Real World article
(written from a Production point of view)

The Star Trek: Voyager Technical Manual is an internal document of Paramount Pictures, written by longtime Star Trek production staffers Michael Okuda and Rick Sternbach, intended to familiarize prospect writers and directors into the technological nomenclature of the television show in question, in this case Star Trek: Voyager.

Summary Edit

From "About this document"
The original Star Trek: The Next Generation Writers' Technical Manual was developed to provide a handy reference for the detailed technological background that our writers sometimes need, and is offered as a supplement to the Writers'/Directors' Guide. It was NOT required reading-relatively few of our scripts use more than a tiny amount of this material. Still, some story points do hinge on this stuff, and Star Trek has always prided itself on scientific accuracy and internal consistency. Star Trek: Voyager will soon yield a similar document; this is but a prototype. As we proceed with the series, more information and artwork will be compiled and distributed. At this early stage, there is much specific data still unknown, still to be invented by the writers, producers, and designers. The basics are in place, however, a solid foundation left by the original Star Trek television series, the features, The Next Generation, and Deep Space Nine. You may want to look over some of this material, be it due to a passing curiosity about phasers or a burning desire to fathom propulsive warp fields, Whatever the reason, it's here if you need it.

Excerpts of copyrighted sources are included for review purposes only, without any intention of infringement.

Contents Edit

  • About this document
  • Section I-A technical primer
  • Section II-Technical introduction
  • Section III-Emergency procedures
  • Section IV-A celestial bestiary
  • Section V-Index

Background information Edit

  • As with its predecessors (amongst others Star Trek: The Next Generation Writers' Technical Manual), this internal document, illuminated with actual production concept art, was composed to help prospect writers out in keeping internal consistency where the ever-growing technological aspects were concerned. Both Michael Okuda and Rick Sternbach had already enough experience to compile such a document.
  • Unlike its predecessors, however, this document did not ultimately result in a publicly available technical manual. Years later, would-be author Sternbach commented, "As for not doing a Voyager TM, I had a contract in hand from Pocket Books but decided not to go ahead because the advance was simply not adequate to do what could have been the best TM ever. Tim Earls was set to do some kick-ass Illustrator and Lightwave art, but I thought it would have been better to walk away than to slave over the project for diminishing returns. I was also not entirely pleased with what Margaret Clark had done with the editing on the DS9 TM; I may be in the minority, but I believe her text changes dumbed down the tech nature of the book; e.g., where I had written an entry like '150+ troops' the text was changed to '150 plus troops' which to me altered the meaning. The TNG TM came across much better." [1](X)