We’re here with another interview with a newer member of our community. The title of this column is “Lower Decks,” hearkening back to the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode titled “Lower Decks,” in which junior officers aboard the Enterprise-D speculate on the reasons for recent unusual actions taken by the command crew near the Cardassian border.
This month’s interview is with the writer behind LtJG. Jerome Milsap, playing a human male assigned to the USS Constitution-B.
WOLF: Tell us a little about the writer behind the character — where in the world do you hail from?
MILSAP: I live in New Jersey in the U.S. I’ve moved around from city to city, but I’ve always lived somewhere in NJ.
Were you a Star Trek fan before joining UFOP: StarBase 118? If so, what were your favorite shows and/or movies?
I grew up watching reruns of TOS, but I wasn’t a real Trek fan until TNG came along. That’s still my favorite series with DS9 a close second. As far as the movies, Generations and First Contact are my favorites, but I have to say (and this may be a bit controversial) that I also enjoy the J.J. Abrams movies. That said, I think the smartest thing J.J. did was setting his movies in an alternate universe instead of trying to do a true reboot, because you just can’t replace the originals.
Is this your first simming experience, or have you done other forms of role-playing before?
It’s not my first, but definitely my most successful. I’ve played in Trek sims before but they usually fizzled out after a while from lack of participation. I have no fear of that happening here! Aside from Star Trek simming I’ve been playing tabletop RPGs since I was about 12, starting with Dungeons and Dragons and eventually branching out to Call of Cthulhu, Rifts, TMNT, Robotech, Toon, Mechwarrior and probably a few others I’m forgetting.
How’d you find out about our community?
I found out about Starbase 118 from a player in one of my other games. He joined that game after I did and commented on how much faster paced Starbase 118 was. He pointed me to the website and I applied right away.
What duty post are you playing, and how’d you choose it?
My main character Jerry is a medic (assistant CMO). In the other games I played my character was always either a helmsman or security/tactical, so when I signed up here I wanted to try something different. Really though, it depended on the concepts I came up with and whatever department felt like it would be the right fit.
My original concept for Jerry was a Gorn who became obsessed with human culture by intercepting transmissions of our old TV shows, except the only show he got was “Hee-Haw” so he thought the entire species wore overalls and told jokes in cornfields. Thinking about it now, I honestly don’t know what department I would have put him in. I toned that down a little bit and made him a human but I still wanted him to have some country or southern flavor. I started thinking about country music and recalled a song called “Amos Moses” by Jerry Reed that mentions “a man called Doc Milsap”, so right there was the name and post.
What’s been your favorite part of being with the community so far?
I think my favorite part of the community is the fact that there is a community. In the other games I’ve played I hardly ever talked to other players outside of IC posts so I never really had any idea of who they really were or what they were like. At Starbase 118 everyone just seems so much friendlier and more accessible. I’ve never seen another group that has this level of interaction with forums, news articles (both IC and OOC), podcasts, a Wiki and regular live chats. Even the mentor system (hi Noelle!) to help new players beyond their initial training was something new to me. Beyond that, I’ve also enjoyed improving my writing skills along the way. Everyone I sim with is a fantastic writer, and just keeping up with them all makes me better in the process.
Thanks for your time, LtJG. Milsap!!