My writing career began on Star Trek: The Next Generation, and I spent the next 10 years with the Star Trek franchise, including working on Deep Space 9 and 2 of the movies. Then worked on Roswell, Carnivale, and then Battlestar Galactica and Caprica. My latest project is Outlander which is based on the series of books by Diana Gabaldon - the series premiers on Saturday, August 9 at 9 PM.

I'm here at reddit headquarters in New York City to answer as many as I can in the limited time I have. AMA!

edit: thank you all for participating. It's good to see that you're all out there and interested, and I hope you all tune into the premiere of Outlander on August 9 on STARZ at 9 PM. Since I will try to be more active on Twitter, feel free to send me your thoughts. Or you can follow the Outlander conversation using the hashtag #Starz_Outlander. Thank you!

Comments: 548 • Responses: 60  • Date: 

judomonkeykyle267 karma

When you were pitched the Portlandia episode “One Moore Episode”, what was your reaction?

video link

Ron-Moore229 karma

I was surprised, and flattered, and had no idea that they were fans of the show! And I couldn't believe they actually wanted me to come up and be in it, which was amazing.

myfaultifear162 karma

BSG question: The Adama/Roslin relationship evolved beautifully over the course of the series and seemed to take small steps forward each episode. How did you go about planning out the evolution of their relationship for each episode?

Ron-Moore196 karma

It was clear at the outset that they probably would gravitate towards one another eventually, because they were in unique positions of authority & of a similar age & male and female. But I didn't want it to happen right away, and I wanted the relationship to begin in conflict, move to respect, become friendship, and then, possibly, go to something deeper.

trevdak2143 karma

Hi Ron ,

I'm a HUGE fan of BSG. Thank you for doing this.

I've heard that Edward James Olmos had it written into his contract that he would drop dead upon sight of the first man-in-a-rubber-mask alien. Is this true? Did it affect your vision for the series in any way or did it align with what you had in mind?

Ron-Moore177 karma

He did say that to me in our very first meeting. However, there was never an intention to have aliens in the show, it was always going to be just humanity & Cylons in the universe, so it was never a problem.

Shahe_B122 karma

What was Starbuck? WHAT WAS STARBUCK? WE MUST KNOW! PLEASE!? Oh, and BSG was the greatest show ever and Helix has started out great. But please, what was Starbuck?

Ron-Moore112 karma

All was answered in the finale. We left it intentionally ambiguous. We wanted you to wonder what she really was, because she was the representative of an ambiguous entity that did not like to be called "God."

ServerOfJustice114 karma

Marc Alaimo brought a lot of charisma to his role as Dukat and many Trek fans began to sympathize with him. As Dukat is a genocidal fascist, it's understandable why the writers were put off by this and took the character in another direction. After "Sacrifice of Angels" his character seems to become a cartoonish super-villain rather than a complicated villain. I don't think I'm alone in feeling unsatisfied with how his story played out. I'm not a writer but it seems as though Damar's redemption was a plot that could have been perfectly laid out for Dukat instead.

More than a decade and half removed, are you satisfied with Dukat's character development over the final season and a half of the series? Is there anything you would change if given the opportunity?

I'm sorry if this post seems critical. I'm a huge fan of your work in Star Trek and Battlestar. I hope you return to space opera some day!

Ron-Moore62 karma

I think we were all pleased with where we took Dukat, it felt like it was organic based on where the character began, who he was in the past and in the present, so I don't think we have any regrets.

josephgordonreddit98 karma

Mr. Moore,

I read that you were chastised by Rick Berman for making DS9 into such a dark show (for lack of a better term, 'space opera'), though in hindsight, DS9 has turned into a prescient show with regards to terrorism, war, and all the moral gray in between.

BSG was pretty similar in regards to its tone: very heavy emotionally with repercussions for all actions.

I guess my question is what motivated you to write about such heavy, often gruesome topics (torture in BSG, terrorism in both DS9 and BSG, war crimes, etc. etc. etc.) in a time when it wasn't really 'standard?'

Also, thank you for DS9. It's my favorite Star Trek series.

Ron-Moore117 karma

I always felt that science fiction was an opportunity to explore important ideas in society, so a lot of those ideas tended to be dark & troubling ones with difficult moral & ethical choices at its heart. I took the opportunity whenever possible to ask hard questions of the characters, to make the audience think about what was right & what was wrong, whether it was on Trek or BSG.

