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Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: Star Wars, Most Recent at Top [Help]
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1. Star Wars Comics Bundle debuts from Dark Horse

 Star Wars Comics Bundle debuts from Dark Horse

Look at the size of this thing! There are so many puns to be made and this Humble Bundle pr makes the most of them. And while Marvel may be publishing Star Wars now, Dark Horse has a mighty backlist of Star Wars classics. Sp get in on this pay what you want download. ALSO for the first time, Dark Horse is offering DRM-free downloads.

Oni’s Humble Bundle just ended with $149,733.13 and 13,023 purchases, BTW.

These are the comics you’re looking for. Humble Bundle and Dark Horse Comics have teamed up to launch the Humble Star Wars Comics Bundle today. Starting at 11 a.m. PDT, fans of the epic sci-fi franchise can pay what they want for up to $190 worth of digital comics, all while supporting a great cause.

Customers can pay what they want for Star Wars Omnibus: A Long Time Ago… Volume 1, Star Wars: Empire Volume 1 – Betrayal, Star Wars: Jedi Volume 1 – The Dark Side, Star Wars: Crimson Empire Volume 1, Star Wars: Darth Maul Death Sentence and Star Wars: Blood Ties – Jango and Boba Fett. Those who pay more than the average price will also unlock Star Wars: Darth Vader and the Lost Command, Star Wars: The Old Republic Volume 1 – Blood of the Empire, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic Volume 1 – Commencement, Star Wars: Legacy Volume 1 – Broken and Star Wars: Dark Times Volume 1 – The Path to Nowhere. Hardcore fans who pay $15 or more will receive all of the above, plus Star Wars Volume 1: In the Shadow of Yavin, bringing this bundle to a total of 89 issues of Star Wars comics.

As with all Humble Bundles, customers can choose how their purchase dollars are allocated, between the comic creators and charity. The Humble Star Wars Comics Bundle defies the dark side and supports the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund, a non-profit organization dedicated to protecting the First Amendment rights of the comics medium. Thanks to the generosity of the Humble Bundle community, more than $47 million has been contributed to more than 30 different causes to date.

The Humble Star Wars Comics Bundle runs for two weeks and ends on Wednesday, October 29, 2014 at 11 a.m. PDT. For more information, please visit https://www.humblebundle.com/books

 

 

2 Comments on Star Wars Comics Bundle debuts from Dark Horse, last added: 10/16/2014
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2. Fusenews: “Red Nine doth here stand by”

  • Me stuff.  You have been warned.  So the first thing to know today is that this coming Saturday I’ll be speaking at the Eric Carle Museum about Wild Things: Acts of Mischief in Children’s Literature.  It will prove to be an amusing talk and if you live in the area I’d desperately love it if you could attend.  I’d like to see your smiling faces, rather than the sea of empty chairs that greets me whenever I close my eyes and imagine worst case scenarios.  It will be at 1 p.m.  In other news, the panel I conducted on Native Fiction was summarized at Tu Books as well as a rather in-depth write-up in Publishers Weekly.  So well done there.  Finally Jules and I were interviewed in conjunction with our book by Cynthia Leitich Smith over at Cynsations.  Woohoo!

HogwartsPoster Fusenews: Red Nine doth here stand by

  • And for those of you who know who Suzuki Beane is, enjoy this little GIF of her dancing up a storm.  If I were ever to get a tattoo it would be one of those images.  Or this one.  Thanks to Sara O’Leary for the GIF.
  • Monica Edinger was kind enough to field some questions from Jules and me about obscure Alice in Wonderland facts.  I thought I’d heard them all, but that was before I learned about Harry, Alice Liddell’s older, forgotten brother.  A boy who existed before Alice?  There’s a book in that . . .
  • Okay.  So we all know that we need diverse books.  Understood.  Done.  But where precisely do you find lists of such titles?  Check out the all new Where to Find Diverse Books site.  Everything from books on disability to Islam to LGBTQIA is included.  Think something’s missing?  Let ‘em know!
  • Things I Didn’t Know: So when we talk about podcasts of children’s literature we rarely consider the academic side of things.  Imagine then my delight when I discovered the Raab Children’s Literature Podcasts created for the Northeast Children’s Literature Collection and the Teachers for a New Era Project.  Quite the listing!
  • And speaking of Things I Didn’t Know (a topic worthy of its own post, I suspect) Jules recently discovered that there is such a thing as a Coretta Scott King Book Awards Fair out there.  Did you know that?  I, for one, did not.  The event “celebrates the Coretta Scott King Awards, those authors and illustrators who have received the award, and books that (as the Award states) demonstrate an appreciation of African American culture.”  Jules interviews the organizer and founder of the event, Collette Hopkins.  Interested in bringing it to your city?  Read on.
  • So I was moderating a panel at a Penguin Random House teacher event this past Monday (I’m just dropping the “Me Stuff” left and right today) and one of the giveaways was Ian Doescher’s William Shakespeare’s Star Wars.  I’m sure you’re familiar with it.  It seemed like a cute gimmick and I thought maybe to snag a copy and give it to my brother for Christmas or something.  Little did I realize that it’s actually a rather brilliant piece of work.  From R2-D2′s soliloquy placing him squarely as a trickster character in the vein of a Puck, to Han Solo’s line after shooting Greedo (“[To innkeeper] Pray, goodly Sir, forgive me for the mess. / [Aside] And whether I shot first, I’ll ne’er confess!”) I was hooked the minute I read it.  My husband’s been on a bit of a Star Wars kick himself as of late.  First there was his three part series on “Why We Like Luke Skywalker”.  Matt posed the question to James Kennedy and got an epic response that is worth reading in Part One, Part Two, and Part Three.  Then there was Matt’s post on what Jonathan Auxier’s The Night Gardener and Star Wars have in common.  There are other Star Wars posts as well that are worth discovering but I think these make for pretty in-depth reading anyway.
  • Daily Image: With Halloween on the horizon it’s time to start thinking about costumes.  For inspiration, why not check out BuzzFeed’s 31 Amazing Teacher Halloween Costumes?  Lots of children’s literature references in there.  Three of my favorites included:

MadelineCostumes 500x500 Fusenews: Red Nine doth here stand by

MsFrizzleCostume Fusenews: Red Nine doth here stand by

BadCaseStripesCostume Fusenews: Red Nine doth here stand by

Thanks to Kate for the link.

share save 171 16 Fusenews: Red Nine doth here stand by

3 Comments on Fusenews: “Red Nine doth here stand by”, last added: 10/17/2014
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3. STAR WARS Reviews and Interviews

The celebration for last week’s release of The Adventures of Luke Skywalker, Jedi Knight continue with an interview, an essay and a review.

SWdotCom page

Here’s the link to my Star Wars dot com essay.

…and an interview over at Yahoo Movies.

…and lastly a review in the Wall Street Journal.

reading

Many thanks to my fellow Jedi who came out to support me at the launch party at Odyssey Books as well as ‘Star Wars Reads Day’ at New York City’s Books of Wonder. Here’s some snaps (courtesy of my loverly wife, Angela):

Odyssey1

Vader2

Vader

Darth Vader ALWAYS gets his book.

