Star Trek: Voyager Rewatch: “Good Shepherd”

It’s “Lower Decks” (but not Lower Decks), only on Voyager instead of the Enterprise! And hey, it’s Brody from NCIS: New Orleans! The Star Trek: Voyager Rewatch does the parable of the “Good Shepherd.”

An excerpt:

The other frustrating element of the episode is the same one with “Learning Curve“—this is something that Voyager should’ve done way more often, because they’re stuck with the same bunch of people. In fact, this episode probably also would’ve been much stronger if one or two of the malcontents from “Learning Curve” was one of Janeway’s lost sheep.

Turning the Tied three-day author event!

To promote the International Association of Media Tie-in Writers’ charity anthology Turning the Tied, a bunch of the contributors are doing a free three-day live Zoom event this coming week: Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday at 8pm Eastern time each night. Here’s the link to sign up for it.

We’ll be talking about the nifty characters we wrote about — Sherlock Holmes! Ayesha! Frankenstein’s monster! Sinbad! Dracula! Hopalong Cassidy! — and the anthology itself and how much we love writing these characters.

I’ll be part of Tuesday’s gaggle, alongside moderator/co-editor Robert Greenberger (who wrote a story featuring Dr. Nikola), Yvonne Navarro (Frida Kahlo), Weston Ochse (Octobriana), Steven Paul Leiva (Cyrano de Bergerac & Baron von Munchausen), Jennifer Brozek (the cats of Ulthar), and David Boop (Kit Carson & Allan Quatermain).

Wednesday will feature moderator/co-editor Jean Rabe (the Ghost of Christmas Past), Aaron Rosenberg (Sinbad the Sailor), Will McDermott (Baldur), Nancy Holder (Frankenstein’s monster), Jonathan Maberry (John Carter of Mars), Stephen D. Sullivan (Dracula), and Tim Waggoner (Herne the Hunter).

And then Thursday will have moderator D.J. Stevenson, Rigel Ailur (Hua Mulan), Greg Cox (Mina Harker), Kelli Fitzpatrick (20,000 Leagues Under the Sea), Scott Pearson (The Time Machine), Ben H. Rome (War of the Worlds), Robert Vardeman (Space Patrol), Derek Tyler Attico (Sherlock Holmes).

Go register here!

talkin’ All-the-Way House with Paul Semel

I talked with the good Mr. Paul Semel on the subject of All-the-Way House, my contribution to the Systema Paradoxa series about cryptids. Check it out!

Here’s an excerpt:

Now, obviously, All-The-Way House is not your first published book. Are there any writers, or specific stories, that you think of as having a big influence on All-The-Way House but not on anything else you’ve written?

Probably the biggest literary influence for this particular novella would be Laurie R. King’s Mary Russell books and stories. A big chunk of All-The-Way House takes place in the past, in the early 20th century and the mid-18th century, and it’s a real challenge to re-create a past time period well. King is better than almost anyone at immersing you in a particular time and place, and she’s done a particularly superlative job of it in the Russell tales, which take place between 1915 and 1925 in various locales around the world.

Star Trek: Voyager Rewatch: “Child’s Play”

Icheb is reunited with his parents, and Seven is cranky about it, as her maternal instincts have been awakened and she thinks that Icheb’s parents are a bunch of big stinkies. The Star Trek: Voyager Rewatch manages to avoid Chucky in “Child’s Play.”

An excerpt:

The pathogen Icheb creates has already been proven not to work beyond a single Cube. All the Borg did was cut that Cube off from the Collective. Plus, it’s the Borg, whose entire schtick is assimilation and adaptation. The one consistent thing about the Borg from when we first met them way back in TNG’s “Q Who” is that the same trick will never work on them twice. They scanned the Cube Icheb and the gang were on and cut it off from the Collective, but I find it impossible to credit that they haven’t already long since adapted to that pathogen and would’ve been completely unaffected by it this time. And this is something that the Brunali should have known, having dealt with the Borg, y’know, a lot.

KRAD COVID readings #96d: Star Trek: S.C.E.: War Stories Book 1, Part 4

For 2021, KRAD COVID readings is covering the only short fiction I didn’t read in 2020: my novellas for the Star Trek: Starfleet Corps of Engineers series, a monthly series of eBooks that ran from 2000-2007. I’ll have a new reading every #TrekTuesday.

This week, we continue War Stories Book 1, which was a series of flashbacks to the Dominion War, showing what some of the current crew of the U.S.S. da Vinci was doing during that conflict that was portrayed on the last two seasons of Deep Space Nine. In Part 4, Bart Faulwell’s team has a breakthrough in their cryptography mission, while his relationship with Anthony Mark deepens…….

Check it out! And please subscribe to the channel!

