Tales from the Mos Eisley Cantina: “The Tale of Muftak and Kabe,” Part 1

will: Welcome back, readers, to the next story, which so far has only a couple of riffs on what’s probably the greatest movie ever made, but they’re lurking.

z: *confused look* I thought this entire book was about Star Wars?

…I kid, I kid.

will: Yeah, but only a little.

To spell it out, the full title of this story is “Play It Again, Figrin D’an: The Tale of Muftak and Kabe,” that first part being adapted from one of the greatest lines never actually spoken in the movies.

Nobody ever says “Play it again, Sam.” The actual line is, first, “Play it once, Sam. For old time’s sake…Play it, Sam. Play ‘As Time Goes By,'” and later, “you played it for her, and you can play it for me…if she can stand it, I can. Play it!”

As spoken by Ilsa Lund (Ingrid Berman) and then Rick Blaine (Humphrey Bogart), both to Sam (Dooley Wilson) in Casablanca. Which, well. I don’t want to say it’s a better movie than Star Wars but I sure don’t want to say it’s a worse one.

In other news, you know how we’ve discussed the West End Games Star Wars RPG a few times before? Well…

I’ll probably buy this as a historical document more than anything else. But I’ll buy it.

Before we begin, one other thing. As I alluded to last week, A.C. Crispin was a damn legend in the field of SF writers, and even more so for media tie-in writers. She wrote some of the most famous Star Trek original novels (and wrote the first one to make the NYT bestseller list), her Han Solo Trilogy is definitely getting the chapter-by-chapter treatment here eventually (it’s the good stuff), she was at one point the VP of the Science Fiction Writers of America, and she cofounded SFWA’s “Writer Beware” project, which looks out for and educates writers about scam editors, agents, and publishers.

In 2013, a few months before her death due to cancer (at age 63), she was named the first female Grandmaster of the International Association of Media Tie-In Writers; one year after Kevin J. Anderson (well, nobody’s perfect), but one year before Diane Duane and three years before Tim Zahn.

So with that in mind…

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Tales from the Mos Eisley Cantina: “The Tale of the ‘Tonnika Sisters,'” Part 3

z: Hello, gentlebeings, and welcome to the third part of our commentary on “The Tale of the ‘Tonnika Sisters,'” wherein we meet friends and influence people.

In personal news: Last Saturday we finally did get to present our summer Small Ensemble Showcase program. And Will was here, along with some other mutual friends of ours, watching. From where I was standing (or sitting), it went joyfully well. From where he was sitting, I… guess it must have been enjoyable?

will: I said that last week. Granted that I wrote that before actually seeing and hearing it, but I was right.

z: We aim not to disappoint. And by dint of much effort, I guess we may be succeeding :).

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Tales from the Mos Eisley Cantina: “The Tale of the ‘Tonnika Sisters,'” Part 2

will: Welcome back, readers, to “The Tale of the ‘Tonnika Sisters,'” wherein like two starships that dock in the night, we intersect with the main sequence just long enough to answer the question that’s sort of at the heart of this story, just in time to rapidly fire off in a different direction again.

If you’re reading this as it goes live, you have just over a day to hie yourself to the WMGSO’s Small Ensemble Showcase in Germantown, MD, at the BlackRock Center for the Performing Arts, August 5. If you’re not reading it as it goes live…you missed a great show.

z: Thank you. For all of it.

As I’m writing this, I just came back from the dress rehearsal; I’m exhausted but I think it really might go well on Saturday.

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Tales from the Mos Eisley Cantina: “The Tale of the ‘Tonnika Sisters,'” Part 1

z: Hello, gentlebeings, and welcome to the first part our next tale from the Mos Eisley Cantina, the tale of the two brunette women with long braided hair hanging out near the bar watching the action.

will: And the tale of who they aren’t, which isn’t the tale that we previously had. Tim Zahn does it again, with the West End Games material.

z: In personal news, I am very discombobulated and somewhat miffed because we had to postpone the concert scheduled for last Saturday. The AC of the church that was our venue died. In the middle of a five-day heat wave. …so yeah.

