Constellation (Star Trek zine published by Westrek)

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Title: Constellation
Publisher: Westrek, a fan club in Australia
Editor(s): Maree Hollier, Sue Isle (unknown dates), Sue Plewright and K. Adrian Bedford (starting in September 1984), Geraldine Cooper and Malcolm Evans (1993)
Date(s): 1982-1995
Medium: print
Size: A4
Fandom: Star Trek
Language: English
External Links:
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Constellation is a gen Star Trek zine of fiction, comments, articles, and reviews published by Westrek, a fan club out of western Australia.

Starting in January 1984, the fan club also published a monthly newsletter with the same name. See Constellation. This may account for some confusing numbering.[1]

From a 1985 issue: "The zine is available to club members, regular trading partners, people who ask us nicely, and at limited editorial whim."

Issue 1

Constellation 1 was published in February 1982 and contains 37 pages.

April 1983 Issue

This issue contains 7 pages, A4, photocopy.

Reactions and Reviews: April 1983

Newsletter of Westrek. New format looking much better. An interesting read, nice illo of Decker on the cover to go with the report on Stephen Collins in W.A.[2]

Issue Reset: V.1 N.0

Constellation 1 (v.1 n.0) was published in September 1984 and contains 9 pages.

A fan in 1984 wrote: "...newsletter of Westrek by the new editors. The new duplicator is giving quite a good legible copy and enthusiasm is gathering momentum so we should see improvements over the next few moths.... or should I say further improvements as the zine continues to grow and improve. An interesting part of this zine, which is mainly devoted to club policies from the editors and committee members, is the debate that focues some of the discussions going on [with] the Babel Conference which is the first Westrek convention. Wish I could be there to hear the debate in person!"—from Beyond Antares #25

Issue v.3 n.2

Constellation v.3 n.2 was published in November/December 1984.

  • The Origins of Westrek, part 2 by Ray Respa
  • The Conscience of the King, a political article which uses a Star Trek episode as an starting point, by A.A. Peel
  • Starfleet Regs, article by Harry Leith
  • The Search for Senility, fiction by Shelley Templar

Issue v.3 n.3

Constellation v.3 n.3 was published in January 1985.

front cover of v.3 n.3, Shaun L. Salmon
back cover of v.3 n.3, Phil Henton
inside page from v.3 n.3

The editorial addresses the "dirty linen" aired in the last issue's editorial and apologizes, saying it was poorly received: "Because of the ill-feeling this generated, and the general reception we received from members that the fanzine should be just that, not a war bulletin, we therefore feel it wise in the future to exclude all such petty politics."

The editor tells fans that two things need to happen regarding the future of this fanzine; it either needs to be half the length and continue monthly, or it goes bi-monthly and members contribute more material.

From the "State Affair" report:

The whole segment began badly, with Star Trek fans being referred to as "trekkies" and "freaks" -- a move guaranteed to alienate most fans without difficulty. The whole impression I had of the segment was of poor research and cheap sots. I had the overwhelming idea whilst watching, that those who put it together thought we were a bunch of hypocrites raving on about peace and equality, when the movie did very little to echo those sentiments. Their constant use of violent parts of the film to counterpoint our people talking about IDIC and future visions was an example. One point here: The Westrek members were in general talking about the series, fan culture and personal involvement in a social club, that is their perception of the world. When that happens, it is easy for outsiders to misunderstand, especially when they don't ask intelligent questions designed to probe away at the seeming discrepancies in perceived philosophies, which one might assume is part of the job of a professional journalist.

And the argument that I am biased is, I feel, negated if you consider a "Willesee" story last year by Janet Street-Porter on Dr Who fandom. That coverage was sympathetic to the people it was about, yet at the same time, objective. It did not make fun of the ideals and beliefs expressed; it was witty in that it demonstrated knowledge of Dr Who and used that knowledge in an entertaining rather than derogatory fashion. It out-did the extremely weak attempt at humour at the end of the segment courtesy of our interviewer, Tim Worner. For the uninitiated, the interview part of the segment finished, leaving Tim to wrap up. Standing in front of a backdrop of what looked like "sci-fi" wallpaper, he noisily claimed, "I hate science fiction!" followed shortly by him sprouting clumsy Spock ears followed by his moan to SA's anchorman Tricia Duffield, "Beam me up, Tricia!"

