K/S & K.S. (Kindred Spirits)/Issues 13-14

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K/S & K.S. (Kindred Spirits) Issues
Issues 001-002 Issues 003-004 Issues 005-006 Issues 007-008 Issues 009-010 Issues 011-012 Issues 013-014 Issues 015-016 Issues 017-018 Issues 019-020 Issues 021-054
Zine
Title: K/S & K.S. (Kindred Spirits)
Publisher:
Editor(s): Central Mailers: BH (#1-#12), NS (#13-), DM (1988), LB (1993), BA (1997-1998)
Type: APA, letterzine
Date(s): 1982 until at least 1998 (as print), however, it also moved online in 1996 to become K/S Circle
Frequency: supposedly every two months but was more erratic than that
Medium: print
Fandom: Star Trek: TOS
Language: English
External Links:
Click here for related articles on Fanlore.

K/S & K.S. (Kindred Spirits) is a Kirk/Spock slash apazine.

There were 54 issues published between 1982 and 1998.

Issue 13

K/S & K.S. (Kindred Spirits) 13 was published in April 1985 and contains 44 pages. Deadline for the next issue is May 25, 1985.

NLS is the new central mailer.

The author of the WIP "By the Stone Ezel" said there would be no more installments printed here as she is considering submitting it to a zine. But this is short-lived, as there are further chapters in the next issues.

NLS wrote in this issue that two members (DD and CH) dropped out of this apa due to the fact that someone was selling copies of it at Clippercon. The apa is NEVER for sale.

This issue contains 9 (two of them by the same person) tribs from 19 members.

Tribs: TGK (And in this Corner #13), DCL (Perpetually Amazed), LF (Lavender Diversity), NLS (Ramblings), JG (Unity of Opposites), RKL (Ruth's Riteings, and Continuma), AB (Tail Recursives), TB (Stellar Drift)

From JG:
I think I have maybe one all-Klingon zine in my collection, and I don't remember ever getting around to reading it. I probably wouldn't buy a / Klingon tale if it were sold as a separate zine; I probably would buy it if it were part of a mostly K/S zine. When I pick up a new zine, my hunger for K/S dominates. It's like going to a good restaurant when you're ravenous: You wolf down the bread and butter and ignore the vintage Dom Perignon. Depending on the zine and what else I have around to read, I don't always read everything in every zine.
From JG:

I remember something Jean Lorrah wrote in INTERSTAT [1] about her experience with female friendships prior to and after becoming involved in fandom. She said that before she discovered fandom, her friendships had been mostly with men and that she'd always felt she had more in common with men than with women. In fandom, she wrote, for the first time she found herself developing friendships and working relationships with women. I could well understand her experience, because in her generation men were brought up to have careers and to Do Something Important, and women were brought up to be housewives. If you wanted to do more with your life than worry about yellow waxy buildup on your floors, then you were likely to gravitate to men as kindred spirits, rather than women. Anyway, I wonder how many other fans have overcome of these social barriers through fandom? I've heard other fans, some of them housewives, say they'd had few opportunities to make friends before they got involved in fandom.

Another issue is social role expectations about what is "appropriate" for women to do with their lives. I have a feeling that many women in fandom never internalized those expectations [of female domesticity] when they were growing up, maybe because we had active imaginations and read a lot of books. Once, at a con, I was in a panel discussion on "Feminism and Fandom." All the panelists said they'd grown up thinking of themselves just as people, and considered what they'd like to do in life from that perspective, not in terms of what women are supposed to do. Then, in adolescence, the boom fell, and they realized there was this "woman's role" they were expected to conform to.

A related issue is fans' romantic relationships with men. In our society, apart from relationships with children and parents, "the" relationship in our lives is supposed to be a relationship with a lover or sexual partner. This assumption has a powerful effect on us, as witness the K/S fiction we write. Of course it is possible for a heterosexual woman who never accepted the classic "woman's role" to meet and love like-minded men, but the supply of non-traditional, "liberated" men is notoriously limited. For the latter reason, it's easy for non-traditional women to develop an attitude of relative disinterest in men!

For whatever reason, there are a lot of single women in fandom -- I'd stake a year's wages that it's significantly more than among the same age groups in society as a whole. I've known women in fandom who'd like to be involved with men but aren't; and others who, although they're not lesbian, just don't seem that interested in the opposite gender (except for media characters, of course). Maybe they were once but eventually gave up. As society sees it, if you don't have a lover, there is an empty space in your life, and we all know nature abhors a vacuum.

