Ashla Bogan was an avid science fiction fan and creative writer. Though Ashla Bogan was not her first or only character, it became the most iconic.
Literary Career Edit
Ashla Bogan is generally regarded as one of the better writers among PBEM sims, excelling in visual scene construction, description of actions, and internal character development. She is not considered a 'power-poster' due to low, overall volume, but is notorious for longer-than-average posts and magniloquent style. It is rumored that it took several days for Ashla to complete a single post and she regularly consulted a thesaurus.
Ashla Bogan began writing as a hobby at the age of ten. She credits her unusually archaic grasp of English at a young age to reading authors such as C.S. Lewis and J.R.R Tolkien, claiming that she failed to learn proper grammar in school.
At a very young age, Ashla Bogan was first introduced to Star Trek: The Next Generation by her parents, and reportedly once believed Star Trek was a reality show and dressed up as Captain Picard for Halloween. Many years later she recalled that at the 'tender age of five' she suffered disappointment upon learning she couldn't join Starfleet.
Ashla Bogan did not regularly watch DS9 and did not develop any interest in the show. In high school, she borrowed recordings of Star Trek: Voyager from a friend, which had fostered in its first season the creation of her first Star Trek character: Jessica Paris. In a fan-fiction short, Jessica rescued the USS Voyager and married Tom Paris. Ashla admitted this was motivated by a crush on actor Robert Duncan McNeill at the time.
In 1996, following the release of Star Trek: First Contact, Ashla Bogan transferred her crush to Neal McDonough, who played Lieutenant Hawk, and wrote several stories involving a new character and romantic interest named, Ryan Sable. At one time, Ashla had planned on turning the stories into a novel, unaware that other tie-in novels involving Hawk had already been written, which introduced the character's family and homosexuality.
Not long after graduating from high school, Ashla openly announced that she hated Star Trek, despite actively writing in the genre for several years after. She justified this by explaining that her stories were heavily modified dystopias of the Star Trek universe, which she used out of creative laziness, and had more in common with genres such as Aliens, Star Wars, and Firefly. Ashla would eventually abandon writing within Star Trek completely.
Ashla Bogan first began simming in late 1999, entering Soultrek as Kaila Logan and a member of the USS Challenger, under the command of K'nar Trazen. At the time, the USS Challenger was deployed in-story and Kaila Logan was billeted on a local starbase awaiting the Challenger's return with another new simmer's character. Together, they wrote several posts accounting for various, mundane activities on the starbase. The plot advanced slowly due to the "by-turn" posting format of the sim, and Ashla quickly became bored with the monotony, inventing a subplot involving the USS Prometheus (Voyager) under the command of Ryan Sable.
The Challenger's game master, who was secretly preparing to abandon Soultrek to create her own sim and falsely believed Ashla was attempting to recruit from the Challenger, felt threatened by this. She destroyed the Prometheus, instructing Ashla to refrain from writing subplots that would detract from the primary story. Determined not to allow Ryan Sable to die, Ashla wrote a post in which the Prometheus had covertly faked their destruction and survived. The game master immediately killed the character of Kaila Logan, removing Ashla Bogan from the sim. In mid-2000, Ashla Bogan presented her case to the Challenger's replacement game master and was accepted with a new character: Jada-Emi Cade.
At the end of 2000, Ashla Bogan applied to the USS Sunfire under the command of Captain James D. West. This would mark the beginning of her most turbulent simming years, as she would become unavoidably caught between disputes within the IDF hierarchy. Her character and soon-to-be namesake, Ashla Bogan, was assigned as the Chief Helm Officer on the Sunfire and began at Lieutenant Junior Grade. Upon the creation of Independence Fleet in 2001, Ashla Bogan was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant Commander and became the Executive Officer in place of Charles Star, who formed and took command of the USS Avalon. Ashla Bogan continued to serve as Executive Officer of the USS Sunfire through 2001, eventually promoting to Commander.
In 2002, following embarrassment over an in-story relationship between the characters Ashla Bogan and James West, Ashla wrote that the character, Ashla Bogan, was believed dead after the destruction of the USS Banting. Ashla created a new character, Audra Murchadh, for the Sunfire and the character Ashla Bogan was moved to the Liberty as Executive Officer. A second, short-lived in-story relationship with Captain Ace Decade led to the AWOL of Ashla Bogan and a plot co-authored by Ashla and her real-life boyfriend, William Eastwood, that ended in the character's capture and conviction by courts-martial. Reportedly, this was due in part to the author losing interest in writing and becoming frustrated with IDF as a whole. After a short break from writing, Ashla Bogan later returned to take the position of Chief Engineer as Lieutenant Commander.
In 2003, following West's return to IDF, Audra Murchadh, was promoted to Captain and Commanding Officer of the new USS Sunfire-B. The sim remained in IDF until late 2003, when the group voted to leave IDF and become an independent sim citing the admiralty and political conflicts. Despite the removal of her sim, Ashla Bogan continued to maintain characters within IDF until 2004. It was not until 2006, a year after Admiral West's final removal, that Ashla returned to IDF with Matsumura Asako as the Executive Officer of the USS Avalon, though she left within a few months of rejoining.
