The Story's Story

I'd really like to say it all came out of some divine inspiration or something but I'm really not so sure I can say that.  I suppose to get a clear picture of how all this started, I'll have to go back to summer of 1998, when Robotech was still being aired on Cartoon Network.  I had been hooked on the show by a friend of mine.  Naturally, when I saw the books at the local book store, it was time to do some shopping.

It was the fall of 1998 by the time I had finished reading every single one of the 21 Jack McKinney books.  I was of two minds about it.  On one hand, I was glad I had been able to watch and read such a great story.  But, on the other hand... well, it was over.  Like anyone else, I wanted more.  There were certain things that kept nagging at the back of my head, mainly that all-encompassing question "what next?"  However, nothing truely cohereant came to mind for a story, so I was stuck with nothing but a set of random musings that didn't lead anywhere.

It was the Winter Solstice of 1998 that really threw everything out of whack.My grandfather had not been well since Thanksgiving and he had died early the morning of the Solstice.  It was really the first time anyone close to me had died and it was naturally something that really got me thinking... thinking a bit too much, really... about death and what we do when there is nothing that we can do.It's a strange thing, but I remember everything about when my father told me, but almost nothing about the rest of the day.  I can only speculate, really (this sound familliar?).  Somewhere in there, I picked up the second of the three-book compilations and started paging through it.  Not really sure why, it must have seemed appropriate for some reason.  I found the page which described how the Veritech pilots dealt with the constant death around them."Who?  I don't know that person."  Everyone reacted that way, except for one character: Rick.

Now, again, I'm not sure where the jump to Max was made, but it seemed like a good fit.  But suddenly it all clicked.  All the way through the reading of the books, I hadn't been able to figure out why a guy like Max would have joined the RDF.  It just didn't seem like him, given everything else he did.  It was suddenly obvious to me that something, somewhere, had drastically changed his outlook on life.

Special thanks to Robotech.comAnd the gaps began to fill in.Macross Island had been a quiet little place, aside of the ship's activities, for ten years.  A city had built around the SDF-1 and now everyone was ready for the thing to lift off triumphantly and take Humanity to the stars.  As you know, reader, this isn't what happened.  The Zentraedi attacked instead, turning festivities into carnage.  And then, that fold.  It ripped everyone away from Earth for a good two years.  And, it occurred to me, with all the death, who would have noticed three more bodies; those of the Sterling family.And so, James, Allegra, and Anna Sterling were born in my mind... with the sole purpose of dying.

James, by the way, was named after my grandfather.  It was becuase of his death that I had started to think about death, something I didn't like to think about in the slightest.  So, it seemed fitting that one of the people close to Max that had died and changed his outlook on life should be named that.

And ultimately, almost without my realizing it, that became the main theme of To Dream With the Stars.  It's taken me a very long time to decide that that was how it happened.  Even longer, still, to be able to write this page and explain to anyone reading the story that that was how it came about.  Max became a sort of mirror for me, only it happened to him over and over and over.  His family, Jeff Machlis, Ariana Allan, Roy, Ben... and onward.  And each time, he could not remember just what he had been thinking.

So, now, I suppose you're wondering why in the world I'd post something like this on line.  Well, part of it is, like I said, I didn't really know that that was how it all happened until maybe about a year ago.  The other part...Well, I owe it to my friends at The Robotech Network.  Gippy, Exey, Guardy, Mir, Pro, Invid, and eveyone else.  I mentioned it in a chat once, they were enthused, I sent it to them and they liked it, suggested posting it, so I did.  So, I've gotta say a big thankies to all of them for putting their faith in my story.  Come 1999, they became a much needed force of fellow Robotech fandom and what's more became some good friends.  So guys, you rock!  ^_^

And so, one by slowly churned away one, the chapters have been posted.  My take on Max has grown and changed and, in a way, I've grown and changed with him.  So, here it is over two years later and I'm still with it.  I'm picking away at the chapter for Dolza's Rain of Death, now, and I'm really not sure what direction that will take Max.  It occurred to me the other day that I hadn't given any thought to how Max would react to the destruction of Earth.  Just how attached to Earth as a whole is he?  It's something I'm going to have to give a bit of thought.

So, that of course means that it'll be a while before the next chapter...

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