Booklet of General Plans
|Title:||Booklet of General Plans|
|Publisher:||Franz Joseph Schnaubelt|
|Date(s):||sold at Equicon '74 as a fanwork, published in April or May 1975 by Ballantine Books as a professional publication called "Star Trek Blueprints"|
|Fandom:||Star Trek: TOS|
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It was later revised and sold as a for-profit pro work in spring 1975 as "Star Trek Blueprints."
The original Booklet of General Plans was a 12-page, large format (30 3/8" x 9"), stapled booklet.Equicon 1974 (April) was where Paramount studies began taking notice of some of the merchandising opportunities beneath the Star Trek franchise.
A letter sent to Star Trek Archives and printed in Archives' Log v.1 n.8 (December 1974) shows the marketing put into this by the fan who wrote it and emphasizes the cross-pollination of pro and fan Star Trek worlds:...months later, with a major Trek convention approaching, Joseph had still not received official permission to sell his work. Bypassing Roddenberry, he made a one-time deal with Paramount to sell the “General Plans” (the Enterprise blueprints) at the upcoming convention. Equicon 1974 took place in Los Angeles from April 12–14. Of the 500 copies of the General Plans Joseph had prepared, 410 sold immediately; 450 requests for additional copies were taken on postcards. Paramount, which received Joseph’s royalty check shortly thereafter, sensed it was on to something, and began negotiating for a mass-market release of both the General Plans and the still-growing Technical Manual. The results exceeded all expectations. The blueprints went on sale across the nation on May 24, 1975, selling out within two hours. By May 28, 50,000 additional copies had sold, prompting Ballantine to print 100,000 more. 
Since my surprise test introduction of the BOOKLET OF GENERAL PLANS at Equicon '74, I have been receiving numerous requests for it from ST fans all over the country. I promised to notify them when I knew something definite. Marketing arrangements have now been made and I'm asking for your cooperation to spread the word through your organization. For the benefit of your ST fans, would you be so kind as to circulate the following announcement-
The BOOKLET OF GENERAL PLANS for a Constitution Class Starship will be be published by Ballantine Books. The first printing of the 2nd edition should be available in your favorite book store in February 1975. If he isn't carrying Ballantine's line, perhaps you should consider using some of the well-known ST pressure. Of course it will be available at the Star Trek Conventions and also at the Customer Service Shop of the Smithsonian Institution where the Booklet is part of a permanent exhibit titled "Life in the Universe." For you lucky people who got a copy of the Special Equicon '74 First Edition we advise you at least have a look at this edition, since it contains subtle improvements and is a permanent ink printing. The STAR FLEET TECHNICAL MANUAL will come along later in the year but the publisher says it will probably be around Christmas time. We think you'll agree the delay was worth it when you see the results, and we also think you'll be pleased with the prices.Now, just for your information in case there's still someone out there who doesn't know what they are, the BOOKLET is a detailed set of 12 accurately scaled drawings 9" x 30 1/2" in size, showing the complete exterior and interior of a Heavy Cruiser (U.S.S. Enterprise type) Class Starship. They faithfully conform to current "U.S. Navy practise, but you'll have to be good little boys and girls and learn your Metric System, because these plans are correctly drawn in metric. And yes, Clementine, the ship does have bathrooms! The STAR FLEET TECHNICAL MANUAL is a compilation of Technical Orders, each 8 1/2" x 11" in size, covering regulations, specifications, data, star charts, equipment, etc., of direct concern to Star Fleet and the United Federation of Planets. The drawings are accurately detailed and scaled, colors are carefully coordinated, and all details are technically and scientifically accurate. The First Edition is planned to be 94 pages but the issue is expandable, and the master outline can classify 50,000 separate individual subjects - not that we're going to have that many, are we? There's enough variety to please everyone, even the "legal eagles," so start saving your Interplanetary Credits! Now it's up to you to show the publisher you meant what you said about wanting copies of my work. A very heavy interest might be a real assist in directing thinking towards reviving the live TV series. Cordially, Franz Joseph Schnaubelt
detail from the Constitution page: the Special Equicon '74 First Edition designation. Franz Joseph is the draftsman and Gene Roddenberry is the Chief of Design. Note the plan's date: April 12, 1974, the last day of Equicon.
The Pro Work
This fanwork was reworked and sold shortly after its original release as a Bantam Books publication in spring of 1975.
Fan Comments: Pro Work
BLUEPRINTS FOR A STARSHIP.The Star Fleet Technical Manual will come along later in the year, but the publisher says it will probably be around Christmas time. We think you'll agree that the delay was worth it and we also think you'll be pleased with the prices.