As an Executive Officer, Ashla Bogan was an average player and mediator, having recounted an occasion when she helped to end a dispute between Admiral West and Rachael Rager (aka Priscilla Myst) that threatened to divide the Sunfire in late 2001. However, as a Commanding Officer within IDF, Ashla Bogan performed very poorly, suffering lapses in motivation that ultimately doomed each command. Her first command, the USS Goldeneye, began in September 2001 and was defunct five months later in January 2002, having generated only 59 posts. Moreover, Ashla was a people-pleaser and had become overextended in her obligations to numerous sims. Caught between politics and her indiscriminate loyalty, she eventually exhausted her motivation, creativity, and suitability for future promotion within IDF. It was under frustration and the persuasion of William Eastwood, who alleged that her friends within IDF were capitalizing on her eagerness to please, that she left IDF and isolated her activity to the USS Discovery.
Seventh Fleet ProductionsEdit
Having already written many works of fan-fiction in other genres (e.g. Resident Evil, Aliens) with a friend, Ashla Bogan and William Eastwood created Seventh Fleet Productions. Not intended to operate as a gaming fleet, the group promoted real-time collaboration and co-authorship, having no administrative hierarchy. Seventh Fleet Productions's website was designed as a repository for fan-fictions, the most popular being the USS Discovery, which was created in late 2003 and absorbed simmers from the USS Callisto and USS Sunfire-B. The site is maintained to this date, though no longer under the name "Seventh Fleet" or the umbrella of Star Trek.
Lieutenant Commander Ashlynn Conyers (2010) is the Chief CONN Officer of the USS Discovery, Seventh Fleet. Only daughter of Admiral Vincent Conyers, Chief of Starfleet Personnel, she is a driven, aggressive, opinionated and unproven combat pilot turned command-track who has something to prove.
Commander Matsumra Asako (2006) was the Executive Officer of the USS Avalon (Independence Fleet). Japanese by birth, her name is presented in the typical Japanese fashion of surname followed by given name. This character was the author's first honest attempt at a well-balanced character. Asako did not remain on the Avalon for long, as the author soon returned to retirement from IDF. Asako would later be resurrected for the USS Discovery.
Lieutenant Matsumra Asako (2010) is the reincarnation of the character previously created for use in Independence Fleet. She serves as a Medical Officer and Surgeon assigned to the USS Discovery, Seventh Fleet. She is generally considered the 'ethical center' of the crew, acting as a compassionate and peace-loving counter-point to the more aggressive Discovery characters - such as Ashlynn Conyers - however, this often puts Matsumra in a dangerous position with potential hostiles.
Ensign Kaila Logan (1999-2000) was the author's first sim-based character and a surreptitious attempt at crossing Star Wars with Star Trek, as it was specifically forbidden by sim bylaws. Possessing telekinetic abilities and an unusual sword - the blade of which Kaila could extend or retract at will, similarly to a lightsabre - she was, naturally, a Mary Sue. She was assigned as a Tactical Officer on the USS Challenger (Soultrek). However, conflicts surfaced between the author and the Challenger's game master - who mistakenly believed that Kaila Logan was a recruiting front. Kaila Logan was subsequently killed, and to this day remains the only dead protagonist among Ashla's characters.
Ensign Jada-Emi Cade (2000-2001) was a Sciences Officer assigned to the USS Challenger (Soultrek). She was the author's first attempt at a return following Kaila Logan's death and desertion of the Challenger's Commanding Officer.
Ashla Bogan (2001-2006) - the character for which the author, Ashla Bogan, is best known - was a stereotypical, Mary Sue character: a la Westley Crusher. Born to a royal family living outside the jurisdiction of Federation law, she was a eugenically engineered human-augment, and possessed phenomenal intelligence and skill. She tested for and was accepted to Starfleet Academy at the age of 15, and served in numerous jobs requiring high levels of technical expertise, often typifying the 'jack-of-all-trades' similar to the fictional character known as Jarod in the NBC television series, The Pretender. She held ranks from Ensign to Commander, and served as Chief CONN Officer, Chief Engineer, and Executive Officer. Her assignments included the USS Sunfire (Independence Fleet), USS Liberty (Independence Fleet) and the USS Discovery (Seventh Fleet).
It was not unusual for Ashla Bogan to become the center of action. She had reportedly been blacklisted and demoted for UA; had been listed as Missing In Action at least twice, having been abducted on at least one occasion; and possibly suffered death, being later resurrected in the tradition of Spock. Though it is rumored she possessed some commendable traits - such as loyalty and friendliness - she often suffered from mood swings and the disillusioned, embittered personality common to most heroines of cyberpunk fiction. Contradictorily, Ashla Bogan was a physically desirable character, and on more than one occasion, she became romantically involved with her commanding officers: Captain Ace Decade, and later, Captain William Eastwood. It is rumored that during a romantic plot between Captain Decade and Ashla Bogan, Admiral West expressed disappointment at having missed a romantic opportunity with Ashla, which subsequently lead to the infamous post #666. The post apparently shocked the simming community, and the creator used it as an excuse to request a full transfer from the Sunfire, depreciating its content by claiming the Ashla, with which Admiral West became involved, was an illegal clone.