We’re working on rescheduling, and in the meantime, the August 5th concert, which is in an actual performing arts center, is hopefully going to proceed as planned.

will: That’s the one that I will be attending, which is good. I’m looking forward to it.

z: So am I; that’s a nice venue and it’s a very exciting program that I am kind of bummed I didn’t get to perform yet :D.

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Tales from the Mos Eisley Cantina: “Greedo’s Tale,” Part 2

will: Welcome back, readers, to “A Hunter’s Fate: Greedo’s Tale,” wherein…ugh.

z: This should have been my week to start, but I had three rehearsals and a lesson on Sunday, two today (Monday), will have two tomorrow, dress rehearsal on Thursday, and need to do arranger-chasing to continue tying down next season’s repertoire as the librarian, so in conclusion eeeee I’m sorry Will I owe you.

Lots and lots, it seems.

will: No, no.

More than that.

*crash*

Huh?

will: Oh, hey, Future Will here. Z hasn’t seen this. It’s now Friday morning and the post goes live in ten minutes.

This post was locked and loaded by Tuesday night, but then Thursday came around and San Diego Comic-Con started. I couldn’t let this post go up without saying that while Zahn bringing Thrawn back was enough to get me off the fence in favor of the new canon, there was an announcement yesterday that pushed me to active approval:

Canto Bight, a story collection on the runup to The Last Jedi, will have a story by Mira Grant, who is a close personal friend who somehow kept this secret.

So yeah, that’s happening.

Anyway. Back to the past!

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Tales from the Mos Eisley Cantina: “Greedo’s Tale,” Part 1

will: Welcome back all! It’s Friday, this is Force Visions, I’m Will, the person hyperventilating next to me is Z (the first concert is next week), and we’re here for the start of the second story in Tales from the Mos Eisley Cantina, “A Hunter’s Fate: Greedo’s Tale.” This story is longer than “The Band’s Tale,” but honestly it’s also more forgettable, so we’ll try to keep it short-ish.

z: [hyperventilates]

will: This story was written by Tom and Martha Veitch. Tom is primarily a comic book writer, and he wrote all fourteen of the Dark Empire comic books (the original six, Dark Empire II, and Empire’s End), meaning that someday his work may well be featured in a The Fuck Were They Thinking? segment and will get a specific shout-out, more like a shout-down, when Tim Zahn comes back with a machete.

As to Martha–and yes, they’re married–this is her only credit in the Star Wars universe, and as far as I can tell, her only professional writing credit at all.

z: I didn’t know these people, and haven’t had any exposure to the Dark Empire comic books, which may change (see what we sacrifice for you, gentle readers). My initial thought at the byline was “…oh, the writers who drew the short straw.”

Because, well, writing about Greedo is a fool’s errand in many, many dimensions. I don’t envy them. And given what comes right now, neither does Will.

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Tales from the Mos Eisley Cantina, “The Band’s Tale,” Part 2

z: Hello, gentlebeings, and welcome to the second installment of our commentary on “The Band’s Tale,” the first story in Tales from the Mos Eisley Cantina, wherein working musicians learn there is a reason why they should set some principles about which gigs to take, then stick to them.

will: And how inevitable it is that they don’t.

z: In personal news: Two and a half weeks to what’s going to be personally the most intense concert of my life, just in terms of what I’m performing. Please ignore the barely-audible high-pitched noise I may be making at random intervals.

will: Which reminds me, said concert has tickets available at wmgso.org, and as it happens I’ll be attending the second (August) concert, so holler if you see us! $9 in advance, $10 at the door.

In personal news here, my job is about to hit a notable busy week, at least potentially (it tends to be variable, I’m told–this is still my first year at the gig), but things should be calmed down in time for next week’s post, never fear.

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