The Wookiee Commode

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Title: The Wookiee Commode
Publisher: Double D Press
Editor(s): Mary Urhausen and Samia Martz
Date(s): 1984-1990
Medium: print
Fandom: Star Wars
Language: English
External Links:
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logo for the series, artist is Karen River

The Wookiee Commode was a gen Star Wars zine which contained stories by multiple authors. It had color covers and interior illustrations by various fan artists, and ran for seven issues.


From Southern Enclave #22:

There are a couple of things in your editorial that I wanted to comment on, Cheree. One thing was the problem—growing problem, unfortunately of zine "piracy." It seems more and more common among editors that have some issues behind them, especially issues that now are sold out. I won't name any offenders by name, but we have run into this situation with THE WOOKIEE COMMODE, too. Both our 3rd and 4th issues are sold out (and the 5th nearly is, as I write this), and I know: for a fact that there are unauthorized xeroxed copies out there. {For my solution to this situation, see my LoC in SE20.) In fandom, as in any human endeavor, there will always be a few bad apples and quick-buck artists; the responsibility lies with the zine-buying public. If no one would buy "black market xeroxes," they wouldn't exist.

From issue #24 of Southern Enclave #24:

Issues #3, #4, #5 are now officially out of print (OOP). In accordance with the terms of the Clone Wars Treaty, Double D Press hereby gives all fans permission to make themselves single, not for resale, xerox copies of these three issues for their own personal use. Double D Press will not be printing any of them. [1]

From Zine Scene v.2 n.1:

Sorry, issues three, four, five, and seven are sold out! All fans have permission to make single, not-for-resale Xerox copies of these four issues only! For those have to get xeroxed copies, or any interested party, I have some copies of the color covers of issues 4, 5, 7 available. They are free for the asking -- if you send me a 9x12 manila envelope with correct postage (2 ounces -- 54 cents).


Regarding a Planned Last Issue

In early 1991, the editor, Mary Urhausen, wrote:

I apologize to everyone who had written to me recently inquiring about WC#8 and hasn't received a reply from me yet. I have been trying to hold off writing to people until I had a more concrete report to give. Well, this is about as concrete as it's gonna get! Currently, WC#8 is not in production. I am not saying it will never go into production; I am just saying that we are not working on it at this time. That's right — there will not be a new issue of WC out for MediaWest this year [the first time that's happened since 1984]. Quite frankly, we do not have enough good material to put out an issue at this time. That's not to say that we don't have any good material; or that we have some good material and a lot of bad material. We just don't have enough good material to justify the work.... Finally, yes, we are still accepting sub- missions for WC#8; but please realize that all submissions are accepted conditionally, since the future of the zine is still very much up in the air. This is probably one of those rare cases where the writers seem to have burnt out before the zine eds did! [2]

Regarding the Zine's Title

From a letter of comment in issue #4:

I'm not terribly fond of the name of the zine, and that's part of the reason I didn't order it earlier. Because of the title, I thought the zine was probably a joke and was not really one with many varied kinds of stories and poems. I thought it was just a silly piece of fluff. Boy, was I ever wrong! I'm glad that a friend suggested that I order your zine!

Issue 1

front cover of issue #1 by Karen River
back cover of issue #1, Vikki R. Stroop
flyer for issue #1

The Wookiee Commode 1 was published in May 1984 and is 128 pages long.

The art is by Vikki R. Stroop, Karen Ripley, Karen River, Betsy Peed, Giovanna Fregni, and Gordon Carleton.

The zine was nominated for a FanQ.

From the editorial by Urhausen:

This editorial will not do the three things that zine editorials traditionally do. It will not (a) explain why the zine is so late—because it's not; (b) enumerate all the disasters that befell the editors during the course of its genesis—because none did [Hey, c'mon, Urhausen, don't try an' tell me that the broken print wheel doesn't count!!—S.M.]; nor explain how editing the zine drove the editors insane—becatise the COMMODE seems to have prevented more insanity than it generated. This editorial has only two functions: one is to thank all those people who deserve thanking; the other is to explain our title.


