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Kevin J Anderson Brings His Sci-Fi Universes To Pensacon

Steven L. Sears

You’ve heard this about other people, but Kevin J Anderson really seems to be the hardest working man in show biz. He has published over 120 science fiction books including many bestselling Star Wars novels. Anderson will be appearing at Pensacon this weekend, including a panel called Spotlight on Kevin J Anderson Friday afternoon at 3:30 at the Bay Center.

He spoke to WUWF’s Bob Barrett about how he became a part of the Star Wars universe and so many other sci-fi worlds.

-- He was working for Bantam Books as a science fiction writer when his editor "went behind my back-goody for her!" and contacted Lucasfilm and suggested they use Kevin for Star Wars novels.

-- He has written 54 different projects for Lucasfilm including novels, comic books, pop-up books, a young adult series and anthologies of short stories.

-- Chris Carter read his Star Wars books and asked Anderson if he would write X-Files novels.

-- Anderson says Dune is is favorite sci-fi book of all time. The final sequel to Dune written by Herbert ended on a cliff hanger, so ten years after the Herbert's death, Anderson contacted Herbert's son Brian and suggested they write more books from Frank Herbert's notes if for no other reason than at they, as fans, would know how it turned out.

-- Recently Anderson collaborated with the rock group Rush on a novel of their concept album "Clockwork Angels". Anderson credited Rush as an inspiration in his first published novel, and Neil Peart saw it and contacted Anderson.  The two have been friends for 25 years, but this is their first collaboration. A second novel called "Clockwork Lives" is in the works and should be out later this year.

-- Anderson runs classes and seminars for aspiring writers looking to become professionals. Instead of concentrating on the creative process of developing characters and building a scene, he concentrates on the business aspect of becoming a professional writer such as understanding contracts and copyrights and finding an agent and publicist.

-- Going to show like Pensacon give him a great chance to leave the office and meet the people who "like my stuff". Fans always ask if he is going to be writing any more Star Wars novels (nothing in the works but he is very open to the idea if Lucasfilm asks) and if he knows any secrets about the new Star Wars movie (he doesn't).

Full interview between Bob Barrett and Kevin J. Anderson.

Bob Barrett has been a radio broadcaster since the mid 1970s and has worked at stations from northern New York to south Florida and, oddly, has been able to make a living that way. He began work in public radio in 2001. Over the years he has produced nationally syndicated programs such as The Environment Show and The Health Show for Northeast Public Radio's National Productions.