Seaview Stories Newsletter 13



Special Halloween Edition


Don't forget to visit Kate's Page for a great Halloween tale 'Seven to Sunrise'.

New Caption Contest Photo



"I knew there was something weird about that costume shop."

What’s in a word?


What’s in a word? Everything. From happiness to sadness, clarity and confusion, words can excite the mind, or confuse it. Especially in fan fiction.


How many stories have we, in our own little fandom, read and pondered, ‘what does that  mean?’ or ask a  more generic ‘huh?’ as to just what the author meant? Especially between the English speaking peoples around the world.


For example, when the character Henry Higgins (Pygmalion/My Fair Lady) said the biggest difference between an Englishman and American was the language, it gave us all a laugh but he wasn’t all that far wrong. However, in the world of today, with exposure to so many differing terms and pronunciations that  gap is closing. But  there are still a few differences that tend to pop up just in time just to confuse everyone.


Case in point:


Inquiry vs. Enquiry


Both spellings are perfectly correct and mean essentially the same thing. However, most Americans  invariably use ‘inquiry’ for both an official inquest or simply asking a question, while most Britons will divide the two, using ‘inquiry’ only for the inquest, and ‘enquiry’ for a question. Why the difference between the two countries? I have no idea. Probably time, history, and in the case of spelling, you might actually lay some of the blame at Henry Webster’s feet.


Creating the first American English dictionary in 1828, he  ‘Americanized’ a great many of the British spellings of the day, believing it’s ‘rules’ to be to complex for the new nation. Hence, some noticeable differences such as using an ‘s’ over a ‘c’ for many words such  defense and er instead of re, as in center.


For Voyage fanfic writers, since we’re scattered all over the globe, as a fellow author, I’d suggest you simply use whichever spelling you’re  the most comfortable with.  It’s the definitions of a word, it’s slang,  and  some phrases  that that are the true culprits of misunderstandings. After all when an English Muffin isn’t really a muffin at all, in either America or England, and a pudding isn’t necessarily a smooth creamy concoction, but any of the desserts on the menu, well, you might as well pull your hair out and wonder  if  a ‘cat’s eye’ is a golden streaked marble, a furry pet’s pleading stare, or  an embedded reflector in the middle of the road. Is  that zebra crossing something designed for an equine species in a game reserve or are Crane or Kowalski trying to cross the street on a painted crosswalk?


Yes, the language of Shakespeare (which is far more confusing to understand in the 21st century than in the 1600's) is the language of confusion.


Which is why the asterisk * was invented. Not really, but for argument’s sake, suffice it to say, that little star has become a real boon to fan fiction writers everywhere. Simply mark an item that might be questionable for the reader to find again at the bottom of the story with a brief explanation.


After all, when reading a story, I want to know if  Lee is actually eating Jell-O*, or a jar full of  granny’s homemade preserves. Hence, coming soon to Seaview Stories, Mr. Morton’s Anglo American Cullinary Dictionary, even if most folks  today know that you can dunk a biscuit into your milk if it’s really a cookie depending on where you live. As for an Aubergine, I won’t even get into whether it means eggplant or the color purple.


So what’s in a word? Just the spice in story telling.









"So what's all the hooplah about Triskaidekaphobia*?"
*Unlucky number 13"

Newsletter #12 Caption Contest Winner


"I don't care what you say, Captain.  You're not going to the Control Room in your Pyjamas!"
Anna S.



From: US State Department

To: Adm. H. Nelson

SSRN Seaview

Re: Mummy Matter


Receipt and official  ‘Well Done’ for the return of :

(1) Sacred Sarcophagus and (1) Ancient Mummy to a valued ally. However, please explain the following for our records:


Sarcophagus - Broken lock


Mummy - Electrical burns, several

Mummy - Gray paint, on bottoms of feet

Mummy - Bullet holes, too many to count


We realize you may have come under attack while transporting item, however, returning frayed damaged goods not the way to win friends and influence our allies.


From: Adm. H. Nelson

SSRN Seaview

To: US State Department

Re: A Mummy Matter



Sarcophagus - Broken lock: Not our fault it was broken to begin with.

Electrical burns, several: Incurred when short in wiring too close to said Mummy.

Gray paint, on bottom of feet: Incurred when Seaview took a ‘rock and roll’ from faulty wiring and half open can of paint spilled on top of Sarcophagus and through the cracks to the Mummy’s feet.

Bullet holes, too many to count: Incurred when crewmen saw what they thought was an intruder on the deck while we cleaned up the paint.



From: US State Department

To: Adm. H. Nelson

SSRN Seaview

Re: A Mummy Matter


Well, be careful next time!


From: Adm. H. Nelson

SSRN Seaview

To: US State Department

Re: A Mummy Matter


Roger that.


From: Adm. H. Nelson

SSRN Seaview

To: Adm. Johnson, ONI

Re: A Mummy Matter


Am forwarding communication between State and I regarding the Mummy Matter. The real story about how the Mummy came to life and ravaged the boat and my crew has been sent to you via coded message.


You will agree that the truth is best hidden from State and other government agencies. I don’t want my entire crew, not to mention myself, placed in straight jackets. Seaview has too much work to do and it would be a great inconvenience without the use of our arms and hands.


By the way, do you have anyone on staff with paranormal expertise? My Captain is still in Sickbay suffering the after effects of possession (again!) and dizzy spells. Not to mention a whopper of a bruise placed on his cheek by yours truly.


Frankly, we’re all getting a bit tired of whatever attraction it is he has to ghosties, goulies, and alien life forms and now apparently, cursed antiquities. Why is it that he always seems to have stamped on his forehead, ‘space for rent, inquire within?’


Really need to find a cure.


From: Adm. Johnson, ONI

To: Adm. H. Nelson

SSRN Seaview

Re: A Mummy Matter


No experts available via this office. Sorry. Any idea why the Mummy didn’t want to go back home?


From: Adm. H. Nelson

SSRN Seaview

To: Adm. Johnson, ONI

Re: A Mummy Matter


Well, considering that hotbed of political unease, would you?

All for now. And please, for next time,  something nice and easy? Like locating and defusing an unlocateable bomb?

By the way, Happy Halloween.(Seems we have Halloween every day, except for the candy. I don't suppose you can send us a gross of M&M's and candy corn? That should appease the Captain while he's in Sickbay.)

Seaview out.





"I knew I we should have explained the difference between frogmen and frog men to that fanfic writer."
"Well, at least she didn't turn us into Centaurs."


"Uh, Lee? I don't mean to worry you, but I have a sudden craving to seek out someone called Gepetto."
"You think that's bad; I just had the urge to make a sock puppet that looks like Lambchop."


*You can read how both Crane and Sharkey were first transformed a cat and dog in 'Spellbound' and Crane again in Cats Paw.

*Wikipedia's history of the Asterisk

* Wikipedia's explaination of the unlucky number 13