Award winner – Samira Neathler, USS Gorkon (Northern Star Award/Rising Star Award)

Award winner – Samira Neathler, USS Gorkon (Northern Star Award/Rising Star Award)

Join us for another in a series of interviews with winners of awards from our 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 Lieutenant Commander Samira Neathler playing a Human female First Officer assigned to the USS Gorkon. She won the Northern Star Award: “Awarded to members holding the rank of Lieutenant or Lieutenant Commander who show constant commitment to the fleet as members of task forces and through our other fleet endeavours.” 

As well as the Rising Star Award: “Awarded to members of Lieutenant Commander rank or higher who show great promise in many facets of their participation in the group, and to whom we look to as a future leader.”

Fairhug: As a long-standing member of the community, you’ve been interviewed multiple times over the years. Is there anything different you can tell us about yourself that you haven’t before?

Neathler: Nothing much has changed in my life. I’ve picked up reading again, which I think I already mentioned in a previous interview and I’m also slowly rewatching the Star Trek shows. I won’t mention how long ago it was since I’ve really watched them.

Based on the awards you received at last year’s ceremony, it’s clear to see that you’re regarded as a star in the community! To what do you attribute your meteoric rise?

Neathler: I was actually quite surprised with last year’s awards so thank you to those who nominated and awarded me. I’ve had great mentors on the Gorkon so they definitely have something to do with it. Although I have to admit, when I commit to a community, I’ve noticed I always like to do some extra. That’s probably why I joined a couple of the many OOC-teams SB118 has. 

The Rising Star Award is given to those who “…demonstrate their capabilities in leadership and facilitation of their fellow officers, including a recognisable dedication in their In Character and Out of Character activities to enhance the community.”, while the Northern Star Award is presented to those “…who show constant commitment to the fleet as a member of task forces and through our other fleet endeavours.” What is your favourite thing about SB118, both IC and OOC?


IC-wise: I love the plots and twists other people add to the sims and the story. Because of the diversity of the crew each person has different ideas and experiences they want to incorporate in their own sims. Writing together sometimes steers the story into a whole other direction than originally planned. And it’s exactly that unknown that I like and pushes me to combine all those ideas and thoughts together.

OOC-wise: You meet people from around the world and get to know each other and become friends. Also when I’m having a bad or tiresome day, there’s usually someone around on Discord that posts something uplifting (or something fluffy and furry) that gets me through the day. 

What I also like with SB118 is that you can put as much time into the community as you like. Next to reading all sims and writing your own part, you can dive into the many OOC-activities SB118 provides.

You have been serving as First Officer of the USS Gorkon for almost two years now. Do you have any advice for those in the fleet who are looking to progress to Command, that you perhaps wish you had known about before taking on such a challenging position?

Neathler: Two years already? Time flies. 

Make sure you have the necessary time to do extra things beyond simming once you’ve reached those staff ranks would be my advice. 

Write regularly and let your sims be an example for the other writers on your ship or station. Once you have that under your belt, you might want to expand your wings and help out on the ship. So talk to your mentor and the ship’s staff, so they know that you are interested in doing a little extra for the ship or the fleet. Once they know your strengths they’ll guide you in the direction you can help out. Believe me, the staff and the fleet will be grateful for the extra help you provide.

In her presentation speech, Admiral Reynolds mentioned your involvement in the Training Team (of which you are also a statistician), the FNS, the Social Media Team and the Community History Team. Don’t worry, I’m not going to ask you to choose your favourite! But what, would you say, are some of the most rewarding things about participating in OOC activities?

Neathler: SB118 has been running all those years by the input and energy of volunteers, people committing their free time to keep the fleet growing. By joining the OOC activities it was my contribution to do exactly that. Making people aware of our community on the social media, helping train new cadets in the training team, preparing new people so they know our way of simming before they join a ship or station. If everyone chips in any way they can, they keep the community we all like alive and allow it to grow.

Finally, the last five years have undoubtedly brought you much success. Is there anything in particular you’re aiming to achieve in the next five years?

Neathler: That’s a question I can’t even answer for several reasons. I’ve been scaling back my OOC-activities since the end of last year, using the freed up time to do some other things in my life. But don’t worry, you’re not getting rid of me that easily. My intention is to keep writing and who knows, what will happen once my batteries have recharged somewhat.

Thanks for your time, LtCmdr Neathler!

You can read more about LtCmdr Neathler on the wiki.

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