Fenocchia91 karma

I love the Outlander series and am very excited they're being turned into a show. They are very long and sometimes meandering books; what has been your favorite part about adapting the first one into a show? Also have you had a lot of contact with Diana Gabaldon/do you enjoy working with her?

Ron-Moore80 karma

It's been an interesting intellectual challenge to adapt the book, rather than creating an original television series. You work a different set of muscles, trying to stay on the path provided by the book, all the while making changes necessary to make a dramatic hour of television. Diana's great and been very generous with her characters & her story. She reads scripts, watches dailies, and sees the cuts of the episodes & always gives us comments, and is always there if we need questions answered. It's a great relationship.

seismicor91 karma

Would you want to return to the world of Battlestar Galactica one day?

Ron-Moore194 karma

Yes and no. I loved the show, loved the characters, there's a part of me that wants to go back and play around there again, but I felt that I finished the show the way I wanted to, and the smarter thing to do is probably to leave it alone.

ArmchairHacker81 karma

Thanks for doing this AMA, Ron! I'm a big fan of BSG and Caprica.

My question is about 17th Precinct. Where would the show have gone if it was picked up?

(For those who don't know: 17th Precinct was a pilot about detectives in an alternate universe where magic, not science, is king. It starred Jamie Bamber, Tricia Hefner, Esai Morales, and James Callis.)

Ron-Moore101 karma

The first season would have followed the story of a group of "terrorists" who had discovered ways of using science to attack people in a world of magic, and it would have formed the basis of the 2 lead character's focus & investigation of what is science, how did someone develop a gun, what is gunpowder, what are the "terrorists" after & what was their threat to a world that operated on magic. It was a very cool show, I wish it had gone forward.

littletsunamie71 karma

Hi Ron!

I am SOOOO excited for Outlander, I cannot wait for the early release this Saturday! I've been following Diana Gabaldon on Facebook and she seems especially pleased with your adaptation of the books.

One of the questions I have, as well as the Outlander community has, is how are you going to approach some of the sexual violence in the series? Given there has been some backlash from some of the Game of Thrones sexual violence.

Ron-Moore62 karma

We try to be as truthful as we can in terms of what is in the book. We try not to be gratuitous, nor do we try to underplay it. Everything happened for a reason in Diana's story, and we try to remain faithful to that.

EASam67 karma

If you never had to answer one question ever again, what would it be?

Ron-Moore98 karma

"What is your favorite episode" or character.

xhotxwater60 karma

How did you end up writing for Star Trek?

Ron-Moore118 karma

I was a Star Trek fan growing up in the 1970's. I was in Los Angeles trying to be a writer in 1989, got lucky enough to get on a set tour, brought a spec script with me, convinced the guy giving me the tour to read it - I'll tell you the full story - he turned out to be one of Gene Roddenberry's assistants, and gave it to my first agent. She submitted it to the show, it sat in the slush pile for 7 months, new executive producer Michael Piller came aboard beginning of the 3rd season, went through the slush pile, found my script, bought it, asked me to do a second one, and then after that brought me on as a staff writer, and I was there the next 10 years. It was an incredibly lucky break, I was in the right place at the right time, and it changed my life.

shivan2158 karma

Is the reddit headquarters similar to the cylon headquarters?

Ron-Moore190 karma

Hahah! Yes. There's lots of lights, there's lots of water dripping from places, and I've only seen 12 people.

Damonstration55 karma

Hi Ron!

I think Gaeta is an incredible character. I would love to know how early you knew he would lead a mutiny. Everything that happens to him over the course of the series leads to his transformation from a model soldier to somewhat-well-intentioned mutineer. How early was that planned?

Ron-Moore52 karma

Relatively late in the process, probably into the final season is when we started talking seriously about that. We were watching the character organically take form as the story developed and it just felt like a natural ending to his tale.

trevdak252 karma

Hey Ron,

/r/BSG is doing a weekly episode-by-episode rewatch of the entire re-imagined series and would love for you to drop by sometime and provide some insight. We just watched Sacrifice, and next is The Captain's Hand.

One sad thing is that the podcast commentary is no longer available anywhere except for the DVDs. Is there anywhere else that we can acquire the podcasts so everyone can hear what you have to say?

Your fans would be forever grateful.

Ron-Moore87 karma

I don't know, I wasn't aware the podcasts are no longer online. I get the feeling some enterprising fan out there has ripped them from the DVDS, and they will be available in some untoward place online for fans to find.

spacebrat40 karma

What do you do in your downtime?

