Off Duty (Star Trek: TOS zine)
|Publisher:||Pon Farr Press|
|Fandom:||Star Trek: TOS, K/S|
|External Links:||online flyer with story summaries -- NOTE: "Trial" by Monica Voille" is listed as being in issue #1, but this story is not in the zine itself|
|Click here for related articles on Fanlore.|
From Media Monitor: "The K/S zine 'just for the fun of it'. You'll find no complex plots within these pages - just good, solid love stories centering around shore leave, vacation & fun-time frolic. Each issue features stories, poetry & art."
For issue #1, from the editorial of Naked Times #18 (January 1988): "I would also just like to mention that I'm currently in the process of putting together a new zine, OFF DUTY. As the title implies, OFF DUTY will contain stories which, out of necessity, couldn't occur on the bridge — i.e., those nice, always-enjoyable stories of love and passion. At this point, it's uncertain whether OFF DUTY will be a one-shot zine (most likely), or whether there will be subsequent issues. It will depend, of course, entirely on reader reaction and on contributors' interest. But the point of all this is that I'd like to encourage any writers out there to let us take a look at your work. I'm always working on either an issue of NAKED TIMES or, now, OFF DUTY. So, if you have anything lying around looking for a home, or a story in mind to write, please do let us hear from you."
For issue #2, from the editorial of Naked Times #20 (July 1988): "Currently, I'm working on OFF DUTY #2 and I'll be starting work on NAKED TIMES #21 just as soon as OFF DUTY is in print. I'm particularly interested in "off duty" stories at the moment - i.e., stories which involve Kirk and Spock in their "off hours" time. These stories can be erotic (strongly preferred!), humorous (perfectly acceptable), or psychological studies of the characters (normally the more "psychological" studies go into NAKED TIMES....). I am especially interested in "mirror universe stories for OFF DUTY, as well as certain "alternate universe" themes (i.e., slave, role reversal, time travel et al). I'm already past the original "tentative" deadline, but due to the fact that I haven't received enough submissions, I'm extending the deadline until October 1, 1988. So please do let me hear from you."
Welcome to the first issue of OFF DUTY - This new K/S zine is "strictly for the fun of it". I'm very pleased with both the looks and the content of this zine, and I hope you'll agree that it's an interesting change of pace.
First, I would like to explain why and how OFF DUTY was born, which will hopefully clarify some of the questions I've been asked about the zine itself. Essentially, there are two basic "schools" of K/S writing (and at least another two dozen offshoots....). The two primary types of writers are 1) those who like a little sex with their story and 2) those who like a little story with their sex. OFF DUTY is definitely an experiment in the latter.
One of the main questions I'm often asked at conventions and through letters concerns the issue of whether or not there has been too much sex in recent K/S zines, or whether there has been too little. And, upon thinking about it, I personally felt it was fairly well balanced. But when I put the flyer out to a lot of K/S writers and received an overwhelming response, OFF DUTY started to take shape.
At any rate, I would like to thank everyone who has contributed to the first issue of what I hope will be a long-running series of zines. And yes, I definitely do plan to continue publishing NAKED TIMES. OFF DUTY is an addition and an experiment. If it works, I'll probably alternate issues back and forth between OD and NT, depending on the writer and reader interest in both zines.
Finally, to the few "complaints" I have received about the basic thrust (no pun intended) of OFF DUTY, let me just say a few words. I've personally felt that K/S is and should remain fun. This is one of the reasons that I altered the guidelines of NAKED TIMES to include the stipulations of "no violence, torture, mayhem, etc..".) OFF DUTY holds those same standards so far as violence, torture and mayhem are concerned. What OFF DUTY does that many K/S zines have stopped doing is that it accepts stories which are good clean (sorry, D.G.) fun. We make no bones about the fact that many of the stories in OFF DUTY are what we affectionately call "sex scenes in search of a plot". (Now wouldn't that make a good IN SEARCH OF episode!). And yet, to those who might frown at this type of stories, I would urge you to remember that each and every story in this zine is based first and foremost on love. Whether that love is homosexual, bi-sexual or heterosexual shouldn't make any difference. If it does, perhaps the offended party should consider his or her own moral standards and put the zine down right away.The fact is that OFF DUTY isn't meant to be "literature". Nor is it intended to be pornography (far from it!). I hope that OFF DUTY is, if it must be labeled, "erotica" - for that is the definite intention of the writers, the editor and the artists. Kirk and Spock are our friends and our heroes, and we hope to share in their love and joy through these pages.