  • Colophon (2)
  • Our Editorial (3)
  • Letters—What We Found in Our Letterbox (four letters: Virginia Wurth, Harry Leith, John Tipper, and Shaun Salmon) (4)
  • The Great Star Trek Costume Event by Sue Plewright (A report about an event where club members were invited by Channel 7's show "State Affair" to come and try on official costumes worn by the stars in The Search for Spock and then be interviewed. One tidbit: Walter Koenig has very tiny feet.) (8)
  • WESTREK Meets "State Affair" by Sue Plewright (9)
  • The Warriors, fiction by Sue Isle (10)
  • Things That Go "Ho Hum" in the Dark, review by Byron P. Phillum ("A Survey of Recent Sedative SF Cinema," quotes Sturgeon's Law, reports that out of seven recent films, three are any good: The Last Starfighter, Gremlins, and Ghostbusters—the four poor ones were Metropolis, Dune, Conan the Destroyer, and The Search for Spock) (16)
  • The Tears of the Singers, pro book review by Yoshiko Higuchi (19)
  • Zine Reviews by Sue Isle ("Koquilion's Chronicle" (a Doctor Who club zine), "The Boot Cupboard" (published by The Dr Who Fan Club of Tasmania), and Communicator #23) (20)
  • Lost in Space Versus Star Trek, article by Phil Henton

Issue 138

Constellation 138 was published in April 1993 and contains 7 pages.

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 138

"This issue is A4, 7 pages, xerox. "New format this issue and looking much better. An interesting read/nice illo of Decker on the cover to go with the report on Stephen Collins in W.A."—from Beyond Antares #23

Issue 139

Constellation 139 was published in May 1993 and contains 24 pages. The contents deal mostly with club news, gatherings, their charity, and official recap and episode descriptions.

cover of issue#139, not credited

This issue was edited by Geraldine Cooper and Malcolm Evans.

  • Editorial (2)
  • Memberships (3)
  • Club Information (4)
  • Centre Seat (4)
  • Itsy-Bitsy Teeny-Weeny Microscopic Borg Bikini, a filk by Lorie "Sarge" Johnson (6)
  • Star Trek Grapevine (7)
  • Technical Journal (14)
  • Man of the People, show synopsis (17)
  • Schisms, show synopsis (18)
  • Q-Less, show synopsis (19)
  • The Next Generation Episode Guide (21)
  • Deep Space Nine Episode Guide (23)
  • Notice Board (24)

Issue 141

Constellation 141 was published in July 1993 and contains 14 pages.

cover of issue#141, artist is Quokka

This issue was edited by Geraldine Cooper and Malcolm Evans.

  • Editorial (2)
  • Memberships (3)
  • Club Information (4)
  • Centre Seat (4)
  • Secretarial Scribblings (5)
  • Geordi, uncredited fanfic (6)
  • Star Trek Grapevine, newspaper clipping (7)
  • Technical Journal (8)
  • A Fistful of Datas, show synopsis (9)
  • The Quality of Life, show synopsis (9)
  • Move Alone Home, show synopsis (10)
  • Notice Board (15)

Issue 144

Constellation 144 was published in October 1993 and contains 16 pages. This issue was edited by Geraldine Cooper and Malcolm Evans.

front cover of issue #144, Lyall Griffiths

The editorial:

Why is there such a stigma attached to being a Star Trek fan? The mere mention of the fact can give those not that way inclined visions of people dressing up in uniforms, wearing pointy ears and spurting technobabble and trivia. OK, it's true in some cases - but there are extremists wherever you go. Most likely the person who has shunned you (i.e. run away screaming) was wearing fluorescent clothing with 'Mambo' or "Live to Surf' written on, and has just gone to watch "Neighbours" or "The Cosby Show" in order to remind themselves how lucky they are that they are 'normal'. So who is right?

I think that part of the problem is that us Trek fans allow ourselves to be preyed upon. We're just too nice - unfortunately Star Trek values don't exist in too many people in these times. Perhaps with the advent of Deep Space Nine there will be a new, more aggressive breed of Trek fan? Imagine a group of uniformed Trek vigilantes roaming the streets in Away Teams, looking to convert non-believers using lead-lined toy phasers. Scary, but not beyond the realms of impossibility. Will the bearded gentleman who threatened me with a knife at the Anniversary Party when I played an Abba record please step forward...

