Monday, January 18, 2016

Let's See What's Out There...


Continuing from my previous post about word choice and the emotional content of words, I thought about two very different starship captains in the Star Trek franchise--Captain Kirk, and Captain Picard, and how they "put the pedal to the metal."

Kirk, definitely the more Horatio Hornblower of the two, you can imagine on an old sailing ship, "...straight on 'til morning." He'll never grow up, full of adventure, as he commands, "Ahead, warp factor 2, Mr. Sulu." Later, in one of the movies, he simply says, "Warp speed." There's always that feeling of bluff and bluster about him, and you can just see him, face in the wind.

Picard, more formal, at first sight appears more proper and formal with his one word command, "Engage," as he sits back in the captain's chair, sipping his Earl Grey...hot. But, there's that sense of adventure that comes galloping out every so often. At the end of the pilot episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation, right before he says "Engage," he says, "Let's see what's out there." So, he's multi-faceted, after all.

Many ways of saying the same thing, even by the same character. "Let's go!" "Let's get the hell out of here!" "Time to go," "Outta here!" "Exit, stage right." Each of these tell us it's time to leave, each has a different feel. And, depending on the depth and breadth of your character, she or he might use one of those expressions, none, or something completely different. And, just like Capt. Picard, we might think of him as only saying his formal "Engage," but just under the surface there could be a "Let's see what's out there" trying to escape.

Ahead, maximum warp...

Keep writing, friends.

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