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Discuss BP with Kathy -- Spoilers Welcome

Discussion in 'Literature' started by Shmi52, Oct 31, 2000.

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  1. Shmi52

    Shmi52 Author of New Jedi Order: Balance Point star 3 VIP

    Registered:
    Nov 20, 1999
    Taramidala --

    FIREBIRD.

    Kathy
     
  2. Hunter Of Winds

    Hunter Of Winds Jedi Youngling star 5

    Registered:
    Dec 5, 1999
    Kathy, I'm glad that you wrote your book the way you did. I don't think he's clutter, and finally we'll get to see the feminine side of Mara. Again, my thanks go to you for writing such an enjoyable novel.
     
  3. Jedi Trace

    Jedi Trace SouthEast RSA star 6 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Dec 15, 1999
    I don't really have any questions, so all I can say is...BRAVA!! I enjoyed every minute of this book - except the beetles. ;o)

    I loved the Ssi-ruuk vs. Yuuzhan Vong reference about the "ultimate humiliation." Seems like there was a thread about that around here at one time.

    Mara was incredible! Strong, witty, and resourceful, but had a warmth that we've not seen before.

    Luke as a *very* new daddy was perfect! He reminded me sooo much of the way Qui-Gon Tim behaved when we were expecting our little Emmadala - sweet and over-protective in an adorably irritating sort of way.

    I can't tell you how happy I am about the "Skycrawler." Thank you so much for suggesting that this event should happen sooner rather than later! The NJO was becoming almost unbearably dark. SW fans, like anyone else, can perish without hope. =)

    Han and Leia were great - 'specially back together. I'm finally understanding Jaina's POV and was thrilled to see her reconciliation with her mother. (Her lack of respect for Leia was one of the sore spots of the NJO for me.)

    And the scene where Jacen faces the Warmaster to defend his mother had me almost in tears. It had such a powerful "Return of the Jedi"/"A Wrinkle in Time" feel to it! (Apologies to anyone who hasn't read that book.) Just like Anakin and Meg, I believe it was the Force channelled through LOVE that empowered him to overcome the darkness. JMHO.

    And I just wanted to repeat what others have said here: Thank you so much for allowing us the opportunity to discuss this with you and for always being so gracious!

    ~Trace

     
  4. Shmi52

    Shmi52 Author of New Jedi Order: Balance Point star 3 VIP

    Registered:
    Nov 20, 1999
    Trace -- You raise some delightful points. WRINKLE was the first sf I ever read (sf? fantasy?). I feel honored by the comparison.

    Yes, the "humiliation" idea was taken from a JC thread. After I asked for fan suggestions, I tried to work in as many as possible. I believe it was suggested by more than one person, on more than one thread. Whoever you(all) are, thank you. You're now part of the Star Wars universe.

    Kathy
     
  5. taramidala

    taramidala Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Jun 18, 1999
    "Firebird" was your fanfic? HA! I KNEW IT! :)
     
  6. Wormie2

    Wormie2 Jedi Knight star 6

    Registered:
    Feb 22, 1999
    Oh yeah! I forgot to mention Han and Leia! Thanks, Trace, for reminding me!

    As a child of divorced parents, I'd placed a silly, unreasonable hope in their marriage. It's sad but true that two fictional characters were the only role model I had for a good marriage. So, they're difficulties hit me hard. I was completely convinced that I would be seeing the "D" word in this book. Much to my eternal joy, you turned that around! I am soooo relieved!
     
