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  1. Thank you to all our entrants in the "Fashion" Writing Challenge! Before I reveal the winner and runner-up of this Challenge, I want to note that the judges had an extremely difficult time declaring a winner this time, and at times it looked as though there would be a three-way tie. As it was, there were single-point differences between our top three contenders, so I want to offer those two who made it to the top with some hearty congratulations! Our winner for this round is the writer behind Jalana with her story "Fatal mistake"! Our runner up is by the writer behind Irina Pavlova with the st
  2. Greetings, everyone! Want to read the Challenge entries, but don't have time to sit down at your computer? Need a way to take them with you on your tablet or mobile device? Now you have it! Please enjoy this full compilation of the July & August Writing Challenge, available with all the entrants' stories and judges' comments. This is a PDF document with interior hyperlinks to each story for your ease of navigation, so do please read at your leisure. Let me know if you enjoyed this easy way to read! Also, if you would prefer to have this as an ePub or .mobi file for your Nook or Ki
  3. Welcome to the last Writing Challenge of the summer of 2014! Appropriately, this Challenge is going to be hot! FASHION The winner of our May & June Challenge, Brian, aka Lieutenant Ren Rennyn, offers the following prompt: I'm rewatching TOS, and got to "Is There No Truth In Beauty?", where (spoilers) Dr. Miranda Jones' elaborate dress turns out to be a sensor web that allows her to "see." It got me thinking about how fashion is used in sci-fi, whether as a plot device, or to set the scene, define a culture, or place us in a certain time. There are plenty of ways an entry for this Challeng
  4. (( A cell, somewhere )) :: The darkness surrounding Claire was heavy on her shoulders. She could grasp it, almost, before her fingers slipped through the thick black soup that embraced her wholly. Raising her hand she could not even see that, so Claire's mind began to wander, wondering if it was even still there. Was any of her body still there or was her spirit just in a void between lives? :: :: A sudden beam of blinding light drilled its way into her eyes, pain flooding through her as she instinctively threw herself to the floor - there was a floor that was a good sign of not being in the
  5. To: Department of Fleet Logistics, Star Fleet Head Quarters, Earth From: Commander Fia Eckelson, Star Base 118 Star Date: 239108.20 Re: Implementation of a new Fleet wide uniform. Sir, Since the beginning of this year, I have had the duty of commanding the Public Relations and Workplace Efficiency Think Tank based out of Star Base 118. While I will not bore you with the details of the day to day operations of the think tank I would like to bring one of our latest projects to your attention as I believe it worthy of fleet wide implementation. This project centers around a complete overhaul
  6. (( Luxury Quarters, Stargazer Hotel, Orion )) Her feet were exquisitely pedicured in the French style, her long, muscular body tanned honey brown, her curly blonde hair streaming down her naked back to just below her shoulders. A jeweled belly button ring hung from her pierced navel, and aqua blue eye shadow, matching her dress, was meticulously applied. Her long, tanned legs were freshly shaved, and she looked down at the four inch stiletto aqua blue sandals lying at the foot of the bed, giving the six foot woman an even more towering presence…::: She scented her body with a combination o
  7. OOC: Obviously, this is slightly un-canon, but it came out of a friendly speculative discussion when I was in grad school. K'tal looked at the Trill man, his mouth slightly open in shock. "You want to know what?" he said. "I said I want to know about the forehead thing. If I help you, you tell me," Azulay said matter of factly. He was stuck. He had to have the Trill Ambassador's help procuring the wine for his wedding, but the subject of the foreheads was not something that his people talked about ever. The prohibition was especially strict when it came to non-Klingons. He resolved to put
  8. Dress Greens Everything had changed. 219 years had passed, people grew old, withered, and died. Buildings were built, treaties were signed and wars were fought. Irina had changed herself, though not nearly to the extent everyone else does over such a long period of time. There were red flecks in the whites of her eyes, while the lustrous deep yellow gold of her hair was now more of a platinum blond, bleached in the same ultraviolet radiation that had long since fried all of the cones in her eyes and reduced her vision to black and white, with a somewhat limited pallet of grays. Thirty-ni