Ron-Moore139 karma

I watch a lot of Seinfeld.

JustPlainSimpleGarak40 karma

Hey Ron,

Throughout your career, who was the most challenging character to write for? And who was your favorite character to write for?


Ron-Moore102 karma

It's tricky to write for Q in Star Trek because he was an omnipotent being with complete control of the universe, and figuring out how to make him "Human" was a bit of a challenge. On BSG, I always particular enjoyed writing for Baltar, I thought he was the most human character in the entire series.

gjcbs39 karma

In the Star Trek Mirror Universe, what is Ron D. Moore doing?

Is there any character, in any of your Trek, BSG, or other works you have written putting a lot of yourself into that role?

Ron-Moore45 karma


I've never gotten that question before.

I think Baltar would be a pretty good model.

All the characters feature some aspect of myself, good & bad, so it's hard to pick out anyone in particular that has more than any other.

gjcbs38 karma

Mr. Moore, thanks for doing this AMA. Let me also express my sincere thanks for the work on TNG, DS9, First Contact, and BSG. I am grateful as well for you introducing Bear McCreary to the rest of the world, his work is great. Oh, and thanks for giving the Trek world the USS Defiant.

  • Okay, I for one really enjoyed the ending for BSG. Now that some time has passed, is there anything you would do different, not due to feedback, just something you wish you had thought of at the time?
  • What do you have in mind for I, Robot 2?
  • Any chance you would return to write/produce any new TV series in either the BSG or Trek universe?

Ron-Moore46 karma

Not really. I think it would have been fun to spend a little bit more time with some of the characters at the very end as they went off to pursue their lives on earth, but it would have dragged out the ending even further.

I did a draft of I, Robot 2 YEARS ago, and it's as far as I know just sitting in a pile someplace, so I don't really have any ideas for it and I haven't heard that it's in active development.

Probably not BSG, because that's probably done. Trek would be fun to return to one day, but hard to see how you get form here to there.

shivan2136 karma

TV seems to found really effective weapon to fight the cinema. Do you thing this trend of long developing deep dramas on tv versus attraction like effects loaded superficial movies will continue even further?

Ron-Moore101 karma

Probably. Feature films have unfortunately developed into 2 categories: giant spectacle and little art film hoping for an Oscar, with very little in-between. The economics of the feature business seem completely out of wack, and i don't know how long they can keep going in that direction. Meanwhile Television has found a way to keep audiences coming in week after week, with solid writing, great characters, and interesting stories. Like Outlander.

FancySack36 karma

Hi Ron,

If you could create your own Star Trek TV series, what would you incorporate in terms of timeline, settings, and characters?

Ron-Moore71 karma

If i had that answer, I'd be a very, very rich man.

two_off28 karma

If you were to mash together two or three other shows, which ones would they be to get the feel/theme of Outlander?

What would be your one-liner to pitch the show to your friends to get them to watch it?

Ron-Moore65 karma

It would be Highlander meets Game of Thrones visits Dr. Quinn falls into the Time Tunnel.

It's a rip-roaring yarn about a woman who ends up in the 18th century and is struggling to get home.

hollyjowest28 karma

Hi Ron, What is your favorite part about working on the OUTLANDER project?

Ron-Moore34 karma

It's been great to do something that's a historical piece as opposed to a science fiction piece. It's been amazing to work in Scotland. It's been a treat to work with my wife, she's the costume designer. It's also just been a project where I've seen all the different elements come together, and I felt like I was doing something very special from the very beginning, very similar to BSG.

Zouch27 karma

Hey Ron, thanks for doing this AMA! I've been a fan of your writing for a really long time. I've got two questions for you:

My first question has to do with the evolution of your writing from Trek onwards. During your time with Trek, you got a chance to work directly with Ira Behr and Brannon Braga (who, I know, you had a falling out with). How would you say writing with them over the course of three different forms of Trek changed the way you wrote in a sci-fi sense? Were there any ideas that either of them had that you wish you penned first?

My second question has to do with the idea of hard reboots (since, you know, you did a hell of a job with one). You've mentioned in the past that you were a fan of the new J.J. Trek films. If you were the one writing the third Trek reboot movie, what would you personally like to see from the original series re-imagined for this one?

Thank you again for taking the time to do this. Can't wait for the next season of Helix!

