Date: 30 Jun 2013 06:02 Title: Part II
Gorgeous story. It kills me that he never told Scotty, but I see why he felt it wasn't his place. It was an unselfish way that Jay cared for his son throughout this piece. The relationship between Jay and Caitlyn is painful. So much to regret on both sides. You are very, very good at drawing family and emotional dynamics, both the good and the horrific. Nicely done.
Author's Response: Aye, that it was. Painful, I mean. Cait Scott is a mess, I think; a high-functioning mess, but a mess. And Jay was young, and dumb, and made exactly the wrong choices. Thank you for reading it.
Date: 30 Jun 2013 05:36 Title: Part I
This is great. Jay, the father who never got to be, taking a chance with his "boy" in his own way now. And I like that he never openly admits it here, can't seem to really bring himself to acknowledge the relationship with words, but it's obvious from the little realizations that he quickly shies away from that he KNOWS.
I have to wonder if Scotty knows, too.
Author's Response: Thank you! Yes, Jay refusing to even say it in narrative wasn't any attempt to hide it from the reader, but just unable to acknowledge it. Scotty doesn't, though; he never figures that out, at least so far as I've written. If he does, it'll be when he's far, far older, and I imagine he'd have some exceptionally mixed feelings about it all. Thanks so much.
Date: 22 Oct 2012 21:32 Title: Part II
This was so moving. I liked Jay, and being closer to his age than Scotty's, I felt deeply for him. Nothing can tear us up like our kids! But I also liked this look at Scotty's beginnings, and his ongoing loneliness. It made me both sad and proud, sort of like Jay, I guess. Beautifully done.
Author's Response: Thanks! I liked Jay, too. He wasn't perfect, but once he had the chance to do something good, he did the best he could. I always felt for him, too. I'm glad you liked it!
Date: 22 Oct 2012 06:43 Title: Part I
I love this look at Scotty's life and character development through a very interesting window character. I also generally like stories about prickly relationships that eventually find their groove. Nice...start...off to read part 2!
Author's Response: Thanks! Looking back, I'm rather proud of how this one came out. I'm glad you enjoyed it!
Date: 05 Aug 2009 14:49 Title: Part II
Loved the developing personality and traits of Scotty and seeing just where some of those traits [and chin] came from. A truly engaging story with a lot of heart in despite the fact it is a sad story to a degree. I felt completely for poor ole Jay but warmed by his efforts to make everything happen for Scotty's test of the theory and guiding him to make his own decisions and maybe head for the stars. Then cheered by Scotty's sucess and ultimate decision to join up! that was uplifting to read and yet written in a simple manner not paraded and chucked down our throat. Wonderfully balanced story telling.
Author's Response: Thanks! I was trying to bridge the gap between what was definitely a not-so-good childhood, towards the novel Kobayashi Maru (where he then uses Perera's theory to trick the simulator), and then to ONOW, where he finally finds his feet and knows his life's his own to give, or to keep. I'm glad it all came across as starting fairly well here.
Date: 05 Aug 2009 14:37 Title: Part I
Eh? Thought I'd reviewed this. But anyway meant I had the good opportunity to reread. And it again being absorbed into the world of this kid and his awkward way of fitting into life. Jay almost as equally awkward - certainly around the kid. Love the span of the tale and how you use language and beats to move the story on with a turn of phrase or dialogue to indicate passage of time. This passage of time is used effectively to show the two finding their standing with one another and how Jay gradually finds a way of working with the kid and talking to him. Scotty is an enigma but a wonderful puzzle to work out. I love how through Jay we get a glimpse into how Scotty works but also get into Jay's mind too. Richly evoked but with such simple precision. I think the word is just honest writing. [which is more than one word I suppose but honest being the operative word]
Author's Response: Thanks, Miranda. I hadn't actually planned to write Jay's part of the tale (or most of Distant Horizons for that matter) but Teddog gave me this plot-bunny and this was what resulted. It was some interesting writing, trying to capture from an outside perspective what a somewhat feral kid would look like to a more civilized adult.
Date: 19 Feb 2009 06:14 Title: Part II
As before...I still found these characters difficult to relate to, but I think it was because of how emotionally repressed both are (though Scotty is to an even greater degree than Jay). But, seeing as that was what you set out to portray, I think you did well.
In the narration and dialogue, I really like how you handle the dialect--just enough to give the flavor, but without being overbearing.
One thing about Scotty I was wondering...did you ever envision him as having Asperger's Syndrome or anything on the autistic spectrum? Some of the comments about the effects of focusing too much on him, as well as the near-obsession with machines, really remind me of descriptions of AS kids. (Though, of course, I know other things may explain Scotty's tendencies--the comparison in my mind was still there.)
One minor grammar nitpick...I did notice a few places where you confused "affect" and "effect." "To affect" is to cause something to happen to something/someone. "Effect" is the noun.
Overall, though--well thought out work! And I can't wait to see On the Nature of Wind here... :-)
Author's Response: First: Thank you! People who overdo the Doric dialect tend to make me wince quite a bit. As to Scotty falling into the autistic spectrum, you make the third person to ask this. And it is a thoughtful and intelligent observation -- at this age, you can't easily tell whether it's psychology or actual brain mechanics.
But as I told them over on the BBS, this is a case of psychology more than actual brain-mechanics, which is why when he gets older and gets out of his messed up family situation, he settles down and opens up a bit more. Right now, everything in him is geared towards survival in some way or another, even though most people who stand outside can't fathom where he gets these notions. But since you read ONOW, you know that he does calm down, does learn how to slowly trust people.
And nit-pick away! Did you happen to see where that was? And if you did, could you send it to me? I always have trouble with affect/effect, even after all these years. if you remember where you saw it, I'd love to fix it. And thanks again for a wonderful review!
Date: 19 Feb 2009 04:13 Title: Part II
This backstory on Scotty was beautifully written. I so enjoy it when authors add depth and meaning to the character by fleshing out the early parts of their history. A lot of what you have in here lends itself well to explain the character traits we see in the Scotty of TOS era. Thanks, as always, Steff. Scotty is usually not my guy, but this story did captivate me. McCoy is your other favorite character to write - perhaps something on his early years is in the works? ;-)
Author's Response: It's only part of a broad arc of his life, but I was happy with how it came out. LOL! I suppose half my mission in writing is making Scotty everyone's guy -- explaining him on a human level. Or, rather, asking the reticent SOB questions and hoping he provides answers. As to McCoy... I do love him, and he's always been my second favorite of the TOS crew, but I don't foresee myself spending nearly the same amount of time on him. Unlike Scott, a lot of McCoy's history is laid out. But here's a question -- why don't you do it? ;-) Why not sit down and see what the young Leonard was made of? You're certainly qualified to write... why not?
Date: 18 Feb 2009 22:05 Title: Part I
I got so into this that when I realized my lunch hour was up it took everything I had to tear myself away. You can see the reverse extrapolation of the Scotty we know, who likes to spend shore leave time catching up on technical manuals. So far-the only "10" I've given.(I think)
Author's Response: Thank you, Mistral. Working backwards is one of the only ways to make sense of the man we see in canon -- figuring out who he is there by asking who he was before.
Date: 18 Feb 2009 08:26 Title: Part I
An amazing account of Scotty's troubled teen years. From his relationships with people closer than he'll ever know, to the first inklings of his true potential, it's all here. Insightfully written and with a potent angst that recalls the confused teen in all of us.
Author's Response: Thanks, Sam. For a piece I never planned to write, it came out really well.