In 1999, J. Michael Straczynski allowed his original notes on Babylon 5 to be released via his Last Word column in the Babylon 5 Magazine (Vol. 2, Issue 9). These notes were the very first concepts he ever put down on paper, moments after he had his inspiration for the show while taking a shower.
Even though the magazine is long gone, on this, the 10 year anniversary of this particular column, J. Michael Straczynski wanted to share them again. While many fans did see them when they were originally published, he realizes that many more have not.
In addition to the actual notes is the introduction to the notes that also appeared in that column.
The Birth of the Babylon 5 Story
"It's no secret that B5 began when two ideas I'd been working on for series — one being a very contained, small series set on a space station, the other a big, huge sprawling saga that would involve dozens of worlds — collided in my head and I realized suddenly that they were the very same show, where the major events of the story would be writ small upon the stage of the space station. In the shower at the moment of this revelation, I dashed out and hurriedly scribbled down what would become the main thrust of the series before I could lose the thread of it.
"In looking at what follows, it may help to understand that when I write down notes on a project, I instantly try to create the mood of it, so I can find the fingerprints more readily later on. Hence the 'being a history' phraseology in the first bit... creating the sense of an almost medieval or myth-based history. It may also read a bit choppy, because I was trying to get down a lot in a small amount of time, before it slipped away."