Some summaries are by Gilda F.
- Editorial (3)
- Gossamer Web, poem by Robin Hood (4)
- When Boredom Strikes by Kay Wells (Spock uses food to seduce Kirk after noticing the effect his eating of certain fruit had on Kirk.) (5)
- Awakening, poem by Shellie Whild (16)
- Best Man, poem by Cybel Harper (18)
- A Number of Reasons by Charlotte Frost (Explores Spock's minor insecurities about his newfound relationship with Kirk. Uhura asks Kirk to check on Spock after she and others have noticed a change in him, unaware that the only change is that he and Kirk have become lovers. " Kirk smiled at the Vulcan. “From now on, as long as we’re together, every evening before we go to bed, I’m going to give you a reason why I love you.” He let that sink in, then added: “And I’ll never repeat myself.” Spock seemed dubious. “Jim, if we remain together a great length of time, it will not be possible for you to come up with a different reason every night.”) (19)
- Magic Water by Faille (an erotic, pseudo-dangerous seduction on, of all places, the bridge. Kirk drinks some of the Scalosian water and tempting his lover into the turbolift, has Spock also accelerate so they can live out a fantasy of making love on the bridge.) (31)
- Forever in Your Eyes, poem by Cybel Harper (41)
- Love with the Proper Vulcan by M.J. Merica (The human captain and Vulcan 1st officer of another starship approach Kirk and Spock separately to ask for advise in starting a similar relationship, unaware that Kirk and Spock are not lovers. "The fingers slipped away from his face and Kirk plunged into black nothingness. Total sensory deprivation. At first he was merely surprised, then fear began creeping in. Panic threatened. He willed it away, clutching firmly to his love for Spock. Spock would not desert him. Spock would more heaven, Hell and oblivion to find him…") (43)
- Play with Me, poem by Dana Austin Marsh (60)
- A Strange Conversation by Sharon Pillsbury (Spock relates to Kirk the conversation he was having with the man Kirk saw him with on shoreleave, what the man would like to do with Kirk and, ultimately, what Spock ends up doing with him. " “Frank inquired about my relationship with you.” Kirk frowned. “What makes him think we had one?” “Possibly because after he made one too many comments regarding you, I threatened to break his neck. He was then silent until you left the bar.") (61)
- Slave, poem by Cybel Harper (72)
- Nocturnal, poem by Carlin Rae Thorne (74)
- Temporarily in Amber Light by Dovya Blacque (Kirk and Spock are lovers in Kirkʼs fantasies on Talos 4, where he has been taken by Spock after an undisclosed injury and awaits Spockʼs return. "“You feel pleasure? Contentment?” Kirk asked. Spock nodded. “Then you feel happy.” “Is that all there is to it?” “Sometimes…”")(also in Shadows in the Rain) (75)
- Deathbed Confession, poem by Alexis Fegan Black (87)
- The Mirror Cracked, poem by Robin Hood (88)
- Summer's End by Ann Dru (Spockʼs devised interruptions of Kirkʼs shoreleave, especially when Kirk is sunbathing nude, finally have their desired effect. "Spock lay on the towel and stretched his long legs. He ran his fingers through his errant hair, then rolled onto his side to face Kirk. His dark eyes locked with the human’s Neither spoke. Neither looked away. The electricity between them grew until seconds became minutes. The cry of a sea-bird shattered the silence.") (89)
- Nova, poem by Robin Hood (96)
- In the Dark of Light, poem by Robin Hood (97)
- Cooled Flames, poem by Dana Austin Marsh (98)
- The Dark and I by Robin Hood (told in first person form, and is, either stream of consciousness or dialogue. Kirkʼs conversation with himself as to why he has been treating Spock so badly are interrupted when he discovers that Spock is in the room-and has heard all of it.) (99)
- Seduction, poem by Cybel Harper (108)
- Reflected Loving by Dana Austin Marsh (On their first shoreleave together after becoming lovers, Kirk talks Spock into acting out each others fantasies.) (109)
- Sleepwalker, poem by Carlin Rae Thorne (114)
- War Games by Alexis Fegan Black (also in Speed of Light) (M/U: Kirk serves Spock during his pon farr and then enters into a battle of nerves with him, each trying to get the other to confess his feelings first. "It became a war. On the bridge of the ISS ENTERPRISE Kirk would notice that his first officer would bend in a deliberately provocative manner, in the turbolift, the Vulcan would stand a few inches closer than necessary, the crisp alien cologne acting like a opiate on Kirk’s system. And Kirk found himself seeking the company of yeomen and officers. He would begin his nightly seduction in full view of Spock, ensnaring his prey with discreetly flexed muscles and an occasional lick of his lips. He would allow his hand to caress his dagger, fingertips stroking its dangerous edge with clear intent. The scariest part was that Kirk was no longer certain whether it was a war dance or a courtship…") (115)
NOTE: "Trial" by Monica Voille" is listed at the publisher's website flyer as being in issue #1, but this story is not in the zine itself:
- Trial by Monica Voile ("Spock turned to devote his full attention to Kirk. “I do like it here. However, I would like another location just as well – if you were there.” Kirk grinned with pleasure. “I’m glad I’m still the main attraction.” “Always.” Spock turned back to the view. Jim Kirk had received enough compliments for the day. Others would come more easily during the long night ahead.")
