General Rules

From Star Trek: Theurgy Wiki

Star Trek: Theurgy is kind of a progressive novel, composed of large long-lasting story arcs that can go on through several Episodes, as well as the more common plots produced by character interaction. All of this is written cohesively by the writers, edited and corrected by the group and the Game Moderator (GM) to ensure a consolidated storyline. (See this page for more info about the GM's role)

Star Trek: Theurgy has Episodes that can take up anything from six months to over a year depending on the writers, the amount of writers, and their drive to develop and write that particular Episode. These greater brush-strokes of the Episodes are planned out to begin with, but tend to work out else than originally intended. This means that there is no obligatory script followed unless the writers wish to follow one through certain points in the storyline.

For this space opera to be well played, we have some rules.

I. Writing Quality
  • Post length should consist of more than two hundred (200) words per post (equals roughly 3 paragraphs), and our writers should always try to reply in all their current threads within seven (7) days. The goal of minimum post lengths is to encourage you to develop the storyline, setting, and characters within your posts. If a writer can't keep up their posting frequency for Real Life reasons, they should always communicate with their co-writers and the GM and tell them when they might be able to post again. More important than post length, however, is writing a good reply, so make sure you read our Forum Writing Etiquette page.
  • Every single post you write should always be spell-checked and proofread for proper grammar and accuracy. Mistakes are human, but a quick read-over is an easy way to ensure the whole group enjoys the story even more. The immersion of the scene shouldn't be broken by too many errors when reading up on the development.
II. Regarding Joint Posts
  • Since this is a forum-based message board role-play, the GM will mostly be working with solo-posts on the board in the main storyline. Yet this does not forbid the building of joint posts (via Personal Messages on the Forum, Discord DMs, googledocs, email, etc.) between two or more writers in the group. It is encouraged if that's what you like to write, on the following conditions:
  1. You will be expected to write a mix of both joint posts and solo-posts. Joint posts will rarely be a part of the narration for the main storyline, so joint posts does - consequently - work best for one-on-one threads (counseling sessions, conversations, sex-scenes, etc.), i.e. scenes that are not directly related to the main storyline. Of course, there may be exceptions to this. The ground rule is that you are expected to post solo-posts when applicable, and joint posts when applicable. You can't participate in this sim by only writing joint posts.
  2. Those who write joint posts are expected to still keep track of the development in the story and the thread in which they are due to post the joint post. Joint posts must always adhere to development in the thread/story, and if mistakes have been made at some point, the JPs must be edited after being posted to preserve continuity. This, to forestall that the storyline gets broken by two groups of writers that might be dictating contradicting events. Lastly, the signature of the joint post should also include the names of the writers that have been working on the joint post.
III. Story Moderation & Character Inheritance
  • The main story line is run by the Game Moderator, who is ultimately responsible for the well-being of the group and the story. Any problems, concerns, questions, or complaints may be directed to the GM via PM (Contact Auctor Lucan). If a writer is inactive, it may affect the whole RP if s/he has characters in key positions. The GM may put the characters of inactive writers in stasis, remove them from the ship, or end their lives for the sake of opening positions for new applicants to the RP. The GM may write the actions of these characters, or ask another writer to do so. For more information about the Game Moderator's role, click here!
  • If a character is essential to the current or overall plot of the story, the GM may also give another writer the opportunity to inherit the abandoned character to write as their own, with a creative license issued to this new writer in terms of character specifications and traits. If the original writer specifically doesn't want their characters to be inherited, then the GM will still write the actions of these characters to expediently remove them from the story by whatever in-story means are available, or ask another writer to have the abandoned character killed off in an upcoming scene.
  • A non-player character (NPC), also known as a non-playable character, is any character in the story which is not controlled/owned by a single player. NPCs in Star Trek: Theurgy are available to be included in the posts of all writers, with a few common sense exceptions, like Story NPCs (commonly controlled by the GM) and the pets belonging to the characters of other writers. Such pets are not listed on the NPC pages, but instead available on the character pages of the aforementioned characters. It is also common sense that relatives and spouses belonging to the characters of other writers are off limits unless you get permission from that writer.