Ron-Moore50 karma

Ira & Brannon were two VERY different people. Brannon and I were both young and just starting out, and we just got to hang out together and play. And Ira was more of a mentor, and someone who taught me my craft as a writer and as a producer. Brannon always had really out of the box wild ideas that I was always a bit jealous of, and Ira had a deep insight into character that I was always really jealous of, so between the two of them they always inspired me to stretch in different directions.

I think it would be fun to go to the Mirror universe in the re-boot. It was always fun to go there again on Deep Space 9, and it's always a great chance to see familiar beloved characters turn out to be evil.

Cramtastic27 karma

So how did Seth Green come to cultivate a relationship with you, one of Hollywood's most dynamic and powerful players? And do you still have your Cylon dartboard?

Ron-Moore37 karma

I ran into Seth at an airport once, and I was a huge fan of Robot Chicken and walked up to him and just said "I'm Ron Moore, and I think you work on one of the best comedy shows of the last 10 years." We started chatting and sometime later he called and said he wanted to have me on the show, and I was very flattered and thought it was funny, and I wish I had the dartboard.

trevdak227 karma

What props from BSG have you kept? I imagine you have a raptor you keep in your garage for a night out on the town.

Ron-Moore62 karma

I wish I had a raptor, or a viper! I have Baltar's cigarette case. I have a uniform. I have a couple of colonial flags. I have Tigh's ashtray. And probably a bunch of other stuff that I can't remember.

preggit23 karma

What got you interested in space and science fiction?

Ron-Moore31 karma

I remember the first Apollo moon landing as a very young child. From that point on i was fascinated with the Apollo missions, and from that it was an easy step to look for space on TV after school. The first show i fell in love with was Lost in Space, in the second and third grade, and then I discovered Star Trek. And that became the show that literally changed my life.

spankingasupermodel21 karma

Enjoyed BSG, and I LOVE DS9. Best Trek series. The darkness of the latter seasons was brilliant and no wonder some concepts such as Section 31 are still popular, because it was completely unexpected but naturally logical.

What are your thoughts on a potential future Trek series? What mistakes that they made in ENT should they avoid? Do you think they should continue to rely on the past as the recent films have or carve out a new story, perhaps set a couple of hundred years after where we left off in the 24th Century?

Ron-Moore31 karma

I think there's a lot of ways you could take a new series. It's an incredibly flexible format. Gene created something that could take you anywhere in a variety of styles. I think it would be interesting to do another series that is not based on a starship, like Deep Space Nine. But there's many possibilities for other ship-based shows as well.

shivan2121 karma

Why do you think there is not a series with constant strong cliffhangers like BSG was? Is it because this style of storytelling is so hard to write?

Ron-Moore46 karma

Somewhat. Battlestar had a built-in jeopardy premise that made it easy to get to cliffhangers every week, because the Cylons could always attack and then there would be jeopardy threatening the ship and all of humanity. Not every show has that built into its fundamental premise.

robinsky120 karma

What is your favourite memory of working on Star Trek : The Next Generation?

Ron-Moore63 karma

Hard to pin it down to one particular moment. Off the top of my head, meeting Stephen Hawking, seeing my first episode being shot, watching the last episode get shot, and getting to walk the Corridors of the Enterprise anytime I felt like it.

big_burger20 karma

Was Daniel (the boxed cylon in the BSG series) Kara's father? There's so much mystery around that character, and I've heard it suggested.

Ron-Moore60 karma


vore900020 karma

Hey Ron, you're just super and all that.

A lot of people kick around the idea of the next Star Trek series being delivered via Netflix much like House of Cards and Orange is the new Black.

Aside from the obvious issues with CBS. What do you think of this idea for Star Trek. And more broadly how do you see this format for TV developing?

Ron-Moore34 karma

I think that would be a great idea. It seems to me that Netflix & networks like that provide a very broad, open way of doing television in a different format. It would be wonderful to see a show like Star Trek cast in that realm where they could literally go where no show has gone before.

skywaterblue19 karma

Outlander is an 80s soft scifi/fantasy novel with romance elements which reminds me a lot of when you tried to do Pern.

  1. What draws you in particular to these scifi series that skew a little more female than most?

  2. Do you ever think about going back to Pern and finishing that project?

Ron-Moore22 karma

1) I just enjoy writing for female characters, don't know exactly why, I always have. Pern was probably the first book like that that struck me that I wanted to adapt, so I pursued the rights.