I am just throwing all this out as maybe having something to do with why friendships with other women may seem more important among fans than among the rest of society. First, fandom provides an opportunity for female friendships that many non-fannish women don't have. Second, significant numbers of women in fandom aren't tied to men (and children) and thus are relatively free to concentrate on friendships with other women. (Whether this is a positive or a negative fact depends on the individual.)
From JG:
I doubt that INTERSTAT receives many more letters than it has room to print. My own experience maybe atypical, but I wrote regularly and frequently to INTERSTAT over a period of about 6 years and every single one of my letters (most of them long) was printed in full. Then, around the time this discussion [about censorship] began in the apa, I sent in a letter about the editor's refusal to print Sandra's letter, briefly summarized what Sandra's letter was about and stated that I knew that the editor had the right to refuse to print it, but that I did not think she should have refused, and quoted Justice Stevens on the danger of arrogating to ourselves the right to say whether opinions are right or wrong. When my letter wasn't printed, I re-submitted it and asked the editor to keep it on file and print it whenever space permitted. Your'e going to suggest to me, of course, that my letter wasn't printed because there wasn't room, or because so many other fans wrote in making the same point as I... or maybe it was just coincidence, having nothing to do with the editors' reactions to the content of my letters, that the fitst 28 were printed and the 29th wasn't...just a fluke of fate.
From JG:
For David Gerrold or anyone else to attack K/S in "defense" of Gene Roddenberry strikes me as officious and therefore, obnoxious, if Roddenberry objects to that use of his universe and his characters, let him object.
From RKL:
[The photo of myself included in this apa] was done with the MacVision program for the Macmtosh computer which is a hardware and software combination which allows you to connect your video camera to your computer and file a picture into the MacPaint program. What a great toy! Because after you take the picture, then you can modify it, as any other MacPaint file...
From NLS:
As far as David Gerrold goes, I hate the ass hole; this has been from way back even before he wrote that shit in that book of his. I really get so mad when I hear of anything that Gerrold has done.
From LF:
My next ST project is a Kirk/Mitchell story. I would like to know how many other Kirk/Mitchell stories have apceared. Was the relationshic treated positively or negatively? If negatively, why did it fail? I would like my story to be different from other stories that may have dealt with this theme, but I'm unfamiliar with what's been done, so I would aporeciate some help from the other members of this apa. Thanks.
From LF:
I remember the old zines I saw from the beginning of Trekdom and recalling the furor over the third season when Roddenberry no longer had control and the spirit of ST was "being destroyed", etc, etc. But not all third season episodes were bad. In fact, some first and second episodes under Roddenberry's control were as bad as most of the third season. All of this evened out in the fanzines. We expanded on the episodes and concepts which were valuable and never referred to the ones which weren't except in exposes. Nobody writes stories based on "And the Children Shall Lead." We pick and choose. We have even taken a bad episode and used one element in it that lead in fascinating directions -- throwing away the rest e.g. Sure in "The Savage Curtain." Nobody cares about the context in which Surak first appeared and that he was portrayed by one of the worst actors who ever appeared on ST. Surak was a concept we could use. And we'll do the same with the movies. The values and vision of ST are, to a large extent, though not completely, what we in fandom read into it. We threw away what didn't fit in with our view of what ST was. We always have, and ST remains alive and vital because of our efforts.
From LF:

In SF fandom, it is deemed appropriate to show your apa to your friends unless confidentiality is stated to be one of the rules of the apa. There are secret apas (no outsiders may see it), and semi-confidential aps (only show it to people who you think will respect a confidence and won't gossip.) in one apa, some members specify in their colophons who their zine may be shown to or who it may not be shown to. [Kindred Spirits apa] has no confidentially policy. Therefore, it's unfair to jump on a member for showing it to an outsider.

I also don't think it's right or fair to use a confidentiality policy, supposing there was one, to hide behind when you're sniping at outsiders who can't defend themselves. When someone is attacked in an apa, I consider it right and proper to inform the victim and I would defend anyone who did this. Now, it has come to my attention that at least one mailing of this apa was sold at a con. I know this because I got a letter from a non-member commenting on my zine, and she said she had obtained her copy at a con. I saw nothing wrong with this at the time because this apa is not stated to to be confidential.
From LF:
Regarding Marshak-Culbreath. I think you are mistaken about these books. Marsak and Culbreath used the terminology of Alpha and Beta male in their first book The Price of the Phoenix, but this was dropped in the later books and even in the first one, Ardrey-Morris ideology is certainly not the basis of the philosophy presented. This Alpha and Beta terminology was the philosophy of Omme, the villain. He tries to set Kirk and Spock against each other by using those terms indicating a power imbalance between them. They don't accept his terms in the end. I you remember Star Trek Lives, Sondra Marshak stated that she was s student of Objectivism, the philosophy of Ayn Rand. Ayn Rand sees human beings as motivated by reason -- not instincts as Ardery-Morris do. Also in Marshak-Culbreath, women are shown to be confident and leaders. This is consistent with Rand but not with Ardery-Morris sociobiology. The woman shown in Triangle seems particularly independent. Now, while it is true that Rand believed that women ought to fall in love with men and be in a monogamous relationship with them, she insisted that women most be the equals of men in these relationships, unlike sociobiology with states that men ought to be dominant. An honest look at the Marshak-Culbreath novels shows the Rand pattern rather than the sociobiological pattern, and in "Triangle," they go beyond Rand by suggesting the possibly of a triad.
From LF:
Regarding Marion Zimmer Bradley's trial -- what was she on trial for? I never heard she'd been on trial. How recent was this. She never mentioned in it in APALAMBA, the gay-lesbian apa, when she was the OE about two years ago. Do mean the divorce trial? I know she's been divorced twice.
From LF:
Yes, guest zines [tribs/official comments by people who are not members of the apa] are perfectly legitimate in apas, but it's standard practice for them to appear under the authority of a member or the CM. This is because apas are meant to be solely by and for members. But if a member or the CM feels that an outsider's views should be heard for whatever reason, s/he can send them in as part of hir contribution. This is called "franking through."
From LF:
Regarding libel and apas: The attitude that apas I know have taken toward libel is that fandom is a family, and we will not sue each other. We will work it out within the apa. There are a few instances of fannish suits, but this is very heavily frowned upon in SF fandom.