  7. Gazer

    Gazer Jedi Youngling

    Registered:
    Oct 5, 2000
    Mrs. Tyers,
    BP was one of the best Star Wars novels I have ever read. I'll admit, I skipped a test review session to finish it,(it was, fittingly, a Fantasy Literature test) and I agree with previous posts that said BP saved the darkening NJO series. Great Job!
    I have a few comments, and I have read all the previous posts, but there are so many that if I repeat anything, please forgive me.
    -I was very impressed with the "pro-life" sentiment that was exemplified in Mara's discovery of the "Skycrawler." (lol!) My view is a bit slanted, (I am a student at the Catholic University of America in Washington DC) but it was refreshing to see my belief in the humanity of a newly conceived child echoed in BP. While fictional, the Jedi Knights, and their code, is clearly oriented toward protecting the sanctity of life.
    -Your characterization was excellent. Mara was just right, Luke was perfect, and the Solo children were right-on. Hopefully, future NJO authors will carry on this characterization.
    -A question: In reading the NJO books, I have wondered about how it seems that new Jedi Knights/Apprentices are introduced and promptly dispatched of within the span of one book. Is this a pattern, or am I just being anal?
    -I have heard previous posts tell about a Vader mask on the BP cover. Call me blind from staring at one too many textbooks, but I can't find it. Help?
    -I loved the mention of Jacen's feeling for Mara at the end of the book being "binary." (I don't often chuckle while I am reading, but I did.)
    -Finally, if you could choose the name for the baby boy, what would it be? (and I encourage anyone to reply to this, not just Mrs. Tyers)


    Great Job, and MTFBWY-A
    Gazer
     
  8. Gazer

    Gazer Jedi Youngling

    Registered:
    Oct 5, 2000
    Mrs. Tyers,
    BP was one of the best Star Wars novels I have ever read. I'll admit, I skipped a test review session to finish it,(it was, fittingly, a Fantasy Literature test) and I agree with previous posts that said BP saved the darkening NJO series. Great Job!
    I have a few comments, and I have read all the previous posts, but there are so many that if I repeat anything, please forgive me.
    -I was very impressed with the "pro-life" sentiment that was exemplified in Mara's discovery of the "Skycrawler." (lol!) My view is a bit slanted, (I am a student at the Catholic University of America in Washington DC) but it was refreshing to see my belief in the humanity of a newly conceived child echoed in BP. While fictional, the Jedi Knights, and their code, is clearly oriented toward protecting the sanctity of life.
    -Your characterization was excellent. Mara was just right, Luke was perfect, and the Solo children were right-on. Hopefully, future NJO authors will carry on this characterization.
    -A question: In reading the NJO books, I have wondered about how it seems that new Jedi Knights/Apprentices are introduced and promptly dispatched of within the span of one book. Is this a pattern, or am I just being anal?
    -I have heard previous posts tell about a Vader mask on the BP cover. Call me blind from staring at one too many textbooks, but I can't find it. Help?
    -I loved the mention of Jacen's feeling for Mara at the end of the book being "binary." ("like a binary star") Greatest quote from the book, in my opinion!
    -Finally, if you could choose the name for the baby boy, what would it be? (and I encourage anyone to reply to this, not just Mrs. Tyers)


    Great Job, and MTFBWY-A
    Gazer
     
  9. Gazer

    Gazer Jedi Youngling

    Registered:
    Oct 5, 2000
    and I am wondering why there are two posts with the same content...oh well, my apologies
     
  10. Chewbacca of Kashyyyk

    Chewbacca of Kashyyyk Jedi Youngling star 3

    Registered:
    Nov 17, 1999
    Chewbacca of Kashyyyk exposes his fangs with a wide grin.

    CoK has read 13 chapters so far and read 0 posts. Forgive CoK is he is redundant.

    Anyway, here goes.......

    Chewbacca of Kashyyyk has a very old blanket that has been run throught the wash cycle many many times. It is worn, but very very familiar and comfortable. So far BP has given CoK that old feel.

    It is very obvious that there was a great deal of care in getting the characters to act as if they had a history of interaction. Take Han's comment about the Ryn. He mentioned that they where loyal to people who treat them decently. Does that sum up Han or what!!!!!! Another nice one was the referances to Jacen's past history with animals. Shmi52 has done a nice job at establishing continuity with the characterizations.

    Finally, Chewie. There are many referances to Chewbacca and CoK feels that this was missing in the former books. It makes sense. When a character with the wooks influence is gone, it is going to influence EVERYTHING that is happening. He will creep into the minds of the characters incessantly. So far this was done very well.

    Very nice start!!!!! thanks for the blanket!
     
  11. Cyclonetrooper

    Cyclonetrooper Jedi Youngling star 2

    Registered:
    Oct 14, 2000
    Greetings to you, ma'am:

    I am definetly impressed with BP,which surpasses all books within recent memory. It's just GREAT.

