Date: 12/5/97 8:44:39 PM
<<I understand you rewrite lots of scripts by other writers. Have any of
your scripts ever been severely rewritten by others, and worsened or
improved in the process? (If so, which, for example?)>>
My first script, "The Bonding" went through a substantial rewrite by both
Melinda Snodgrass and Michael Piller, and I can testify that it was greatly
improved in the process. The first draft of "The Defector" was basically
thrown out and we "gang-banged" the second draft (yeah, yeah, a very un-p.c.
phrase that means the entire staff worked on the script together -- I wrote
Teaser & One and the rest of the teleplay was divided up among the other
writers). Other scripts of mine went through varying degrees of rewrites
after I became a permanent staff member and almost always were improved in
<<What are some of the episodes you rewrote on either series without
receiving credit? (I don't mean 'polish' jobs.)>>
My first assignment on staff was to help gang-bang (there it is again) "A
Matter of Perspective" and none of us took credit on the job. Ira and I
also did a page one rewrite of "Sarek" that season. More recently, I did
a fairly significant rewrite of "Visionary." There are quite a few others,
but those are the ones that come to mind.
<<Do you ever discuss your scripts with the directors?>>
We have a "tone meeting" with every director and go through the script scene
by scene, discussing the characters, the action, the overall tone of the
episode -- everything -- in detail before the episode begins shooting.
There are also numerous production meetings, casting sessions, etc. in which
the director and producers hold lengthy discussions.
<<Have you seen dubbed Trek episodes or films?>>
Michael Piller once gave me a Spanish-dubbed copy of "The Bonding" as a
Christmas present -- it was pretty cool.
<<Why don't starfleet officers carry around more than one combadge for when
the first gets taken away?>>
If only they had pockets in those uniforms...
<<Any chance we'll have some starships named after Jacques Cousteau or Carl
Sagan, both of whom passed away not long ago?>>
It's always possible. Starship names are up to the individual writer and we
christen them according to our own preferences.
<<By the way, ever read any of Sagan's books or seen *Contact*?>>
I read "Cosmos", "Dragons of Eden", and "Contact" back when I was in High
School, but nothing of his since. I haven't seen "Contact" the movie yet,
but maybe when it makes it to DTV.
<<Did we ever get an answer to the Capt. Shelby question? [Was the Capt.
Shelby mentioned in "You are Cordially Invited..." the same Shelby from
"Best of Both Worlds"?]>>
Well.... my intent when I wrote the line was that this was indeed the same
Shelby from BOBW. I thought it was a cool reference to throw in for the
fans, but I had completely forgotten that John Ordover & Co. had very
specifically and very politely asked us if we had any intention of ever
using this character again and we (including me) had said, "No way -- do
what you want with her." This very salient fact was pointed out to me after
the show had aired and I had a rather sheepish conversation with Paula Block
over in licensing and with John via e-mail explaining what had happened.
Since I only used Shelby's last name in the episode, you're free to look at
this either way -- it's really her or it's someone else with the same last
name (it's a big fleet, after all).
<<Questions about the Dominion Arc: Is this going to end up as a duel
between two theologies?>>
Possibly -- we haven't worked out the end of the arc yet.
<<where are the other 98 baby changelings?>>
Date: 12/5/97 9:11:03 PM
<<Did this group ["The Friends of Vedek Bareil"] have any type of impact
(even remotely) on Bariel's return? If so was it because of something they
did or because the writers were aware that there was a group that wanted to
see his return? And finally if it was something they did, what was it?>>
The emergence of Mirror Bareil came during the break session on
"Resurrection" (which was called something else at that point). We wanted
to do a Mirror universe story in which the Intendant came over to our side
for a change, and we were grappling with what she wanted and how it would
impact on our characters when Ira came up with this idea. To be honest, I
nearly blew a gasket, having no real desire to see Bareil again, but even I
had to admit that it made for a much better story. We were aware of the
"Friends of... " group, but their influence, if any, was to keep Bareil that
much farther away from the things we wanted to do. I'm happy that they're
happy now, and they've sent some very nice and very polite thank-yous to us
here on staff since "Resurrection" aired.
<<In the TNG episode, "Redemption, Part II" (which you wrote), why was Worf
not surprised to see Commander Sela on the viewscreen in L'ursa and B'tor's
chamber? He should have been just as surprised as Captain Picard and
Counselor Troi were when they first saw Sela on the Enterprise viewscreen.
What was the deal with that?>>
This was simply a mistake. It slid by everyone until the episode was cut
together and then we realized that we'd goofed.
