Emails! Texts! FB messages! DMs! Let’s do this in one place, shall we?
1. No, I had no idea. I’m a freelance writer is all — they don’t tell me these things. I will say I’m very impressed with the ability of some folks I know to keep gigantic secrets.
2. I sensed something big was up — call it a very interesting vibe that’s been in the air. But I thought it had to do with the arrival of Kathleen Kennedy and sorting out things for the future. Which wasn’t wrong, but I’m as amazed as anybody else by the scope of the revelation.
3. As a writer, more Star Wars movies is good news for me — more Star Wars means more potential projects, and more potential projects means a greater likelihood that I can pay my mortgage. (Sorry for the cold-blooded business-guy part of this post. It’s over now.)
4. As a fan, more Star Wars movies is GREAT news for me. Look, I’ve loved Star Wars since I was eight years old and gaped at Darth Vader’s Star Destroyer taking a wonderful percentage of forever to go across the screen. I endured the six fallow years between the end of the Marvel series and Heir to the Empire, and the slow rollout after that. (Remember Star Wars reappeared with a book a year and a comic every other month.) Now, there are new Star Wars tales most every week, and it’s great. But this is BETTER THAN GREAT. This is the stuff I daydreamed about as a kid — I’m hugely excited to see Episode VII scroll up into the heavens and wonder what comes next.
5. I have no idea what Disney and Lucasfilm have in mind, so this is absolute speculation, but I wonder if George Lucas’s consulting role will be similar to what he’s doing now with The Clone Wars. The show is a collaboration between Lucas, Dave Filoni and the show’s writers, with Lucas proposing story ideas in broad outline, exacting detail and somewhere in between; answering questions big and small; looking over shoulders with regards to direction and pacing, and so forth. I’ve greatly enjoyed the results — at its best, Clone Wars has offered rich characterization, big-hearted storytelling, intriguing takes on classic movie themes and styles and moods, and of course plenty of eye-popping visuals and designs. (Seriously — check it out if you haven’t.) That kind of collaboration could mean a wonderful future for Star Wars.
6. When I first got to write Star Wars books, I was worried that it would ruin my fanhood — there’s a reason for the old warning about going inside the sausage factory. To my vast relief, being a professional Star Wars writer hasn’t made me less of a fan. (Can I look at projects dispassionately? Sure. But that’s a necessary tool for any writer.) I still turn on Clone Wars or open a Dark Horse comic or crack a Del Rey novel with a sense of happy expectation. More than that, I’ve made friends at Lucasfilm and at a whole host of publishers — friends who are without exception big Star Wars fans as well. And I’ve met fellow writers and fans who’ve become friends too. I don’t know what Disney has in mind for Lucasfilm and Star Wars, but I do know that they respect talent, experience, fan communities and the passion they engender. So my hope is that all of us can continue this journey together — and that it will take us somewhere great.