This story is very much based on the Star Trek Role-Playing Game scenario of the same name produced in 1986. In that same year, I believe, I played that same scenario. I wrote an account of that gaming session as a writing exercise but didn't do more than that with it.

In 1992, I joined the Klingon Assault Group. Finally, I had an outlet for the Klingon heart that I learned I had from years before. Numerous re-writings of the story went on in my head but it wasn't for a number of years and the production of my own website that I had the motivation to put all those daydreams down in prose.

There were some changes made for dramatic effect. In the original RPG game, Kordite was a K't'inga-class battlecruiser captain during the time portrayed in Star Trek III (2285). On encountering the nomadic natives, he and his crew had to participate in a number of challenges to prove themselves worthy of their trust. In my re-write, Kordite was my Next Generation-era persona (2365) and was of a much lower rank. The thorn-in-the-side character of Kul'Ro had a different name originally but was still very much the same. I deleted the dramatically tedious challenges but the seduction by Utta played out pretty much the same. As did the party, arrival of the Vulcans, late night visit and final battle.

So now I flash forward to 2004 when I pick up a copy of Keith R. A. DeCandido's "I.K.S. Gorkon: A Good Day to Die". In that novel, the captain goes to a newly discovered world rich in a vital shipbuilding mineral. There he encounters a somewhat cat-like warrior species. The fate of the planet is determined by a series of traditional challenges between the natives and the Klingons. Sound familiar?

[. . . edit. . . ]

Now the first version of this afterword skated pretty close to accusing DeCandido of re-writing the same storyline. Actually, I thought he had read or even played the same FASA module nearly 20 years ago and when he wrote his novel, the same story was there, probably unintentionally.

After an "ego search", DeCandido found my website and responded to this aftward via e-mail, accusing me slander and saying that he never saw the "Imbalance of Power" module. (He did admit to playing the RPG, though.)

He says he never saw the module so I'll believe him.

In 1921, Georges Polti published "The Thirty-Six Dramatic Situations" that boiled all of drama; theater, opera, literature and forward into movies and television, into 36 plots. Every book, play or other dramatic presentation , he postulated, is one or a combination of this handfull of plots.

Authors are always looking for ways to repackage these 36 variations into something new. Everyone's seen them all before but there needs to be something fresh in the delivery that people haven't seen to be successful. In this case, the elements that DeCandido chose just happened to be too many of the same elements that I'd already seen decades previously. -- Revised: 2 January 2005
Copyright © 2005 Kevin A. Geiselman