[snipped]

Fandom is family, and we will handle our problems internally prevails pretty much. Woe to fandom when that family spirit is gone.
From LF:
I don't believed for a moment that [the postal service is] monitoring all of Gerrold's mail. They have better things to do. David Gerrold is not entitled to have a special service that no other citizen gets. What may have happened is that he revised threats against his life in the mail and handed those letters over to the authorities to investigate. That's entirely plausible. Just don't write threatening letters, and you have nothing to worry about. [2]
From LF:

When [BH] announced her resignation, I volunteered to take over this apa and apparently so did a a number of other people. Although [BH] had said that if got more than one offer, she would hold an election. Apparently, she panicked and gave it to the first person who offered -- [NLS]. I would like to take this opportunity to let [BH] know that I am in not the least offended and intend to give [NLS] every assistance.

I think this apa is doing well and can expect to do even better in the future... Anyone who thinks we have a problem with low contribution should have a look at the apa MIXED COMPANY, the mixed gender feminist apa (to distinguish it from the woman-only feminist apa A WOMAN'S APA). The last mailing was 14 pages.... We're in fine shape compared.
From DCL:

When I was new to fandom, a couple of real beauties to whom I paid the compliment of being interested in their work reacted as if I were trying to steal something from them. Talk about hostile paranoia! I've come to the conclusion that so-called friends who behave in this way have so little else going for them that they need to hang onto every ounce of power, control, or prestige that they imagine they have. Anyone who seems to have something they don't is seen as a threat. This ties into what [JG] said about jealousy.

Unfortunately, there are always going to be people who think their way is the only right way, and no one can tell them anything. But this should not deter the rest of us from trying to find a more sane way of doing something if at all possible.

Fortunately, for every selfish stinker in fandom, there are dozens if not hundreds) of generous, honest, open-minded folks. It's just that it is the other kind who makes all the noise. They seem to derive pleasure from stirring up trouble and are unwilling to take responsibility for their actions. This type needs to realize that they are sick and seek professional help, because unless they clean up their acts, they will sooner or later find themselves very much alone.
From TGK:
I buy or read a non-K/S / story? Buy it, no. Read it? I might, if it caught my interest fast enough (like within the first paragraph or so). Non-K/S erotica has a tendency to seriously bore me though, so I rarely bother to pick it up or finish it unless it does.

Issue 14

K/S & K.S. (Kindred Spirits) 14 was published in June 1985 and contains 84 pages. The next issue's deadline was July 25.

cover of issue #14

NLS is the central mailer.

There are 8 new members (CP, MVD, CKH, JW, PD, DEM, EB, and returning member SW).

This issue has 17 tribs from 22 members.

The tribs: CP (Yin-Yang), LF (Lavender Diversity), MSVD (Kindred Trek), BPG (Ad Astra #8), CKH (Secat Traces #1), RKL (Ruth's Riteings), EB (Milwaukee Mafia Missive), JG (Unity of Opposites), JPW (Walker's Wisdom), TGK (And in This Corner), DCL (Perpetually Amazed), SW (Fantasies), DEM (Zute's Identical Twin Sister), PD (Furin #1), AB (Tail Recursives), MF (Another Fine Mess), NLS (Ramblings)

The apa has many reprinted April-May 1985 posts copied from Science Fiction Lovers Digest "which is on a computer network."

A fan, JPW, becomes a enthusiastic new member after the Central Mailer sent her issue #13. She also touches upon the topic of this apa being sold at at least two cons. While the sale of this publication at that con made two members quit the apa, as well as raising many discussions about expectations of privacy, it was what caused JPW to join: "[My comments are brief to some members because]...the two [issues] I purchased at separate conventions were issues #6 and #10), therefore leaving a wide gap between that and #13. I hope what I have set down will intrigue you.... Believe me, this has been one of the highlights of my life!"