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4. NYCC’14: Marvel’s Cup O’ Joe Panel Reveals a Black Vortex, Peggy Carter, and Star Wars Galore

 

 

BzrmhibCEAAUqDq e1413049072780 NYCC14: Marvels Cup O Joe Panel Reveals a Black Vortex, Peggy Carter, and Star Wars Galore

 

by Alexander Jones

Marvel Comics just unveiled a ton of new information regarding their publishing line, and even announced some brand new female-led titles. The news broke at Marvel’s Cup O’ Joe Panel, where Marvel’s Chief Creative Officer, Joe Quesada, announced a brand new crossover with the Guardians of the Galaxy, Captain Marvel, the All-New X-Men, Star-Lord, Cyclops and Nova. The crossover is entitled The Black Vortex and begins in February 2015. The Black Vortex is said to be an ancient artifact, that sort of functions like the cosmic cube, it unlocks the hidden potential within an individual. It also seems like this crossover is going to be more focused on the cosmic side of the publisher’s massive world. The Black Vortex has an Alpha special drawn by Ed McGuinness that launches the story, followed by an Omega special also drawn by Ed McGuinness that ends the story.

BzrnajkIAAMYQZD 300x225 NYCC14: Marvels Cup O Joe Panel Reveals a Black Vortex, Peggy Carter, and Star Wars Galore

The Star Wars titles are all confirmed to be coming in February including Star Wars #1, Darth Vader #1, and Princess Leia #1. Another Star Wars title was announced as Star Wars – Kanan: The Last Padawan by Greg Weisman and Pepe Larraz which is coming in April of 2015.

Captain America #1 and Avengers & X-Men: AXIS Act II Inversion both kick off in November.

Marvel’s Editor-in-Chief Axel Alonso chimed in with this amusing quote:

“Wolverine is dead next Wednesday, Rocket Racoon is arguably one of the most popular superheroes in the world, Thor is a woman, Captain America is African-American – did you ever think that you would see that?”Bzrp0TlIAAAEtOz 300x225 NYCC14: Marvels Cup O Joe Panel Reveals a Black Vortex, Peggy Carter, and Star Wars Galore

Speaking of their most beloved new female characters, Marvel has just announced Operation S.I.N. utilizing Peggy Carter of the upcoming television series. Some of the other S.H.I.E.L.D. architects like Howard Stark are also going to make an appearance in the story. The event has the same trade dress as Original Sin, and is said to spin out of that story. It’s written by Kathryn Immonen with art from Rich Ellis.

James Patterson’s Maximum Ride is coming to Marvel in graphic novel form. The first five issues of the book will launch in Spring 2015. The adaptation is written by Marguerite Bennett and Alex Sanchez.

Whew, that was quite a few announcements!

 

4 Comments on NYCC’14: Marvel’s Cup O’ Joe Panel Reveals a Black Vortex, Peggy Carter, and Star Wars Galore, last added: 10/12/2014
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5. Read You Should: Celebrate National Star Wars Reads Day!

star wars reads day 3 logo Read You Should: Celebrate National Star Wars Reads Day! Not at New York Comic Con?  Want to get your geek on, or earn some cool cred from younger relatives?

This Saturday, nationwide, is Star Wars Read Day!

The many publishing partners of Disney/Lucasfilm are collaborating for the third year, encouraging children of all ages to celebrate the myriad stories and cool books in the Star Wars universe!

Find out more, at their Facebook page! Barnes & Noble and Books-A-Million stores are hosting events, and if you’re in New York, head down to the Scholastic store in SoHo! They’ve got Kazu Kibuishi at Noon, and then Star Wars from 2-4!

The PR:

Star Wars Reads Day Strikes Back October 11, 2014
Bookstores and libraries will once again feel the power of the Force.

Disney Publishing Worldwide and its publishing partners announced today the third annual Star Wars Reads Day, to be held October 11, 2014. Last year, Star Wars authors and costumed volunteers participated in over 2,000 Star Wars Reads Day events across North America and, for the first time, around the world. On October 11 of this year, Star Wars fans, authors, and artists will again come together in this multi-publisher initiative that celebrates reading and Star Wars. Participating publishing partners include Abrams, Chronicle Books, Dark Horse, Del Rey, Disney Book Group, DK, Klutz, Quirk Books, Random House Audio, Scholastic, and Workman Publishing.

“With the debut of our new animated series Star Wars Rebels launching on Disney XD this Fall, and the upcoming theatrical release of Episode VII in 2015, our third Star Wars Reads Day comes at an exciting time,” says Carol Roeder, Director of Lucasfilm Franchise Publishing, Disney Publishing Worldwide.

The following authors are confirmed to participate in official Star Wars Reads Day events: Chris Alexander (Star Wars Origami), Tom Angleberger (Origami Yoda series), Jeffrey Brown (Goodnight Darth Vader, Star Wars: Jedi Academy), Troy Denning (Star Wars: Crucible), Ian Doescher (William Shakespeare’s Star Wars, William Shakespeare’s Empire Striketh Back, William Shakespeare’s The Jedi Doth Return), Jason Fry (LEGO Star Wars: The Visual Dictionary: Updated and Expanded, Star Wars in 100 Scenes), Daniel Lipkowitz (LEGO Star Wars: The Yoda Chronicles), John Jackson Miller (Star Wars: Kenobi), Chris Reiff and Chris Trevas (Star Wars: Death Star Owner’s Technical Manual), Daniel Wallace (The Bounty Hunter Code, The Jedi Path), and Ryder Windham (Star Wars: The Ultimate Visual Guide, Star Wars Rebels Junior Novel).

0 Comments on Read You Should: Celebrate National Star Wars Reads Day! as of 10/11/2014 11:19:00 AM
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6. USA TODAY Interview

USA TODAY: October 2nd, 2014: ‘Star Wars’ trilogy is retold in new kids’ book

StarWarsDiTerlizziMcQuarrie

Tony DiTerlizzi’s 7-year-old daughter Sophia already is a huge Star Wars nerd, and he’s getting ready to spread the love to a whole new generation of fans.

The children’s picture book The Adventures of Luke Skywalker, Jedi Knight (out Tuesday) kicks off a new series of Star Wars books from Disney Publishing for the younger set. Older sci-fi geeks will love it, too, because it retells George Lucas’ original Star Wars movie trilogy using the artwork of conceptual designer Ralph McQuarrie.

McQuarrie, an Oscar-winning illustrator who also worked on E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial and the original Battlestar Galactica, was one of the first artists tapped by Lucas in the mid-1970s to begin visualizing what his Star Wars universe would look like.

“It’s such a great experience to look into that process of visualizing this world that we all know and love so much as it was being formed,” says DiTerlizzi, 45, the author, artist and co-creator of The Spiderwick Chronicles series with Holly Black. He will appear at New York City’s Books of Wonder on Oct. 11 for the third annual Star Wars Reads Day, and DiTerlizzi also is on a Star Wars/Star Trek panel at New York Comic Con Oct. 12.

The writer talks with USA TODAY about working on the new book, McQuarrie’s influence and how today’s generation connects with Star Wars differently than his did.

…Read the complete interview, as well as watch an exclusive video, at USA TODAY.