2) I do think about Pern, its time might have passed at this point. It was one of the great projects that could have been in my career.

trevdak218 karma

In the commentary for Kobol's Last Gleaming, you mention that that the original plan was to have Lee take Crashdown's place. Does that mean you intended to kill Lee off early?

Ron-Moore32 karma

No. It was just that he was literally going to be on that Raptor and be on the ground in that storyline.

scott6056118 karma

What is your favorite STNG episode you had not worked on writing?

Ron-Moore34 karma

Frame of Mind.

ndodpgk1618 karma

Hi Ron. Where do you see the future of Sci Fi headed? Do you think we'll ever see a big Sci Fi hit on a network or are they too niche and will continue to evolve on the cable networks?

Ron-Moore34 karma

I think the cable networks are a better home for it. I think the broadcast networks are still trying to go for a very broad, general audience. So their programming tends to be a little more vanilla, whereas sci fi is a very strong, spicy flavor.

Luriker17 karma

Ron, huge fan of BSG, although I just started (and finished) it this summer. What made you decide to move on from Caprica and the BSG IP in general? Would you take over Blood & Chrome if you were invited and/or lacked other commitments?

Ron-Moore29 karma

Well, Caprica was canceled, so that's why I left that. BSG had a definitive ending, so that's why I left that. Blood & Chrome was talked about & in development while I was with Universal, but it took so long to come to fruition that by the time it was given the green light, I had already left the studio and gone to Sony.

StarTrekIdeas17 karma

In an interview with Digital Spy in February of this year, you stated: "I'd love to do Star Trek again, in all honesty," Moore said. "But I also don't have a great new Star Trek idea. I'm not saying I know exactly how to do a new TV show - I don't. Maybe I shouldn't do it until I have that great epiphany!"

There are a lot of fans, myself included, who would absolutely trust you and only you to take the reigns for a new series. I also take the quote above to mean that the main thing holding you back from pitching a new series is an idea behind the show.

And a lot of us fans have ideas - some good and some bad. I feel passionately about pitching an idea to you a series for you to potentially make happen, but I recognize in your position if you opened this up to everyone, you wouldn't be flooded with an unbelievable amount of ideas. Are you open to hearing proposals from people, and if so - what is the best way to get this idea in front of your eyes to be considered?

Ron-Moore24 karma

I can't really do that, for various legal reasons. If there is a new Trek idea, it will have to just spring from my cramped fingers.

seismicor16 karma

How many versions of a story continuation were on the table after the conclusion of the first season of BSG?

Ron-Moore19 karma

Not many. We pretty much went in the direction that we had talked about into the second season.

philmargolies14 karma

From all of the episodes on all of the shows you have been involved in over the years, which one (title) would you have engraved on your tombstone?

Ron-Moore44 karma

sociallyawkwardhuman14 karma


Ron-Moore37 karma

I'm not much of a gamer, but ironically my wife is, and she loves Skyrim: The Elder Scrolls.

Mudron13 karma

Favorite books, genre-related or otherwise?

Ron-Moore34 karma

I was a childhood fan of the Hornblower series of books. At the moment, I am reading the third volume of Shelby Foote's series on the Civil War, which is one of the best historical narratives I've ever read.

Shahe_B13 karma

Is the BSG movie going to happen? Will you be apart of it?

Ron-Moore23 karma

I have nothing to do with that project, which I understand is under the control of Glenn Larson.

Didi6313 karma

I live overseas. Will Outlander be available on iTunes?

Ron-Moore22 karma

I don't know, to be honest. But you'll love it if it is.

T-town0412 karma

Thanks for doing this, I'm a big fan. What tips would you have for aspiring screenwriters?

Ron-Moore31 karma

Perseverance, belief in your own talent - it's a business that delights in saying no to you over and over again, so if you can be discouraged, you will be - but as they say, a writer writes, and if you can't do anything else with your life, you'll know it.

oooo_nooo12 karma

You, alongside James Callis & Edward James Olmos, had a hilarious appearance as local actor Ken Reynolds on Portlandia ("One Moore Episode"). Do you have any interest in future comedy acting? Or would you prefer to stick to writing?

Ron-Moore23 karma

Haha! I'm certain I'm a better writer than an actor, so I will stay on this side of the camera.

vwwally12 karma

I really enjoyed Virtuality (along with much of your other work). It's a shame it didn't get picked up.