  9. Thank you to everyone who participated in our late summer July/August Writing Challenge! I'm pleased now to bring you the judges' decisions. I will note that a clear final field was harder to come by in this contest, as some final rankings were only one point off another. The winner of the Challenge for July and August is the writer behind Ben Livingston, with his story "The Genetic Engineer's Manifesto"! Our runner-up is the writer behind Evan Delano, with his story "Resignation"! Congratulations to both of you, and watch the Community News in the coming weeks for more about these authors and
  10. Welcome, my friends, to the July and August Challenge for 2013! For this Challenge, Ed -- the writer behind Captain Diego Herrera and Ambassador Tallis Rhul and the winner of the May & June "From the Past" Challenge -- would like you to consider the topic "Under My Skin." Now, you may choose to take this expression figuratively and examine its ramifications for one of your staid characters (or, perhaps, an entirely new one); but the beauty of Trek is that you may also choose to get under a character's skin literally, perhaps with some Borg nanoprobes, a Trill symbiont, or something complet
  11. From: Commander Sean Gardner, Commanding Officer, Bernard IV Duckblind Research Facility Sent: 239008.07 To: Captain Elizabeth Zaks, Commanding Officer, USS Intrepid Subject: Resignation from Starfleet Dear Captain Zaks, I regret the need to write this letter; however, after much reflection, I’ve concluded that I cannot return to Starfleet in good conscience. I can’t turn my back on this world. Not while I know what’s happening here. As a Starfleet officer, and as a scientist, I have dedicated my career to the ideal of non-interference as enshrined in Starfleet’s General Order 1—the so-called
  12. The price of ignorance is extinction. When a person grasps that truth –not comprehends it but truly appreciates its intricacies and its final implications – when a person realizes that, there’s nothing else to do. Knowledge must be sought wholeheartedly and without reservation, shedding the blanket of ignorance that, though warm and comfortable, offers no true shelter. My father learned this through experience. He, like so many others, perished on Sherman’s Planet during the famine before I was even born. As did so many like him. And is that fair? Was he truly less suited to life there than an
  13. A wound festered inside of her. The cut had peeled away the layers of life itself and buried its way deep within her skin, fleecing her of all rationale, and robbing her of the future that she had long dreamed would make life in Starfleet complete. She was alone in her agony - even the consoling words of those gathered around her could not stop the pain that raged so fiercely, silencing her. Lieutenant Taylor, the Chief Medical Officer, stared into her glazed eyes. "Captain Pelzer, I'm sorry, there is nothing more I can do." She had long appreciated the doctor's candor, but never more than
  14. “Ambassador?” It was a deceptively simple formation, yet it encompassed not only a physical enigma but a slew of philosophical questions, both personal and existential, that any sentient might ponder at some point in their life. The majority of them boiled down to: What if? The angular slab of stone before him might well hold the answers, but it wasn’t talking. It had not spoken since Captain James T. Kirk had discovered it, over four hundred years ago, and the view through its portal showed nothing more than the desert plain beyond. Perhaps it would never speak again. “Ambassador?” What if? S
  15. (USS Unnamed Ship) ::She hated to leave him all alone, but duty called and Esther could not be late for her post. The Chief Medical Officer would have a conniption fit, to put it mildly, if she was. And yet, she hesitated one more moment and did her best to resist one last run of her hand over the ebony that covered his head and trail it down over his body. Alas, she could not resist and her fingers made contact of their own accord.:: ::He didn't stir, not even the slightest and his eyes remained closed, his body in a state of complete relaxation. Esther chuckled softly as her hand stole away
  16. ((Highlands of Scotland)) ::The Trill woman, wearing a backpack and carrying a walking stick from her father-in-law’s extensive collection, had set out from her camp with only a couple of hours left before the mid-autumn sunset. The Northwest Highlands, in the far reaches of the Isle of Britain, was one of the least populated areas on Earth, despite it being in Europe, one of the most densely populated. Idril enjoyed the silence and often took her leave times with her in-laws and camped in the hills and valleys there. Something about the solitude, the pregnant silence, had gotten under her ski
  17. Happy September, everyone, and I'm pleased to bring you, courtesy of our lovely Challenge judges, the winners of August's special contest! The winner of the August Writing Challenge is Velana with her story "The Life in a Moment." Our runner-up, for the second contest in a row, is Idril Mar, with her bouncy "The Desperate Engineer." Congratulations to them, and thanks to everyone who participated. The option to include poetry or verse in future contests is something I'd like to implement, but when it happens again, we will likely have separate winners in fiction and poetry genres. Thank you to
