Today sees the release of J.W. Rinzler’s The Making of Return of the Jedi, an epic tome chronicling the years of hard work that went into the last film in the original Star Wars trilogy. Rinzler, executive editor at Lucasfilm, had unprecedented access to the source materials, concept art, and handwritten notes in the Lucasfilm Archives, and his extensive research shines through in the pages of this book.
Posts Tagged ‘Books’
Hello Star Wars fans!
Del Rey Books is thrilled to announce the launch of the Del Rey Star Wars Action Team, or SWAT for short. Whether you’re a die-hard reader who’s consumed every one of the novels over the past 35 years, or a newbie jumping into the books for the first time, the SWAT is looking for a few dedicated recruits. It’s entirely free — all you need is a passion for Star Wars stories and a willingness to help spread the good word.
During its five seasons, The Clone Wars jumped around both the regions of the galaxy and the timeline of the galactic conflict it chronicled, taking us from Anakin and Obi-Wan’s adventures on the front lines to Padmé Amidala’s efforts to find a peaceful solution to the war in the Senate. We saw clone troopers and battle droids in combat, but we also learned about the ambitions of Mandalorians and Sith and were brought into the plots and schemes of pirates and bounty hunters.
For DK’s Star Wars: The Clone Wars Episode Guide, released earlier this month, Lucasfilm wanted to present the episodes in chronological order for the first time, starting with “Cat and Mouse,” Anakin’s duel with Admiral Trench, and ending with “The Wrong Jedi,” in which Ahsoka Tano leaves the Jedi Order, seeking her own path. In all, we chronicled 108 episodes and the 2008 theatrical release, which was originally four standalone episodes.
When I started working on Vader’s Little Princess, I wanted to come up with a bit more than a hundred ideas, from which we’d select the favorites to include in the book. Some of these ideas were taking parenting situations and fitting them into a Star Wars scene, and some were characters or bits of dialogue that I wanted to include and just needed to find the right parenting scenario to fit with them. I loved drawing IG-88 in Darth Vader and Son, and wanted to draw him again, as well as seeing if I could figure out a way to include Vader’s “no disintegrations” line. My first idea was Vader using IG-88 to deliver flowers to his daughter. The initial sketch wasn’t quite finished, but I thought I could refine it to make it work better.
I sometimes hear writers whine about questions they hate to answer.
For example: “If one more person asks me where I get my ideas, I’ll scream! (I’m gonna say they’re delivered by stork.)”
Or: “I’ll strangle the next fan who asks ‘Why did you have your character do X? (Blame it on my unhappy childhood.)”
Or: “How am I supposed to describe my writing process? It’s ART, for criminy sake! I sacrifice a fatted reader to the gods of creativity and Snoopy dance under a full moon.)”
I am puzzled by this whining because these are all questions I’m perfectly happy to answer. Repeatedly.
It’s no secret that I was a lifelong Star Wars fan before I ever took this job; after all, it’s why I took this job. And sometimes that can be a tough line to tread. I have to balance Professional Jen with Fangirl Jen. This struggle can manifest itself in silly ways, like the longing glances I aim at the product display room near my office, or the self-consciousness I sometimes feel when wearing one of my many Princess Leia t-shirts at work, or the fact that the rest of the publishing department knows I will automatically favor any proposed magazine cover with Ewan McGregor’s Obi-Wan on it. And to be fair, it’s easier when it comes to, say, packaging and marketing (the cover of a book, the ads for a comic), which have certain commercial criteria they need to fulfill. The most nebulous, yet arguably most critical part of my job in which I need to maintain the balance between Professional Jen and Fangirl Jen is the editing process.
As some of you know, I’ve been a writer all of my life, emphasis on all. In the summer of my eighth year, I hand printed copies of a flier called the Hobart Street News to try to sell to neighbors on my block in Philadelphia. I charged a nickel, sold two or three to friends of my folks, and decided to go out of business after the second issue—predating by decades a similar fate for too many American newspapers. But the reason that I became a writer was that first I was a reader.
This morning’s Del Rey panel was my very first Star Wars Celebration panel ever, but I wasn’t too nervous since I was up on stage with people much more talented and expressive than me: authors Aaron Allston, Troy Denning, James Luceno, Drew Karpyshyn, and Timothy Zahn; Del Rey Editor-at-Large Shelly Shapiro; and our esteemed moderator, Pablo Hidalgo. So let’s get to what was discussed!
At San Diego Comic-Con, I got to host a pair of panels this Star Wars Day that looked ahead into some of the publishing projects for the remainder of 2012 and into 2013. They revealed, among other things, that the chronicles of Vader’s fatherhood will continue, a pop-up acklay is a real showstopper, the classic heroes return to comics in all new adventures with an old school feel, and the Big Three return to a landmark novel that could perhaps be called postapocalyptic (see what I did there?) …