I’ve been asked a few times now about what it means that my upcoming Star Trek: TNG novel COLLATERAL DAMAGE “represents the culmination of 16 years of literary continuity.” For those who didn’t know, the Trek novels have been working in a mostly coordinated/shared continuity since 2001.
I started contributing to the shared Star Trek literary continuity in 2001 with my work for the S.C.E. eBook series, which at that time published monthly novellas. It was a mix of episodic and serialized narratives, and we put in links to other Trek book series.
My first full-length paperback novels were a pair of TNG books, released back-to-back in September/October 2004. Those were A TIME TO KILL and A TIME TO HEAL, the 7th & 8th books in a nine-book series.
I really shook things up in A TIME TO KILL and A TIME TO HEAL. The two books were a Star Trek critical allegory of the 2003 U.S. invasion and occupation of Iraq. There was some really dark stuff, especially in the second book. And it had lasting consequences for our characters.
I’ve now written a total of 28 Star Trek novels, and I have continued to weave ongoing story threads through many of them, even ones set in different centuries and series of Star Trek. Consequently, I was able to link TNG, DS9, SCE, Titan, and Section 31 tales.
Now, after 18 years, many of those story lines are converging in one novel: COLLATERAL DAMAGE, which follows up on the fallout from my Section 31 novel CONTROL, as well as the events of Dayton Ward’s TNG novels HEARTS AND MINDS and AVAILABLE LIGHT.
So what might you want to read before jumping into COLLATERAL DAMAGE this October? You don’t =need= to read anything, since I explain in-text what you need to know to follow the story. But you’ll get more out of it if you’ve read some or all of these books:
TNG: A Time to Kill (the Tezwa crisis)
TNG: A Time to Heal (the Tezwa coverup and its aftermath)
TNG: Cold Equations, Book I: The Persistence of Memory (Data’s reincarnation)
Titan: Fortune of War (the Riker/Sarai/Batanides subplot)
Section 31: Control (the Section 31 controversy)
TNG: Hearts and Minds by Dayton Ward (the Section 31 fallout)
TNG: Available Light by Dayton Ward (more Section 31 fallout)
I hope you’ll pre-order your copy of COLLATERAL DAMAGE, coming Oct. 8, 2019. (But if you think this is the end of the current continuity … let’s just say we Trek scribblers have a few rabbits left to pull from our hats…)