TrekCore Interview with Randall Landers

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Interviews by Fans
Title: TrekCore Interview with Randall Landers
Interviewer: Joseph Melvin
Interviewee: Randall Landers
Date(s): spring 2006
Medium: print
Fandom(s): Star Trek TOS
External Links: online here; reference link
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In 2006, Randall Landers was interviewed Joseph Melvin for TrekCore.

See List of Star Trek Fan Interviews.

Some Excerpts

Oh, geez, I've been a fan since I first watched the show in 1966. The first episode I recall watching was "What Are Little Girls Made of?" While I've enjoyed TNG, DS9 and even some VOY to an extent, my first and true love has got to be the original Star Trek series, the animateds and the original series Trek movies... Yep. Even wrote stories about it as a twelve year old. As a 14 year old, I discovered Star Trek Lives! by Jacqueline Lichtenberg, Sondra Marshak and Joanie Winston, and I found that other folks were writing Star Trek, too. When Marshak & Culbreath's Star Trek: The New Voyages was published, I submitted several stories to them for consideration, and was referred by them to several zine publishers. Roberta Rogow (herself a professional writer these days) published one of my stories in her fanzine, GRIP. Within two years, I was putting together stories for my own fanzine, and I haven't looked back since.
Believe it or not, [who inspires me most is] a tie between Jim Kirk and Bones McCoy. I love heroes, and Jim Kirk is the best of the best when it comes to heroes. McCoy is the sort of man I'd like to think I am. Opinionated, irrascible, and sometimes even a pain in the ass, but honest, loyal and possessing a genuine love for his fellow beings.
I love Rayelle Roe's fan fiction. She would tell these wonderful stories about Kirk, Spock and McCoy going camping, or swimming, or to the beach, etc. I noted that Harve Bennett mentioned her stories at Space Trek in St. Louis back in the early 80's and when STV:TFF came around, wham! there were these two camping scenes. I've always known the origin of those scenes which are regarded by many to be the only redeeming features of that film. I love James Blish's and Alan Dean Foster's novelizations. I've mentioned Jean Lorrah's works. I'd add Nomad, Chris Dickenson, Linda McInnis and Ann Zewen as fan fic writers I truly have admired (and had the honor of publishing). I should also add Rob Morris, D.G. Littleford and Jim Ausfahl to that list. Rick, Rob and Jim are currently the most prolific writers, but we're ALWAYS looking for new stories to publish.
I truly believe that fan-made films are the fanzines of the 21st century. Some of them are good, some of them are bad. Some of them have good people working for them, some of them have jerks working for them. But that's true of fan fiction, conventions, websites, and any other aspect of fandom. And it's not limited to Star Trek. You haven't lived until you've run into a Broncos fan who wears his jersey every Sunday, videotapes every game, calls you up about a work-related matter and ends up discussing draft picks. Yet these are the same people who consider Star Trek fans "wackos, weirdos and geeks."
So many of the current "idiots in charge" at Pocketbook and Paramount have no idea what really happened because they weren't even born at the time fandom was at its zenith. One of these "professional writers" said he'd never even heard of zines. Geez, I guess he's never read STAR TREK: NEW VOYAGES or STAR TREK LIVES! And I'd recommend both of those books as well to every fan. ST:NV was a collection of fan fiction previously published in fanzines (as opposed to the STRANGE NEW WORLDS stuff that has supposedly never been printed before). And STAR TREK LIVES! details what it was like to be a fan in the 70's. And don't forget Joanie Winston's THE MAKING OF THE STAR TREK CONVENTIONS which has some wonderful material.

Lastly, I have a request from several of my contributors to make. Some folks on various Star Trek websites throughout the Internet have used the phrase, "[insert crappy episode/movie title] was just like fan fic." Usually, this sort of disparaging remark is uttered by Modern Trek fans who've never really bothered to read fan fiction. They've just "heard it was bad" as one of them told me when I took her to task. I referred her to Chris Dickenson's KEEPER OF THE KATRA and Nomad's I NEVER SAID GOODBYE and asked her to read them. She did, and then she apologized for the remark, saying both stories had moved her deeply.

Give fan fiction a chance, folks. Come visit our website and check out any three stories. If you don't find any of them worth reading, well, accept my apologies. But you might open a new door, a new avenue of entertainment to you, one that you might find yourself wanting to be a part of. And believe me, we would welcome you.