I first met Samia Martz at MediaWest*Con '83—which also happened to be my first con. (That fact explains less than you think — and excuses nothing!) Immediately I realized I'd found a kindred spirit. (I think my exact thought was, This woman is as warped as I am!!). Somehow, in the detrius surrounding the dismantling of the art show on Monday evening, the two of us got to speculating on whether or not the Millennium Falcon would've had special "accommodations" for a Wookiee. (Hey, remember, this was a con — not a United Nations seminar!) The phrase "Wookiee commode" sprang to mind — and stuck there, like a wad of wet paper! Blame it on the mood of the moment: on "LumberCon," the sushi, or even the rarified [sic] atmosphere in the back of Lori and Gordon's van as we trundled off to our third viewing of Return of the Jedi in four days! What ever the causative agent, Samia and I determined that if we were ever to publish a zine, it would be called THE WOOKIEE COMMODE. And we did—so it is.

As to the original speculation—is there such a thing as a Wookiee commode? — obviously there must be, because you're holding one now!

(Now about that "Double D Press" . . . but that would be another story!)

From the editorial by Martz:

One thing I've always kept in mind when considering the COMMODE—and I hope you will, too—is "What can you say about a zine that had its genesis on the last days of two conventions?" Mary's told you how we got our name—maybe I should tell you how it all finally came together. It happened on the last day of WorldCon in Baltimore. Mary and I—completely and irrevocably dazed from working four days for Registration—decided to do something totally out-of-hand and go get some lunch. In a restaurant. With silverware. And cloth napkins. And so it was, early in the afternoon of 5 September, 1983 in the City Lights Restaurant in Harbor Place over shrimp salad and a glass of white wine, that I looked at Dr. Mary Urhausen and said—I swear these were the words that came out of my mouth—"Can putting out a fanzine really be that hard?"

I have come to two conclusions since: (a)Yes, it is; and (b) No, it isn't. What I mean is, it's both a lot harder and a lot easier than I expected. And I've made two further observations: (1) It's more fun than graduate school; and (2) It beats all hell out of honest work. Maybe it all comes down to this—fandom has given me a lot—friendship [You hearin' me, Urhausen?] and love I've never found anywhere else. What I've done in the WC is just an attempt to give some of that back.

So in spite of all the work—and all the times I consigned everyone involved with this damn fool operation to the lowest and coldest pit of all the hells of Sith if you have even half as much fun reading the COMMODE as I did writing my story "The Learner" and helping to put this sucker together, you're in for one hell of a good time.


  • Environmental Impact Statement, editorial by Mary Urhausen (2)
  • Co-Editorial Response by Samia Martz (3)
  • The Care and Keeping of Wookiees by Michael Halboran ("And if you've ever wondered how you'd manage your own Wookiee if Mom and Dad break down and get you one for Christmas (or Life Day), Michael (no relation) Halloran tells you in "The Care and Keeping of Wookiees." It's really not so hard . . . you already know the basic rule.")(5)
  • Life on Dagobah by Giovann Fregni (7)
  • Force of the Future by Laura Thomas (9)
  • Horroscope by Betsy Peed ("How long had Darth Vader suspected he might have lost ones somewhere in a very large galaxy? Betsy Peed gives a chilling view of an early confrontation between the Dark Lord and a young Princess Leia in "Nothing but the Truth." Betsy also provides an interesting astrological glimpse of the Sith in a WC exclusive "horrorscope.") (13)
  • Word Search Puzzles by Linda Vandiver (17)
  • Shadows of Change by Elizabeth Cisco ("How difficult is it for Lord Vader to accept his feelings about Luke as his son? What exactly does he feel? Elizabeth Cisco takes a fresh look at the dark Jedi in "Shadows of Change. "") (19)
  • The Training of a Young Jedi by Giovanni Fregni (23)
  • The Ballad Of Lexi Cullivan, poem by Samia Martz (24)
  • Six Years Later by Laura Thomas ("How does Han come to terms with Luke's training Leia as a Jedi? And the fact that he's going to be a daddy? Find the answers in Laura Thomas' "Force of the Future." And to check out that future, have a look at Laura's "Six Years Later"— one of those kind of nights on the Falcon as Han reviews his changing life. He's thinking of selling tickets.") (26)
  • The Ride of Your Life, "The Tee-Shirt Poem" by Mary Urhausen (30)
  • Nothing But the Truth by Betsy Peed (33)
  • The Secret of the Jedi,poem by Betsy Peed (39)
  • Dreamer, poem by J. Rogan (39)
  • Once, poem by Betsy Peed (42)
  • Future Options for Fannish Writers by Sharon Saye (47)
  • Celebrate the Night by Karen Ripley ("Want to find out what happened the night after the Ewok victory celebration on Endor? And if Han ever got the furry little critters pried off his legs? Try Karen Ripley's "Celebrate the Night" for an entirely new presentation of the Caressable Corellian and his relationship with her highnessness.") (Episode 1 of "The Virgin Prince Series" -- most of the series is in "The Wookiee Commode," Episode 6 is in StarQuest.) (47)
  • The Learner by Samia Martz ("As for the real version of what happened on Ord Mantell and the story of which young Jedi has to help pull both Han and Chewie's collective fat out of the fire, see Samia Martz's "The Learner." And it's not the young Jedi you're thinking of, folks— though it is a story where everyone learns something. (Hopefully, the Wookiee thought.)") (part of the First Steps Universe) (56)
  • The Third Co-Ed: A Fantasy? by Samia Martz (a self-insert, humorous vignette of Martz and Han Solo as friends and lovers) (127)

