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Joining the 501st & Rebel Legion

You walk down the street, or into the mall, or near a library, and you see someone dressed up as a stormtrooper. Not a cheap Halloween costume—they look like the real thing. And you think to yourself, “Who ARE these people?”

It turns out these people are probably members of the 501st Legion, a worldwide organization in which groups of people gather locally to dress up in Star Wars costumes and attend special events. The 501st has shown up at four of my six book signings so far. And before you judge, you should also know that these are some of the nicest people you will ever meet. My local group—the Cloud City Garrison of the 501st Legion, in case you were curious—recently stopped by a children’s hospital to bring joy and awe to the patients.

Imagine my surprise when, last night, I dropped by Powell’s bookstore to sign some back-ordered copies of William Shakespeare’s Star Wars. Waiting for me were members of the 501st, in costume on a hot summer’s evening, there to present me with honorary membership into the 501st Legion as well as the Rebel Legion (they wanted to make sure I had the good with the bad). Blushes, smiles, maybe even a little lump in my throat—I feel like I’ve just made the geek Hall of Fame, and that’s a very good thing.

Thanks to the members of my local Garrison, and thanks to members of the 501st Legion around the world who bring Star Wars to fans everywhere.

Posted by Ian Doescher

A Birthday Gift That’s Hard To Top

Photos by Marian Hammond

William Shakespeare’s Star Wars came out July 2nd, one week before my birthday, and what a week it was—lots of fun press, a great book release at Powell’s and a great party afterward (featuring the world’s best cake courtesy of the world’s best spouse), watching the online buzz grow, and so on.

I thought I’d hit the high Monday the 8th, when Google Trends Manager Kevin Allocca appeared on the Today show and named my little book as the reason why Google had seen an upturn in searches for “Star Wars” over the weekend.  But then, later that day, my editor Jason Rekulak from Quirk Books called me and told me there was a decent chance I would end up on the New York Times bestseller list.

Wait, what?

Posted by Ian Doescher

Life as a Debut Author with the Writer Behind William Shakespeare’s Star Wars

William Shakespeare’s Star Wars is my first book. (I like saying that, because it implies there will be others.) I’ve learned all kinds of things about the publishing world in the last year, but in these last weeks before publication a few lessons have come clearly to the forefront. Here’s what this first-time author has learned:

Posted by Ian Doescher

Sing and then Mate and then Die

by Buzzy the Cicada

Pssssttt…hey, you down there. Yeah, that’s right. Hi. I’m up here, in the tree. You got a minute?

Posted by Rick Chillot

William Shakespeare’s Star Wars Flash Mob at the Philadelphia Museum of Art

May the Fourth be with you, Star Wars fans!

This morning, Quirk Books, Urban Playground, and Drexel University’s Dragon Jedi assembled outside the Art Museum here in Philadelphia for a special reenactment of William Shakespeare’s Star Wars.

Members of Urban Playground and the Dragon Jedi performed three scenes from the book, and were accompanied by an inflatable R2D2, a number of weaponized baguettes, and plenty of curious onlookers.

A HUGE thank you to Urban Playground, the Dragon Jedi, and Locust Moon Comics (for hosting our mini after party on the super busy Free Comic Book Day). Expect more pictures next week! Til then, enjoy the video!

Posted by Eric Smith

May the Fourth Be With Thee

Star Wars fans everywhere will be celebrating May the 4th in their own special way. Movie marathons, lightsaber battles, you name it. You can see a full list of official May the 4th events on Star Wars website, which includes a soccer game here in Philadelphia

As for Quirk, we've whipped up this fun William Shakespeare's Star Wars ecard, just for you. Save it, pin it, send it around… and MAY THE FOURTH BE WITH THEE.

Posted by Eric Smith