Reactions and Reviews: Issue 1
See reactions and reviews for War Games.
See reactions and reviews for Summer's End.
See reactions and reviews for Love with the Proper Vulcan.
See reactions and reviews for A Strange Conversation.
See reactions and reviews for Temporarily in Amber Light.
See reactions and reviews for A Number of Reasons.
See reactions and reviews for The Dark and I.
See reactions and reviews for Reflected Loving.
See reactions and reviews for Magic Water.
See reactions and reviews for When Boredom Strikes.
[zine]: When I first heard about this zine, I was intrigued by the ads which proclaimed it to be a "K/S 2ine just for the fun of it". Hmmm, I thought. Aren't they all? But I sent for it anyway, and received a very pleasant surprise. Marilyn Cole's front cover is erotic and sensitive, quickly foretelling what awaits the reader between the covers. And Dragon's back cover gives us the Idea of what happens after we read the zine. Her sleeping Kirk is, In a word, "sweet". WHEN BOREDOM STRIKES, by Kay Wells, leads off the zine and sets the tone for what's to come. This story, by a writer I've not heard of before, is a erotic little thing that had me laughing out loud. In Ms. Wells' characters, perhaps we see ourselves as we've gone through the motions of seduction with lovers in the past. A truly entertaining story, tightly written and un-presumptuous. A NUMBER OF REASONS by Charlotte Frost Is another nice little piece, an interlude more than an actual story, though it has its point to make, and does so easily and without apparent strain on the part of the writer. Exploring Spock's minor insecurities about the newfound relationship, this story brings out the hesitation and the fear of rejection we've all felt at one time or another. MAGIC WATER by Faille starts off at first like a humor story, which this reviewer has never particularly enjoyed. However, as It gets moving (perhaps a bit too quickly), It turns into an erotic, pseudo-dangerous seduction on, of all places, the bridge. Somewhat predictable in nature, it is nonetheless an enjoyable little story. LOVE WITH THE PROPER VULCAN, by M.J. Merica, was perhaps my least favorite story in the zine because it made me uncomfortable. The writing here Is excellent, but the methods the author goes through to get her characters together are somewhat questionable. The final love scene between Kirk and Spock, however, Is well worth squirming through the first half of the story to. read: hot, sexy, "right on", for me anyway. A STRANGE CONVERSATION, by Sharon Pillsbury, is another story by what I think is a new writer. This lady's style Is crisp and clear, with touches of humor, high tension and the inevitable happy ending. Involving a conversation overheard In a bar, it's a light, fun piece to read. TEMPORARILY IN AMBER LIGHT, by Dovya Blacque, Is probably the "heaviest" story In this zine - in that there is a feeling of foreboding running throughout the pages. Graphically beautiful in Ms. Blacque's usual poetry/prose style, it leads the reader down an unsuspecting path of illusion, leaving one with a chill at the end. Any further details would spoil the plot. SUMMER'S END by Ann Dru is one of the "lighter pieces In the zine - actually little more than a love scene between Kirk and Spock. Nothing new here, but a good libido stimulant nonetheless. THE DARK AND I by Robin Hood is told in first person form, and is, either stream of consciousness or dialogue. This is a style that normally doesn't work, but Ms. Hood does an excellent job with this one. A lot of folks could relate to the lying-in-the-dark-contempiating-seduction/rejection theme. REFLECTED LOVING by DA Marsh is more a vignette than a story, delving Into an attempt by K & S to share a fantasy. Nicely done,, but not enough to really get into with this one. WAR GAMES by Alexis Fegan Black is definitely one of the sexiest stories I've ever read. Set In the mirror universe and involving what I consider to be "true" mirror characters (they don't "wimp out' or spout Harlequin sentiments), this story leads the reader down a path of kinky seduction befitting the mirror universe. A hot and fast-paced "sexual thriller". The poetry is the usual, with "Sleepwalker" (Cariln Rae Thome) and The Mirror Cracked" (Robin Hood) and "Best Man" (Cybel Harper) really standing out. The artwork, aside from the front & back covers, Is nice but unremarkable, though the pieces by Jeanne Matthews In TEMPORARILY IN AMBER LIGHT tell me that we'll see more Of this artist, hopefully. As a whole, OFF DUTY 1 Is a valiant first effort, 158 pages of two-column typeset printing. Try it out for a zine that offers no heavy complications and a lot of erotic, loving reading. 
