise canon character is a MACO, seen in the third season only. She was mentioned in the canon E2 episode as having become Travis Mayweather‘s wife. Major Jay Hayes also mentioned her on his deathbed, and asked that she be placed in charge of the MACOs. She held a Corporal‘s rank. She only has a first initial in canon; I have named her Julie.

Portrayal

As in the show, she is played by actress Julia Rose.

Personality

Portrait of a Character – Julie McKenzie
Julie McKenzie (Julia Rose)

There was virtually nothing on her in canon, so I have had to fill in the blanks. She’s mainly enthusiastic about the mission. In the E2 stories I am writing, she and Travis begin their romance with fun, although it quickly turns serious. While she is an eager mother, she is also career-driven and goes back to working full-time in the MACOs after their son, Paul, is born.

In Shell Shock, she is expecting a promotion and is disappointed, but rises to the occasion when asked to help out. The possibility of conflict with Hayes’s replacement, Strong Bear Dawson, is deflected when she realizes that her fellow crew members need her.

Relationships

The only relationship I have for her is with Travis. With Travis, things are fun but also playfully affectionate. They enjoy each other’s company a great deal.

Mirror Universe

So far, I have not written a Mirror Universe counterpart for her.

Quote

“Our people are pouring off the ship, and they’re scattering. They want to see their families while we’re here, that sort of thing. I can’t make anyone – not even my MACOs – stay in San Francisco without pulling rank. Some of them are probably gone already and can only be brought back by communicator.”

Upshot

A mostly quiet character, Julie probably needs more depth than I have given her so far.

Inspiration – Names

Background

I take names seriously, and, truth be told, that’s actually Star Trek canon. A lot of the named characters, particularly the ones who do not have English-style names, have meaningful appellations.

Nyota Uhura
Nyota Uhura

Take Hoshi Sato, for example. The first name means “star”. The surname means “at home”. Hence, she is “at home in the stars”.

A similar situation exists with Nyota Uhura. Nyota means “star” and Uhura means “freedom”. Are communications officers required to be named Star?

Canon to Fanfiction

For my characters, names have meanings that draw from heritage, repeat in order to show familial relationships, and have meanings unto themselves.

In Between Days

Doug Beckett is so named because Douglas means “dark stranger”, which is exactly what he is – a stranger from the Mirror Universe, first experienced in pitch darkness.

Lili O’Day‘s full name – Charlotte Lilienne O’Day – evokes several themes. Her first name means “free woman” and her middle name is of course a flower (and Malcolm refers to her, in the prime timeline, as Lili-Flower). Her surname sets up the contrast to Doug, for she is quite literally “of the day”.

Malcolm Reed (alternate timeline)
Malcolm Reed (alternate timeline)

Because the name Malcolm means “a devotee of Saint Columba“, and that is the patron saint of poets and bookbinders, I make Malcolm a gifted poet. The reed (which of course is the lower, non-flowering part of a plant), is evoked as he and Lili, in Together, talk about the flower and the reed, and she assures him that the flower is pretty and all, but the flower can’t live without the reed.

For Melissa Madden, in part it’s a shout-out to future canon character Martin Madden.

Melissa means “honey bee” and she is a rather earthy individual. As for Leonora Digiorno, Leonora means “light” (Malcolm incorrectly refers to her as the Lioness) and Digiorno is the same as O’Day, “of the day”. Her relationships are purely in the day, hence she is solely a daylight character.

Times of the HG Wells

The Wells characters were less name-driven but there are some highlights. Sheilagh and Darragh are both Irish-type spellings, meant to impart a somewhat exotic flavor. HD Avery is really Henry Desmond, with the middle name being a shout-out to Dominic Keating‘s first real role, in a British sitcom called Desmond’s. Carmen means “garden”, an offhanded joke as the character is a sophisticated urbanite. The characters Tom and Kevin hearken back to the In Between Days series and are meant to show a relationship to that earlier series.

Otra, the half-Witannen character, has a name meaning a small animal, like a mouse. I also used Glyph as the name of a Ferengi, as short nouns are canon for Ferengi names (e. g. Quark and Nog). Von is another Ferengi name, but I grabbed that one from baseball – Von Hayes (yet another shout-out to Steven Culp).

Interphases

For this series, character names have to evoke a time period properly. Rosemary Parker’s name fits in with her birth in the 1920s, whereas Jacob, Benjamin and Dorcas all evoke the 1700s. Jim, the son of Benjamin and Dorcas, is a shout-out to Mark Twain’s Jim character in Huckleberry Finn.

Emergence and Mixing it Up

For both of these series, since there are several aliens, names had to be made up. Skrol is meant to sound a bit like Slar, the only known named Gorn. Etrina, Tr’Dorna and Sophra are all made-up names, meant to sound feminine. Bron is intended to evoke a feeling of brawn.

For Daranaeans, female names end with vowels whereas as male names often (but not always) end with an -s. Prime Wife females, being considered superior, are given names with a soft th- sound in them, such as Thessa, Dratha and Kathalia. This is the th- sound in thistle, rather than in the. The sound, anywhere in the word, is meant to mean “smell”, with a positive connotation. Secondaries get somewhat pretty names, often with m- sounds, like Morza and Mistra, but sometimes not, like Cria and Inta (in all fairness, the younger Inta, a secondary, is named after a last caste female). Third caste females tend to get shorter names, like Darri and Fyra and Cama. The men’s names are all over the place, from Elemus and Arnis to Craethe and Trinning.

Calafans

Calafans love names and meanings so much that it’s a standard greeting to a new person – “what is your name, and what does it mean?” The first time Lili hears this, in Local Flavor, she is a bit appalled as it is a part of a come-on.

Men often get the -wev ending, which means “master of”, whereas women often get the yi- prefix, meaning “student of”. But the differences are not intended to be sexist. With no middle names and no last names, a lot hinges on a name, and they cannot be repeated. Therefore, names are given out by the government, and parents often petition for a name for their baby while the child is still in utero. Names are then released upon death. Names without either prefix include Treve (messenger) and Miva (clay).

Upshot

For me, the naming of characters is a deeply person act. Alien names are a great deal of fun to come up with, as I put together sounds I like or that seem to harmonize, and then attach meanings to them. Sometimes a character doesn’t really “click” until he or she has been named. Then, suddenly, it can all fall into place.