© Batz Goodfortune 1998
I started writing my UFO2005 stories because they gave me something to do whilst I can't sleep at night. I didn't Know it was cool to write fan fiction but upon discovering this, I decided to jot down some ideas I had been tossing about for years. What started out as a story outline soon became what is for me, an epic work. I've never written so much fiction in my life. I'm not much of a writer for that matter and if it wasn't for the editing efforts of Anthony Appleyard and Deborah Rorabaugh, this would be largely unreadable. I also managed to tap into the resources of the FAB-UFO list run by Marc Martin. Upon which there are so many people of varied qualifications as to make my puny intellect seem inadequate. I have tried to find out as much factual information and set these stories based in what we know about the universe. Although I have been forced to gloss over many aspects of which I am unsure, I have tried to make it seem as credible as possible. In particular I'd like to thank Marc Martin, Steve Pilant, Baruch (Bernard) Eden, Philip Pilgrim, who's five year old daughter Adrianna now commands SHADO and Bjorn Indriðason from Iceland. Who furnished me with detailed information about Reykjavik such that I felt like I lived there all my life.
Although it may seem pretentious on my part, I wanted the first Story, dealing with what had become if SHADO over the past 30 years, to be like a feature length movie. Wide angles and big budget panoramic vista's. Whilst the following stories I wrote/am in the process of writing, would be like a remake TV series. A "UFO the next generation" if you will. Whilst I appreciate that for some, it was the characters and the actors alone which provided the attractiveness of the original show, for me it was always the concept. I thought it was absolutely on the edge when I was a kid. As I grew through the eighties, with films like ET being popular, UFO took on a whole new significance. I didn't believe that all aliens were going to be sugary sweet and bubblegum flavoured. For any aliens to actually come to such a stupid planet as Earth, they must want something pretty bad. They might want our resources. They might want our body parts. Who knows what they might want but they must want something and they're probably pretty nasty guys. I always thought that throughout the cold war , especially the very nuclear eighties, that we all shouldn't be pointing our guns at each other,. I thought then as I do now, we should be pointing them out into space. Defending ourselves just in case. Further proof of just how stupid and backward thinking we really are. But I digress.
Sometime between 1996 and late 1997, I managed to collect video copies of all 26 episodes of the original series. Along with the movie, 'Journey to the far side of the sun' which was the precursor to UFO. This was something that I never dreamed possible. I thought I'd never see it again. It just fired up my interest to the point of obsessiveness. I've studied the series watching each episode over and over. I tried to pick out the underlying production values and philosophies behind the original writing. I tried to work out what the un-answered questions were and answer them. Not just the central questions which the show revolves round but the how and why things were the way they appeared. I've tried to add depth that would not have been possible for such a production in the late sixties. I may be accused of reading far more into the show than was actually there but I have discovered that things weren't all that far fetched. If you exclude the fact that the nineteen eighties didn't exactly pan out anything like the future predictions in the show. Cool as they may be, I got to thinking that truth is often stranger than fiction. So I re-worked the concept slightly to make it fit. The central difference is that rather than being set in an alternate universe of Gerry Anderson's making, I tried to set it in the universe we know and love. Whilst Gerry's main concern was obviously a case of . "How cool can I make this thing?" My concern was with. "Gee there's a lot of really cool stuff already out there." I've seen pictures of real things that human-kind has invested time and effort into that could easily rival most things in UFO. Only most people wouldn't notice them because we consider them obviously possible today. I found my self asking questions like. "If there is an unexplained bulge in the side of Skydiver, what's laying underneath that bulge? What's it's function?" Engineers doing often add features simply because they look cool. But What if all that potential was put into practice right now? Put to use in a super secret organization which was there to fight the threat of an Alien invasion. We might end up with an organization such as SHADO. Not at all far fetched and just as cool as the original coolness of the show.
Having said that I need to apologize in advance because I found that in writing, I couldn't adequately describe the very cool stuff. Especially in view of a few people I know who have never seen the original series and yet find themselves reading these stories. Always mindful of what they may have missed out on. Never truly understanding how cool UFO really was. For those like me, who are UFO junkies, the reader my instantly recognise what I've been trying to achieve, I just hope I've included enough references at the right time to keep it interesting for new readers.
Finally, I was very impressed with the Writing of JMS with his epic series, Babylon 5. Regardless of what you may think about the show, it's conceptually brilliant and totally bends the rules of both film and television. Rules that I have been waiting to be bent for 30 years. He started writing B5 over 14 years ago with the basic concept. It was a story set to run over five seasons with a definite beginning and end. Each episode is a story within it's self but only part of the total story. The amazing thing is that things that happened in very early episodes were able to reference future events in the later season(s) Everything was interconnected. Whilst this doesn't really suit the concepts in UFO, I did want to take the idea on board that one could write a total story with a beginning and end. And not be afraid to finish it for fear of a new season. So my intentions, at the time of writing this, are to write episodic stories which contribute to a greater story which will explain why the aliens are coming to earth and eventually see earth win against them. Making Earth better for it. And a transformation from tragic characters trapped in a thankless, invisible job, into real heroes. For those who would be angry at what I've done to some of the original characters, all I can say is, don't give up on Straker yet. It's all just part of my overall scheme. And yes, people can return from the dead in very unexpected ways. I should know, I've done it myself once. Please excuse my writing style.. Especially for the movie version. I've never really written fiction before. I just hope someone somewhere enjoys it and I don't get too embarrassed looking back on this in years to come.
The Works of Batz Goodfortune
The Library Entrance