I highly recommend Off Duty #1. The flyer advertises "the absolute best in erotic K/S fiction," so this is an adult zine. The stories have a sameness imparted by the "lots of sex and little plot" format, a nice change from "save the ship/universe/each other from total destruction" type of story, though. The one exception is Alexis Fegan Black's "War Games," which packs quite an emotional wallop. Ms. Black's contribution to K/S is substantial, and one can detect the germination of this story in some of her earlier work. Although I found the ending a little weak (a sequel rather than a few throwaway lines?), it's outstanding. Having set the story in the "mirror" universe, Ms. Black has effectively sidestepped any "Kirk or Spock would never do that" criticism, freeing the reader to suspend disbelief from the very first line. The result: a powerful emotional involvement with both the characters and the situation. A must read for K/S fen. 
Off Duty 2 was published in March 1989 and has 162 pages. Front and back covers by Dragon. Interior art is by Jackie Zoost, Shellie Whild, Caro Hedge, Marilyn Cole, Deeb, Virginia Lee Smith, Siobhan, Sarah B. Leonard, and Kay Wells.In the editorial, fans are given a head's up regarding getting their hands on some slash zines at the upcoming Creation Con:
For anyone who hasn't heard, there was some sort of problem with CREATION last year, apparently caused by some overly moral "fan" who felt that "slash" zines didn't belong at such conventions. For other editors or fans who will be attending that convention, we are hoping to have our zines there, but behind the table. So... if you know us on on sight but don't see the zines, just come up and ask. And if you don't know us on sight, look for the table with the STAR TREK genzine, MORE MISSIONS, MORE MYTHS. Chances are that one of the dirty old broads behind the table will be either myself, Wendy or Alayne.
- Off Duty, poem by Natasha Solten (4)
- The Finest Embrace by Dovya Blacque (Kirk accepts Spockʼs offer of sexual intimacy after they discuss the meld they shared on Melkot.) (5)
- Angel, poem by Taerie Bryant (13)
- Words, poem by Syreta Knight (15)
- Senses, poem by Kimberly Sara Huntington (16)
- Ineluctability by Caroline K. Carbis (Spock has an ulterior motive when he asks Kirk to teach him how to swim.) (17)
- Love, poem by Kimberly Sara Huntington (22)
- Dreaming, poem by Amy (24)
- A Matter of Trust by Rachel Cavendish and Cassandra (M/U: Spockʼs discovery of a way to reproduce the effect of kironite are put to use on Kirk after Kirk comes to Spockʼs cabin and accuses him of trying to sabotage the ship and take the captaincy. " “I have been patient for one sign of gratitude, one sign of friendship. What do I receive? Accusations and threats. When I met your double from the parallel universe, I actually envied my own counterpart. Here was the man you could have been – loyal, caring – “ Kirk suddenly found himself jealous of a man he had never seen. “If you liked him so much, why didn’t you just keep him?” he asked bitterly…") (25)
- Mirror Man, poem by Rachel Cavendish (36)
- The Dreamer Remains, poem by Robin Hood (38)
- Anniversary by Rebecca D. Winter (Kirk, Spock and McCoy, all unable to figure out what to buy for Kirk and Spockʼs 8th Bonding anniversary, end up all buying the same thing. "“Buy a kitten, mister? They’re genuine Terran; the parents have papers. We breed them ourselves.” Bright-faced and eager, the children couldn’t have been more than ten. One, already a shrewd salesman, thrust a kitten into Kirk’s arms. He quickly gave it back. “No, that’s okay. I can’t have a kitten.” But as he spoke, the creature began to purr…") (39)
- Dual Existence, poem by Amy (48)
