Date: 20 Jun 2011 23:10 Title: A Weaver of Lives
Wow that was surprisingly gripping for a obituary style story. It made the Tekeny Ghemor character more interesting, because I personally think in the DS9 series, Tekeny Ghemor was one of the more weaker secondary (recurring) characters. His primary role was simply to develop Kira's character.
From a plot point of view I like it how Natima has overstated Ghemor's importance and popularity amongst other Cardassians. This is typical of obituaries trying to make the person in question more larger than life.
Of course one of real Cardassian 'heroes' was Damar, he went from Dukat's loyal right-hand man, to leader of Cardassia to freedom fighter. Without Damar the Cardassians would never have revolted against the Dominion in the final stages of the Dominion war. The Cardassians would have fought to the last man against the Federation, Klingons and Romulans.
Thank you for reading. :-)
You and I couldn't disagree more about Tekeny Ghemor; I found him a most compelling character even on the show.
Natima Lang certainly used flowery language in the obituary, as is typical--but I'm not so sure she overstated what Ghemor did in his life. Ghemor wasn't one of the revolutionaries and couldn't be, because of his exile, and his untimely illness and death. However, where I think his influence is going to show more is in the postwar era, and through the people he left his mark on. Especially his cousin, who becomes no less than the Castellan (commander in chief) of the postwar Cardassian Union.
I cannot see how this piece diminishes Damar in any way. Damar had a heroic arc, yes. But this wasn't about him.
Date: 20 Sep 2010 03:45 Title: A Weaver of Lives
We've seen Tekeny Ghemor in only two episodes (unfortunately), but I think this article by Lang describes him perfectly. I can imagine all those things without any problems; the tone of his voice when he welcomes every and each person coming to work each morning, being there for Kira when she woke up after the surgery, and caring for riyăk's family tragedy.
It was very touching, and very warm description.
Not all Cardassians were as the system tried to shape them, unfortunately those, who remained themselves in spite of all, were hunted by that system.
And still - there were Cardassians, who appreciated that value of being simply nice and a people's person, so maybe not all of them are so bad and there are many more decent ones.
I really enjoyed the story. Now if you excuse me, I need to get tissues to wipe my eyes.
I think there were definitely Cardassians who remembered the value of simple kindness. At first I was surprised that a man like Tekeny could ever have risen to the rank he did...but I think it was a combination of doing his job well, and just being nice to people. After all, when you're nice, people will often work harder and better for you than they would otherwise. That shouldn't be your main reason for being nice, but it sure is a great side effect. ;-)
That Tekeny loved a Bajoran, even after he realized it wasn't his daughter, said it all about what a big heart he must have had. (And when he first comes back onto DS9 in "Ties of Blood and Water," he looks SO huggable! :-D ) I wish we could have seen more of him...Kira's reaction when he came back told me there HAD to be more to the story.
Thank you for reading! :-)
Date: 19 Nov 2009 08:40 Title: A Weaver of Lives
Great character piece. The extended Ghemor family, not just the Legate, is so richly portrayed. I really liked the use of the journalistic vehicle for the story. And you're right, there is definitely a need for more fic dealing with Tekeny and Iliana.
Glad you liked it!
And even with Tekeny knowing her as Nerys and not Iliana, I still think more fic is needed--I mean, she gave him that big, cheerful hug the INSTANT he showed up the second time on the station...I have to think there was more that passed between them than just their keeping tabs on each other in the news. I mean, what did they talk about on the shuttle? What did they talk about offscreen? And were they writing to each other? They HAVE to have found a way to be part of each other's lives.
Personally, I think that even if they may have had to be very careful what they said and how they contacted each other, they DID find a way to keep up. I suspect post-Omarion Nebula (and the destruction of the Obsidian Order), it MIGHT have been possible.
And even if they couldn't chat frequently, I figured a scene like what happened in the Infirmary in my version would go a LONG way towards explaining what permanently tied the bond between them.
BTW, I can't take credit for Alon Ghemor...he comes from the Pocket Book novels and I just appropriated him. (Raveda, on the other hand, and Alon's parents...those are more my invention.)
Date: 14 May 2009 18:19 Title: A Weaver of Lives
Ah, this is such a wonderful read. Tekeny Ghemor really is a model of the "average Cardassian", who by skill and common sense alone has risen to a position of respect in his community, without falling to corruption or forgetting his love for his homeworld.
And I love the use of Natima Lang. One didn't exactly get the best image of her from the one episode. It was fun, but not very flattering in terms of showing off her brains. What a wonderful idea to expand on what little info we get on her in canon.
Thank you so much for reading! :-)
Tekeny's just one of those characters that (in my mind) you can't help but feel a lot of warmth for. Writing for him was a real pleasure--though on the other side it was also kinda sad because of his early death and all the anguish he experienced in his life.
As for Natima...the idea of her as a journalist and ambassador comes from the Terok Nor and DS9 relaunch novels. While I am not going to really hold to the relaunch in a lot of ways, that was an aspect I really liked. I thought putting her back into that journalistic role in a freer society could be interesting. And I'm glad you liked it. :-)
Date: 19 Feb 2009 07:21 Title: A Weaver of Lives
What a poignant piece of journalism. It has no objectivity, but still reads in a similar style to a journalistic piece; part that, part touching biography. Macet's cursing insult at his cousin made me laugh; Tekeny's kindnesses to kin, workers, friends and neighbors was heartwarming, to say the least.
