Star Wars Tales From the Past Step Into the Future

Tomorrow the Star Wars Expanded Universe novels backlist goes digital, with over 100 titles being made available as ebooks. In the upcoming weeks, I’ll be highlighting books on that list that I’ve enjoyed as a Star Wars fan in a Summer Reading Roundup. I’ll also feature specific books from the backlist in my new series Looking for Strong Female Heroines, in which I’ll suggest story arcs that will fill your fangirl cravings for heroine-centric tales.

In the meantime, here are some interesting tidbits I’ve spotted around the web:

In an interview at Suvudu.com, Michael A. Stackpole was asked if he would ever return to Star Wars. Previously, fans have been unsure if the popular author didn’t want to return to the GFFA or if other forces were at work.  I’m not sure it really matters to fans at this point, just that he’s been sorely missed.  Here’s his response:

I love Star Wars. If Del Rey ever decided that having me return and, say, write another X-wing book, or more about Corran Horn, I’d definitely be interested. It would all depend on their needs and our mutual schedule.

There is a new hope for Star Wars EU fans, who would probably salivate over another X-wing book, or a story about Corran Horn and his family, or maybe a tale exposing the Fel family backstory.  The fans over at TFN Literature, who have been pretty apathetic recently about the books in general, certainly were showing their enthusiasm this week for the potential of Stackpole’s return to Star Wars.

As I noted in that thread, because Stackpole is a fast writer and well-versed in the ins and outs of e-publishing, there is an opportunity here to get a great story out as an ebook, bypassing the long delays created by the traditional elongated schedule for print books.  One of the areas Star Wars books have struggled is reacting to changes in market demand. Publishing a fan-favorite book electronically, then bringing the print release out a year later with bonus material, would certainly garner more enthusiasm than the mere possibility generated by Stackpole’s interview.

Just a reminder: Next month’s book for the Cantina Book Club is X-wing: Rogue Squadron, which comes out tomorrow.

Some of you may already follow Stackpole’s blog about the rise of ebooks and publishing, but there is another Star Wars author alumn, Kristine Kathryn Rusch, who blogs about the changes in the industry. Yesterday, through @NJOENews, I found this Star Wars-related blog at Bordersblog.com.  She talks a bit about Han Solo, romance, and the reason he’s such an appealing character for women.

Rusch’s Star Wars: The New Rebellion will be available tomorrow as well.

Finally, with Timothy Zahn’s Choices of One coming out next month, I found a recent post he made on Facebook quite entertaining.

Years ago, a woman confronted me at a convention and took me to task over her belief that Mara had acted badly out of character in another author’s recent book. I tried to explain that I hadn’t written that book, but it made no difference — the woman still blamed *me* for Mara’s lack of consistency. It made for an interesting conversation…

You’ve got to love passionate fans policing characterization, but it’s more productive if the ire is aimed at the right party. Since Mara’s last appearance in an EU novel not written by Zahn resulted in her death, most likely the fan was feeling the sting.  Anyway there was no irony lost on me in the exchange about continuity with a fan because Zahn’s been credited with introducing at least a few glitches into the EU. Chak Fel, anyone?


Also over at my author website triciabarr.com, my latest excerpt has been posted. My yet-to-be-titled first novel is a space opera centered on the adventures of a young woman thrust into the heart of an epic battle to save an entire moon from a savage invasion. I hope you’ll check it out.

Fangirl

Tricia Barr took her understanding of brand management and marketing, mixed it with a love of genre storytelling, and added a dash of social media flare to create FANgirl Blog, where she discusses Star Wars, fandom, and the intersection of women within Star Wars fandom. She is co-author of Ultimate Star Wars and Star Wars Visual Encyclopedia from DK Publishing, a featured writer for Star Wars Insider magazine with numerous articles on the Hero's Journey. Her FANgirl opinions can be heard on the podcasts Hyperspace Theories and Fangirls Going Rogue.