IV. Creating a New Story Scene
  • Any sim member may start a new thread for individual scenes for their character(s). These threads are fully private; no one else should post in them without being invited by the person who started the thread. Please make sure you specify which Chapter/Day/Etc. the scene belongs to in the Episode, who the thread is made for, and that the thread has the same title layout as is required by the board upon which it is posted. Example: CHAPTER XX: The title of the scene you write (Character 1/Character 2/Etc.) The GM can also help you with the current thread title standard for new threads.
  • The same applies when making a thread for a larger number of writers. In these threads, Out-of-Character correspondence about posting order and general direction is more important, since there are more writers that need to be coordinated about the scene's progression.
V. Space-Time Continuum Challenges
  • Characters need not appear in a single thread at the time, and are thus free to be in several different scenes at once (provided that the scenes follow each other in the story and do not happen simultaneously).
  • To avoid confusion, crew members are to specify in OOC notes when scenes takes place in relation to others if the thread title doesn't specify this with a time tag. Furthermore, it is encouraged that individual scenes are handled so that they correspond with ongoing missions in as realistic a manner as possible (for the sake of not disrupting the space-time continuum). Logic and common sense are the rules-of-thumb here.
VI. No Shaming or Gatekeeping
  • Just as it is expected that no writer will be harassed or judged for submitting explicit writing, judgement will also not be passed - or a player harassed - if a character, plot-element, or random notation is not 100% in alignment with Star Trek canon.
  • While the setting remains in the Star Trek universe, a creative license has been issued to applicants in combining elements from the series, novels, and fan-fiction spanning the world wide web. All who wish to participate in the USS Theurgy story have chosen to do so to write good stories of their own design, and to do so in peace. However, it is encouraged that each writer - to the best of his or her abilities and knowledge - strive to keep themselves within Star trek canon (See Memory Alpha). If in doubt, contact the GM.
VII. Non-Consensual Puppeteering or God-Moding
  • One thing that is highly frowned upon is writing other characters without their consent. Characters are considered the property of their writer and may not be used without the writer's consent. One of the pillars of role-playing is remembering you are writing an interwoven story with many other writers. Though your character is important to you, others' characters are equally important to them. Therefore, be nice, and respect the character creations of other writers.
  • Though there is great freedom in role-playing, please remember others' characters will also be affected by your actions. It is expected that writers will respect the characters and creations of other writers; those who have been around role-playing groups know of the golden rule to write only for those characters they themselves have created. Only the GM, or another writer the GM designates, may write for your character, and this is typically only to move the storyline along. If there are other instances where you require another writer’s character to participate in a story development, you have one option: contact that writer!
VIII. Age Restrictions & Explicit Writing
  • You must be 18 or older to be a member. If we find anyone who is younger than that, it will result in an immediate ban in the interests of protecting minors. Upon registration, you verify that you are of age, and at the discretion of the GM, an age verification process will be conducted if there is cause for doubt to your claim.
  • Yet it's not enough that you are of age, but your character(s) must be so as well. All characters involved in sexual, erotic, and mature scenes must be at least 18 years of age or older, both mentally and physically. This applies even in In-Character backstories and Out-of-Character conversation about real-life events. There shall be no reference to sexual activity of underage persons. Underage sexual photos (including drawn images, etc.) or other evidence of the exploitation of minors will be reported to the authorities.
  • Images with artistic nudity must be posted on the The Boudoir (NSFW) board on the forum or the nsfw-boudoir channel on Discord. They must be kept away from other boards or channels since such content might end up our site being filtered by company computers. All characters depicted must be of age 18+ both mentally and physically. No visual content with pornography (featuring sexual acts including masturbation, penetration or phallic arousal) is allowed, only artistic nudity.
  • Star Trek: Theurgy is an adult community, but extremely story driven, so the focus is not the intimate relations of the characters in the story. Nevertheless, it should be mentioned that it is still rated 18+ and has some sexual content. The optional participation in writing explicit scenes must always be consensual between the affected writers, and if you don't know someone's preferences when it comes to writing erotica, you are obligated to ask OOC (despite how awkward it might be). Keep in mind that preferences may also vary depending on each individual scene, so OOC communication is key.