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7. Joe Quesada’s Star Wars #1 cover variant revealed

star wars 1 joe quesada cover 1024x791 Joe Quesadas Star Wars #1 cover variant revealed StarWars.com
has unveiled Joe Quesada’s variant cover to Star Wars
#1. The first Marvel issue of the 21st century will debut in
January with story by Jason Aaron, and art by John Cassaday and
Laura Martin. Marrtin colored Quesada’s cover. Marvel’s CCO
wrote:

I was asked to give a quote
about this cover and to tell fans about the first time I saw Star
Wars or how it completely changed my life, but it’s a story I’m
sure isn’t all that interesting when compared to the countless
others that have been told, much more eloquently, by so many before
me,” said Quesada. “While each of us has had our unique moments of
discovery and love affair with the property there’s nothing that I
think I could say or add that hasn’t been said before and
truthfully it really isn’t all that important because It’s that
love for Star Wars that binds all of us who share those unique
moments like the Force itself. That’s why when I was offered the
opportunity to do this cover I was both thrilled beyond belief and
as nervous as I was when I did my very first professional work over
twenty years ago. To have the opportunity to illustrate the classic
cast members in one piece has been by far one of the highlights of
my career as an artist. I can only hope that it turned out okay and
that maybe, just maybe, I get the chance to do it again
someday.

I like it, but no
Jaxxon?

2 Comments on Joe Quesada’s Star Wars #1 cover variant revealed, last added: 10/1/2014
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8. New York Comic Con, Star Wars Reads and Additional Fall Events

Next week is the release of STAR WARS: The Adventures of Luke Skywalker, Jedi Knight. To celebrate, I’ll be doing events in my hometown, New York City, Boston, Austin and Miami.

Along with some familiar faces from “a galaxy far, far away”, I’ll be presenting and signing at my favorite hometown indie bookstore, The Odyssey Bookshop. Space is limited, so you’ll need to RSVP sooner than later. If you cannot make it the shop can take your order and ship a signed book to you.

From there, I’ll zoom down New York for NY Comic Con where the STAR WARS fun continues. As well, I am signing at the Dark Horse Comics booth and giving out a FREE promotional print for my upcoming book, REALMS: The Role Playing Game Art of Tony DiTerlizzi. Here’s the New York Comic Con schedule:

REALMS_print

Autographing: Promotional Print for “REALMS: The RPG Art of Tony DiTerlizzi”
Saturday 12PM – 12:50 PM, Dark Horse Booth

This image of a classic Advanced Dungeons & Dragons kobold marks a return to my roots as an illustrator for the beloved roleplaying game. Along with collecting my artwork from Planescape, Changeling and Magic the Gathering, REALMS will also feature a series of new paintings of some of my favorite monsters and characters from the game that started it all. We’ll be giving out this 12×18″ print FREE at the Dark Horse Comics booth, so come on by!

StarWarsDiTerlizziMcQuarrie

Panel Name: STORMTROOPERS vs. RED SHIRTS
Sunday 11AM – 11:45 AM ET, Room 1A18

Conflicts in galaxies far far away have entertained us since the dawn of science fiction, but it we owe it to Star Trek and Star Wars helped to bring science fiction to the forefront of pop culture. Tony DiTerlizzi (The Adventure of Luke Skywalker, Jedi Knight), Jack Campbell (The Lost Stars: Imperfect Sword), Karen Bao (Dove Arising), Tony Abbott (Copernicus Legacy: The Serpent’s Curse), Emmy Laybourne (Monument 14), Claudia Gabel and Cheryl Klam (Etherworld) discuss skiffy upbringings and these two influential classics. A formal autographing will take place immediately after the panel at Table 19 in the autographing area.

RD.II.b

While in New York City, I’ll be participating in “Star Wars Reads Day” at Books of Wonder along with some other notable Jedi, including Tom Angleberger.

STAR WARS Reads Day
Saturday, October 11th, 4:00 PM – 6:00 PM

Join us for this spectacular event in a galaxy far, far away…

TOM ANGLEBERGER Emperor Pickletine Rides the Bus (Origami Yoda #6)
TONY DiTERLIZZI The Adventures of Luke Skywalker, Jedi Knight
PABLO HIDALGO for Star Wars Rebels: A New Hero
MICHAEL KOGGE for Star Wars Rebels: Rise of the Rebels
MATTHEW REINHART for Star Wars: A Pop Up Guide to the Galaxy

Later in the month, I’ll be attending several book festivals, including:

Boston Book Festival
Saturday, October 25th, 12:30 – 1:00 PM ET

First Church of Boston Auditorium
66 Marlborough St.
Boston, MA 02116

* I will be pre-signing books at 11:30 AM prior to my presentation

Texas Book Festival
Sunday, October 26th, 2:45 – 3:30 PM CT

The Capitol, Extension Room E.2.028
1100 Congress Avenue, Between 11th and 12th Streets
Austin, TX 78701

*I shall be signing at the book signing tent immediately following my presentation.

Miami Book Fair
November 21-23rd

Angela and I will both be presenting and signing at this favorite Florida fair. Look for schedule and details soon.

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9. R2D2 Korean Melon

There are times when the imagination kicks in and it becomes so real that it becomes almost like a mini vision of some sort. This is one of those moments when I saw the Korean pear sitting on the counter, I saw very clearly the R2D2 sitting there. About a month ago right after Ira […]

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10. Jedi Academy: Return of the Padawan

I’m sure the Germans have a word for when you get two pages into reading a book and realise it’s the second one in a series instead of the first. Whatever that word is, it applies to me, having just experienced that with Jeffrey Brown’s Jedi Academy: Return of the Padawan. The ‘return’ should probably […]

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11. Video Sunday: No. Seriously, Lisa. Hire me.

Howdy, folks.  I have news for you.  Did you have any idea that a children’s literature online show called KidLit TV was in the works?  Nor did I until I stopped by Roxie Munroe’s studio the other day.  She informed me that man-about-town Rocco Staino had been by with an honest-to-goodness film crew to talk to her about this new series. Calling itself, “The video resource for the greater kidlit community” it’s launching this fall.  Here’s the first video so far:

Okay. I admit it. I’m a sucker for cute kids.  Thank goodness they don’t do many lemonade stands in my neighborhood or I’d be without a dime in my pocket.  So when I saw this video about the Dr. Seuss Wants You! Indiegogo campaign, I was hooked.  These gals are trying to raise funds so that their school library can have its very own librarian.  Resist their cuteness if you can!

Thanks to AL Direct for the link.

You know what I love?  Shakespeare.  You know what I love even more than Shakespeare?  Graphic novels.  You know what I love even more than Shakespeare and graphic novels?  Book trailers.  Now all three of the things I love have combined in this trailer for The Stratford Zoo Presents MacBeth.  I have read and loved the book (Lady MacBeth as a spotted animal = brilliance).  Originally premiering on Watch. Connect. Read., do be so good as to enjoy it.

Many of you have probably seen this but the IKEA BookBook ad is rather charming.

Which, in turn, is not too dissimilar from this faux Amazon Prime Air Launch ad.

Thanks to Michael Stusser for the link.

Ooo.  Lisa Von Drasek!  Now that she’s moved to Minnesota (I am not even kidding when I say how envious I am) I don’t get to see her around and about anymore.  Fortunately somebody out there (U of M, presumably) did this kickin’ recording of her conversation with Kate DiCamillo.  For those of you more familiar with Kate, come for the DiCamillo, stay for the Von Drasek.

By the way, this is the first I’ve ever heard of IFLA.  Anyone else out there feel as out of it as me?

Good old Ed Spicer. Not only does he come out for every book signing I do in Michigan but he records my blabberings and puts them online.  This recent posting went up in conjunction with Wild Things but was filmed several years ago.  If you’re interested in me with the talkety talk, enjoy.

Thanks, Ed!

As for today’s Off-Topic Video, I am thoroughly indebted to Dan Santat.  It’s the final ceremony of Star Wars done without the soundtrack.  As my friend Dan McCoy said of it, “Over and above the comedy, this actually let me see Star Wars with new eyes, for the first time in decades, which is amazing.”

