Each month we interview a member of the Academy Training Team for insight on how our training works, and as recognition for all the hard work that goes into training new members each and every week of the year!
This month, we’re sitting down with Nikki Ryan, a Lieutenant playing the CMO of the Veritas.
WOLF: Hello LtCmdr. Ryan! Can you tell us a little about yourself for the folks who may not know you?
RYAN: First, thank you for having me here. I think most members of the Fleet know me as Rune Jolara but I’ve recently made a switch to playing Dr. Nikki Ryan. In real life, I’m a professional visual artist and freelance graphic designer working towards becoming a front end web developer. I’ve loved Star Trek and anything sci-fi since the beginning of time. I’m also (slowly, very slowly) working on a sci-fi/supernatural novel.
You’ve been with the community for a long time! Do you remember how you found us, and what motivated you to join?
Yes, a very long time indeed. A friend originally introduced me to the group way back in 2005. I needed to take an extended LOA. I came back a couple of other times but each time RL happened. Then in 2012, I came back to stay. My motivation was simple, this group combined two things I loved the most, writing and Star Trek. As a bonus, I’ve met some pretty incredible people and made some lasting friendships… really they’re like a second family. I wouldn’t trade my time here for the world.
In place of our regular monthly interview with a member of the Academy Training team, we’re instead going to be interviewing the winners of 2016 Top Sims Contest, T’Lea and Rune Jolara, whose sim titled “Defying a Direct Order” won them the coveted title of “Top Sim of 2016”!
Let’s dive in and learn more about these writers and this well-written sim.
WOLF: Hi there and congratulations on your win! I’m really excited to learn more about the story behind this sim. But first, why don’t you tell us a little bit about yourselves as players and writers, and how long you’ve been members of our community?
T’LEA: First, let me say that I really appreciate all the support for our sim. The competition was, and always is tough. How long have I been with the community? I believe it’s been over ten years now, and I hope to be here for ten more. When I first started writing back in 1993 I was fresh out of high school, and at the time DS9 was accepting spec scripts. I wrote a few and sent them in, but nothing ever came of it, except my growing passion for writing and Star Trek. When I found this community it combined the two things that I love, and the rest is history! Since then, this group has become a second family to me. A family of writers who understand and enjoy the same passion for Trek and storytelling that I do. As a full-time caregiver to a disabled family member, you all have provided support through friendship, and no matter what ship I have been assigned to (there’s been quite a few over the years) writing with you all has provided an outlet for me in the best of times and in the worst of times. This place truly is special to me.
JOLARA: Thank you and, likewise, I want to thank everyone for their support. I originally joined in 2005 but ended up taking an extended LOA. I came back a couple more times but, again real life got in the way. I finally came back to stay in 2012. I really can’t remember a time when I wasn’t writing in one form or the other. Even during my childhood I would sneak away and write. It’s helped me through some pretty dark times in my life. My earliest memories of Star Trek is watching TOS with my uncle. When TNG came out, my interest (almost obsession) in all things Trek was reignited and hasn’t really stopped. Like, T’Lea, this group combined two things I loved the most. As a bonus, I’ve met some pretty incredible people and made some lasting friendships… really they’re like a second family. I wouldn’t trade my time here for the world.