    I was hoping for some more Imperial Remnant and Chiss, but I'm being greedy. :)
     
  12. Darth Thrawn

    Darth Thrawn Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Mar 18, 2000
    Hi Kathy

    First i have to say i did love BP, and as much as i loved the scenes with the jedi, i have to admit that i loved the scenes with nom anor the best! Along with Tsavong Lah i think he is perhaps the most interesting charecters, especially the bit at the ned about the jedi. i thought this has to be one of the best novels manily becuase you brought out so much detail about the vong! All i can say is i cnt wait to see whether the NR will sacrifice the Jedi, and if they do, what will happen when the Vong go back on their word and attack Coruscant

    Just a few quesitons, but i dont know whether you can answer them:

    1) will we ever see vergere or the chiss again?
    2) will leia try and regrow her hair, or will she keep it short now?
    3)How does the suprise and mystery of being a writer compare to being a fan?Do ever feel that you cant experiance some of the magic that people not involved with star wars feel. I mean Id feel kinda weird knowing whats gona happen in the NJO over the next couple years and not being to enjoy the suprise of the books that will be written in the future! (i hope that didnt sound complicated and you know what i meant!)

    ANyway, again congratulaitons on the books, and by the way, when you said things were looking dark for one jedi apprenitce, were you talking about Jacen, with his force stuff, or as DL said a while back, was it jaina with her temp blindness?
     
  13. BCAMERON

    BCAMERON Jedi Youngling

    Registered:
    Sep 19, 2000
    Thanks for writing this novel, it has got the world of Star Wars novels buzzing again - something that has not happened in a long time, and thanks for letting us all get the chance to interogate you!

    I hope you enter the Universe again, and if Del Rey have read the reactions to this topic they would be fools not too.

    Thanks, Brian
     
  14. General Cargin

    General Cargin Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    May 15, 1999
    I am one very happy laddy. I wandered around a local shopping centre tonight thinking,"hmm, BP is due tomorrow, I'll see if I can con a bookstore manager to let me have it early."

    Needless to say, success.

    Anyway, I'm only a quarter of the way through, Kathy, and all I can say is great job. I haven't come across any of the really big stuff that everyone else is raving about, but I love all the little references to TaB, and half of the rest of the EU.
     
  15. wild_karrde

    wild_karrde Jedi Grand Master star 7

    Registered:
    Oct 8, 1999
    OK, I got some questions. Nothing major, more just a few minor inconsistencies.

    The members of the Inner Council during the NJO are:

    Borsk Fey?lya
    Senator Viqi Shesh
    Cal Omas
    Celch Dravvad
    Fyor Rodan
    Navik
    Pwoe
    Triebakk

    Now, it is definate that Viqi Shesh is a Senator, however, the other members (excluding Borsk) have been referred to as Councilors and Senators. Which is their official title?

    Also, the Rodian was spelled Navik in "Agents of Chaos", but Narik in BP. Was this just a typo on your part? You mentioned that some characters names changed. Was this one?

    Yeah, just minor details, but the Senator/Councilor thing has been bugging me for a while.

    Thanks.


    EDIT: hey! I got 4 stars! woohoo!
     
  16. Jedi Trace

    Jedi Trace SouthEast RSA star 6 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Dec 15, 1999
    Hi Kathy - me again. =) One thing I forgot to mention (thanks to Wormie for reminding me) - THANK YOU for giving them a son! Just put me in the "I-really-didn't-want-the-Skywalker-name-to-die" category! [face_clown]

    I did think of one question:

    I'm not sure if you're allowed to answer this or not, but how far along was the pregnancy before Mara felt it? By the end of the book, she know's it's a boy, and those physical changes don't happen until around two months along. I sensed that she was earlier than that and perhaps able to determine something of the DNA through the Force?

    Thanks!
     
  17. Shmi52

    Shmi52 Author of New Jedi Order: Balance Point star 3 VIP

    Registered:
    Nov 20, 1999
    You people were busy while I caught up on my sleep. Thanks a kajillion for your feedback.

    Wormie2 -- I too am a child of divorced parents. Jacen's observation on page 142, that "There was something splendid about the universe when your mother and father loved each other," was a bit of bittersweet wish-fulfillment on my part.

    Gazer -- I hope you did well on that test anyway. The mom in me feels very guilty.