So who invented the word Trekkie'? Surely not a fan. I can quite easily imagine a group of hunters prowling around video stores and book shops, calling out "Here Trekkie Trekkie", blowing into a communicator whistle. I once read somewhere that "we" prefer to be called 'Trekkers'. Despite being infinitely more dignified, it still sounds daft - a hike, anyone? So next time you go to say "I'm a Trekker" or "I'm a Trekkie", instead say "I'm a Star Trek fan and I'm proud of it" and see what the response is.

My mind takes me back to the Saturday Night Live sketch set at a Trek convention. All of the people there were the stereotypical fan, as described in my first paragraph. Although sometimes we need to laugh at ourselves (some of that sketch was genuinely funny; some sadly true) it was quite unnecessary for William Shatner to appear and make the comments he did. "Get a life", he said. As fans it's us who gave him a life - a damn good one at that. Surely we deserve some respect from him? At least most of the other stars take the time to talk to their fans at conventions - strange we may be, but we pay their bills and they know it.

It seems that Trek fans have to live in a world of our own - mentally and/or physically. Either that, or hide under a guise of 'normality' and come out of the closet once a month behind closed doors. Some of us have to grow up and come back down to Earth - but as I said, there are extremists everywhere.

Myself? I consider myself a fan, but not a fanatic. I don't dress up in uniform, although I probably would do it I was the right shape. I must confess that I don't flaunt the fact that I'm a fan when I'm not at Westrek, or around those privy to my deep, dark secret - it's worked against me too often. But if someone asks me if I like Star Trek, I'll reply "Yes, and I'm proud of it". It doesn't earn me much respect, but it's funny to see them run away screaming.

  • Editorial by Martin Eade (1)
  • Memberships (3)
  • We're Moving! (meeting place has changed) (4)
  • From the Centre Seat (5)
  • Club Discounts (6)
  • Episode Teasers (9)
  • The Faisel Technique (10)
  • New Episodes (11)
  • Convention News about ConFusion (13)
  • Technical Journal (15)
  • Notice Board (17)

Issue 146

Constellation 146 was published in December 1993 and contains 18 pages.

cover of issue #146

Issue 147

Constellation 147 was published in January 1994 and contains 16 pages. The editors are Nigel King, Martin Eade, and Lyall Griffiths (this is Lyall Griffiths' last issue).

cover of issue #147
  • Editorial ("Does the end justify the means? Or more specifically does the level of violence and other negative behaviour still qualify Star Trek as family viewing?") by Lyall Griffiths (2)
  • Memberships (3)
  • Hall Location (4)
  • Centre Seat (5)
  • Club Discounts (6)
  • Survey Results, favorite episodes (7)
  • Better Judgement, fiction (9)
  • Starfleet Intelligence Report: Starfleet Historical Records Memory Alpha Database: The Battle of Narendra III (11)
  • Seatrek '93 con report, by Karen Mendes (13)
  • Notice Board (15)

Issue 148

Constellation 148 was published in February 1994 and contains 14 pages.

cover of issue #148

The editors are Nigel King, Adam Sparnon, and Martin Eade.

  • From The Centre Seat, "What is it about space and science fiction series' such as Star Trek that captivates audiences worldwide?" by Adam Sparnon (3)
  • Club Discounts (4)
  • Constellation Credits (5)
  • The Big Trill, a Star Trek: TNG fic (6)
  • A Spectacular Crossword (7)
  • Proposed Club Constitution Amendments, an eight-page ballot
  • Constellation Correspondence, a fan's testimonial about her love for Star Trek by Helen Hart, and another letter by Joshua A. Rankin (9)
  • TNG vs Channel 9: "Ye Canna Change the Laws O' Physics, Cap'n" by Harry M. Leith, article on Star Trek fans being a minority, being too polite, taking a backseat to sport fans' desires, includes the line: "We are still paying the price for people who wore too many rubber ears in the sixties. Do you like being labeled a Crackpot? No? Get used to it!" (10)
  • The Rules of Acquisition (10)
  • Starfleet Intelligence Report: The Romulan Exodus from Vulcan, The Formation of the Romulan Star Empire, by Ian C. Johnson (11)
  • Notice Board (13)

Issue 149

Issue 150

Constellation 150 was published in April 1994 and contains 24 pages.

cover of issue #150

It was edited by Nigel King, Martin Eade, and Adam Sparnon.

