Star Trek has been fortunate enough to exist across various types of media, including television, film, comics, novels and internet series as well. Since 2016, CBS has been somewhat stricter in what can and can't be produced under the Star Trek banner but there is close to sixty years worth of material out there, some of which being recycled in different ways.
Some of the early novels found themselves being adapted into episodes of Star Trek, while even some fan productions ended up inspiring what would come later in the main franchise. Though the fan production guidelines are tough, they do have wiggle room, so there are still projects underway which may serve to inspire more Trek in the future.
Going way back, some of the lesser-known novels have had an enormous impact on the franchise as a whole, with entire plots of later films built around important information revealed in these pages. Though not every project out there is immortalised by the main franchise, there are some infamous episodes and ideas that have come from the minds of the fans following the series.
10. Axanar - The Klingon War
Axanar was the fan production that was produced by Alec Peters and his team. It was unfortunately swiftly issued with a summons letter from CBS studios once the 21-minute Prelude to Axanar hit YouTube. The quality of the piece was excellent, with many Star Trek alumni appearing in different roles. The late, great Richard Hatch appeared as Kharn the Undying, who led the Klingons in their war against Starfleet.
Axanar was built around the conflict between the Empire and the Federation. This conflict would dominate much of the first season of Star Trek: Discovery, which is certainly interesting to see, particularly as Discovery was produced after Axanar was released and the Axanar team offered the production to CBS free of charge, which was rejected.
A short scene was released online in advance of Prelude, which featured Gary Graham returning as Soval. The scene, set on Vulcan, was visually very similar to what would appear in Discovery as well. The full story of CBS v Axanar is detailed in our previous article here - it is a fascinating example of a possibly overzealous approach to dealing with this production by CBS studios. The ill-will that arose from the case certainly made the similar plot-points a little more suspect.