Each month we interview a First Officer or Commanding Officer of the fleet as part of our “First Officer in Focus” and “Captain’s Corner” columns to get to know them better, and learn more about what their positions entail.
This month, we’re interviewing the First Officer of the starship USS Atlantis, Lt. Commander Serala, a Half-Romulan female.
GALVEN: Tell us a little about the writer behind Serala. Where do you hail from, and what are you up to when you’re not simming?
SERALA: Well, I am from the capital city of the great state of Texas. I have been an avid fan of Star Trek my entire life (which is very nearly as long as the series has existed, having been born while the original series was still being produced). When I am not simming, I work from home (currently) as a supervisor for a call center for a major automobile manufacturer handling Lemon Law claims. I also play a lot of Elder Scrolls Online. I do love to play all forms of tabletop RPGs, but I am not currently part of a group. And finally, I love doing photoshop and other graphics type work, which led me to join the Image Collective, where I have learned a lot of very valuable tips.
Tell us more about your writing style. What’s your process for putting together a sim?
That’s a great question. I doubt I am unique in how I do things, but essentially I utilize a word processing program. In my case, I prefer Google Docs. I start a document each new mission or shore leave and pretty much keep a string of posts going. When the other writers in a scene send their posts, I add their responses, make note of any scene details they have added and rewrite everything from Serala’s perspective. Then I will add my own responses, some more details and narrative, and try to include at least three open tags for each person in a scene.
Is there a particular aspect of your role of First Officer that motivates you in your position?
Mentoring. I am a very big supporter of the mentorship program and that reflects a lot of my responsibilities in my real-life job. I really enjoy helping to develop new writers and helping mentors to become better mentors. I also love writing the ship’s reports each month.
Looking back on your experience so far, what would be one piece of advice you’d give to anyone who’s just joined?
I actually have several, but since you asked for just one, I think the biggest one would be “don’t hesitate to ask questions.” That’s what part of what your mentor, First Officer and Captain are for. There can be a lot to try to assimilate when a new player joins a ship, especially if it’s in the middle of a mission, and it can become confusing and overwhelming for many. If you find yourself lost or confused, or you just don’t know what to do, ask. Even reach out on the ship’s Discord channel. But I also have to add that this is supposed to be a game. Enjoy yourself. After all, that’s what this is all about.
And lastly, do you have any aspirations to become a Commander and beyond?
Absolutely. I have been working on my requirements almost since I made Lt. Commander. Having looked over the requirements, I believe I really have only one requirement left before I am eligible to test for Commander, and I am hoping to achieve that one soon. I made a joke (I can’t remember if it was in-character or out, or both) about wanting Captain Brell’s job when he was still the CO of Atlantis. I was only half-joking when I said it. And here I am the First Officer. It would be nice to achieve that goal at some point, hopefully in the next few years. Though for now, I am just very happy to be a First Officer and I am realizing I still have a lot more to learn before I am really ready to take over a CO’s job.
Thanks for your time, Lieutenant Commander Serala!
You can read more about Lieutenant Commander Serala on the wiki.