How to Solve the Skywalker Problem

Daisy Ridley as Rey

A few years back, Lucasfilm CEO Kathleen Kennedy famously said that the episodic Star Wars “saga” films are and always will be the story of the Skywalker family. From Episode I on, we’ve followed Shmi, Anakin/Vader, Luke, Leia, and now Ben/Kylo Ren.

In The Last Jedi, it’s revealed that the new trilogy’s heroine, Rey, has no connection to the Skywalker lineage. She’s not a Skywalker, a Solo, a Kenobi, a Windu, or even a Palpatine. She’s “no one” from “nowhere,” a development that worked narratively and emotionally for the character; it was the worst news Rey could have possibly received, yet she managed to rise above it and persevere. That’s what being a hero is all about.

But fans were kinda disappointed. Because logically speaking, how could the newest Jedi of the Star Wars saga not be a Skywalker? Not only did it break with the narrative pillars of the rest of the saga, it also meant that the evil Kylo Ren is the last of the Skywalker line — a development that doesn’t bode well for the line’s future.



What I Remember About Writing FEARLESS

Fearless artwork

So I made it through Relentless. It wasn’t easy turning an online serial into a printed novel, but I did it. Now I had to figure out the sequel. Fearless was an odd beast. It was the toughest nut to crack of the three, the hardest one to write, and it’s my least favorite of the trilogy.

But I’ve heard from a number of people over the years who say it’s their favorite. Go figure!

Spoilers ahead for Fearless (and Merciless, too).



6 Things People Don’t Know About Me

1. I have a weird thing about my hands.

I’m not OCD. I’m not a germaphobe. But I can’t stand for my hands to be sticky. There’s a famous story in my family about how I refused to take part in finger painting in kindergarten. Some things never change.

2. I can draw.

I’m couldn’t sell art or anything, but I can sketch respectably. When I was younger, I could look at any object and recreate it with paper and pencil. My son appears to have inherited this ability — but he far surpasses me. He’s able to do it from memory, and make up original things as well.

3. I always wear socks.

I never go barefoot. Don’t know why. Just doesn’t feel right without socks on. Exceptions are Hapkido class or the beach.

4. I’ve got mad bargain shopping skills.

For realz. Any store I enter, I make a beeline for the clearance section. I’m not ashamed to admit that most of my clothes come from clearance. My favorite online store is a closeout deep-discount store called Hollar. I’ve found lots of cooking gadgets for MANterest at Hollar, and most of what they carry is just $1-3! Shipping is free if you order $25 or more.

5. I cut my own hair.

Maybe I’m kidding myself and people have already figured this one out on their own…

6. I rarely read books.

I know, I know. Shameful for an author. But when you spend most of your day, everyday, staring at words, reading is pretty much the last thing you want to do when you have downtime. I play video games to unwind.


My new YouTube channel: MANterest

I’ve said many times on social media that I’m not a foodie. And I’m really not.

Except I kind of am now. Not really sure how it happened, but I’ve been cooking a lot lately. Especially baking. I love baking.

I seem to have developed an addiction to Pinterest recipes. Combing through the best desserts and breakfast items and supper selections is not something I ever imagined myself enjoying, but somehow… I do. A lot.

Because I’m a nerd and because I’m always looking for ways to generate much-needed income from things I’m already doing, I thought, “Hey, why not throw together a YouTube channel where I present the very best Pinterest recipes I find?”