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Lower Decks interview: LtJG. Ishani Kasun, SB118 Ops

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. Ishani Kasun playing a El-Aurian/Human female assigned to StarBase 118 Ops.

WOLF: Tell us a little about the writer behind the character — where in the world do you hail from?

KASUN: I grew up in southeast Washington and I moved to the Portland, Oregon area for my first degree and I’ve been here ever since. Professionally I’m an auditor at a smallish, local CPA firm in the metro area, which means I have to travel quite a bit. I’ve been working there for about ~6 months and haven’t been through our busy travel season yet so it’s an aspect of the job I’m still not certain if I like or not.

Is this your first simming experience, or have you done other forms of role-playing before?

I’ve been roleplaying in general for several years but SB118 is my first simming/script style role play. Nearly all the rest of it has been via forums and prose style of RP.

What duty post are you playing, and how’d you choose it?

Ishani’s currently the Assistant Chief of Security on Ops, which wasn’t something I had considered when coming up with the character. When I first concepted and applied with Ishani, I had picked counseling (with medical as a secondary choice) as her duty post and had gone through training with her as the counselor. I had a friend on Ops and so I had picked that as my desired posting, but unfortunately in between applying and finishing training the medical/counseling department had filled up.

Since counseling/medical wasn’t an option on Ops anymore I was given the option to either stay in counseling and chose a different posting or to stick with Ops and choose another duty post. I wanted to stay on Ops but I also wanted to keep as much of her backstory as possible. After some back and forth the solution we came up with was having her be a security officer in a newly created division that specialized in handling crises which would allow me to use her counseling background in character. In the end, I’ve found I like this duty post better and I feel I get the best of both worlds.

Where would you like to be in a few years? Have a taste of command of your own? Or maybe planning on joining one of our great OOC groups?

I’d like to get Ishani up to Chief of Security but beyond that don’t know yet where I’d like to go with her quite yet. It will depend on how busy I end up being in real life. I do want to help Ops out as much as I can even if I don’t end up having time to do anything officially.

Looking back on your experience so far, what would be one piece of advice you’d give to anyone who’s just joined?

Give yourself time to get used to the simming format SB118 uses and don’t be afraid of taking chances, especially if this is your first time with this particular kind of role play. Everyone on Ops was helpful and welcoming, but it still took me quite a bit to get the hang of simming, not only in the writing style but also in the underlying expectations of how you move the plot forward. Forum RP from my experience tends to be a lot more rigid than simming on SB118, and it took me a while to relax and realize that I wasn’t committing a great RP sin by saying that someone’s character had moved three feet to the left or assuming that they were going to respond a certain way.

Thanks for your time, LtJG. Kasun!

You can read more about LtJG. Kasun on the wiki.


About Tristan Wolf

FltAdml. Tristan Wolf, real name Jordan, founded UFOP: StarBase 118 – a Star Trek Play By Email RPG – in June of 1994. He previously served as the Commanding Officer for a number of simming installations, notably the first of StarBase 118 Operations. He currently lives in San Francisco with his partner and their Humane Society rescue dog named Baxter. Jordan works in politics, loves scifi (natch), fantasy, and new technologies.
View all posts by Tristan Wolf

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