Many thanks to Dan Santat for the vid.

share save 171 16 Video Sunday: No. Seriously, Lisa. Hire me.

1 Comments on Video Sunday: No. Seriously, Lisa. Hire me., last added: 9/22/2014
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12. Marvel to reprint Dark Horse Star Wars comics as STAR WARS LEGENDS EPIC COLLECTION

Huh, well blow me down with a womp rat. Over the 20 years of Dark Horse’s Star Wars license they built up a healthy business in selling collected editions of their “expanded universe” stories. However that ended when Disney purchased Lucesfilm and reassigned the Star Wars license to their “in house ” publisher Marvel.

Although the entire “expanded universe” is expected to be rewritten in the wake of Episode VII coming next year, many thought the comics would go to the big remaindered table in the sky, especially since Marvel’s graphic novel backlist is, ahem, a work in progress.

Well, it’s turns out Marvel couldn’t resist the low hanging fruit of keeping the Dark Horse Star Wars comic in print — at least in a $34.99 collectors edition in the “Epic Collection” format. The first collection will be out in April, 2015, leading the way to the new film.

ANd perhaps, the content of these reprints would even give a clue to wheat might still be canon in the new Star Wars timeline?

Marvel is excited to announce the release of an oversized dose of a galaxy far, far, away – Star Wars comics are coming to Marvel’s prestigious Epic Collection format – STAR WARS LEGENDS EPIC COLLECTION: THE EMPIRE VOL. 1 TPB.
 
Let the dark times begin! Marvel welcomes Star Wars to the Epic Collection program, with this first volume of a series focusing on the years that follow Star Wars: Episode III — Revenge of the Sith! After the end of the Clone Wars, the Republic has fallen and Palpatine exerts his ruthless grip on his new Galactic Empire. Now, the few Jedi that remain must decide whether to hold true to their faith, or abandon it completely in the face of a brutal purge — one carried out by the new Dark Lord of the Sith. Rise, Darth Vader!
 
“We’re thrilled to be bringing our innovative Epic Collections to a galaxy far, far away,” says Marvel SVP Sales & Marketing David Gabriel. “We’ll be bouncing around to different periods of Star Wars history with each Epic Collection, constructing one huge tapestry, collecting full unbroken runs of all the greatest Star Wars comics from the past 35 years.”
 
STAR WARS LEGENDS EPIC COLLECTION: THE EMPIRE VOL. 1 TPB. will offer a new way for fans to collect and read iconic Star Wars stories across the past 35 years of published titles. These oversized, self-contained color collections will bring the adventures of the Rebellion, the Galactic Empire and more to the masses with exciting new Epic Collections.
 
COLLECTING: STAR WARS: REPUBLIC 78-80, STAR WARS: PURGE 1, STAR WARS: PURGE — SECONDS TO DIE 1, STAR WARS: PURGE — THE HIDDEN BLADE 1, STAR WARS: PURGE — THE TYRANT’S FIST 1-2, STAR WARS: DARTH VADER AND THE LOST COMMAND 1-5, STAR WARS: DARK TIMES 1-5
AUTHOR: JOHN OSTRANDER, RANDY STRADLEY, HADEN BLACKMAN, ALEXANDER FREED
ARTIST: LUKE ROSS , DOUGLAS WHEATLEY, JIM HALL, CHRIS SCALF, MARCO CASTIELLO, ANDREA CHELLA, RICK LEONARDI

 
STAR WARS LEGENDS EPIC COLLECTION: THE EMPIRE VOL. 1 TPB.
WRITTEN BY JOHN OSTRANDER, RANDY STRADLEY, HADEN BLACKMAN & ALEXANDER FREED
ART BY LUKE ROSS, DOUGLAS CASTIELLO, ANDREA CHELLA & RICK LEONARDI
440 PGS./Rated T …$34.99
On-Sale April 2015
ISBN: 978-0-7851-9398-2
© 2014 Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM. Used under authorization. All rights reserved.
 

 

2 Comments on Marvel to reprint Dark Horse Star Wars comics as STAR WARS LEGENDS EPIC COLLECTION, last added: 8/28/2014
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13. Marvel to reprint Dark Horse Star Wars comics as STAR WARS LEGENDS EPIC COLLECTION

Huh, well blow me down with a womp rat. Over the 20 years of Dark Horse’s Star Wars license they built up a healthy business in selling collected editions of their “expanded universe” stories. However that ended when Disney purchased Lucesfilm and reassigned the Star Wars license to their “in house ” publisher Marvel.

Although the entire “expanded universe” is expected to be rewritten in the wake of Episode VII coming next year, many thought the comics would go to the big remaindered table in the sky, especially since Marvel’s graphic novel backlist is, ahem, a work in progress.

Well, it’s turns out Marvel couldn’t resist the low hanging fruit of keeping the Dark Horse Star Wars comic in print — at least in a $34.99 collectors edition in the “Epic Collection” format. The first collection will be out in April, 2015, leading the way to the new film.

ANd perhaps, the content of these reprints would even give a clue to wheat might still be canon in the new Star Wars timeline?

Marvel is excited to announce the release of an oversized dose of a galaxy far, far, away – Star Wars comics are coming to Marvel’s prestigious Epic Collection format – STAR WARS LEGENDS EPIC COLLECTION: THE EMPIRE VOL. 1 TPB.
 
Let the dark times begin! Marvel welcomes Star Wars to the Epic Collection program, with this first volume of a series focusing on the years that follow Star Wars: Episode III — Revenge of the Sith! After the end of the Clone Wars, the Republic has fallen and Palpatine exerts his ruthless grip on his new Galactic Empire. Now, the few Jedi that remain must decide whether to hold true to their faith, or abandon it completely in the face of a brutal purge — one carried out by the new Dark Lord of the Sith. Rise, Darth Vader!
 
“We’re thrilled to be bringing our innovative Epic Collections to a galaxy far, far away,” says Marvel SVP Sales & Marketing David Gabriel. “We’ll be bouncing around to different periods of Star Wars history with each Epic Collection, constructing one huge tapestry, collecting full unbroken runs of all the greatest Star Wars comics from the past 35 years.”
 
STAR WARS LEGENDS EPIC COLLECTION: THE EMPIRE VOL. 1 TPB. will offer a new way for fans to collect and read iconic Star Wars stories across the past 35 years of published titles. These oversized, self-contained color collections will bring the adventures of the Rebellion, the Galactic Empire and more to the masses with exciting new Epic Collections.
 
COLLECTING: STAR WARS: REPUBLIC 78-80, STAR WARS: PURGE 1, STAR WARS: PURGE — SECONDS TO DIE 1, STAR WARS: PURGE — THE HIDDEN BLADE 1, STAR WARS: PURGE — THE TYRANT’S FIST 1-2, STAR WARS: DARTH VADER AND THE LOST COMMAND 1-5, STAR WARS: DARK TIMES 1-5
AUTHOR: JOHN OSTRANDER, RANDY STRADLEY, HADEN BLACKMAN, ALEXANDER FREED
ARTIST: LUKE ROSS , DOUGLAS WHEATLEY, JIM HALL, CHRIS SCALF, MARCO CASTIELLO, ANDREA CHELLA, RICK LEONARDI

 
STAR WARS LEGENDS EPIC COLLECTION: THE EMPIRE VOL. 1 TPB.
WRITTEN BY JOHN OSTRANDER, RANDY STRADLEY, HADEN BLACKMAN & ALEXANDER FREED
ART BY LUKE ROSS, DOUGLAS CASTIELLO, ANDREA CHELLA & RICK LEONARDI
440 PGS./Rated T …$34.99
On-Sale April 2015
ISBN: 978-0-7851-9398-2
© 2014 Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM. Used under authorization. All rights reserved.
 