Fanworks:

  • By the Stone Ezel, part 6 by LF
  • Rebirth, another chapter by JG (there wasn't an installment in the last issue)
  • Tantrum, fiction by JPW ("Kirk") and K.S. Sehlat (from an impromptu writing challenge in September 1984)
From MF:
VCRs - been gathering input from various sources ... have concluded I'm going to rent some of the ones available and see for myself. That's a rather large investment to just arbitrarily plunk down without knowing exactly what you want. And as you commented, the kinds of machines my friends possess are a consideration ... for I hope to eventually do some swapping . However, while more people seem to own VHS , there are some around here who have BETA. But as I don't plan to purchase until at least mid- September (or later), I've plenty of time to investigate the possibilities.
From MF:
I wanted to respond to your "Explication de Texte"... I took a course in Logic while at college; the pitfalls of communication were one of the primary topics of class discussion. Our professor delighted in assigning us bombastic political statements to analyze ... which we did, translating the English into a kind of semi-algebraic notation designed to reveal inconsistencies and half-truths. (And of course, a half-truth is a non-truth .) Thought of that class the very first time I read Roddenberry's intro to the novelization, for a more ambiguous bit of nonsense I have yet to see I (And considering Mr. Roddenberry's not inconsiderable talents in the area of writing, one has to conclude that the ambiguity was intentional.) Love it when a person can play such subtle ducks and drakes with the language... and my grey matter thanks you for a most insightful article.
From MF:
Nice to find another librarian amongst the fen, [AB]. I was beginning to think we were a rare-and-endangered species ... although , come to think of I do know of two others . Think I mentioned to you that [CH] is of that persuasion. Also [RR] although not into K/S.
From MF:
And a reminder ... you have visiting rights to Marilyn's pictures. "Prince of Darkness" is at [NLS's] and "Bondslave" is supposed to be at [K's]. (And I'm still looking for a discreet location to hang them ... where my nieces won't stumble across them. Until I figure that one out, pictures will be visiting in Santa Clara and Daly City I ) And thanks for letting me have them at auction.
From PD:
When "Star Trek" appeared in 1966, I felt as if I'd been waiting for it all my life. I loved it then and I love it now. I enjoy almost every thing about it, though I recognize that some things are done better than others. I liked all of the movies, in varying degrees. (I realize that many people hated them or don't consider them "true Trek", but that's what a lot of people say about K/S and it hasn't stopped me from liking that either.) I attended my first convention in 1976. That was my introduction to organized fandom. I still didn't find out about zines until 1979. (Slow, aren't I?) The first ones I got hold of were the "Kraith" zines. It took me even longer to find out about K/S, but when I did, (about a year ago), I became insatiable, and ordered everything I found out about. This lead to some pretty bad zines, but it also lead to an awful lot of good ones. "Universal Translator" was a godsend. My biggest regret was that I'd missed so many good zines by finding out about K/S so late!
From DEM:
My current zine tastes are pretty eclectic; western, any Trek, Dr. Who, Battlestar Galactica, K/S, K/S/Mc (sorry to offend), and anything else with McCoy. Last week I read a Han/Luke, a S/H, and a McGarrett/Dano story, stories. Anyway, I really like slash especially K/S. K/S is the only slash that seems believable to me, some of the others are really reaching.

My absolute favorite zines are; Amazing Grace, Blue Guardian, Naked Times, Matter/Antimatter 3-4, Odyssey 6.5, and Displaced....