Tricia Barr's novel, Wynde, won the 2014 Independent Publisher Book Award Gold Medal for Best Science Fiction/Fantasy/Horror Ebook. She was also part of Silence in the Library's successful all-female creator science fiction and fantasy anthology Athena's Daughters, which is available now. For excerpts and tales of her adventures in creating a fictional universe, hop over to TriciaBarr.com.
Fangirl

Fangirl

Tricia Barr took her understanding of brand management and marketing, mixed it with a love of genre storytelling, and added a dash of social media flare to create FANgirl Blog, where she discusses Star Wars, fandom, and the intersection of women within Star Wars fandom. She is co-author of Ultimate Star Wars and Star Wars Visual Encyclopedia from DK Publishing, a featured writer for Star Wars Insider magazine with numerous articles on the Hero's Journey. Her FANgirl opinions can be heard on the podcasts Hyperspace Theories and Fangirls Going Rogue. Tricia Barr's novel, Wynde, won the 2014 Independent Publisher Book Award Gold Medal for Best Science Fiction/Fantasy/Horror Ebook. She was also part of Silence in the Library's successful all-female creator science fiction and fantasy anthology Athena's Daughters, which is available now. For excerpts and tales of her adventures in creating a fictional universe, hop over to TriciaBarr.com.

7 thoughts on “Star Wars Tales From the Past Step Into the Future

  • June 28, 2011 at 1:44 am
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    “I’ll also feature specific books from the backlist in my new series Looking for Strong Female Heroines, in which I’ll suggest story arcs that will fill your fangirl cravings for heroine-centric tales.”
    WONDERFUL! :D *much applause*
    (…It would be a nice change for me. *sheepish* I don’t really notice the gender-slant in most stories until I think about it – e.g., when I try to think of stories to recommend for that list, and then realize that, while strong female characters were present and prominent in the books of which I thought, the heroes were uniformly male…)

    I found the blog by Rusch very interesting. Oddly enough, the first thing that came to mind when I saw her novel covers was that (though I know the cover art is NOT up to the author) the heroine looked very much like Carrie Fisher… Hmm, looks like Carrie Fisher, acts like Han Solo… *heh* An coincidence, of course, but an amusing one.

    Interesting what she says about women liking the bad boy. I’ve always preferred the pure-hearted, wholesome type myself… but am aware that many find this boring. :P

    ” Years ago, a woman confronted me at a convention and took me to task over her belief that Mara had acted badly out of character in another author’s recent book. I tried to explain that I hadn’t written that book, but it made no difference — the woman still blamed *me* for Mara’s lack of consistency. It made for an interesting conversation…”
    Ouch! XD Poor Zahn. I suppose she expected him to sense the disturbance in the Force and compel the guilty author to do his bidding? “You will write Mara In-Character…”

    *off to read the excerpt*

    • June 28, 2011 at 8:39 pm
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      I found the blog by Rusch very interesting. Oddly enough, the first thing that came to mind when I saw her novel covers was that (though I know the cover art is NOT up to the author) the heroine looked very much like Carrie Fisher… Hmm, looks like Carrie Fisher, acts like Han Solo… *heh* An coincidence, of course, but an amusing one.

      True enough on the looks, but then again she looks a bit Bella, a bit Katniss, kind of that generic, multi-racial brunette. Ever wonder why there are no blonde heroines? Yes, the thought has crossed my mind.

      I always thought Leia picked Han because he does and says things she can’t or won’t.

      • June 29, 2011 at 5:18 pm
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        What about Podkayne of Mars? :P Okay, you have a point… There haven’t been that many blonde heroines recently, to the best of my knowledge. Presumably, it’s to appeal to a wider audience (the ‘generic, multi-racial brunette’ you mentioned). It also seems to be an attempt by some authors to be ‘different’ by rebelling against the hot-blonde stereotype… just like everyone else does. :P Interesting point, now that you mention it – even redheads get priority over blondes, although that tends to be either because the author has a fondness for redheads or is a redhead herself (or himself)… It is odd.