  • Editorial (2)
  • Star Trek, Life is Peaceful There..., filk to the tune of "Go West" originally written by The Village People, and more recently performed the Pet Shop Boys (5)
  • A (Belated) Christmas Message, "'Twas the night before Christmas" Trek poem (6)
  • Star Trek vs Blake's 7, a 25-point list comparing the two shows, "Thanks to Russell B. Farr for bringing this list to my attention by forcing me to read his excellent fanzine, "Piffle & Other Trivia," the official publication of the UWA Science Fiction Association." (7)
  • Puzzle Page (8)
  • Bits and Pieces (9)
  • Constellation Correspondence, long letter by Ian C. Johnson, defending Star Trek from another fan's letter in the previous issue (11)
  • Trek to Infinity, a clipping about the upcoming movie, from "The West Australian" April 6, 1994 (12)
  • a fan's report of the Trek film festival at a theatre called "Lumiere"(13)
  • Book Review, Isaac Asimov's "Nemesis" (15)
  • Oneirosphere, Star Trek: TNG fiction by K. Adrian Bedford (to be continued) (16)
  • Starfleet Intelligence Report: The History of Romulan Star Empire, Part Three, Romulan Events from 2311 to 2370AD, Modern Day Romulans (22)

Issue 151

Constellation 151 was published in May 1994 and contains 21 pages.

cover of issue #151

Issue 152

Constellation 152

Issue 153

Constellation 153

Issue 154

Constellation 154

Issue V.1 N.1 (reboot issue, is also issue #155)

This issue (undated) was published in September/October 1994 or October/November 1994 and contains 37 pages.

cover of v.1 n.1

The editors are Greg Desiatov, Martin Eade, and Nigel King.

  • the zine has now gone bi-monthly, and "v.1 n.1" reflects this change. The next issue (#156) returns to the original numbering system.
  • editorial by Nigel King (focus on the history of the Star Trek franchise, standardization of plot, where is the franchise going, what will Star Trek: VOY be like?) (2)
  • Ejector Seat: latest club news by Co-Ordinater Malcolm Evans, includes a short story contest, includes prompt, the prize is $50 (3)
  • announcement: "As you can no doubt see, this issue of Constellation is the first of the bimonthly issues voted upon in August and represents a significant change from previous issues brought to us by Martin, Nigel and Greg. As was mentioned at the annual general meeting in August, the bi-monthly issues allow the Editors to increase the content whilst reducing the cost to the Club and hence avoiding any increase in membership fees. So if you have any submissions for or comments about the new and improved Constellation, the Editors are available during the monthly meetings or by writing to the Club's post office box."
  • The Official Writer's Bible for Star Trek: VOY "kindly leaked to Constellation by Sue Isle. All you need to know about the new characters in the latest incarnation of Star Trek." (5)
  • The Veteara Probe, Trek fiction by Adrian Barker and Reto Meier (9)
  • Subspace Distortions, all the latest Star Trek news and gossip, compiled by Adrian Bedford (23)
  • The Honeymoon is Over, original science fiction by Anita Marchesani (25)
  • Starfleet Medical, a thesis on the psychological danger of Command Rank, by "Commander Alethea Raspa, Counsellor for the now de-commisioned U.S.S. Altair (26)
  • Good Things Come to Those Who Wait, Star Trek: TNG fiction by Wendy Potts, "Beverly and Jean-Luc finally get it together" (28)
  • Quantum Leap: The Next Generation, Quantum Leap/Star Trek: TNG fiction by Rachel Turner (32)
  • Starfleet Intelligence Report on "the reclusive race: The Jarada" by Ian Johnson (33)
  • Star Trek: Generations, photos from the upcoming feature film (35)

Issue 156

Constellation 156 was published in Dec 1994/Jan 1995 and contains 33 pages.

cover of issue #156

Issue 157

Constellation 157 was published in Feb/March 1995 and contains 22 pages. The editors are Nigel King, Lyall Griffiths, and Martin Eade.