Star Trek: Voyager Rewatch: “Ashes to Ashes”

Hey look, it’s Sheriff Jody Mills! Kim Rhodes guest stars on an episode where she plays a crewmember that everyone thought was all dead, but turns out to be only mostly dead. The Star Trek: Voyager Rewatch also makes a bad David Bowie joke while discussing “Ashes to Ashes.”

An excerpt:

This is actually an excellent episode for many of the same reasons why TNG’s “The Bonding” is an excellent episode: it reminds us that there’s an entire crew on board. Dramatic television in general and Star Trek in particular are really lousy at treating characters who are dramatically background personnel as people, even though from the internal perspective of the show, they’re just as important as everyone else. So many one-off characters have died on this show whose deaths had little to no meaning, and this episode pushes back against that nicely.

What especially sells it is the great Kim Rhodes. Ballard is charming, funny, tormented, brilliant, confused, delightful—Rhodes imbues her with such a complete personality that it heightens the tragedy of her situation. (I’m still bitter that the proposed Supernatural spinoff Wayward Sisters starring Rhodes as her superlative Sheriff Mills didn’t go to series, as that would’ve been so fantastic…)

happy book birthday to All-the-Way House!

It’s the official on-sale date for All-the-Way House, my contribution to the Systema Paradoxa series about cryptids from the NeoParadoxa imprint of eSpec Books! On Prime Day, no less!

This story provides the secret origin of the legendary Jersey Devil, and takes place in the same milieu as the Bram Gold Adventures novels and the Yolanda Rodriguez short stories.

Here’s the cover copy:

There are creatures lurking in our world. Obscure creatures long relegated to myth and legend. They have been sighted by a lucky–or unlucky–few, some have even been photographed, but their existence remains unproven and unrecognized by the scientific community.

These creatures, long thought gone, have somehow survived; creatures from our nightmares haunting the dark places. They swim in our lakes and bays, they soar the night skies, they hunt in the woods. Some are from our past, and some from other worlds, and others that have always been with us-watching us, fearing us, hunting us.

These are the cryptids, and Systema Paradoxa tells their tales.


When there are talks of a monster sighted in the waves off the Atlantic City boardwalk, Coursers Valentina Perrone and Sarah el-Guindi–supernatural hunters-for-hire–are called in by the local Boss to… handle it. But echoes of the past send them into the heart of the Pine Barrens, where more than one secret hides, along with their answers.

Will history repeat itself? Or will the monsters find safe haven?

Either way, in the end, they discover there is always more than one way to deal with a problem.

Here are some ordering links:

You can also read an excerpt from the book here, and watch and listen to me read a bit from the book at the video below, which is archived on the Tube of You:


The Kickstarter for The Four ???? of the Apocalypse, the inaugural project from the brand-new, very-small-press publisher Whysper Wude, is done! And we funded at a whopping 177%! Yes, we shot past our $6000 goal by more than $4000, ending up at $10,636!

Now the real works starts: collecting the stories, getting the bonuses and rewards together, and turning this into an actual book!

We’re hoping to have the book done in time for Dragon Con. Cross fingers….

Thanks to everyone who supported the crowdfund, thanks to the authors for agreeing to do this (and many of whom provided some of the nifty bonuses!), and if you want to get the anthology at this point, you have to wait until it’s formally published!

Yay us!

talkin’ Trek with The Scotch Trekker

I sat for an hour for a live chat with Dan Leckie and Cris Fox of The Scotch Trekker to talk about all things Star Trek. I talked about my Trek fiction, how I got started watching Trek, how I got started writing for it, my feelings on the characters, the challenges of tie-in fiction, writing about the shows for, and a bunch more.

Check it out!

Star Trek: Voyager Rewatch: “Spirit Folk”

Faith and begorrah! The crew returns to the Fair Haven holodeck program for no compellingly good reason. Saints preserve us! On the bright side, though, we get to see Harry Kim kiss a cow. The Star Trek: Voyager Rewatch wishes a top o’ the mornin’ to “Spirit Folk.”

An excerpt:

I’m just sitting here trying to figure out why anybody thought doing a sequel to “Fair Haven” was a good idea. Hell, I’m still having trouble figuring out why anyone thought doing “Fair Haven” in the first place was a good idea.

There are some things I like better in this than in “Fair Haven.” For starters, there are literary references to actual works of literature! Besides The Faerie Queene, we get mentions and/or sightings of A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court by Mark Twain and The Time Machine by H.G. Wells. The Olds Runabout was cool. And Harry Kim smooches a cow.

Unfortunately, these aren’t enough to mitigate the awfulness, from the actual honest-to-goodness use of “Saints preserve us!” to the EMH somehow being hypnotized, which is simply not possible for a photonic life form, to the tired stereotypes to the idiocy of the holodeck being able to be destroyed by a holographic rifle.