 

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14. Marvel to reprint Dark Horse Star Wars comics as STAR WARS LEGENDS EPIC COLLECTION

Huh, well blow me down with a womp rat. Over the 20 years of Dark Horse’s Star Wars license they built up a healthy business in selling collected editions of their “expanded universe” stories. However that ended when Disney purchased Lucesfilm and reassigned the Star Wars license to their “in house ” publisher Marvel.

Although the entire “expanded universe” is expected to be rewritten in the wake of Episode VII coming next year, many thought the comics would go to the big remaindered table in the sky, especially since Marvel’s graphic novel backlist is, ahem, a work in progress.

Well, it’s turns out Marvel couldn’t resist the low hanging fruit of keeping the Dark Horse Star Wars comic in print — at least in a $34.99 collectors edition in the “Epic Collection” format. The first collection will be out in April, 2015, leading the way to the new film.

ANd perhaps, the content of these reprints would even give a clue to wheat might still be canon in the new Star Wars timeline?

Marvel is excited to announce the release of an oversized dose of a galaxy far, far, away – Star Wars comics are coming to Marvel’s prestigious Epic Collection format – STAR WARS LEGENDS EPIC COLLECTION: THE EMPIRE VOL. 1 TPB.
 
Let the dark times begin! Marvel welcomes Star Wars to the Epic Collection program, with this first volume of a series focusing on the years that follow Star Wars: Episode III — Revenge of the Sith! After the end of the Clone Wars, the Republic has fallen and Palpatine exerts his ruthless grip on his new Galactic Empire. Now, the few Jedi that remain must decide whether to hold true to their faith, or abandon it completely in the face of a brutal purge — one carried out by the new Dark Lord of the Sith. Rise, Darth Vader!
 
“We’re thrilled to be bringing our innovative Epic Collections to a galaxy far, far away,” says Marvel SVP Sales & Marketing David Gabriel. “We’ll be bouncing around to different periods of Star Wars history with each Epic Collection, constructing one huge tapestry, collecting full unbroken runs of all the greatest Star Wars comics from the past 35 years.”
 
STAR WARS LEGENDS EPIC COLLECTION: THE EMPIRE VOL. 1 TPB. will offer a new way for fans to collect and read iconic Star Wars stories across the past 35 years of published titles. These oversized, self-contained color collections will bring the adventures of the Rebellion, the Galactic Empire and more to the masses with exciting new Epic Collections.
 
COLLECTING: STAR WARS: REPUBLIC 78-80, STAR WARS: PURGE 1, STAR WARS: PURGE — SECONDS TO DIE 1, STAR WARS: PURGE — THE HIDDEN BLADE 1, STAR WARS: PURGE — THE TYRANT’S FIST 1-2, STAR WARS: DARTH VADER AND THE LOST COMMAND 1-5, STAR WARS: DARK TIMES 1-5
AUTHOR: JOHN OSTRANDER, RANDY STRADLEY, HADEN BLACKMAN, ALEXANDER FREED
ARTIST: LUKE ROSS , DOUGLAS WHEATLEY, JIM HALL, CHRIS SCALF, MARCO CASTIELLO, ANDREA CHELLA, RICK LEONARDI

 
STAR WARS LEGENDS EPIC COLLECTION: THE EMPIRE VOL. 1 TPB.
WRITTEN BY JOHN OSTRANDER, RANDY STRADLEY, HADEN BLACKMAN & ALEXANDER FREED
ART BY LUKE ROSS, DOUGLAS CASTIELLO, ANDREA CHELLA & RICK LEONARDI
440 PGS./Rated T …$34.99
On-Sale April 2015
ISBN: 978-0-7851-9398-2
© 2014 Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM. Used under authorization. All rights reserved.
 

 

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15. Video Sunday: “Luke, I Am Your Father” (in a manner of speaking)

I’m a chick who loves Star Wars.  I’m not ashamed of the fact.  Feminist icon Princess Leia?  I can get behind that (gold bikini or no).  So when I saw a galley for that AMAZING Star Wars children’s book coming out with art from the original concept artist Ralph McQuarrie, I was blown away.  Here, Tony DiTerlizzi (who did the writing in the book) talks about the film and the art.  Geeks unite!

I love that he mentions that moment with the two suns.  For me, that was undoubtedly the most iconic scene in the original film.  I just loved the realism of it.  I am SO reading this to my kids.  P.S. For a fun time read the rants about the “Luke, I am your father” line.  Or, better yet, don’t.

Now until about a day ago when my niece did it, I didn’t actually know what the Ice Bucket Challenge was.  Dav Pilkey takes it on using Flip-o-Rama.  Good man.

Ball’s in your court now, CeCe.

I think it’s safe to say that I have never seen an author promote a cinematic adaptation of their award winning book as much as I’ve seen Ms. Lois Lowry talk up the latest film of The Giver.  Here she does it again:

How famous is J.K. Rowling?  So famous that when she writes an incidental character, NBC News is willing to report on that character getting her own song.  According to Salon this is an original song written for Pottermore starring Celestina Warbeck, Molly Weasley’s favorite singer:

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

And speaking of all things Potter, the thing about learning that there’s a documentary out there called Mudbloods is that you can’t believe you hadn’t seen a film of that name before.  It’s an awfully good idea to make a movie about the rise of the real world Quiddich movement.  It’s not the first Harry Potter documentary of course but it’s a cute idea.  Here’s the trailer:

Man.  It would weird to be J.K. Rowling and see this, wouldn’t it?  Here’s some additional info.

A little me stuff.  I conducted a talk with Mara Rockliff and Eliza Wheeler for Bibliocommons in honor of their latest book The Grudge Keeper.  It was recorded, but rather than show our lovely faces the video shows some slides of what we’re discussing.  In case you’ve an interest you can take a gander at it.  A lot of talking about the process of writing picture books can be found here:

As for the off-topic video, this one’s been making the rounds.  It’s one of those videos where you go, “Huh? Huh? Huh? Huh? Ooooooh!”

Thanks to Steve Bird for the link!

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16. Review: The Star Wars Tries to Soar

TheStarWars_cover

By Matthew Jent

The Star Wars

Credits

Script: J.W. Rinzler

Art: Mike Mayhew

Colors: Rain Beredo

Lettering: Michael Heisler

Cover Art: Nick Runge

Genre: Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Movie Tie-In

Star Wars the film — the original film, whether you call it “Episode IV” or “A New Hope” or just “Star Wars” — is a religious text. There’s barely been a time since its 1977 release when it wasn’t being enjoyed, debated, worshipped or deconstructed. In a world of reboots, remakes and restarts, it is hard to imagine Star Wars doing anything except continue.

And yet. Star Wars was created by a mortal mind. It did not spring fully formed from the head of some god. Dark Horse’s The Star Wars is a graphic novel collection “based on the original rough-draft screenplay by George Lucas.” It takes place among the stars. It concerns an evil empire being fought by a rebel alliance. There are words herein such as “Skywalker,” “Darth Vader,” and “Jedi.”

But in place of lightsabers, we have “lazerswords.” Instead of The Force, we have “the force of others.” There is a moon-sized space station called, not the Death Star, but “The Space Fortress.” There are echoes and mirror images of familiar characters and designs, such as a familiar group of bounty hunters we encounter about halfway through the story.

