In this edition of the Lower Decks, we meet a spry young newbie to the community, Ensign Gregory Able. Ensign Able has come from humble beginnings on his journey from the Orleans shipyards, to hitting the books, and now to the USS Apollo. Greg’s writer, Mark, is here to tell us a bit more about this promising young addition to the fleet.
The writer for Mr. Able, Mark, lives and works in the UK as an IT specialist. Being greatly involved in social networking, and having been part of a Star Trek based community prior to ours, his experience in RP’ing and PBeM groups is not limited. His fan group, the USS Navras, which is part of the STARFLEET International Star Trek Fan Association, served as the vessel by which he found the UFOP: SB118 community. In efforts to expand his relations with other Trek-friendly communities from within the group, Mark stumbled upon our community through Twitter, and ultimately had to check it out. “I’ve participated in a lot of RP in MMOs and before that play-by-email and no-one has ever seemed so well organised and friendly. I am glad I found you and proud to be here for sure.”
Like many of us, Mark grew up on TNG, watching the exploits of the great Picard and his motley crew during the first real airing of the series on UK television. Through countless repeats, and as he would call it, “compulsive” viewing, he’d become rather acquainted with the Star Trek universe. To follow would be Deep Space Nine, which serves as his proverbial flag ship show, and after that Voyager. “…When you live in a house full of sci-fi geeks it was compulsive viewing. Those three series, plus the original cast movies which I have seen many times, really form the core of my enjoyment of Star Trek. Enterprise never really hit it off with me and really I’m not the biggest fan of The Original Series episodes, although there’s no denying their importance.”
Some of these influences are sure to show up in his future writing, as it did in his character development. “I wanted to avoid all the typical stereotypes, but also pay homage to some of my favourite characters in Star Trek. His personality is a fusion of a few different characters, a bit of Ben and Jake Sisko, Geordi LaForge, Miles O’Brien, Trip Tucker, plus a bit of my own personality in the mix. My best RP characters always have their origins in the best existing characters but are their own unique combination or fusion of those and my own ideas.” So, the end product of his plan? Gregory Able. “…A young, aspiring, hands on engineer fresh out of Starfleet Academy. I have recently been assigned to U.S.S. Apollo as my first posting and we’re just making final preparations to set sail on what will be Greg’s first mission. Greg comes from an old time Southern US family and after graduating school and begin rejected by Starfleet worked at the Orleans fleet yard as an enlisted crewman for a few years before being accepted into the Academy so his hands-on approach is a bit different to most out-of-the-class room Academy graduate engineers. It reflects my personality, I’m very much a roll up your sleeves and get stuck in kinda guy when the chips are down.”
Being fresh from training can mean a few things for any new addition to the fleet, one of which is that there are so many options, so many roads that you could travel down. It would appear that Mr. Able is at a good spot in his short career thus far. Mark isn’t sure just where Greg will be in a year’s time, but he could speculate. “I haven’t totally got a feel for that yet in such a short time, but I really hope that Greg will have a name as a good engineer and maybe an extra pip on his collar, but I really have no set goals, I just want to enjoy the sims and see where the experience takes me… I’ve only been simming with the Apollo crew a few weeks. I’ve been made to feel very welcome and I’m sure Greg will get up to some great adventures in the not-too-distant future.”
As for the Apollo‘s next mission, and Mr. Able’s first, Mark will have the opportunity to experience MSNPC play, and get to be an active force in guiding the mission along. With his fresh outlook on his career, and his writer’s anecdotal appreciation for the Star Trek realm, Ensign Greg Able is sure to be a household name in no time. We’ll be sure to keep an eye out for him. For now, this has been another edition of Lower Decks with Ensign Greg Able, and as always… Carry on, Ensign!