What plans did you have for the show if it made it to a series?

Ron-Moore19 karma

Virtuality would have continued to play out the reality show within a show, as well as the virtual story that was happening within the ship. We were going to discover that there were many layers of deception going on with the crew, possibly the whole mission had been designed to psychologically toy with them for mysterious reasons. In truth we had a lot of ways to go with what the first season could have been, but we never had the chance to sit down and lay them out in a concrete way.

trevdak212 karma

What's your favorite brand of scotch?

Ron-Moore17 karma


seismicor12 karma

Is the second season of Helix going to be set in a different location? How much will it affect the unique atmosphere of the show?

Ron-Moore20 karma

Second season will be set on an island. It will maintain the same claustrophobic feeling the first season had. It will also maintain the one episode per day structure.

iwishmynamewasbrian11 karma

Hi Ron! My father is from Chowchilla and has been telling me my whole life if I ever bump into you in LA to tell you that fact and that my grandmother was a teacher there for many years. In the form of a question: did growing up in such a small town influence your career moves? Or even your creative perspective? I imagine you were one of few kids from the area to go into TV, was there conflict there?

Ron-Moore20 karma

Chowchilla was a formative experience for me, and it will always be my home. I think growing up in a small town gave me a lot of opportunities to do things I wouldn't have been able to do in a big city. I was Quarterback of the football team, I was also in the marching band, and I was also able to write a play in high school and produce it with my classmates. If i were in a bigger city, i would have had to have chosen just one. It was also a very sheltered community. It was sort of like growing up in Mayberry, in that the town felt like it was 20 years behind the rest of the country. The Tv in my house was my window into the world, and I always thought that after I graduated I was going to go out there, someplace. My parents were very supportive of me leaving town, they never said "Stay here." I think they were surprised that i went into writing. It seemed like a sketchy career with a lot of instability. I think in their heart of hearts they would have been more secure if I had become a lawyer. But I think they're pleased & proud of how it all turned out.

Thereminz11 karma

recently watched the entire bsg series on netflix...pretty good

I'm sure I could go to some forum to find the answer but.. in bsg when they get to "earth" kara says the constellations match from the map on kobol,..was she mistaken? just one of the few things that kinda irked me, but overall i enjoyed the series

I've heard the outlander books are good, i'll have to check that out i guess

Ron-Moore31 karma

I think our internal reasoning was that the constellations had shifted over thousands of years, forming a different pattern depending on where you are in the Universe. So the view from the first earth did hold those patterns originally, but the view from the "second" earth also had those patterns. Call it the hand of the entity that is not god.

gjcbs11 karma

Do you still stay in touch with Ira and Michael Taylor?

I really want to thank Michael in person one day for "The Visitor" especially, and all of his work as well.

That Trek writer's room from TNG and DS9 has provided us SciFi fans with some truly phenomenal material over the years. Thanks so very much for that!

Ron-Moore12 karma

I work with Ira currently on Outlander, which has been a treat! And I worked with Michael on BSG.

n_mcrae_198210 karma

Hello, Ron. Been rediscovering TNG and DS9 lately and enjoy it just as much as I used to.

Just for fun, were there any actors you had in mind for a role that didn't pan out or decided to go in another direction? I know, for example that David Warner was the first choice for Akorem Laan, and Martin Sheen was considered for Sloane.

Ron-Moore20 karma

There was an interesting moment in time where Paramount actually pitched us the idea of having Marlon Brando play Soren in Generations (The movie). None of us knew what to make of that idea, but we were more than willing to give it a shot, but it never went anywhere.

Wallynbp110 karma

Ron, I read you were working on a reboot of the movie A Knight's Tale, as far as I know, there has been further news.

Is it still on the table or was it just a good idea whose time has past? Any details you can provide would be nice if it finished. It is one of my favorite movies, it has it all

Ron-Moore12 karma

It's still on the table, there's nothing happening currently but it's one of those fun kind of projects that could come back at some point.

NiceMike9 karma

On average, how many times do you revise a screenplay before you consider it done?

Ron-Moore11 karma

Impossible to say. You constantly are re-writing the script. Sometime the entire script, sometimes just particular scenes over and over, right up until the shoot.

lalady229 karma


Ron-Moore18 karma

I've never been a big fan of writing classes, to be honest. I think either you're a writer or you're not, just keep doing it, get criticism, listen to it or reject it, and keep writing until someone says "I love that" and then they buy it.

shivan218 karma

Have you always inclined to the open way of storytelling, like in DS9? Did you like any open series that were shot before DS9?

