The Captain’s Log

The Captain's Log Issue 217 August 1995

It’s fascinating how chance encounters can shape the course of our lives. While the exact date of our meeting is uncertain—likely in mid-1994—I know it was at an Austrek club meeting that I met Katharine. Austrek is the oldest Star Trek fan club in Australia and the second-oldest in the world. By the time we met, I held an adoration for Star Trek: The Next Generation and the classic Original Series. Katharine’s ascension in 1995 to editor of “The Captain’s Log,” Austrek’s monthly newsletter, marked a turning point.

Following the closure of Genesis in 1993, a yearning to flex my design skills led me to the Log, and I proposed to Katharine the idea we collaborate, with me taking over layout design duties. These cover scans, not my own but “borrowed” from the internet, are a time capsule for my evolving style. The transformation from prior issues was remarkably stark as I steered a deliberate shift toward a more “professional” aesthetic that permeated both covers and interior layouts.

By late 1995, Katharine and I harboured ambitions of something grander—an independent magazine covering science fiction and fantasy media. The X-Files was immensely popular and genre films and TV were infiltrating mainstream culture. Katharine’s departure from her role as the Log’s Editor in early 1996 marked a juncture. Together, we created Frontier Magazine (1996-2001).

Without “The Captain’s Log”, possibly I would not have the fulfilling friendship of Katharine. I stood by her side through the vows of her wedding, and later held her hand when that union ended. She forged an enduring friendship with Sarah, a connection that graced our own wedding day—Katharine, with her reading, and her father Frederick, the officiant.

In shared moments, we weathered a freezing morning for Spencer Tunick‘s artistry, and she was the first witness to our news of impending parenthood. Her presence during the birth of our first child mirrored our own during hers (Sarah was in both delivery rooms!). Our bond extended to parenthood, as she is godparent to our children, as we are to her eldest.

Yet, it was the quiet late-night conversations that truly cemented our friendship. Profound discussions bled into the early hours, where earnest thoughts melded with silliness. So, in this moment, I celebrate the irreplaceable presence of Katharine—my extraordinary friend. With much credit to “The Captain’s Log”.