<<Also, at the end of "Redemption, Part I", Picard said that Worf was going
to be tactical officer on Gowron's ship. Then, at the beginning of
"Redemption, Part II", Worf was tactical officer on the Hec'tar (Kurn's
ship). What happened?>>
As I recall, a lot of time had passed between the events in Part I and Part
II, so we felt there was enough of a time cut there to justify Worf having
switched assignments. What really happened was that we didn't even come up
with the story for Part II until after hiatus (which was SOP in those days)
and we didn't have the idea for putting Kurn and Worf on the same ship until
<<Have the Founders completely forgiven Cardassia (the Obsidian Order) and
Romulus (the Tal Shiar) for attacking their homeworld? >>
<<Did Odo model his look after the Founders or Dr. Mora? Didn't he once say
that he modelled his hairstyle after Dr. Mora's? If so, is there any hidden
connection between Odo's mentor and the Founders?>>
Odo modelled his look after Dr. Mora and the Founders then modelled their
look after Odo. They did this initially as a compliment and way of
reaching out to their long-lost Changeling, and later they kept doing it as
a dig and reminder to him of his own limitations.
<<And how come in only the ep. "You are Cordially Invited" you hear Keikos
name??? Do you hear Miles talk about his wife and missing her and his
children in any other ep.??? >>
We haven't worked out how or when Keiko is returning to the show, so we've
avoided mentioning her too much. I think there are other references to her
<<What other idea's did you come up with for getting DS9 back besides the
I honestly don't remember. The Prophets were far and away the best idea we
<<Has Worf completely moved off the Defiant and into Jadzia's quarters? And
they take their honeymoon, if they did take one?>>
Worf and Dax are now both living on the station. I'm not sure if they moved
into Dax's old quarters or if we're saying they got new quarters altogether.
They have not had their honeymoon yet.
Date: 12/5/97 9:29:38 PM
<<I've noticed some episodes, like "The Way of the Warrior," use the Klingon
exactly as it is presented in Marc Okrand's The Klingon Dictionary. While
ohh, "Soldiers of the Empire" use Klingon that seems to be completely made
up on its
own. (Except, in that episode, for the Klingon National Anthem.) Now, I'm
complaining about not using Okrand Klingon in any way, I'm just wondering
what are the
deciding factors that determine whether Okrand is consulted as to the
Klingon in an
episode, or whether or not the writer just wings it? Is it mainly
Whether or not we use the language as spelled out in Marc's dictionary is up
to the individual writer. Robert had a facility for languages and he's the
one who translated the stuff in "Way of the Warrior." I personally find the
dictionary cumbersome and usually find it easier to make it up phonetically.
<<In "Call to Arms," when we were forced to abandon the station, it seemed
to be done
hastilly. So, this may be a stupid question, but it's something I've been
what did the Dominion do with all of the personal possessions our Starfleet
behind? Store them? Destroy them? I ask because, Ron, I must know... is
okay? Or is he -- say it's not so! -- a prisoner of the Dominion?>>
I believe Kukalaka is sharing a cell with Tom Riker.
<<Possibilities [ for Ron's middle name]:
Daghda, Dahy, Daibheid, Daimhin, Daire, Daithi, Dallan, Daman, Damhlaic,
Darragh, Darry, Dary, Deagian, Declan, Deoradhain, Derinod, Donn, Donnan,
Doran, Dowan, Dowle, Dubg, Dubhagain, Dubhan, Dubhghall>>
Oh and you were so very, very close....
My middle name is.... (drumroll please)....
Please update your files accordingly.
<<In this episode Reunion we find that K'mpec is dying from poison. Who
Our intention was that Duras had poisoned him. It's been a long time since
I've watched the show, but I thought this was clear -- no?
<<I have to say that I was deeply disappointed by "you are cordially
invited", and would go so far as to put it on my worst DS9 episode list.
I loved most of the episode as it pertained to Worf, but Dax in this
episode really became loathsome.
Her disrespect fro Martok's wife, her position, and her authority really
worked against itself, destroying IMO what should have been one of the best
DS9 installments ever. We pretty much go from Dax calling Martok's Wife's a
liar and her ancestor a whore...Dax then publicly challenges her at the
bachelorette party...then...nothing, we just see Martok's wife officiating
the wedding, everyone smiling- the end.... My question in all this is, was
there perhaps a scene or two that were dropped for time that bridged the gap
between Martok's wife disliking Dax to her approving the wedding? I guess
the Sisko/Dax scene was supposed to be our bridge, but I really feel it just
didn't work. >>
I felt that Sirella was there to test and push Dax and see what kind of
stuff she was made of and that Dax was expected to stand up for herself,
which she did. (And I really liked Dax in this episode, by the way.) I
thought about writing a "Dax apologizes to Sirella" scene, but felt it was
superfluous -- once Dax decides to go back and apologize, the show is over
for all intents and purposes. I saw nothing to be gained by actually
showing the scene and knew that the audience could fill in the blanks.
This is one of those scenes
that sounds better in concept than it would have been in execution.
Which reminds me -- I just wanted to post a personal "Thank you" to Catbyte
for your extremely generous and gracious comments on this episode. We've
gone head to head a few times on this board and I was very gratified to see
that you enjoyed this show since it was influenced in part by many of the
things we've talked about around here. Here's hoping it's not the last one!