While in transition between the USS Sunfire and USS Liberty, through an unusual twist, the 'real' Ashla was officially adopted by Admiral Conyers and legally changed her name to Noelani Vespera Conyers. This was, undoubtedly, an attempt to 'reboot' a character that the creator had come to view as hackneyed, which ultimately failed. At the time of her shelving in mid-2006, Ashla Bogan was a Lieutenant Commander serving as the Chief CONN Officer of the USS Discovery, Seventh Fleet.
Captain Audra Murchadh (2002-2004) was the illegitimate half-sister of Ashla Bogan. Born to a mistress who was smuggled out by a palace guard and secret lover, she grew up on Earth, and was a contrived attempt at continuing the branch of royalty begun with Ashla Bogan on the Sunfire. Like her elder, half-sister, she was also a Mary Sue.
Emery L. AshleyEdit
Captain Emery L. Ashley (2001-2002) was a Human-El-Aurian Hybrid and Commanding Officer of the USS Goldeneye (Independence Fleet). Emery was a characteristically dry-tempered heroine, and Mary Sue type character.
Lieutenant (JG) Leeaneve Resko (2002-2003) was a Tactical Officer assigned to the USS Challenger (Soultrek), and author's second attempt at a return to Soultrek after becoming inactive. She was a member of an AvaGem subspecies that was genetically engineered by the Founders, whose culture was often depicted as a derivative of J.R.R. Tolkien's elves. Leeaneve became romantically involved with and eventually married fellow Tactical Officer, Lieutenant Clayton Mock. Soon after, the couple announced their first pregnancy: Leeaneve was carrying twins. However, due to genetic differences, the pregnancy lead to numerous complications that eventually threatened her life and resulted in a premature birth.
Lieutenant Commander Jennifer Bowen (20??) was the Chief Intelligence Officer of the USS Liberty. As a Human-AvaGem hybrid, she was an extreme example of the Mary Sue archetype.
Lieutenant Commander Ryan Sable (2002-2003?) was the second character created by the author, preceded by an obscure character by the name of Jessica Paris. However, Sable did not enter the simming arena until late 2001, as the Chief CONN Officer assigned to the USS Griffin. Ryan was a cousin of Diana Troi, via an only sister of Ian Troi, whom Ashla invented. Ryan was, like many others, an archetypal Mary Sue, possessing a history and biological enhancement similar to that of Voyager's Seven of Nine. Unlike Seven of Nine, her biological enhancement was not visible to the naked eye, and was attributed to a more technically advanced species, who supposedly created the Borg. Her final assignment prior to shelving was Executive Officer on the USS Sovereign.
Lieutenant Ryan Sable (2010) is a reinvention of the original character, and serves as a Sciences Officer on the USS Discovery, Seventh Fleet. She has very little in common with her predecessor.
Murphy Wesson was originally created for a chat-based RPG set in the contemporary Los Angeles Police Department. She often exemplified the disillusioned and emotionally unbalanced 'damsel in distress'. She was reincarnated as the more stable Ensign Murphy Wesson (20??-20??), and served with Ensign Ferrell Smith as a Security Officer on the USS Washington. The character was later borrowed by the creator of Ferrell Smith, in the cameo of a SCIS Special Agent on the USS Avalon.
Karenessa Ledgers (20??-20??) was originally created for a Babylon 5 sim, which is now defunct. She was later re-invented as Lieutenant Karenessa Ledgers on the USS Callisto. Her early history involved a cross-over between Aliens and Star Trek, wherein her parents were killed by a Xenomorph infestation on a passenger transport. Karenessa was saved by another passenger, and later adopted by Joyce and Jacob Ledgers. As an intentional deviation from the author's typically Caucasian characters, Karenessa possessed African heritage and was the writer's first attempt at creating a more ethnically diverse character base. Karenessa was a Starfleet Marine, and through a cross-service program, eventually served as the Callisto's Executive Officer under the command of Colonel Adrian Shephard.
As a first-generation AvaGem, Captain Caviiya Aubrey (2003) was a subtly disguised Mary Sue, and often subject to a grim outlook on life. She served as the Commanding Officer of the USS Dawnstar - an independent sim that never began successfully.
Captain Shanti Harold (2005) was a member of Starfleet Special Operations, who had been temporarily reassigned as the Commanding Officer of Starbase 10 (Independence Fleet). Shanti Harold was a Mary Sue that wore glasses.
Leilani Angel was the author's first honest attempt at an antithesis of the Mary Sue: she was short, plain, mousy, shy, lacked confidence, and often clumsy. She served as the Chief Operations Officer of Starbase 10 (Independence Fleet), and was short-lived.