I just read the current Star Trek novel, Ishmael by Barbara Hambley and was absolutely shocked and flabbergasted by it. I love Trek (of course), I really liked Here Come The Brides, and I've always liked cross universe stories. If Ishmael had been a zine, I would have bought it immediately and loved it (it's a great story), but I found it very bizarre for a mainstream novel. Did any body else find it odd?
From DEM:
Of course he's gay (which would not be any of our business if he'd lay off the apparently homophobic anti K/S speeches). He has done more to publicize K/S to mainstream sf audiences with his many very public statements against K/S than all the K/S zines in fandom. I wonder what his motivations are in that.
From DEM:
The first time I heard about K/S, it was described to me as gay Trek which sounded really flakey and off-the-wall. I was instantly and irrevocably converted to the K/S premise when I read The Price of The Phoenix. By the way, I always wondered if Marshak and Culbreath ever wrote in any K/S zines. [3]
From SW:
Greetings, one and all. Now that I am the proud owner of a VCR, I am happily collecting all of the Trek episodes on video so I can watch them over and over and over and freeze-frame those really nifty shots of Kirk with no shirt on. *BLISSFUL SIGH* Actually I didn't set out to buy a VCR. I was saving up to get a new coat but then this VCR sale caught my eye and I figured I could always sew up all the rips in my old coat. They were in the inside lining anyway and no one would see them but me and — well, you can see where my priorities lie.
From DCL:
Your friend [Larry Y's] experience with the book cover illustration that had nothing to do with his written description is so typical. The author is the last person they consult about artwork to go with the story. It's all handled by the Art Director in the pro publishing field. That doesn't mean that we in zine publishing can't do things differently (and better)!
From DCL:
I wish Roddenberry could read and comment on your brilliant send-up of his T'HY'LA footnote. Since becoming involved in active fandom, I've been a bit surprised and disappointed that we have so little contact with or input from the creators and stars of ST, I wish I knew of a way to find out if Bennett got the KATRA idea from Jean Lorrah! We actually have no idea of how they feel about a great many things — including K/S. Rumors and hearsay are often contradictory and always unreliable, I know we discussed the possibility of sending copies of the questionnaire to Bennett, Roddenberry, Shatner, Nimoy, etc, with a cover letter explaining that we'd really like to hear their opinions, but other fans have said that perhaps K/S should be kept "underground" as much as possible, so nothing has been done along these lines (so far).
From TGK:
Shadow Lord. I did buy [that Trek pro novel] and really liked it. I thought the guy on the cover mas supposed to illustrate what you get when you graft Merritt Butrick's head onto David Hasselhoff's body. That's not the only mistake; Boris put Rahu's emblem (described on page 66) in the "prince's" T-shirt (glad to see Tokyo sportswear is still popular in the twenty whatever the hell century it is). Looks like he also thought "Angira" mas some kind of Japanese monster (wasn't there one by that name? The English dubbing on those movies is often so bad it's hard to make out the names). Just goes to show, you can't tell a book by it's cover.
From TGK:
No, I didn't see Starman. Trek movies are all I'll actually endure a movie theater for; uncomfortable chairs, air conditioning too high (bad nems for my sinuses), sound amplified until it's almost too big to get in my little ear canal (earache city for a meek after), annoying distractions of the boorish kind — No thanks. That's what I got my VCR to avoid.
From TGK:
Well, I'm impressed! IDICon 2 was terrific (this from someone who has never been overly fond of cons). I'm definitely going back next year, if they have another one.
From JPW:
By the Will of the Ancients of Vulcan, I got ahold of a copy of NAKED TIMES #2 with the wonderful Pat Stall cover of the MIRROR Universe Spock getting ready to kiss our Kirk. Suddenly, a great voice inside my head, commanded: "THEE WILL WRITE A STORY BASED UPON THIS COVER!" Not being one to argue, I set to the task. The month was September; the year I980. Although the rough draft was finished around the beginning of I981, I am still working on it!! You see, when that story sees print, I want it to be very good. Anyway, because of one little cover, I have been published in several K/S zines (both poems and stories), and will be in several upcoming ones; and I am working on stories for a few. .See what a little encouragement and inspiration can do!!?
From JG:
I agree that Roddenberry shouldn't be completely let off the hook for the failings of ST:TMP. I think it's clear from Susan Sackett's book, THE MAKING OF ST:TMP, that by the time they got around to making the film, GR was pretty burned out. As you know, GR had to fight with the network and then Paramount every inch of the way to get adult content and a socially progressive perspective into STAR TREK, the series and the first film. Paramount rejected several potential scripts for ST:TMP, including one by GR himself, because they were too "controversial." In a taped interview with Marshak and Culbreath a couple of months after ST:TMP was released, Roddenberry talked about how hard he'd had to fight to keep the studio from turn ing ST:TMP into an imitation STAR WARS. He said it was a major battle, and I believed him, because he sounded exhausted! Roddenberry has said those fights with the movie-makers took a great personal toll on him, and that is one reason he's retreated rather than fight to the limit. Selfishly, I wish he'd fought harder to make ST:TMP a better film, but it's his life, not mine. In contrast, I've never even heard of any "battles" between Harve Bennett and the corporate honchos over the character of the films Bennett produced. I've assumed that's because basically they were on the same wavelength and they wanted the same kind of product.
From JG:
For every crewmember on the Enterprise, there is potentially an interesting story about how she came to be there, what her family thinks about it, and so forth. For all we know, maybe McCoy comes from a Bible-thumping, Southern Baptist background. Maybe Kirk was brought up as an Irish Catholic and trotted off to confession the first 5,000 times he got laid. The show said very little about the characters' backgrounds, and we can fill in the details if we want, but there's no particular imperative that we do so. The point I'm trying to make is that we shouldn't go into a character's background just because he or she is a member of a non-Western religious community, if we wouldn't go into that background if the same person were American or European. To do so suggests that being a Hindu or a Muslim or whatever is not the "norm," and of course that's not the case.

Naturally, if the focus of your story is a character's practice of her religious beliefs, that's a different story. It would differ in detail from a story of someone who's a "practicing" Catholic, Protestant, or Jew on board the Enterprise, but it would be fundamentally the same kind of story. On the other hand, a character who's mentioned as a practicing member of a particular religion doesn't need any special elucidation. If that person's religious beliefs need some special accommodation, that's Starfleet's job, not ours, just as it's the job of T.J. Hooker's police department to accommodate the lieutenant who uses a wheelchair by making the facilities accessible, etc. We can safely ignore those problem along with other aspects of the character's personal life which need not concern us in a story about something else.

When emphasizing a character's religious and ethnic background, I think it's important to avoid the trap of seeming to define the person by that background. We know better than to do that with people from Judaeo-Christian backgrounds, like ourselves, and by the same token, we shouldn't assume that a person has any particular characteristics just because he's a Brahmin, a Muslim, or a Buddhist. Our individuality is too rich for that. The few times that someone has defined me or stereotyped me by my religious background, it's made me feel uncomfortable, even angry. Certainly, I was influenced by that background (and still am), but other persons with the same background behave and think very differently from me. And, just as there are thousands of different ways to be an Episcopalian or a Roman Catholic or a Quaker or a Lutheran, there are thousands of different ways to be a Hindu Brahmin. So, if you want to write a character who's a Brahmin, please don't define him by that characteristic alone.