IX. Play Nice & Be Respectful
  • When registering on this site, you agree that you will not post any Out-of-Character material which is defamatory, abusive, hateful, harassing, threatening, invasive of a person's privacy, or otherwise in violation of US Federal or International Law. Spam, flooding, advertisements, chain letters, pyramid schemes, and solicitations are also forbidden on this forum. Anyone who feels that a posted message is objectionable is encouraged to notify the GM of this site immediately. The GM reserve the right to remove objectionable content, within a reasonable time frame, if he determines that removal is necessary. This policy applies to member profile information as well. You remain solely responsible for the content of your posted messages.
  • If you decide to frequent the site's Discord Server, you must abide to the specific Discord rules as well.
  • Writers who can't behave like adults will be banned at the behest of the GM. This sim should be a place where everyone feels safe and welcome, and if there is any indication that someone has been personally attacked or disrespected because of their sexuality, gender or something they wrote, it may result in a ban.
  • The same applies if a member feels forced or harassed into writing unwanted In-Character development. In the same respect, being possessive about characters or writers in the sense of telling others to "back off" in any way or capacity may also lead to a ban. If anyone feels uncomfortable, it is safe to come to the GM with such a report via Discord or a PM on the forum. Here is also a helpful link related to drama. It is really simple: Everyone has an ass, just don't act the part.
X. Absences
  • If you need to take a break from actively writing in the sim, or you might not be able to meet the posting deadline of 7 days in your threads, you are required to communicate your absences in the Main OOC thread on the forum, and preferably add a notice to your forum profile's signature field. Better yet, contact all the writers you are writing with as well. Failure to meet the posting deadlines and also failing to communicate your absences might lead to your membership being discontinued.
  • If you know that you need to step away from writing actively in all your threads for an extended period of time, this being more than a month (4 weeks), you will be labelled as an Inactive Theurgist, and you will have to contact the GM in order to have your membership restored. During this time, your usage of the site's Discord server will be discontinued as well, and depending on the In-Character development and the length of the absence, your character might be removed from his or her Departmental position as well, leaving it open for an active writer instead. During this kind of extended absence, the GM may have to write your character so that the story progression isn't halted. See III. above.
  • If you cease to reply to your threads for an extended period of time, even when claiming you mean to do it, the GM might still mark you as an Inactive Theurgist and remove your character from the story. For example, merely being on the Discord server does not count as being an active writer.
XI. Disclaimer
  • This role-play group functions solely as a non-profit entertainment for writers where no economic gain is perceived by any of its members as a result of the available media. Star Trek, Star Trek: The Original Series, Star Trek: The Animated Series, Star Trek: The Next Generation, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Star Trek: Voyager, Star Trek: Enterprise, Star Trek: Discovery, Star Trek: Picard, Star Trek: Lower Decks the Star Trek movies, etc. are © Copyright Paramount Pictures and CBS Studios.
  • All content on this site is transformative and non-profit fair use, made by fans. Fair use is a copyright principle based on the belief that the public is entitled to freely use portions of copyrighted materials for certain purposes, such as commentary and criticism, nonprofit educational purposes, or parody. This principle recognizes that society can often benefit from the unauthorized use of copyrighted materials, when the use a) furthers scholarship and education or b) informs the public. Transforming an image to add something new to the work, with a further purpose or different character, so that the first work’s expression, meaning or message has been altered, is called a transformative use.
  • As for parody, it is work that caricature other work by imitating it in a (usually) comic way. Judges understand that, by its nature, parody demands some taking from the original work being parodied. Unlike other forms of fair use, a fairly extensive use of the original work is permitted in a parody in order to “conjure up” the original. The courts have recognized parody as a fair use, even when done for profit, which this site doesn't generate. While fair use is more difficult to establish if your use deprives the copyright owner of income or takes away from a new or future market for the copyrighted work, non-profit and caricature work is exempt.