The way it was woven from beginning to end, as well, speaks of some extremely lovely writing. I've always admired your dedication to this culture and showing it as so much more than we were able to see most of the time, but it's always a true pleasure to dip into it again whenever I have time.
My only grammar comment is that colons are given the same weight as periods, and so the first word after a colon should be capitalized. But that's a very trivial thing, in an otherwise superb tale.
Thank you so much for reading. :-)
Ambassador Lang doesn't pretend any objectivity in this...that's why I think she preferred other biographers to handle the chronology-building and straight reporting on the events. While she used journalistic techniques to get the information she needed, that's why she filed her report in the op-ed column. (I also imagine that with Cardassia just getting the beginnings of a free press, they're going to be VERY careful about marking the fact that this is an opinion piece, which is why I marked it more times than the site I got my style template from.)
I enjoyed letting Macet say his little piece about Dukat. I'm sure he's been holding that in for many, MANY years, and now that the [expletive] is burning in hell, perhaps even literally... ;-) (Can you IMAGINE every time he's wanted to go off on somebody thanks to the resemblance? "NO, DAMMIT! For the LAST f-ing time--observe the beard! I AM NOT Dukat and I have NOTHING in common that narcissistic man-whore of a head case!")
Tekeny's warmth...man...I give a LOT of credit to Lawrence Pressman for bringing so much to the character. When I watch "Second Skin," I really think it was Tekeny's love that affected Kira the most, not anything Entek ever threatened her with.
About your grammar comment...if you're going by the APA Manual (and some of your comments and PMs make me suspect you would), you'd be right. However, various style guides give different advice and the subject seems to be triggering a lot of arguing on grammar-forum threads I Googled. Personally, I prefer not to.
Date: 19 Feb 2009 01:11 Title: A Weaver of Lives
Wow..I really liked this. For a show that already had much depth, for a TREK show at least, you are giving it even more detail which can only make those who have never seen the show give it a chance....And the crafting of the story, the way it was told, made it a stand-out as well....
You have fan....
Thank you so much for reading this. :-)
It really meant a lot to me to write this one, but I did it so early in my Sigils and Unions process that I think it got lost int he shuffle.
I appreciate the review. :)
Date: 17 Feb 2009 22:14 Title: A Weaver of Lives
This was such a cool representation of an introspective news article-you create a vibrant character that we never actually see or meet, except through second-hand recollections. And the bit about Kira is icing on the cake-it really makes the whole tale work.
Thank you so much! :-)
The original credit for the character of Tekeny Ghemor goes to the writers of "Second Skin" and "Ties of Blood and Water," of course, but I really enjoyed the chance to elaborate some more on what his life must've been like before those final days.
Not inserting any sort of direct letter from Tekeny or any other way to let him speak directly to the reader (even from beyond the grave) felt like the right thing to do in this case. Even as I wrote...I found myself with that longing I remembered from "Ties of Blood and Water," wishing he could come back but knowing it wasn't possible. That longing and grief (if such can be felt for a fictional character) was very much the effect I wanted.
With Kira...I have to think the happenings of "Ties of Blood and Water"--everything that passed between her and Tekeny, both good and bad, would've really had an impact. I imagine she feels quite the turmoil of emotions when she thinks of him and that some feelings may even have intensified after his death...i.e. now that he's gone, she realizes just how large the void is that he left in the land of the living.
Ohh, and I find it interesting--your rating sure did change between when you read this over at HopeStation and when you read it now. Do shoot me a PM over at TrekBBS; I'm quite curious to know what happened, as I hadn't changed anything between versions. ;-)
Date: 16 Feb 2009 00:29 Title: A Weaver of Lives
Wow. I don't know at once in which way this is best -- as journalism or as a story. ;-) The answer is, I believe, that this is one phenomenally touching and deep story, masterfully wrapped in the form of an article.
Last bit with Kira was incredible. Thank you for sharing this.
Thank you so much for reading...I'm glad it could touch you. :-)
With the very last scene, with Kira, I took my cue from "Ties of Blood and Water" itself: just as Tekeny's very last moments were kept offscreen and became so incredibly powerful for what we did NOT see, I wanted the message to come from Kira's silence.
But if you look closely (and I'm sure you've already noticed this), there are still reflections of "Ties of Blood and Water" throughout the rest of it.
As to the journalistic aspect of it...just a random note: I based the format on the way editorials appear on FoxNews.com, though compared to FN, I kinda "overdid" the reminders up at the top that this is an opinion piece--reason being that I figured if Cardassia is just developing a free press, they're going to kinda over-disclaim it (at least by our standards) when an article is opinion.
Anyway, that's probably more than you ever wanted to know about my writing process; once again, thank you so much for reading. :-)
Date: 02 Feb 2009 01:34 Title: A Weaver of Lives
A touching, almost heartbreaking character piece, even beyond the wonderfully detailed attention to Cardassian life and culture. I don't know DS9 very well, but this story makes me want to look up the relevant episodes. Thanks for the ride.
I'm glad you liked reading it. The episodes to check out would be "Second Skin" and "Ties of Blood and Water." If you think THIS is heartbreaking, trust me...you have to see those two. Even reading the summary of the latter won't prepare you...