Exclusive Interview with upcoming Star Wars: Scourge author Jeff Grubb

September 13, 2011 at 10:04 am | Posted in Books, Interview, Star Wars News | 1 Comment
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Star Wars: Scourge might not be out until April next year, but here at Roqoo Depot we would like to give readers a heads up on what to expect. Scourge will be written by Jeff Grubb who has written dozens of novels in various franchises, including Star Wars. Jeff wrote for several Star Wars RPG projects including the Arms & Equipment Guide, Power of the Jedi Sourcebook, and Tempest Feud. Since the upcoming novel will be dealing with Hutts, it’s worth pointing out that Tempest Feud was a roleplaying supplement that centered on an interesting plot involving several scheming Hutts.

Now who better to ask for more details than the man himself? Here is our exclusive Star Wars author interview with Jeff Grubb.

How did you get started as an author?

JG: I became an author by slow and continual evolution. I’ve always written, but my training is as a civil engineer. When I was in college, I wrote  – essays, short stories, worked for the school newspaper (the Purdue Exponent) and campus radio, and won a few writing awards. I also was exposed to Dungeons & Dragons in college, and after a brief career designing air pollution control devices, joined TSR as a game designer. I was one of the founding  fathers of both Dragonlance and the Forgotten Realms settings, and those worlds provided new opportunities for fiction.

My first full novel was Azure Bonds, set in the Forgotten Realms and written with my wife, Kate Novak. Since that time, I’ve written over a dozen novels, thirty short stories, a bunch of comic book books, and a slew of things for RPGs, card games, board games, and computer games. I am currently employed with ArenaNet as a game designer, and help to ride herd over the continuity for the upcoming Guild Wars 2.

Can you tell us some about your previous works? Perhaps a recommendation for new readers who would like to get an idea of what they can expect with your upcoming Star Wars novel?

JG: All of my long-form novel work has been in shared worlds, many of which I helped create and develop. My most “epic” book is The Brothers’ War, which tells the origin of the Magic: The Gathering world. My funniest book is Lord Toede, for Dragonlance, which is two parts Blackadder and two parts Roadrunner cartoon. My most recent book, written with Matt Forbeck, is Ghosts of Ascalon, which provides the historical background for Guild Wars 2.

The approach I tend to take when I’m approaching a book, particularly a book set in a shared world, is to write the best book that fits in that world. So while there are entertaining moments in Scourge, it is not a (intentionally) funny book. Approaching Star Wars, I want to capture the magic and excitement of the universe.

Can you tell us a little about your interest in Star Wars? Have you been a lifelong fan? Have you read any of the Star Wars novels or comics?

JG: In the summer of 1977, the original Star Wars was playing in ONE theater in Pittsburgh, out in Monroeville, east of the city. Our group of D&D players went to see it about 15 times during the summer, so yeah, I am a lifelong fan. When my wife and I were first dating, I would buy the Marvel Star Wars comics and then mail them to her so she could read them as well. I read the early novels, and loved the Brian Daley Han Solo stories. I have also written a lot of roleplaying and miniature game rules for the RPG at Wizards of the Coast (my wookiee in the playtest was named Whappamanga, and was the inventor of the VoxBox, a pad with pre-programmed responses in Basic to help communications with other races).

What inspired you to write Hutts?

JG: I love the Hutts, and more importantly I love “Scum and Villainy” stories. I think of Star War stories as “Jedi” stories (A lot of the epic NJO material), “War” stories (X-Wing and stormtroopers series), and “Scum and Villainy (dealing with a lot of the other races and the shadier parts of life in the Galaxy). The cantina scene was a launching point for so many alien races. The Hutts loom large (sorry for the image) in “Scum and Villainy” stories, and I think deserve a lot more attention as a race, and while they are not all Jabba, they are a race where Jabba is not considered out of the norm. I’ve worked with Hutts before in a game product called Tempest Feud (with fellow designer Owen Stephens) which provides the foundation for Scourge.

Since this is right before the NJO series, will we be seeing a certain wily undercover Yuuzhan Vong agent? And will there be any foreshadowing of the coming YV invasion?

JG: Both questions answered here – the fun part of “Scum and Villainy” stories is they have a tighter focus, even when the tale is spread across a number of planets. The story takes place before the Yuuzhan Vong invasion, and all of the participants are unaware of the approaching storm.

We here at Roqoo Depot would like to thank Jeff for taking the time to answer our questions and David Moench over at Del Rey for helping us out. If you would like to find out more about Jeff, you can visit his official blog hereStar Wars: Scourge is scheduled for release in April 2012.

Posted By: Skuldren for Roqoo Depot.

1 Comment »

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  1. Another Hutt aficionado! You must be thrilled Skuldren. Nice interview. Pimp it out kid.

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