It’s long been rumored that the original Star Wars screenplay had enough content for what became the entire saga, and you get a sense of that here. The plot moves at a breakneck pace, which leads to some welcome between-panel jumps that modern comics tend to overexplain. But the downside is that The Star Wars lacks the quiet character moments needed to humanize and soften the space-fantasy archetypes the characters have become. There’s no time taken for quiet character moments or smalltalk over the dejarik table, and there’s no winning smirk when Han espouses his preference for a good blaster. This is just plot, plot, plot.

Mike Mayhew’s art relies on frozen, exaggerated facial features, but it was the charisma and sass of Carrie Fisher that made Princess Leia rise above the cliché and lazy stereotype of a thinly drawn damsel-in-distress. Here, Princess Leia’s character is thinner than cheesecloth. Young hero Annikin Starkiller punches her in the face to keep her from arguing against their escape from the Empire, and a few dozen pages later she proclaims her love for him. The cast of the original Star Wars film is beloved, but they don’t get enough credit for bringing humanity and charm to a screenplay so devoid of it.

It’s not clear in this adaptation how much of the dialogue is Lucas-original, and how much is created by writer J.W. Rinzler, but someone really likes numbers and mumbo-jumbo space coordinates. Quad-tristation configurations, south axis point three-nine-four, point five-seven on the axis — it’s meaningless jargon that makes the story feel militaristic and unengaging, causing the eye to scan nearby word balloons for a familiar name or phrase as an anchor point.

Another Star Wars legend is that the Ewoks of Return of the Jedi were originally going to be Wookiees. This proves true here, but again the process feels rushed. Two-thirds of the way through the story, the Wookiees start talking in translated word balloons instead of unintelligible, roaring vowells. Did we not need to know what they were saying previously? Were they literally just yelling wordlessly? Why is it important that we know when one of them says, “No problem, boss. That hunk of lifeless metal is in big trouble”?

The only nice surprise in the narrative of The Star Wars is the late reveal that the Jedi and the Sith are not so much ancient enemies-to-the-death as much as they are rival clans, capable of working together if it suits their interests. But again, this is treated as a plot device and not a character choice. There is no follow up or second beat to this development, and with the exception of a tiny panel detail on the last page, you are left to wonder what, exactly, becomes of Sith Prince Vallorum.

Likewise the twin boys Biggs and Windy, so important to the plot earlier in the book, are put into artificially-induced comas and lugged around in metal containers when their use as plot devices are over.

The art and color by Mike Mayhew and Rain Beredo make this volume a worthy exploration of Ralph McQuarrie’s original concept designs. Mayhew’s faces are fun and expressive, and Beredo’s colors are softly lit but bold. A late-story splash of Annikin and Leia’s romantic embrace is the highlight of the volume.

The Star Wars is an ambitious and fun concept — taking the rough draft script and original designs and re-imagining a beloved franchise — that fails to rise above expectations. It’s not quite a fiasco, but its story and dialogue do a disservice to the gorgeous art between the covers.

The book’s backmatter contains design sketches and notes on the adaptation process. Regarding the diminished role of the spaceship pilots from script to comic adaptation, it says, “there is always less room on a page than you imagined.”

But should that be so? Isn’t a benefit of the comic book page that you don’t have to build sets, hire actors, or stitch costumes? An artist can draw a space armada with the same tools and time it would take to illustrate a quiet forest glen.

Of course, there are production schedules to be concerned with. Another backmatter page espouses the importance and necessity of having an entire concept art team on hand to flesh out this rough draft, then goes on to say that interior artist Mayhew started drawing issue one before any of those concept artists created a single design. This belies a troubled and rushed production process. Obviously, this collection is one of the final Dark Horse Star Wars publications before the license moves to Marvel, so the behind the scenes reasons for a rush can be presumed.

But that doesn’t make the final product any more enjoyable. It feels like a rush job, because it is one. I won’t go so far at to call it a cash grab, but I’m forced to wonder if The Star Wars is simply a decent version of a once grander plan.

5 Comments on Review: The Star Wars Tries to Soar, last added: 8/14/2014
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17. Gaming the system

By Robert M. Geraci


2014 is the year of role-playing…November marks the 10th anniversary of World of Warcraft, the first truly global online game, and in January gamers celebrated the 40th anniversary of Dungeons & Dragons, the fantasy game of elves and dwarves, heroes and villains, that changed the world.

Photo of Dungeons and Dragons

When Dungeons & Dragons (D&D) became popular in the late 1970s and early 1980s, many commentators lambasted the game as a gateway to amorality, witchcraft, Satanism, suicide, and murder. Of course, such accusations were no more substantive than the claim that vicious tricksters put needles in Halloween candy, and eventually everyone saw through them. In fact, the only thing that D&D’s detractors got right is that D&D competed against the conservative religions that attacked them.

Those original D&D books were and remain sacred texts. Finding an out-of-print copy of Deities and Demigods was a religious experience in the 1980s. It was impossibly rare, appearing once a year behind the counter at the comic book shop and with a plastic bag protecting it from the mundane dust, dirt, and fingerprints that could sully its sacred value (and it’s high price). The magic of Unearthed Arcana could inspire the spirit, renewing a love of the game through new rules and new treasures. Like any good sacred text, the handbooks of D&D enthralled the players and gave them dreams worth dreaming. In doing so, they gave them opportunities to be more than anyone else had ever hoped. Dungeons & Dragons made heroes of us all.

As the devoted fans of D&D grew up and, more often than not, gave up the game and its requisite all-night forays against evil, fueled by junk food, soda, or beer, they nevertheless carried it with them in their hearts and their minds. Dungeons and Dragons never changed people into Satanists and murderers, but it did change them. All of those years carrying a Player’s Handbook or a Dungeon Master’s Guide couldn’t help but reshape the bodies that lugged them around or the minds that fixated upon their contents. Those books encouraged adventure, and a desire to go one step further, even in the face of cataclysmic danger. Let the mysterious be understood, for there is always another mystery to uncover.

Dungeons & Dragons was a revelation. It didn’t come—as far as we know—from any gods, but it revealed the future. Today more than 90% of high school students play videogames and the demographics just keep getting better for the manufacturers. Every time a new Marvel comics-themed movie hits the theaters, it goes radioactive, raking in many times over its enormous cost to film. The religions of Star Trek and Star Wars have played a part in this cultural turn, and they get most of the mainstream credit. But it was the subtler impact of D&D that really re-shaped the world. Dungeons & Dragons provided the intellectual and imaginative space that has produced many of today’s great writers, technology entrepreneurs, and even academics. The game is a game of imagination, and its players—whether they gave up when they graduated high school or college or whether they play now with their friends and their children—never forgot what it means to imagine a world. They’ve been re-imagining this one into their image of it and we should all be thankful for the opportunity to play in their world.

Robert M. Geraci is Professor in the Department of Religious Studies at Manhattan College.  He was the principle investigator on a National Science Foundation grant to study virtual worlds and the recipient of a Fulbright-Nehru Senior Research Award (2012-2013), which allowed him to investigate the intersections of religion and technology at the Indian Institute of Science in Bangalore. He is the author of Apocalyptic AI: Visions of Heaven in Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, and Virtual RealityVirtually Sacred: Myth and Meaning in World of Warcraft and Second Life; and many essays that analyze the ways in which human beings use technology to make the world meaningful.

