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 Ensign Kimberly Stapledon playing a human female engineering officer assigned to the USS Constitution-B.
DeVeau: Tell us a little about the writer behind the character — where in the world do you hail from? Anything you’d like to share!
I live in Canada. It’s not as cold as people think. I have various interests and hobbies, such as 3d modeling and philosophy.
What was your introduction to Science Fiction in general and Star Trek specifically?
My introduction to science fiction came first from the original Star Wars films and then from Ridley Scott’s Alien. Star Trek came a little later, in the early 90s watching Star Trek TNG. During my late teens I got into Arthur C. Clarke’s stories and got hooked on the more awe-inspiring aspects of science fiction.
What is your experience with roleplaying?
I’ve done a fair bit of roleplaying by email and internet forums. I started off writing in a group on Yahoo Groups back in 2001. The format was a bit different, more a kind of everyone writes a part of the story type thing. Characters weren’t specific to each player but were just written as each player wrote a part of the story. To be honest I was surprised at first when I encountered the simming model of being responsible for one’s own character. It certainly does result in a lot more personalization and creativity around character development.
What brought you to SB118 the first time, and what brought you back to us?
I’d initially started here after listening to Pendant Audio’s Defiant Podcast, before they took it down. I’d loved the idea of a kind of open source expansion to the universe we all loved. So I wanted to try and see if I could participate in something like that as well.
As to what brought me back, I decided after a while that I needed a good creative outlet again. I also missed the community.
Why did you choose this specific character and duty post?
Well in real life I’m a computer programmer, so engineering worked well as a duty post. It’s kind of fun to imagine out of this world versions of cutting edge technologies today and write about them. I developed Kim Stapledon in particular based on a pseudonym I’d been writing under for a while several years back. The name is based on the science fiction writers Kim Stanley Robinson and Olaf Stapledon. I wanted to combine both a hard SF angle with the more wondrous aspects of science fiction.
Where do you see your character five years from now?
I am honestly not sure. I definitely hope to have written a good number of meaningful arcs with Stapledon and the crew of her vessel. I’m hoping to explore the nexus between the real world and the virtual world in some of Stapledon’s adventures, but I am sure other opportunities for interesting topics will come up.
Thanks for your time, Ensign Stapledon!
You can read more about Ensign Kimberly Stapledon on the wiki.