Those are my reasons for introducing "minority," Third World and handicapped characters into STAR TREK stories as casually as possible, with a minimum of "explanation." To me, it's just a way of saying, "We all belong, we're all part of one community. None of us needs to justify being here more than anybody else."
From JG:
I think your proposal that editors request sketches before they request final illustrations is a great idea. In fact I think the whole idea of guidelines for editors in working with artists is excellent and I hope you will go further with this. I am interested in hearing more about how the guidelines would work in practice. Sometimes, an artist will submit a finished illo with wrongly-proportioned body parts (er, I didn't mean just those parts), or faces that bear little resemblance to those of the characters, and although you know she's capable of better work, you just can't ask for changes after she's sent you- the finished piece. Could such problems be corrected at the stage of submitting preliminary sketches? For example, could I say to the artist, "The concept is fine but Kirk's legs are too skinny and Spock's bent arm looks flat and foreshortened and needs to be more three-dimensional," and expect such problems to be corrected?

Besides obviating misunderstanding between editor and artist over acceptance of artwork, the approach you suggested would give the artist an opportunity for feedback before she completes the artwork. Artists have been known to be dissatisfied with the way their art turns out, and say that sometimes a piece of art just doesn't "work." Maybe the editor's comments at an early stage would actually be helpful to the artist. And I think that usually, editors would not reject art on the basis of the artist's preliminary sketches -- they would ask the artist to re-do the piece, assuming the artist is willing. But that raises another question — how would artists feel about input from editors who are not artists? And when is it appropriate for a layperson to give her opinion on such matters as the proportion of heads and limbs, perspective and three-dimensionalify, and other such technical problems? I know some artists who welcome comments and suggestions from lay-persons, but others might be offended. As a nonartist I hesitate to second-guess an expert but on the other hand I do want art to look like Kirk and Spock and to be aesthetically pleasing. What do artists think about the author's being involved In the approval process? I know at least one author who won't have her work illo'd at all because she would have no control over the final product, and I know others who've been dissatisfied with the art chosen to illo their work.

I would like to see your proposal became a reality. It would make me feel comfortable about soliciting art from a wider variety of artists.
From JG:
Regarding Marshak and Culbreath and the Ardrey-Morris school of thought: I'm basing my conclusions on S&M's biography of William Shatner, which was published after the two Phoenix books. The authors refer liberally to Ardrey, Morris & Lionel Tiger throughout the book. They sent Shatner copies of Ardrey's & Morris's books in preparation for their interviews with him, and in those interviews as recounted in the book they try valiantly to get Shatner and Gene Roddenberry to embrace the sociobiological faith. (To their credit, both WS and GR declined to convert.) S&M's later novel, THE PROMETHEUS DESIGN, is based squarely on sociobiological concepts, with the Alpha Male syndrome in the forefront. I agree that S&M's ideas are far from identical to those of Ardrey, Morris, Tiger and other thinkers who use geneticist concepts to support male supremacy. Clearly, S&M are supportive of strong and independent women, women who are leaders. What I gathered from the Shatner biography, however, was that they wanted to add the concept of the Alpha Female to that of the Alpha Male -- in other words, not to challenge A&M's basic assumptions and methods, but to broaden them to include women as well as men. As Clifford Geertz once remarked, sociobiologists are either two-animal men or one-animal men (he said "men" because, as he noted, few sociobiologists are women). The "two-animal" - sociobiologists consider men and women to be two different species for all intents and purposes. S&M are one-animal people, I think.
From EB:
When I write in the Trek universe, I use the pseudonym [FP]. My mundane identity as [EB] is not a secret — I use a nom de plume for fun, rather than for purposes of concealment. My pseudonym is also a literary allusion, a gesture of acknowledgement toward another literary work which I hold in considerable regard. So far I've met only one other person in fandom who recognized that. If you do too, please tell me. It will make my day.
From EB:
Greetings from the wilds of Wisconsin, where Trekkers are so few and far between (and/or invisible, incognito, in closets, whatever) that the loneliness and isolation can drive one to desperation — witness the desperate deed of writing at length to faraway kindred spirits.

[snipped]