        Hmm, yes… I think it’s also because Han challenges Leia, so she respects him. She’d roll right over Luke (with the caveat that such a hypothetical relationship would take place in a world where Luke and Leia weren’t siblings, of course).

        • June 29, 2011 at 7:42 pm
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          Redheaded girls and green-eyed men, those are the unique factors that authors go for.

          I was a blonde once – literally like stepping into bizarro world – men were more inclined to look, oogle, stare and approach, but I got taken a lot less seriously in business and non-business interactions. As a writer it’s hard to ignore that subconscious behavior.

          • June 29, 2011 at 9:58 pm
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            Green-eyed men? Haven’t really noticed that one… I mostly notice ‘mysterious gray eyes’, used on everyone from Luna Lovegood to Octavian Caesar to… gee… even Tolkien’s elves, come to think of it. Red-haired girls, though – yeah, it tends to be a visual shorthand for “I have a short fuse and sharp tongue”, particularly when coupled with green eyes.

            “I was a blonde once – literally like stepping into bizarro world – men were more inclined to look, oogle, stare and approach, but I got taken a lot less seriously in business and non-business interactions. As a writer it’s hard to ignore that subconscious behavior.”
            Yikes! That’s downright disturbing. I’ll… have to remember that. I suppose it makes sense, considering that popular culture portrays blondes as dumb, sexualized creatures, but it’s absurd that people would actually judge based upon HAIR COLOR, of all things. (In light of that, Tahiri’s being reduced in later LOTF to Jacen’s unquestioning servant and attempted-seductress of Ben [and being revealed in Allies as Caedus’s mistress] becomes VERY disturbing. I know that’s absolute silly paranoia, but she IS the major blonde woman on the cast, according to my off-hand recollection…)

          • June 29, 2011 at 10:07 pm
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            Green-eyed men? Haven’t really noticed that one…
            Read any of the SWEU lately? :p

            But yes, gray eyes are popular too. Or grey if their British apparently.

            Red-haired girls, though – yeah, it tends to be a visual shorthand for “I have a short fuse and sharp tongue”, particularly when coupled with green eyes.

            So then maybe brunette is shorthand for…smarter and other dependable traits? Yeah I actually do think about these things as I write. I’m odd that way. Everything about a character means something or will mean something to somebody.

            I tried red-head once too btw. I can’t say I got treated differently than as a brunette. That’s why the blonde-trend was so interesting.

          • June 30, 2011 at 10:20 am
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            Read any of the SWEU lately? :p
            Oh, yes… I remembered Ben, but forgot Jag also has green eyes. Okay, good point. :)

            So then maybe brunette is shorthand for…smarter and other dependable traits?
            *shrugs* It’s probably shorthand for “no stereotypes attached”, conferring a relative advantage. When blondes and redheads are reserved for archetypical characters, that leaves only brown and black hair for the ones outside of the flashy archetypes.

            …Funnily enough, on that topic, I’ve been unconsciously assuming Vespa is a brunette. Is that correct? *curious*

            I’m odd that way. Everything about a character means something or will mean something to somebody.
            Well, a lot of these things do have symbolism. It gets hilariously overdone in manga, wherein being German means you’re highly talented, but effeminate, mentally unstable, and likely have a relative’s corpse in your closet (or carried around under your labcoat… seriously), being Caucasian (non-German) means you’re wide-eyed and childlike (whether in a good-hearted or bratty way), but never quite as bright as the Asians (perhaps possessed of a savant-like talent for fighting, though), etc. Meanwhile, the Japanese characters (or very-obviously-drawn-as-Japanese characters, as applicable depending on the world) are simply Too Good For Their Own Good, regarding duty, filial piety, etc. Either that, or they’re incredibly cunning villains. They’re a cut above everyone else, anyway.

            That’s just what I’ve observed. Obviously, the West has different stereotypes…

            (I have to go somewhere imminently, that’s why this last part is rushed.)

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