- "I've always thought that tie in novels were professionally produced fanfic -- and if they're not, there's something wrong."
- ―Karen Miller
Karen Miller is an Australian fantasy author who has written three novels for The Clone Wars. In writing these novels, Miller consulted resources including Wookieepedia, The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia, scripts for episodes of the Star Wars: The Clone Wars television serial, Essential Guide reference books, the prequel trilogy, and The Essential Atlas.
Biography[edit | edit source]
The Clone Wars[edit | edit source]
- "That magnificent explosion of John Williams music…the title crawl…the rebel blockade runner coming overhead…and then, holy moly, the star destroyer. It was a defining moment in cinema, and it was a defining moment in my life. I fell in love, head over heels, jaw-dropped to my knees in love. And then we got the cantina sequence, and the introduction of one Han Solo. Harrison Ford all smartmouthed and sexy, lounging in that booth…I whispered to [my] friend's girlfriend—'Now he's a bit of all right' and really, that was it. I was a certified Star Wars fan from that moment in 1977 and I've never stopped being one. Some stories are timeless. Some true loves never die."
- ―Karen Miller
At some point, Miller committed to writing a loosely connected serial of five books alongside Karen Traviss, with Miller writing books two and four. Miller was asked which era of Star Wars she wanted to contribute to and she chose the Rise of the Empire era, specifically the time around the prequel trilogy as it was her favorite. She was enamored with the spectacle of the tales set there and the fact that fewer people had written novels that took place then. Signing up, she was unaware that Star Wars: The Clone Wars would trigger a complete continuity overhaul in that time frame. Nonetheless, she respected that George Lucas and Lucasfilm Ltd. could overwrite whatever they wanted, including her work, and she set to writing anyway. Studying for her novel, as she had a great respect for the established continuity, she was shocked by the character arc of Obi-Wan Kenobi, a very vibrant Jedi Master who became the humble, solitary hermit seen in A New Hope. She found this incredibly engaging and emotional, going on to consider Kenobi her favorite character to write. She also wanted to explore the relationship of the main characters with Senator Bail Organa, whom she felt was not explored sufficiently in the films. He was alongside the major players at the end of Attack of the Clones, but within the films themselves there was not an explanation for why Kenobi and another Master, Yoda, felt comfortable entrusting Organa with one of Anakin Skywalker's children. When Miller planned to write her novels while aiming for an adult audience instead of the children that formed the television show's primary demographic. Her stories were not written to match the tone or themes of the show much at all. Instead, Miller drew thematic inspiration from the prequel trilogy and researched Expanded Universe material utilizing The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia, The Essential Atlas, Essential Guides, and Wookieepedia.
She set out writing the manuscript for Wild Space, without mentioning anything to her fans, and fell in love with the project. She maintained silence until October 26, 2007, when she updated her LiveJournal to say that that she had received news that she was very excited about. Two days later, she said she was finishing revising the galley draft of what she was calling her "Sekrit Projekt," because she was not allowed to say it was a Star Wars novel.
Early in the drafting of the second The Clone Wars novel, by November 2008, Shelly Shapiro, Editorial Director of Del Rey, contacted Miller with the idea to turn her initially single book story into a duology to cover for Karen Traviss's dropping out from writing her last The Clone Wars novel and her eventual departure from Star Wars fiction. Miller accepted and began crafting her story as a two book arc, which thereby became Clone Wars Gambit: Stealth and Clone Wars Gambit: Siege. Aside from this, Traviss's leaving Star Wars did not affect Miller's books much because they were working on almost completely separated stories at that point. It did increase Miller's workload, however. Miller considered 2009 to be the most demanding of her professional writing career after writing five novels in that time. It was a highly demanding undertaking and Miller believed it helped her writing while teaching her many things, but she resolved to never do such a thing again. Initially, the placement of the Gambit series in terms of the show's continuity was supposed to be fixed like Wild Space was. However, due to shuffling of the show's episodic arrangement as production progressed, this proved to be a convoluted task, so Miller suggested and was able to keep its timeline placement vague for later clarification.
In 2009, the Black Saturday brush fires ravaged Australia's state of Victoria. To raise money for relief efforts, Miller and another Star Wars author, Sean Williams, each auctioned off the opportunity to name a character in their respective upcoming novels. The winner of Miller's character decided to name him Rikkard. Due to her contracting swine flu and a heavy work load, the release of the second half, Clone Wars Gambit: Siege, was delayed several weeks. The novel was in bookstores on July 6, 2010.
"Roll of the Dice" and Tarnished Crown[edit | edit source]
In 2012, Miller was asked to contribute a short story to Star Wars Insider based on Aaron Allston's X-Wing: Mercy Kill, due for release later that year, and she agreed. Her story idea, in turn, was approved in March and became "Roll of the Dice," a tale following a primary protagonist of Allston's novel in an adventure set just prior to the novel's events. Within a day, Miller had completed half of the story's first draft. Miller was provided with an advance copy of Allston's novel for reference. The final draft was completed in two weeks to be published a few months later, in the July Insider issue.
Bibliography[edit | edit source]
|2008||The Clone Wars: Wild Space||Novel||Nominated – Best Speculative Fiction Novel – Adapted, Scribe Awards|
|2010||Clone Wars Gambit: Stealth||Novel|
|2010||Clone Wars Gambit: Siege||Novel|
|2012||"Roll of the Dice"||Short story||Star Wars Insider 135|