It's just three years since I found out about the existence of fandom (May 1982), and less than that (summer 1982) since I became actively involved with it. I know that I still have many new discoveries to make, and I'm trying to make up for lost time. And hoping that the first fine careless rapture will not subside.
From MVD:
I have never felt any reticence with people concerning my KS interest. There have been no problems in either my professional association work or in my business work. My manager tried to set up a business trip to get me to Houston for IDICON which, unfortunately, fell through. His only concern was that we might get raided but I told him it would give him an opportunity to practice management in getting me out of jail. When I had a story accepted in a zine there was great interest in knowing whether it was one of "those" stories but no negative comments. I do realize that I am very fortunate in not having problems.
From MVD:
What is the Difference Between SH and KS? I thought I had understood something when I noticed the romantic idealism of much of KS. There is commitment, often past death. There is honor and duty over even love. Spock is usually shown virgin and Kirk often virgin to male-male relationships. Except for the explicitness, I would be reminded of Regency romances. But what I've seen of SH so far seems to show far less commitment, far less concept of duty or honor, and somewhat less concern with virginity. So is there anything which underlies the slash literature (other than the obvious).
From LF:
I don't take for granted that an apa is confidential because every apa is different. There's one apa with a copy count of 80 that is expected to be seen by everyone ' throughout SF fandom at one time or another and is continually passed about. On the other hand. there's another apa where everyone is constantly paranoid about it being discussed with: outsiders and one group of the members who don't consider it confidential enough have gone off to found a secret apa that no one else knows anything about. All the [other] apas I belong to are controversial.
From CP:
A couple of fans (rather well-known ones actually) were relating similar experiences to me recently. A group of the "old guard" fans around since "the time of the beginning" introduced them to fandom years ago as friends and were, all sweetness and light. When they achieved a measure of recognition themselves it was the cold shoulder treatment, abruptly. They are basically idealists about IDIC, and like to think it is practiced in life, especially by those supposed proponents of the idea. Upon finding this not so they have become very disillusioned and are thinking about chucking the whole thing. I find it very sad that the old adage about "one bad apple" is indeed so true. Despite the caring and sharing of the majority of fans it takes only a few to destroy those fragile ideals we hold so dear. I can only hope that thee people become universally recognized and relegate to the obscurity which such behavior deserves.
From CP:
I am the first to admit that MY priority lies with the written material over the art, and I'm an artist! However, artists are second citizens in zine publishing from the start, since they are illoing a story already submitted and accepted. They are then placed with the responsibility of living up to both the writer's and editor's expectations of the story. I feel, given these restrictions from the beginning, the artist should be given a portion of the artistic freedom the writer has by developing their own ideas for ills rather than being chained to "approval by the editor (and in some cases, the writer). This is obviously an artist's perspective... I guess I feel that this is not a professional field, and such standards are certainly expected of the writers; I would hate to see such restrictions imposed on the artists.
From NLS:
I want to plug a convention that I think is and has been the best one for a Star Trek K/Ser and just plan fan to attend, and that has to be IDICON. I can speak for the group that I went out with this last April, WE HAD A GREAT TIME. The gals out in Houston are just WONDERFUL. They make you feel right at home. It really is like having a big party with 200 of your closest friends. I'm sorry that I missed the first one. But look out because I hear they are going to do it again. So if you only have that one convention to attend next year make it IDICON you won't be sorry.
From BPG:
I went to IDICon and did not particularly enjoy it. As I suspected, not only had the novelty worn off, but unlike last year, the attendees broke off into cliques. Rather than the Friday night party being a mixer, as it truly was last year, every one stood around in tight little groups, and seldom were the lines crossed. An aerial view would have been amusing — at leasts for sociologists. Before anyone jumps on me for disliking IDICon this year, I'll gladly admit my deficiencies: I just never had a herd instinct. I am Human (much as I sometimes hate to admit it), not Bovine. And, I am a loner by nature. I go to cons for stimulation, amusement, sometimes even for learning, and for meeting new people, not for hanging out with the same old clique, reinforcing each other's same old prejudices. There are no sour grapes in this attitude; as far as cliques go, no thanks, I've tried it and I don't like it. My current favorite con is not Trek at all, but a very feminist SF con in Wisconsin. No cliques. Never thought I could get bored with almost-naked men, but I sure was with the two that danced late on Saturday night. After awhile, watching them rub their greasy cocks into various women's faces, I started feeling nauseated as well as bored.
From BPG:
Unfortunately, the sane ones of us are in the minority. Just recently, we have lost another sane K/S editor, a vanishing breed^ and I really cannot forgive fandom for this. She got so disgusted by the constant nastiness and unreasoned attacks by paranoid fans, the persecution by various self-styled BNFs, the constant pressures put upon her to cooperate by doing weird things, participating in vendettas, and espousing psychotic "movements" and schemes; the non-cooperation and attempted manipulation by her contributors and by other editors, and no help whatsoever from her "friends". She has gafiated, and has been turned off of K/S by this nastiness. I am so sad she is gone. I tried to help her, to convince her to try a little longer to stick with it, but what could I say? She was right, and we both know it. The "selfish stinkers" and psychotics in fandom forced this honest, intelligent, hardworking, unselfish, talented, level-headed, sane and sensitive person away from fandom. We have all lost a great deal. Those hostile paranoiacs in fandom have forced other fans to leave also, I know for a fact. We could ignore them singly, but they band together in cliques, pressure groups, and they force fans they view as a threat, as competition, out of fandom. If their first tactics don't work, they resort to boycotting, ostracism, rumor-mongering, character-assassination) and finally out-and-out threats. They put pressure on editors to accept their work, as a group, not as individuals, even if the work is bad, I have heard, and I certainly believe it. [4] Is it any wonder that zines are so bad these days? (If anyone doubts me, read an older zine, and compare the quality.) The group with which you had the bad experiance has used these tactics for years, on many innocent fans. [J], the excellent musician, was one; I am another. They have ostracized me and boycotted my artwork for some six years now, for no reason except that I threaten them, and they are jealous. Last year, at Shore Leave Con, one of the staunchest members of that clique came up to me quietly, and said that she really liked some 80% of my illos and would love to bid on a few in the art show, but that she could not — because then she would suffer the consequences and be ostracized as I was. Nice people, hmm? How would you go about making these people and their crooked practices public? Sending "confidential" letters to letterzines and zine editors is a disgusting practice and largely ineffective anyway. They would, of course, deny any accusations vehemently. Try to make any kind of public statement and they would make so much trouble for you, perhaps even threatening you physically, or trying blackmail, that you would be forced out of fandom to save your sanity. How do you propose to fight them?
From BPG:
A "real gay relationship in K/S": No way! Realism, up to a point, is fine. But whether a man is gay or straight, he is still male, and males, in general have a fundamentally different attitude toward sex that colors all their relationships. (Read some of the new theories on the subject in anthropology. They are getting near to the truth.) Simply, sex and a "relationship" of any kind, in cluding love or friendship, are two entirely different and separate things that do not overlap, for men. Men can learn to accept the possibility of the two occurring simultaneously in the same person, but sex and relationship are not, and never can be, intimately joined as they are with women. To many men, it is not even a desirable condition that they might be.

