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.
We’re here with another interview with a newer member of our community! This month’s interview is with the writer behind Ensign Lephi playing a Ferengi female Engineering Officer assigned to the USS Atlantis.
GALVEN: Thank you for accepting to do this interview with me! Could you tell us a little bit about yourself for our readers out there?
LEPHI: Thanks for sitting down with me for this interview! My real name is Daphne, and I live on Canada’s East coast. I’m a freelance writer at this point in my life since my workplace is still shuttered. I used to have my pilot license and I’ve traveled a fair bit, doing a bit of everything in life along the way.
Do you take any inspiration from movies/TV/books when writing for your character?
There’s a couple of good podcasts and books out there that have really fleshed out the nuance of Ferengi personality, so I pull from there but of course I put my own spin on it to make her uniquely Lephi.
You’ve been with the fleet since May and in that time, what has been your favorite moment writing for the StarBase 118 Star Trek PBEM RPG?
If I had to pick, I’d say writing the scenes with MSNPC Drezon Brex. The way that the tension organically built between them over several sims until his slip of the tongue brought out a side of Lephi I wasn’t expecting to see so early. It was nice to see it have a good ending too.
Out of all the number of duty posts, you chose to be an engineering officer. What advice can you give new and older members who want to choose that particular duty post?
It’s all about striking that balance, which of course I’m still working on finding for myself. The balance between including technical details for realism, while not sacrificing readability for it. I personally enjoy the diversity of the department. I chose to specialize Lephi in component and material engineering, which gives me lots to do and grow with. She could have been the same old propulsion engineer that we see in a lot of the canon, but I wanted to try something different.
On Lephi’s wiki page in her background section, there’s a mention about her father being absent due to work and then eventually tried making up for it. What do you set your style of character development with when you begin writing?
Oh her father is a real piece of work, despite his attempts to appear otherwise. My style of character development is that I’ve placed all these little things throughout her backstory that I can take and turn into major story arcs for her at any time.
And lastly, do you personally have aspirations in the fleet? Are there any OOC activities you’re associated with, or any you’d like to join?
Well, I hear there have been 2 Ferengi who have reached the rank of Commander, and I’d like to see Lephi be the first Ferengi Captain at least. On an OOC level, I’m involved with the Wiki team, the Community News team, and I just joined the FNS officially. I’m pretty active on the Discord as well, and I was the scorekeeper for the annual trivia contest this year. I’m hoping to eventually get involved officially with the chat team. Overall, I’m living proof that Trooper was wrong. I’m here for a good time and a long time.
Thanks for your time, Ensign Lephi!
You can read more about Ensign Lephi on the wiki.