    You raise a good question about authors introducing and then disposing of characters in a single book. Two relevant points:
    1) Well-developed characters are not readily disposable. It takes a lot of thought and work to flesh out a character's driving motives, his/her past, mannerisms, and even little continuity details like hair/eye/lightsaber color. So if someone's got to die in a novel, in order to intensify the sense of threat to the main characters, authors generally pick someone who doesn't represent such an investment of WORK on the author's part (or, as in NJO, on the part of other authors). -- Unless we're going for the big one, the gut-wrencher, the turning point in a story. Then it's got to be someone the readers have come to love and care for (or truly despise -- that's why a good villain is rarely killed in an ongoing series, and I'll bet a few of you know exactly who I mean in NJO, no matter how badly you'd like to see him pushed out a window!).
    2) The much-overworked and dearly appreciated members of our continuity team (thank you again, continuity team -- you saved my hide more than once) are keeping a list of "new Jedi already introduced" and encouraging subsequent authors to use them instead of simply inventing new Jedi in each book.

    Your other questions are answered elsewhere -- happy hunting. ;)

    CoK -- Eek, the fangs! What a relief . . . only a Wookiee smile . . . whew! Happy reading --

    Cyclonetrooper -- Why, thank you. I'm sorry the IR&C didn't have more of a role in BP. There just wasn't room. But we all know they haven't vanished.

    Also, it can be a little intimidating -- okay, it can be downright terrifying to feature characters who were invented by another author, and whom the fans love so much (tell me about it!! Let me throw another bouquet to Tim Zahn, who proofed my Mara scenes and pronounced them consistent with his understanding of her character).

    Darth Thrawn --
    1) No can answer. Implant, y'know.
    2) I don't know!
    3) Oo oo what a good question. Yes, I miss some of the thrill of being surprised (like showing up at church and seeing communion trays on the altar -- nowadays, it's my job to set them up). On the other hand, there is a distinct thrill to "being on the inside" and getting to take a hand in the preparation of THIS banquet. Great fun.
    4) <BEG> That was, as DL guessed, a reference to Jaina's blindness.

    BCAMERON -- I had a very nice note from Shelly this morning, saying she had read quite a bit of this thread. She's pleased. :D

    General Cargin -- Then I hope you enjoy the "big stuff," too.

    w_k -- I hate politics. Hate it hate it hate it. Hate this time of year and mute the TV campaign ads until the very last week, then am sorely tempted to vote for whoever's still acting like a civilized human being. So those are the parts of EU novels I read veryveryfast. So as I understand it, Councilors are also Senators -- members of an inner Senate circle.

    Argh! If Navik became Narik, then our proofreaders missed something! Apologies to all of the Rodian fans . . . I assume the team will straighten this out in subsequent editions.

    Trace -- We left Mara's pregnancy dates a little vague, which provides a bit more continuity freedom for the next author. But I'd guess 2-3 months along. I don't think Mara would need to sense any physical change in the fetus in order to determine his sex. After all, she was able to discern Luke's "life signature," in order to realize that this "almost like a tumor" was something else entirely.

    Kathy
     
  18. wild_karrde

    wild_karrde Jedi Grand Master star 7

    Registered:
    Oct 8, 1999
    That's how I understood it too, KT. They are all Senators, and are members of the Inner Council, so when they are having a Council Meeting they are referred to as "Councilor".

    It wasn't much of a question, but it was bugging me. I, too find "real-life" politics boring, but SW politics I really like. That is why I'm pumped about Luceno's prequel book. Also, there appears to be lots of politics in E2.
     
  19. Wormie2

    Wormie2 Jedi Knight star 6

    Registered:
    Feb 22, 1999
    I actually thought of a question! I've been asking everyone else, so I guess I ought to ask the source.

    I remember reading somewhere the Leia's hair had something to do with a cultural and/or religious practice on Alderaan. When you had her shaved, none of that was mentioned. I was wondering if that was one those silly little plot points that tend to get skipped or did I miss something?
     
  20. 181st Fighter Wing

    181st Fighter Wing Jedi Youngling star 2

    Registered:
    Jan 8, 2000
    Kathy

    Sorry about my rather crude reference in my last post. This is such a monster thread that by the time I read thru it and was ready to reply, I completely forgot about your "no profanity" request. Please accept my humble apology.

    One quick question; Does Del Rey give the authors any visual references (sketches and such) of the Vong ships, critters, and even certian certian individuals? Just wondering how you mannage to keep your descriptions so consistent from author to author.
     
