George R. R. Martin, the writer of Game of Thrones, is currently doing well and is much sought after. However, things weren’t always so rosy for him. The author said that at an early stage of his career, he was rejected for the job of the writer of Star Trek: The Next Generation.
At that time, while Martin had not written the novel series A Song of Ice and Fire which went on to serve as the basis for the legendary HBO series, he was still a highly reputed author. He had award winning science fiction stories to his credit and had entered the world of television by working on the reboot of the 1980s hit Twilight Zone.
However, all that success and reputation didn’t break the ice with the producer of the iconic science fiction show. During a May 2017 speech at UCSD’s Arthur C. Clarke Center for Human Imagination, Martin narrated his experience of having interviewed for the writing staff of Star Trek: The Next Generation.
“I had an interview with Star Trek: The Next Generation for a possible job as a staff writer. I remember coming into the office of this producer – who thankfully did not last long on the show, and you can see why when I tell the story. He said, “I don’t know who you are, can you tell me your credentials.” And I said “I am just coming off Twilight Zone where I worked for a while, but before that I wrote novels and short stories. I am primarily a science fiction writer.” And he said “Oh really, well Star Trek is not a science-fiction show, it is a people show.” I was fooled by the photon torpedoes and starships. I was misled. Needless to say I did not get that job.”
It seemed that Martin took the incident in his stride and although he didn’t mention who the producer was, we can guess that it could have been only Maurice Hurley. Maurice who is infamous for his nasty behavior was at the helm for the first two seasons of Star Trek: The Next Generation. These two initial seasons didn’t generate much goodwill, and it was only after Michael Piller replaced him that the series was transformed into an iconic production. As we know now, things ultimately got better for Martin as well as The Next Generation, we can’t still stop thinking about what kind of violent, dark, vicious and unpredictable twists would have been a part of the journeys that Martin would have planned for Captain Picard and his crew of Enterprise, if he had been in the writing seat.