Award winner – Quinn Reynolds, USS Gorkon (Great Bird Award)

Award winner – Quinn Reynolds, USS Gorkon (Great Bird Award)

Join us for another in a series of interviews with winners of awards from our recent 2023 Awards Ceremony. Our goal is to give you insight into how our fleet’s best simmers write, and imagine their characters as well as their out of character contributions and achievements.

This month we’re interviewing the writer behind Admiral Quinn Reynolds playing a Human female commanding officer assigned to the USS Gorkon. She won the Great Bird Award for her contribution to “the development and/or invention of a new method of simming, thinking, or seeing the Star Trek universe.”.

DeVeau: In our last interview, you mentioned a career change.  Would you be willing to update us on that and other events that have happened in your life over the last year? 

It’s been a rollercoaster year, that’s for sure. I’ve changed careers from healthcare to tech, which was quite a switch. I’m really pleased with where I’ve landed, and it’s been great to discover that a lot of the soft skills used in healthcare are in demand here. On top of that, my family and I relocated to another country, and I discovered that getting your belongings across the sea is quite an adventure. Though the circumstances which prompted it were less than ideal, it’s happily turned out to be the best thing we could have done for all of us!

You have been in the group for a long time, and yet there’s no end to the influence you’ve had in SB118. When you first joined the group, did you ever see yourself in the position you are in now?

Funnily enough, I joined the group with the specific intention of not going into this kind of role! I’d been something of a “forever GM” in the gaming groups I’d played in, and wanted somewhere I could just be a player. I definitely didn’t see myself as a captain, let alone a member of the Executive Council. My outlook changed over time, and I’m pleased to have given back to a community that’s given me so much.

What are some of the most memorable moments for you in SB118?

I’ve had the pleasure of meeting people who’ve become steadfast friends, telling a whole host of wonderful stories, experiencing the inner lives of some fantastic characters—it’s really hard to pick out the most memorable because there have been so many. One great source of those moments is the Gorkon’s ongoing entanglement with a fantasy reality where everyone is a Maquis fighter before the Dominion War. Everyone loves the dip into the darker aspects of their characters, and there’s been some really fantastic writing, both in the fantasy and how it echoes into their real lives. It’s an absolute pleasure seeing what everyone brings to the table and gets out of it, each time we pay the Skarbek a visit.

One of the things Commodore Rahman mentioned was how players have described your ship as “distinctly different and more engaging than what our fleet’s standards were many years ago.”  Would you please talk about what sort of standards you have set for your ship and how far you have come from where you started?

I think the thing I most try to emphasise is collaborative storytelling. Respecting the contributions of the rest of the crew, celebrating their stories and writing, and encouraging everyone to give their fellows a chance to shine in the spotlight. Some of the best writing I’ve seen has come from characters who’ve messed up, or hurt someone else, or failed in their ideals—no one’s perfect, and everyone can’t be right all the time! So I really try to encourage people to see that it’s OK if their character stumbles from time to time, and embrace the storytelling which comes from it. 

Another point Rahman brought up was your unique ideas, including the ‘Year of Hell’.  Would you please tell us about that and what inspired you to try this unique way of doing a mission?

I wish I could say it was entirely my idea, but it owes a large part to a mission run by Saveron aboard the Invicta!

The foundation of the idea was inspired by one of our service ribbons: the Extended Service Ribbon, which is awarded for taking part in a mission that spends over a year away from the ship’s home base. It made me wonder what that kind of mission would look like, and I remembered one of the missions from the Invicta, in which we travelled to a universe where the Dominion had conquered the Federation. What if, I wondered, the Gorkon got trapped over in that universe, unable to find a way back home? And that’s how the Gorkon ended up fighting for its life in our own “Year of Hell”.

Are there some ideas you would like to incorporate as you continue to weave your stories with your crew?

All the time! Many of the Gorkon’s missions are inspired by our crew in one way or another. We’ve had everything from off-hand comments from folk in Discord inspire entire missions, to folk crafting full proposals for everyone to enjoy. We’ve occasionally been influenced by the stories other ships have told, like our Year of Hell described above, and side-plots exploring events and locations from elsewhere in the fleet. From ensigns to admirals, I’ve been inspired by so many people along the way.

Thanks for your time, Admiral Reynolds!
You can read more about Admiral Quinn Reynolds on the wiki.

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