  21. Jedi Ben

    Jedi Ben Chosen One star 8

    Registered:
    Jul 19, 1999
    Curses be upon this computer it wiped a real good post I did, on second thoughts a curse will make it even more difficult to use, ahh enough!

    Aleja,

    You can like BP and still be critical of NJO, I am! :)

    (I did have a really good post explaining how earlier NJO eps have been flawed, why BP avoids them plus an analogy to the Blackadder series and it got wiped)

    A quick addition: On the critical front I still hate the simplistic anti-govt plot with the council, were it not for the fact I can see a resolution I like the looks of, (it's an extrapolated future from BP-I have no inside sources) itd be enough to cause me to abandon NJO. The Thracken plot I similarly despise.

    Do I still like BP? Yep. It's just that I would like to see a positive view of govt and politics, we know the reality is horrible but it could be so much better, so why not use fiction to explore the good aspects of politics? Yes, they do exist even if they are near-death at the present time! This is one of NJO's biggest failures.

    Oh yeah, Aleja, I agree with you about the Vong, I don't find them a hugely interesting bunch, their function seems to be of a catalyst, speeding upchanges in the SW universe that would have had to be comtemplated at some point, while introducing radically new unexpected developments. (or they will if my hunch is correct)

    Kathy,

    Of course you are allowed a blindfold.:)

    Seriously, I haven't seen anyone going around saying "BP Sucks", let's say for example, Bror Jace (no offence Bror you are a noted NJO critic) takes a dislike to BP, he'll say how and why, it'll be criticism but reasoned criticism, preferably without personal attacks being involved. Should anyone do the above and be cruel and destructive you won't be lacking allies for the defence of BP. One example of a constructive critique was Smuggler's Spin's view of BP.

    I have to go, though I'll cheat and draft the NJO critique off line, bit of revision will probably improve it.

    Catch you all later,

    Best wishes
     
  22. Shmi52

    Shmi52 Author of New Jedi Order: Balance Point star 3 VIP

    Registered:
    Nov 20, 1999
    Wormie2 -- I'm intrigued by the Alderaan-cultural idea, but -- wait -- wasn't there something in Zahn's duology about one of the Mistryl Shadow Guards imitating the "complex Alderaanian marriage-knot" of her hair? (Am I even close? -- I wish I had Jim Luceno's memory!!) Well, if somebody tracks it down let me know. It's too late for BP, but now I'm curious.

    181st -- Very gracious of you. Thanks.

    Continuity is tricky! With VERY few exceptions (Jim gave me a sketch of Droma), the only illustrations available to us are the same ones you've seen in published reference works. We just have to read carefully and keep notes. EU Studies 301 and 302, four credits. . . .

    Jedi Ben -- Fair 'nuff. I've taken (and learned from) my share of reasoned critique. I don't have to love it, but I know it forces me to grow.

    Kathy
     
  23. Wormie2

    Wormie2 Jedi Knight star 6

    Registered:
    Feb 22, 1999
    Oooh, I forgot about the marriage knot thing. I think it involved a veil of some sort. I'm sorry my memory is so shot over this, but in one of the recent books, I could swear I read something regarding her hair.
     
  24. jedi-jeff

    jedi-jeff Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Nov 2, 2000
    BP was an excellent book. I have a few questtions for Kathy.

    When Tsavong Lah loses to Jacen, he becomes furious; I wonder if this incident will lead him to errors in judgement that will be exploited in future books?

    Has Mara been definitely cured of her disease?

    The conflict between the Jedi and the Vong is very much a conflict between faiths. The thrust of the NJO series seems to imply that the Vong are motivated by their religion. It seems that the Vong will be defeated only if they realize that their Gods cannot help them against the force. Is my interpretation of the Vong correct and will the Vong be defeated only when they begin to question the power of their Gods?
     
  25. Shmi52

    Shmi52 Author of New Jedi Order: Balance Point star 3 VIP

    Registered:
    Nov 20, 1999
    jedi-jeff --
    Good question about Tsavong Lah. We shall see.
    Mara is in remission, not cured.
    I like your third suggestion. I don't know if that's how things will pan out, but it certainly made me stop & think.

    Kathy
     
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