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Image credit: Dungeons and Dragons (meets Warhammer…) by Nomadic Lass. CC BY-SA 2.0 via Flickr.

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18. Comic Con International Recap

I’ve attended San Diego’s Comic Con International off-and-on since the 1990′s and I’ve watched it grow to become the daddy of all geek conventions. Despite the long airplane flight, long lines and 200k+ crowd, it is a fun four-day ride.

SDCC

I’ve always felt that I am a bit of an odd puzzle piece as a participant in the programming for Comic Con. Compared to other massive conventions, like BookExpo, there are far fewer kid’s lit author/illustrators present–and many that do attend are either current bestsellers or their book is Soon to Become a Major Motion Picture. I suppose my books fall somewhere in this category and I am thankful for that.

LATimes

As Angela and I shuffled past the decorated booths, I was reminded that Comic Con is a grab-bag cross-section of pop culture in media. Film, television, nerdy apparel, toys, games and books were all featured prominently. About the only thing that wasn’t front and center were good ol’ comic books, which seem relegated to the outer fringes of the convention floor.

But, because there was such a mix, I bumped into all sorts of creative types: like fellow artists and writers, sculptors and film-makers.

Allen

Next to me are Vicki and Allen Williams, director Kirk Thatcher, and artist Travis Lewis sits front and center.

GeorgeRR

HBO’s ubiquitous Game of Thrones series dominated the con. Here, I met the book’s author (and the winner of the Game of Thrones) George R.R. Martin at the Weta booth (there’s Weta Workshop founder, Richard Taylor, right behind us). After stalk-chatting with George for several minutes, he had some of his characters remove me from the premises:

GoT1

But I was remembered by my old friend, artist Donato Giancola–who used my likeness as one of the Night’s Watch in the 2015 Game of Thrones calendar. Scratch that one off of my bucket list.

Donato

I participated on a couple of panels, including “Fairy Tale Remix” moderated by the award-winning author, Shannon Hale (who may, or may not, be part of a crime-fighting duo).

Shannon

The conversation on the influence of fairy tales in modern storytelling was lively and the audience’s questions were thought-provoking. (Lytherus.com has a nice, detailed write-up on the panel).

panel

Above are authors aplenty (from left to right): Katherine Harbour, Shannon Hale, Cornelia Funke, Marissa Meyer, Danielle Paige, Ben Tripp, T-Dog and John Peck.

postcards

Friday was “Star Wars Day” at the con (in DiTerlizziland, every day is “Star Wars Day”) and I presented the upcoming picture book The Adventures of Luke Skywalker, Jedi Knight (featuring illustrations by the legendary Ralph McQuarrie). Along with Exec. Editor of Disney Publishing, Michael Siglain, and Lucasfilm historian and author, Jonathan Rinzler, we talked of how this book came to be and offered up inside stories of the development of the first screenplay as well as Ralph’s place in Lucasfilm history as the visual genius who presented the first glimpses into a galaxy far, far away.

SW

I had a moment when Jonathan told me that he thought Ralph would have liked how this book turned out. That meant a lot to this ten-year old kid and I am still beaming from his comment.

The Star Wars fun continued when Ang and I reunited with film effects dungeon master, Phil Tippett, who was not only responsible for bringing to life childhood cinematic moments (like the AT-AT attack in The Empire Strikes Back or the dinosaurs in Jurassic Park) but goblins, trolls and Hogsqueal in The Spiderwick Chronicles.

Phil

After my authorial duties were completed it was time to spend some hard earned royalty money. For many nerd collectors, Comic Con has become a one-stop-shop of the weird and rarefied. In fact, there were one-of-kind props from some of my favorite films, like Marty McFly’s hoverboard from Back to the Future II. (price tag: $30k):

hoverboard

…or one of the puppets from Beetlejuice:

beetlejuide

If your a 70′s kid trapped in a man’s body (like me) then you’ll love these Kenner-styled Alien figures. Sure, they’re about 30 years too late, but you know what they say…(in 1979 no one can hear you scream…for Alien action figures?)

aliens

Speaking of toys, Sideshow toys melted my brain with a new line of incredibly detailed creeptastic ghouls and demons called “Court of the Dead”. If you were a fan of McFarlane Toys or Wayne Barlowe, you’re gonna love these. Take a look:

sideshow

sideshow2

Lastly, I nabbed a few limited edition artist’s sketchbooks. By far, this is my favorite sort of thing to hunt down and purchase at the con. Fortunately, booksellers (like Stuart Ng Books) had many to choose from like this reproduction of Claire Wendling’s sketchbook.

claire

…and, yes, I dropped off a handful of signed The Battle for WondLa: Sketchbook III to Stuart who should have them for sale on his site very soon. I’ll share a link once they’re up. In the meantime, “Stay classy San Diego. I’ll see you next time.”

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19. Star Wars Stuff

Well, Episdoe VII is officially under way. Principal cast has been announced and shooting has started. As a life-long fan, I have much confidence in JJ. Contrary to many, I totally enjoyed what he did with Star Trek and thought Into Darkness was better than his first one. To me, it seems Mr. Abrams is a fan first and a businessman second. I hope that he makes my beloved universe his own, acknowledges the fans and makes something not only for kids, but also those of us who never really grew up.

Star Wars Weekends 2007

I have my hopes for what I would like to see in the new trilogy; characters like Mara Jade and events like the death of Chewbacca. Don't get me wrong - I don't want to see Chewbacca die. Jar Jar heads that list. Chewbacca's death was an epic moment and a great sacrifice. He swore a life-debt to Han and it should be a necessary moment, even if it does not occur as it did in the Expanded Universe novel.

The cast consists of a young group of relative unknowns. Sound familiar? Still, there is one Harry Potter alum, two from Coen Bros and one that endured Attack the Block. One of the biggest treats for me is to see Max Von Sydow join the ranks of Alec Guinness, Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee. In case you are not familiar with this legendary actor, he starred in the classic Strange Brew.

I could rant about how great the original trilogy was, everything wrong with the prequels and what they musn't ruin in the new movies. I won't do that. We all have our own opinions and own hopes. Isn't that what Star Wars is really about...hope? It is adventure, humor, mystery, love and good conquering evil. On top of all that, it gives us hope...hope that there is something bigger, greater out there - something that binds the universe together. It gives us hope that we can revisit our childhood and remember the things that made us happy.

Star Wars remains one of the earliest inspirations for my own writing. The Hero's Journey is a universal map that applies to my first novel, The Fourth Queen. I even tried my hand at some SW Fan Fiction (which might end up on this blog some day).


"They're for sale, if you want them."

As I continue my training in the Jedi way, I find that I can part with material things. To that end, I have created a Facebook album featuring over 300 figures collected since 1995. Feel free to make me an offer on any or all of them.



As always, thank you for reading my blog. 
Please be sure to visit me on FB: www.FB.com/MarkMillerAuthor




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20. Vader’s Little Princess

Vader's Little PrincessJeffrey Brown has cemented himself as a firm favourite of mine for a bunch of reasons, not least:

  • his genius in coming up with an idea for some clever books and seeing them through to fruition
  • because he’s gotten me out of many a gift-giving bind (especially for friends with children, as being a child-friendly but child-free person, I’m not overly familiar with what appeals to kids these days)
  • his books manage the holy-grail feat of impressing both adults and kids.

I’m writing, of course, about Brown’s Vader series. The first, entitled Darth Vader and Son ( I have to say I think Vader and Son would have been a stronger title), I’ve blogged about previously. It’s based on the premise that instead of not encountering Luke until he was an adult, Vader instead raised him on the Death Star.

