THE TROUBLE WITH TRIBBLES
The Story Behind The Popular Star Trek Episode
By David Gerrold
Available at Amazon
The Star Trek episode, “The Trouble With Tribbles” aired in Dec of 1967. We were in Vietnam at the time and so obviously didn’t see it. Most likely our first viewing had to have been as a rerun sometime in 1968 after we’d come home and been discharged back into civilian. Our initial reaction; what a fun story. We’d always been sci-fi fans since our high school years. Our heroes were Ray Bradbury, Isaac Asimov, Robert Heinlein, A.E. Van Vogt…and too many others to mention.
Thus it was only a matter of time before we learned who this David Gerrold guy was and via several interviews in various magazines ala “Starlog” we recognized him as the writer of our second favorite Star Trek episode. So we picked up a few of his books and were never disappointed.
Jump ahead lots of years (in between which we became a writer) and who should pop up at our local comic shop one Wednesday afternoon but Mr. David Gerrold, who was making a pit stop in our town of Fort Collins, Colorado, his trip back to California. Meeting him was a pleasure and with other friends, we shared a few hours of lively conversation. Among the books Gerrold had available to purchase and autograph was his behind-the-scenes book regarding the making of “The Trouble With Tribbles.” We scoffed it up immediately.
Lest you think we only enjoy sci-fi and fantasy, our reading taste has always covered a wide spectrum of genres, as the title of the blog will attest. One of the most cherished is books about writing by writers we enjoy. Reading through Gerrold’s memoirs of his experiences was eye-opening, to say the least. His story of what it took to bring his initial idea to actual production is as harrowing an adventure as Ulysses’ own Odyssey. That the thing was produced is in itself almost a miracle. His recollections of working with producer Gene Coon are fun and his tales about being on the Desilu set during the film are endearing. For all he endured, in the end, it is his self-effacing humor that makes this memoir worth your time. Especially if you’ve ever entertained the idea of writing for television.
On that idea, we’ll take a pass. Finally two things. One, his last chapter is precious. If you think little acts of kindness have no lasting effect on the world, think again. Secondly, you can find this wonderful book at Amazon in paperback, hardback and on Kindle. Sadly the only thing you won’t get there is the beautiful wrap-around cover by Ty Templeton that is on our edition. That you’ll have to get from the man himself. Do yourself a favor, it’s more than worth it. As is this truly wonderful book.