  18. In a moment of mental anguish, the Chief Engineer of the Independence breaks out in song, to the tune of "Camp Grenada" by Alan Sherman. -- Jenn Hello Captain… Anassasi. Greetings from Main… Engineering. The deck is clean now… thanks to Ensigns. And we might be able to start up the core soon. We had some losses… I'll admit it. Seven crewmen… all have bit it. You'll remember… Ensign Fields. Due to radiation he's fused to the shields. All my officers… hate the crewmen. And the crewmen… think the same. Without some phasers… there'd be fights here. I feel I'm becoming an ancient slave driver. But
  19. Greetings and various apropos felicitations, Writing Challenge enthusiasts, and welcome to this special August Challenge! Read this introduction carefully, as any entries that don't follow the guidelines will be disqualified. A collaboration between last month's winner Dave, aka Alleran Tan, and I had resulted in this special August theme: "A Moment In The Life Of..." Every entry must be under 1000 words for this round, which means that flash fiction and short-short stories would be ideal. However, I'd also like to open the Challenge up to some forms we haven't seen before. For example, how ab
  20. The sigh passed swiftly and softly over the vast gray bulkheads. The Akira-class vessel listed sideways, her body torn open. A black starlit sky mercilessly ripped tiny hands clutching at her, and she cried out, a moan ripping through her core. Eileen sagged. Twin plumes of fire billowed and rolled, welcoming her tiny charge into its arms, and she felt a surge of power tremble through her torpedo tubes, eager for a small recompense. Energy pulsed through her veins. Eileen heaved her warp nacelles forward without success. Too much internal bleeding. Her bio-neural gel packs dripped slick
  21. At what point did life begin? Entire books had been written on that question. Debates had raged back and forth for centuries. It was the unsolvable mystery of creation. Everyone had a theory; no one had definitive proof. Did life begin when one cell combined with another cell to create new cells? Was it when that cluster of cells took on features...arms, legs, eyes, a nose? Perhaps it was the first time the fetus moved or when it had developed enough to survive on its own. Or did it all come down to the moment of blood, sweat and tears when a child emerged into the world, purple and wrinkled,
  22. Ethical Considerations Starbase 55, population 1,203 Stardate 239102.04 I was born on Ferenginar and, much like most Ferengi, I was raised with the principles of our species: a form of hyper-capitalist profit-seeking completely out of place with nearly every other warp-capable civilization in the Alpha quadrant. For all of my life this was all I cared about, a numbers game. How many bars, how many strips, how many slips. Credits and debits, stock options, negative gearing and dividend reinvestment. How small and pathetic all that seems to me now. My assimilation and subsequent "liberati
  23. ((Timothy Peak Academy)) Roberts: Thank you, ahem, ::Gregor sifted through his notes:: Timothy Peak Academy, for the opportunity to speak with you today. ::The podium was a crutch that he hadn’t needed when he started this. He was younger then – fresh out of the Academy and wide-eyed about the world. He didn’t walk through an audience anymore. He didn’t jump around the stage. Now, his grip on the wood tightened; he planted his feet firmly behind the pillar. Roberts glanced over to the headmaster, who sat at the side of the auditorium in the front row, lips firmly together and staring over his
  24. A momentary Resistance The dark haired woman rushed into the room. Her security reds long since battered and torn from hard use. In the not so great distance, she could hear the rhythmic shuffling of feet headed in her direction. Closing her eyes and swallowing hard, she quickly keyed in the sequence to seal the door behind her. When it failed to move, she cursed and pulled off the control panel, revealing the circuitry underneath. Moments later, she successfully short circuited the controls, closing off the view of a Borg drone just turning the corner. Her breathing came out in ragged g
  25. They just didn't know what it was like. To be turned on and shut off like a faucet; forced into reality only in the most dire circumstances, yet forgotten when things were going well, the holographic doctor mused about its very existence. Sure, he did not have feelings, per se, but even in his currently set, standby mode, thoughts fluttered around his electrical synapses. Residing within the memory banks of the sickbay computers, he felt as if he were trapped into a tiny little box. It gave new meaning to claustrophobia. There again, there were no feelings and no fears. Perhaps that was part o
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