The Officer’s Guide

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Officer’s Guide: I Want to Feel It

What we write here at UFOP:SB118 is by and large fiction. Works of creative fiction are what move and motor our past, present and future, and keeps us all interested in the creative writing process as a whole. There are times however, when you may realize that the spark that was once there may not be anymore.  We need to feel just where your character comes from.That’s right. The key to reigniting that spark is that, as readers, we all want to… feel

Even from the time you filled out your application with the community, you’ve been drilled on character creation, and the importance of being able to create a plausible and detailed work of fiction, mostly because it’s going to be the basis for everything you do during your tour of duty. The character you create is the avatar in which your ideas come to life, the vessel that brings your creative writing to print. This is where you begin to learn about one of the first lessons in this line of work… separation between real life (RL), and in character (IC).

Officer’s Guide: Pushing it To Print

Most of us view this sort of writing as another creative avenue for us to relieve some stress, go on an adventure from the comforts of our home, or to meet new and interesting people. Some people might have different uses, such as honing their writing abilities, or sharpening their English skills in time for something bigger. Some of us enjoy writing our own books; enjoy making stories for all to enjoy. But the tricky part is… having all enjoy it. Publishing can be a bear of a task, but a little help is on the way.

In this article from The Writer’s Technology Companion, the ins and outs of the publishing business and how to bring your goal to fruition are laid out for understanding. Also the link to the actual text of So You Want to Write a Book? (O’Reilly Media) can be found here as well, bringing you to a wealth of information outlining the publishing process, how much you would expect to pay, legal issues, contracts and much more. Broken down into seven chapters, each section has specific information concerning all parts of the publishing process. This isn’t an end all be all solution to your publishing problem, but it’s certainly a step in the right direction. Push that book to print officer, just make sure you send me a copy…

Officer’s Guide: Top Sims Contest for Beginners

This week’s topic is on the Top Sims Contest, what it takes to win, and how to go about doing that. While the “Writing Challenge” is more of a personal contest, the “Top Sim Contest” shows pride in your ship and it’s writers, She’ll start with some Submission Guidelines to get you started.

Quick Tips

  1. You can submit ANY sim from your ship, or another ship. All sims are welcome, including command staff (Captain, First Officer, etc.) sims.
  2. Please find a balance between nominating too few, or too many. Don’t submit every good sim — instead, post every great sim!
  3. Also encourage your fellow crewmates to submit at least a few sims a year. If you want your crew-mates to win more often, you have to nominate the best sims, and encourage others to write higher quality sims.

It’s well said and understandable, but I still wasn’t sure what to think about how to choose properly, and it made me ask around. My first choice was Captain Kalianna Nicholotti; I wanted to see what her thoughts were in this matter in regards to a more personal approach.

  • “The Apollo, a lot of the time, is a great example. Top Sims shouldn’t be just dialogue; they should show deep into the event or the characters in the sim allowing the readers to really ‘feel’ what’s going on. Usually the sims I submit get an emotional response from me when I read them. Like a part in a book that is so good you want to laugh/cry/cheer/get mad/etc at the characters.”

Officer’s Guide: There They’re… No Need to Worry

So even when you’ve been writing for the longest time, and you’ve got your grammar down pat, there comes a time when that pesky “there”, or “their”, or even “they’re” words come into play. After writing a few sims in a row, you didn’t even realize it when you typed in the wrong usage; Or maybe you just don’t know the difference? Well here’s an article that should help you brush up a bit…

This article from is extremely useful when it comes to learning the usage of the words for the first time, or even if you need some brushing up. There are interactive tests and quizzes to further hone your ability , as well as exercises and worksheets so that never again are you thwarted by the evil usage monster. Each usage of the word “their” or “there” etc, features a clear and concise meaning of the word along with its structure, and an example sentence using the word. On their website you can find links to other grammar and English writing lessons that can be a treasure trove for those who may not have English as a first choice for communication. No more toiling with the wrong definition, as this website makes it easy for you to understand this semi-confusing word!

Officer’s Guide: Tips From the Experts

This article has been making its way around the fleet as of late, but here it is to print. The people at Pixar have released some tips of the trade from a few of their best writers on how create some of the best stories around. Emma Coats will lead us through what she’s learned over the years from some of the brightest members of the Pixar writing force, with twenty-two basic story writing rules.

Making a thrilling story, or sim for that matter, can be a bear of a task. Tuning in to The Pixar Touch, a blog documenting the journey of Pixar writers as they conjure up some of the best ideas to give to the world, we can tap into some of the great success that their writer’s have received over the years. Taking the information right from it’s original book form, the article provides you with twenty-two “rules” that writers adhere to when going through the creative process. Take the time to explore the site a bit more and you’ll find other  links to articles that may be helpful in the long run, dealing with creativity and literature. Also there’s a link to the Blog Section for some further reading. Enjoy, and shake free of those limitations, officer!

Officer’s Guide: Un-fogging the Writing Challenge

Writing challenges are usually designed under the premise of being… well, challenging. As an Ensign, or as Commander Kells has shown us – a cadet, it may be more challenging than one might think at first. Knowing the ins and outs of the process and how the challenge works can be the key to getting started. LTJG Vid-Lotilija of the USS Apollo has compiled just the article for any prospective Challenge candidate. Take it away Lieutenant!

That Extra Mile: The Ensign’s Guide to Promotion

Someday… just when is someday? Some experts in our community, the many Captains and command level staff, will tell you that the process can be as involved or as hard as you make it. The one thing that will determine the expediency of your promotions throughout your service aboard your vessel is, simply put, going that extra mile. Perhaps you may recall, from an earlier feature interview with Fleet Captain Toni Turner, that participating in extra activities such as the Image Collective or the News Team would certainly aid in your efforts to better your character, but maybe not in the sense that one might think. Participating in whatever you can get your fingers into simply shows people that you want to be active, and you enjoy doing this (being a part of the UFOP: SB118 community), and that’s what makes Captain-grade simmers. 

Executive Council: The Ensign’s Guide to Management

Throughout the various stages of life we learn that every good system has exactly that, a system. Without a skeleton, our community would be a proverbial skin-pile. The Executive Council, comprised of five active members of the community, serves as that skeleton, handling many of the issues that arise in the OOC world.

They see to it that the day-to-day operations are carried out, and that business as usual is allowed to continue. Who are the ones responsible for this massive undertaking, and what sorts of things do they do? In what ways do the EC plan to shape the future of our community? All of these questions and more will be answered in this comprehensive guide for Ensigns to the Executive Council.

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