Women only engage in impersonal sex when they are paid for it, are raped, or are so stoned they don't know what they are doing. Men always enjoy sex, often preferring impersonal sex. They simply don't connect it with anything else. And so they can use streetwalkers and "glory holes" with enjoyment, never missing what is not even a part of sex to them. This makes for one BIG difference in a man's sex life and sexual fantasies, snd this difference is clearly shown in gaylit and gay-porn.

So, no thanks! No "real" gay-K/S for me! And besides, who is to say how a "real" gay Vulcan would act? Judging from what we are told about their sexual practices, and doing a bit of speculating on the theme, they could be completely different from Human males — and possibly quite a bit like Human females!
From BPG:
About the "fandom is a family" attitude in the other APA's you mentioned, sadly in K/S fandom the spirit was never there in the first place. I have been involved in it for 9 1/2 years now, almost from the beginning, and things are going from bad to worse. Something will have to change soon if it is to last; it is reaching the point that only the real weirdos and crazies can tolerate it. Sometimes I think that the whole thing is about ready to blow up in our faces.
From BPG:
"Slash" fiction means absolutely nothing to me unless I like the characters. Frankly, the more I see of S&H, the less I like them, and the others all leave me cold; I am not a media-fan, "slash" or otherwise, I only love Trek, Kirk and Spock, and care about what happens to them. So that leaves only the writing quality (not great, sometimes quite bad) and the sex to appreciate in other "slash" fiction. Though there are some tangible rewards in celibacy, I hate to admit that all my sex is vicarious at the moment. So, I read it for the sex.
From BPG:
Re your story for S. Ferguson's zine: there must be some justice in the universe after all!! But what is this hypocrisy about "if we are not going to be courteous [and kind], with one another, then what is the point?" Tell that to all the fans whose SASE's and IRC's you never returned. And how about my artwork? I have written to the Postal Inspectors about you, and intend to pursue ths matter until it is resolved.
From BPG:
In re MZB's trial: I believe it was her first divorce trial, and some time ago. I'll try to find the zine and check on it. Remind me if I forget.
From BPG:
I am busy collecting evidence about who started and perpetuated that rumor that I had something to do with that loathsome NAKED DOUBLES flyer. I have discovered that a certain New Jersey fan with a Crusader Complex that amounts to a psychosis, is largely responsible for perpetuating these lies. When I collect enough evidence, I am going to see if something can be done about it legally. I had started to do this regarding a certain libelous editor, and decided to drop it, but now I can see that some fans just have to be kicked, or they won't stop.
From BPG:
I think we should eject any member who violates our privacy by showing our APA to people who would be better left in ignorance of its existence. After all, "slash" fiction is hardly considered an accepted part of our culture yet. Why offend people and make them angry unnecessarily? I know that it is probably too much to expect that this APA be kept confidential. And that means that we are all going to have to watch what we say. It is for that reason that I cannot say anymore concerning Mr. Gerrold [snipped]. Comments of that kind could be considered damaging, even legally actionable.
From BPG:
I reread my first "zines" to see if I truly sound hostile and defensive or bitchy, as you accused me, in your attack upon me. I do not sound hostile or bitchy or anything else except assertive, as I always do. Did you reread them before you made your false accusation? Are you using your own head when you say that or are you allowing someone else to make your judgments for you? Are you playing "follow- the-leader" in attacking me about this, or are you researching it and making your own judgment, as you should? I never harmed you; so, why are you attacking me? I don't want to hear it anymore; I am sick to death of being attacked. I don't want to hear from you again. Ever. To all the rest of you, cut the accusations. It is getting assinine.

[snipped]

Well goodbye, everyone, for now at least. I think I am going to go and take dope or something. I need it after all this.

References

  1. ^ This is a reference to Interstat #31
  2. ^ This is a reference to David Gerrold's 1984 Open Letter to K/S Fans.
  3. ^ Not really. Marshak did not, and Culbreath produced The Fire Bringer, which was barely fannish.
  4. ^ This COULD be a reference to Final Frontier, and that zine's decision to not print the beleaguered and controversial Loveslaves.