The follow-up, Vader’s Little Princess, is the daughter-themed equivalent, with Vader experiencing all the love and enduring all the quirks that come with that gig.

The scenarios are recognisable to parents and non-parents alike, but given a peculiarly fantastic Star Wars-themed twist. Let’s be honest, these books are pretty much the best thing nerds and nerds who’ve become parents could ask for (and that’s not even including how much these books appeal to kids).

Some favourite Vader’s Little Princess moments include:

  • when Vader embarrassingly insists on dropping Leia right to the front door of school in an At At Walker rather than, as she requests, around the corner
  • a dad-and-new-boyfriend ‘bonding’ moment when Vader introduces Han Solo to a carbon freezing chamber
  • when Vader lectures Leia, dressed in the barely there outfit famous from the Jabba the Hutt scene, that she’s ‘not going out dressed like that’
  • when Leia pours her heart out about (and implores Vader to help dissect the meaning of) saying ‘I love you’ to Han Solo and all he said back was ‘I know’
  • and when Leia takes Vader to the ballet featuring—wait for it—Jar Jar Binks (it wouldn’t be a Star Wars spoof without a Jar Jar Binks joke).

Vader and SonI don’t find Vader’s Little Princess quite as entertaining as I do Vader and Son, although whether that’s because Brown understandably used up his best material in the first book or because the element of how-cool-is-this surprise was gone the second time around.

But I do find it great enough to warrant reading occasionally and recommending and gifting to friends more often than that.

I’m not sure if there’s room for a third book in the series—maybe a Vader as grandparent title?—but I truly hope so. In the interim, these two are going to remain my parents-and-kids gift-giving staple.

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21. STAR WARS Book Trailer

Lucasfilm has released a trailer for my upcoming picture book adaptation of the original trilogy, title The Adventures of Luke Skywalker, Jedi Knight. Take a look:

 

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22. Best Selling Kids Series | June 2014

Best Selling Books for Kids This month, DK Readers: Star Wars are on top of The Children’s Book Review’s best selling kids series list.

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23. Best New Kids Stories | July 2014

We have quite the variety of books to share with readers this month. We're featuring picture books all the way to popular teen books. Jeffrey Brown returns with the highly anticipated sequel to the NY Times Bestseller Star Wars: Jedi Academy! There is fun stuff for picture book and puppy fans; as well as great chapter books for older readers.

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24. Comic Con 2014 Schedule

For those attending next week’s Comic Con International in lovely San Diego, California, here is my schedule of events:

*** BE SURE TO STOP AT SIMON & SCHUSTER (booth 1128) TO RECEIVE A FREE COPY OF The Battle for WondLa LIMITED EDITION SKETCHBOOK!

wondla_3

Thursday, July 24th
10:00 am -10:30 am
Booth 1119
Book signingMysterious Galaxy Book Store presents Tony DiTerlizzi. Many of my titles will be available for purchase or bring your books and cards to be signed.

12:00 pm-1:00 pm
Room 32AB
Fairy Tale Remix — Toto, I’ve a feeling these aren’t your typical fairy tales… From cyborg Cinderellas to swashbuckling pirates, fairy tales are just full of possibilities for retelling and reimagining. A fantastic line up of authors will discuss how they take very well-known stories (such as Rapunzel, The Wizard of Oz, Tam Lin) and remix them for a new audience, and how they create their very own fairy tales! Moderated by Shannon Hale (Ever After High series), this panel featuring Marissa Meyer (The Lunar Chronicles series), Katherine Harbour (Thorn Jack), John Peck (Charming Series), Cornelia Funke (Mirrorworld Series), Tony DiTerlizzi (Search for WondLa), Ben Tripp (The Accidental Highwayman), and Danielle Page (Dorothy Must Die) will give insight to the fairy tales of old, and new!

1:30 pm – 2:30 pm
Autograph Area AA09
Group Signing: Fairy Tale Remix
*I’ll have the FREE WondLa III sketchbooks on hand for the signing after the panel discussion.

StarWarsDiTerlizziMcQuarrie

Friday, July 25th
3:00 pm-4:00 pm
Room 7AB
Star Wars: The Adventures of Luke Skywalker, Jedi Knight — Ralph McQuarrie’s art for the original Star Wars trilogy is introduced to a new generation of young readers in Star Wars: The Adventures of Luke Skywalker, Jedi Knight. Join New York Times bestselling author Tony DiTerlizzi as he talks about the conceptualization of this project and the process, challenges, and privileges of writing to the works of a legend; along with Troy Alders (Art Director, Lucasfilm), J.W. Rinzler (Executive Editor, Lucasfilm), and Joanne Chan (Children’s Book Editor, Lucasfilm).

*We will have a promotional postcard wallet of amazing McQuarrie art that we will be giving out at the panel, so stop on by!

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PS –For those not attending this year’s comic con who wish to nab one of the limited edition The Battle for WondLa sketchbooks, fear not. Stuart Ng Books (on of my favorite places to spend my royalty checks) will be selling them after the convention.

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25. SDCC 2014: Watchtower Thursday: Surfing the Tsunami Online

*  We’ve won!  Politicians officially open Comic-Con!

On Thursday, to mark the official opening of Comic-Con International 2014, San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer and San Diego City Council President Todd Gloria harnessed their inner superheroes and flew through the air on a zip-line near the downtown Convention Center.

Gloria was the interim Mayor after the Filner scandal.  Faulconer won the special election.  Faulconer has strong ties to Comic-Con: he worked PR on the second convention center expansion before he ran for public office, and supports the expansion of the convention center.  His hobbies: yachting and biking.

* Google Glass banned from Comic-Con screenings.

 Not that surprising.

*For the wrestling fans out there… Sting appears at the WWE panel. [No, not the musician.]

Is this bigger than JR Jr. working for DC?

 * SYNERGY!

Well, yes; corporate synergy is another explanation—ESPN, like Marvel, is owned by Disney. The three spots feature former SportsCenter anchor Kenny Mayne introducing Marvel’s latest super team as new ESPN employees brought in to ensure the safety of the new SportsCenter set.

How soon before we see “ESPN: The Sports Comic Magazine”?  What?  Sports fans are geeks, too!  T-shirts, who-would-win fantasy leagues, arcane statistics and knowledge, objectified athletes and cheerleaders…

 * This year’s economic profile of Comic-Con.

 *  We discover Stan Lee’s one weakness…  Get well soon, Stan!   

*  OH NOES!  Girls are ruining Peanuts too!

“With their youthful, ingenious, and fashion-savvy sensibility, Snoopy and Belle are a perfect fit with the We Heart It community, and we’re looking forward to a terrifically successful partnership,” said Dave Williams, President of We Heart It. “Peanuts has always offered a fresh and original world view, which is exactly what We Heart It fans crave. This will provide an outstanding opportunity for our fans to find inspiration and engagement with this legendary brand.”

It’s like an electronic greeting card.  You can like and share pictures online.

* A Comic-Con Virgin, from Japan:

* The Boston Herald profiles how Wired used their “Wired Café” to best effect.

* Reed Elsevier, owner of NYCC, announces earnings.

 * Some Star Wars VII tidbits.

Movie Wars

DC wins on a quiet day (so far, as of 7 PM EDT/4 PM PDT), getting great publicity for their “All Hat, No Battle” Batsuit reveal. 

* MTV plots how DC can beat Marvel in Hall H.

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