Ron-Moore8 karma

Can you clarify what you mean by open ways of storytelling?

trevdak28 karma

Do you plan on coming to Galacticon 4?

Ron-Moore13 karma

I don't know? I haven't been invited, but you never say never.

conor_h6 karma

Would you consider remaking another sci-fi program? I'm think of one of the british sci-fi programs from the 70/80's (blakes 7 ect) or the short lived american program Space:above and beyond from the 90's?

Ron-Moore13 karma

I thought about Space:1999 but it was such an insane premise I had no idea what to do with it. But there was something appealing about doing something so outrageous at the same time.

uberguby4 karma

First I absolutely must commend your science fiction writing, particularly on Star Trek. I wouldn’t be comfortable if I didn’t take the time to praise Next Generation’s “The Bonding”, “Family” and DS9’s “Rocks and Shoals” and “Only a Paper Moon”. Though I love many of your episodes, these are, in my opinion, some of the finest science fiction scripts ever written for a television show. Next Generations “All Good Things” is, for me, the Definitive Star Trek script, and I often tell people if they watch one episode of Star Trek, this is the one. And though I enjoyed the hell out of Battlestar Galactica, I hope you are ready to go back many years and talk about some Star Trek.

I have so many questions. If you only answer one, please address this first one, marked in boldface letters.

My favorite thing about your scripts is that they capture human experiences in a way which is most appropriate in their settings, especially dealing with trauma. “Only a Paper Moon” is a great example because it deals with a problem that I think is universal, but by using the holodeck as a set piece we tell the story in a way that it could only be told in Star Trek. Do you have a method or approach to writing a story that most facilitates this outcome? I am aware this is such a vague question, and difficult to answer in any definite terms, but please remember that this is because I so deeply admire an aspect of your writing that I find very difficult to put into words.

Some other questions I would also love to have your input on, but I understand if you are swamped and can’t address these.


Do you have any rules for writing or creating characters?

Do you have any rules for writing arcs?

What do you think sets you apart from other television script writers? That is, what is it about “Ronald D. Moore” that makes him indispensible to the industry?

Is there anything you are working on or want to work on with similar scope to Battlestar Galactica?

TNG and Battlestar are both reimaginings of culturally successful television shows. Does something about reimagining established stories excite you personally or is that a coincidence?


If you could produce a modern Star Trek show, would you? How would you format it? Would you write for Star Trek again? Would you take a lead writing position?

Some ways Battlestar Galactica’s format is different from Star Trek is that there is much more continuity between episodes, and arcs that span several episodes. There is also far more emphasis on ancillary characters, with a much larger ensemble cast. Do you think making these changes to a show like Star Trek would be inappropriate to the idea of what makes Star Trek work? Which do you prefer?

Also… am I using the word “format“ correctly here?


I apologize if these questions are inappropriate, I’m just not as certain what your involvement in Battlestar Galactica was. As far as I’m aware, you are the showrunner, and it is “Your Show” in the way that Star Trek was Roddenberry’s.

I’ve heard it said that the final five were chosen at random. How true is this? Were Roslyn, Adama, Apollo or Starbuck out of the question for these choices?

Did you choose to include All Along the Watchtower as a significant portion of the show? I thought it was absolutely perfect, because to me, the song deals with the idea of the cycle of Revolution>Ascension>Oppression>Revolution, but this was such a personal interpretation I was very surprised to see it used in a show that deals with the cycle nature of Revolution>Ascension>Oppression>Revolution.

Seriously…. Like for real now. What is the deal with Kara Thrace?

Again, if you only answer one question, please answer the one in bold face. I know this is a barrage of questions in a barrage of questions, but I doubt I’ll ever again have a chance to address one of my favorite, and frankly personally inspiring, script writers. It’s honestly very awkward because, I don’t actually know much about you. I just know I kept seeing your name on writing credits for my favorite episodes.

Ron-Moore9 karma


All I can say in terms of approaching story & character like in Paper Moon is that a lot of the hard work in television is done in the writer's room. We sat & talked about that story for hours, kicked it around, and found the depths within it, and then I was able to take the blueprint, go off by myself, and enrich it. But the key thing is that you have other people who are very smart & insightful, and you draw on everyone's collective experience to figure out where you want to go with characters.