- Trial by A.T. Bush (Kirk talks Spock into a 3 day sex marathon as a means of alleviating Spockʼs fears of injuring Kirk during his next pon farr.) ("Kirk silenced the open moth with a fingertip. “Hear me out, Spock. What I propose is – we have three days of utter privacy – and all this luxury. I want uninhibited cooperation from you. I want to stay in bed until we can’t take anymore.” Spock had heard such a boast before. “Was that not your usual shore leave scenario?” He sighed heavily. “If I refuse, I suspect you will be spitefully unpleasant for the remainder of our leave. Kirk didn’t take offense. “You’re absolutely right…”") (49)
- No Notice, poem by Kimberly Sara Huntington (68)
- A Philosophy, poem by Tere Ann Roderick (69)
- What I Am, poem by Cybel Harper (70)
- Tainted Water by Charlotte Frost (Kirk has to get Spock back to the ship without anyone seeing them after an alien drink causes symptoms of inebriation in his lover. "“The ceiling is a most interesting mixture of colors. I have never noticed that before,” Spock laughed again. You’ve never hallucinated before, either. Kirk straightened and pulled on the other man’s arm. “Come on, Spock, let’s get you into bed…") (71)
- Where the Heart Is, poem by Cybel Harper (79)
- Audience of One, poem by Tere Ann Roderick (80)
- Nepenthe by L.P. Santos (Kirk gives Spock 30 days to decide if their relationship is important enough to him to allow it to be known or if it will end when the 5 year mission does. "With the acute hearing of his ancestors, Spock listened to the slight sounds from their shared room. Rising from the table, he moved toward the large picture window, waiting as he friend moved about in the next room. When all seemed in order, Kirk re-entered the kitchen. With suitcases in hand, he glanced around in a contemplative stance. “I’ll send for my other things,” the human said in a controlled voice…") (81)
- A Second Self, poem by Robin Hood (88)
- Holding Your Own by Robin Hood (Kirk and Spock start with masturbating in front of each other but end up lovers after trying to alleviate the problems caused by hearing McCoy make love in the next room.) (89)
- Night Moves, poem by Rachel Cavendish (94)
- Cave In by Sharon Pillsbury (Humor: Kirk and Spock have trouble retrieving Kirkʼs communicator from his pocket after being trapped in a cave-in.) (95)
- Tonight, poem by Dana Austin Marsh (98)
- Seeing is Believing by Kay Wells (When McCoy refuses to believe him after he tells McCoy that he and Spock are lovers, Kirk decides to invite McCoy along on his and Spockʼs shoreleave where he plans to have McCoy "accidentally” see him and Spock making love. "“Just what is it going to take?” Kirk asked, a touch of anger creeping in his voice. “Ghod, Bones, this is so important to me. You’re our best friend. I was hoping to get your blessing before we made a general announcement…” McCoy didn’t believe for a second that his captain and first officer were lovers…") (99)
- Questions and Answers, poem by Dana Austin Marsh (111)
- The Pages of My Heart, poem by Dana Austin Marsh (112)
- A Rare and Special Gift by Sharon Pillsbury (Kirkʼs status as a kept man while he, Spock and McCoy are stranded after a shuttle crash, causes anger and resentment after their rescue when Spock and McCoy misunderstand his reasons for it.) (113)
- One, poem by Rachel Cavendish (162)
Reactions and Reviews: Issue 2
See reactions and reviews for Tainted Water.
See reactions and reviews for Anniversary.
See reactions and reviews for A Matter of Trust.
See reactions and reviews for Nepenthe.
See reactions and reviews for Seeing Is Believing.
See reactions and reviews for Trial.
See reactions and reviews for The Finest Embrace.
See reactions and reviews for Ineluctability.
See reactions and reviews for Holding Your Own.
See reactions and reviews for Cave In.
See reactions and reviews for A Rare and Special Gift.