cover of issue #157
inside issue#157, a caricature of the TNG cast by Al Hirschfeld
  • Editorial by Martin Eade (about Star Trek characters celebrating Christian holidays) (2)
  • Memberships (3)
  • Hall Location (4)
  • Club Discounts (6)
  • Competition (8)
  • TNG Season 7 so far... (9)
  • Episode Teasers (10)
  • Star Trek: VOY (12)
  • Seatrek '93, con report, part two (13)
  • Christmas begins here... photos of a fan party (16)
  • cynical filk to the tune of "Jingle Bells," the first line is "Jingle Bells, Star Trek sells, cash in all the way, For anything with "Star Trek" on it somebody will pay!" (17)
  • Notice Board (19)

The editorial:

Why have we never had a Christmas episode of Star Trek? In television these days it is common practice to have a "Christmas special". Surely with 52 episodes of TNG and DS9 coming out of Paramount per year at the moment we could have just one Christmas episode?

The question is, what would the plot be? The usual Christmas special places the regular cast in a Christmas atmosphere, and runs the plot around Carol singing, exchanging of gifts and soon In Star Trek, however, it would seem a bit odd to have an unprovoked attack interrupting Yuletide activities - imagine the Enterprise crippled and the Borg sparing the crew at the last minute just because it's Christmas? How about a bunch of Romulans beaming on board to pull a cracker and roast a few chestnuts over the warp engines? Maybe not. To avoid rather blatant blasphemy (and comparisons to Star Trek V) or a feel-good miracle story (Look! The Christmas Star! And the mysterious disease destroying our brains has suddenly disappeared!] there is only one alternative: the discovery of Santa Claus. Most of the Senior Officers would be in Ten-Forward (festively decorated) being generally festive, when Mr Worf (disgusted at this silly Human event) would call from the Bridge with news of a distress signal. Roll opening titles... The Crew would rescue a mysterious ship (shaped like a Reindeer) that contains lots of presents and a jolly man dressed remarkably like Santa Claus. He would be in need of repairs to his warp engines ("with so many Federation outposts. Reindeer just aren't fast enough!") Of course the Crew would think him insane although tests would indicate otherwise ("He believes he is Santa Claus, Captain!!) Data would probably be confused and do something silly in the holodeck. Geordi would fix the craft and Santa would fly off (after saving the Enterprise from destruction via a subplot), wishing everyone a Merry Christmas. The next morning all of the Crew would find unexplained presents in their quarters. Don't we all have a warm glow inside now?

Back to the original question of why we've never had a Christmas episode. Surely Christianity hasn't died out? In this Century it is unfortunate that Christmas is more of a commercial experience than anything else in the 24th Century this shouldn't really be an issue (see last month's Editorial), so perhaps Christmas has been forgotten. Perhaps nobody knows what Stardate Christmas Day is. Who needs an episode where the crew are nice to each other - isn't that what Star Trek is about in every episode? Quark would no doubt have a field day but I doubt that the Bajorans or any other non-Human species for that matter celebrate Christmas. Still, they all seem to speak English (sorry, Federation Standard) so why not? We ignore everything else that's wrong with Star Trek, but that's another Editorial... I suppose if we had a Christmas episode we'd also get an Easter one. Can you imagine Wort with bunny ears happily giving out chocolate eggs to the ship's children (and a crazed Counsellor Troi)?

There is another possibility, and that is Q. How about "Merry Qmas." Qpid worked, so why not this? Patrick Stewart has had the experience - he kept "A Christmas Carol" all to himself. He should have brought in the rest of the cast and let Paramount pay for ft. Both TNG and DS9 are in re-runs over Christmas this season so no special this year. Still, the TNG movie is due out in Christmas week next year...

Issue 158

Constellation 158 was published in Apr/May 1995 and contains 29 pages.

cover of issue #158

Issue 169

Constellation 169 was published in Feb/Mar 1997.

cover of issue #169


  1. ^ "There is significant variation in the format of numbering of Constellation, with the first issue released numbered 8202.19 [i.e. 19 Feb. 1982]; the Sept. 1984 issue designation vol. 1, no. 0; and the Jan. 1986 issue listed as vol. 1, issue 1. The fanzine was published from 1982 till 1995." -- from Zine Wiki
  2. ^ from Beyond Antares #23