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 1

See reactions and reviews for The Learner.

First issues are never easy, particularly if you're putting out a SW zine. SW fandom is dominated by fat, super-expensive, annual zines that look almost professional. The editors of TWC must therefore be lauded for daring to put out a zine under 200 pages, and with less than perfect repro. The biggest problem with the graphics in the zine is that pages show thru on the other side too clearly. However, it is nice to see a zine with nary a typo to be noted. The contents are mostly lightweight, meant for an easy summer afternoon's reading. Some tongue-in-cheek poetry, cartoons, "The Care and Keeping of Wookiees" by Michael Halloran are an example of this. Some serious poetry is also offered, such as Betsy Peed's "The Secret of the Jedi" (a powerful and mystical piece) and "Once" by the same author (a very affecting and poignant summary of one Jedi Knight's struggles.)

Sharon Saye has a "Future Options for Fannish Writers," which posits some excellent ideas for SW fanfic. The point seems to be to get us all out of the non-creative doldrums that fanfic appears to be stuck in (tho certainly not all of it.)

Probably the most interesting thing in the zine is Betsy Peed's "Horrorscope," an astrological analysis of Lord Vader's personality written by an astrologer to the Emperor. Creative, well-written, and engrossing, it shows a strong understanding of the complexities of a creature known as Darth Vader.

A couple of Han pieces by Laura Thomas which delve into Han's life as Leia's husband are a bit unsatisfying and depthless.

Elizabeth Cisco's "Shadows of Change" has an excellent idea, about Vader's seeking the advice of a Jedi spirit in an ancient ritual to try to understand why he was unable to convince Luke to join him (in TESB). The answers he gets don't make the Dark Lord very happy.

Betsy Peed's "Nothing But the Truth" is an all too short piece that has Vader visiting the Organa household and encountering the fiery teenage Leia.

Karen Ripley's "Celebrate the Night" offers a refreshing and welcomed view of the "Han-the-galactic-stud/Leia-the-royal-virgin" caricature. I admit I loved this story just because of the surprise ending, but the rest of it is presented subtly enough to enjoy for its own value. The longest piece is by Samia Martz, entitled "The Learner, or "Ord Mantell -- A Nice Place to Visit, But..." Unfortunately, this story is a difficult read because it offers yet another SW Mary-Sue type: a 15-year old girl Jedi, student of Luke's, whose parents were killed by the Empire, whose father was a Jedi, loved as a younger sister by Han, loved by Chewie, saves the day, etc., etc. Even her name — Jeni Petersen — bears the mark of the MS cliche. (Oh, Ben talks to her, too.) The story simply doesn't succeed. It is over-sentimental, gushy, repetitive, overdone in almost all respects. Everyone speaks in slangy dialogue ('somethin'," 'nothin'," "an") and the scenes with Han and Jeni are forced and unconvincing. With tighter editing, it could have succeeded at least as a good adventure story, but the overwhelming attempts to make the reader care and feel fall flat. Ultimately, you just don't feel like continuing.

If were this zine priced under $10, I would say take a look at it if your pocket feels generous, and if you feel like supporting two obviously sincere editors, but at $12.50, I hesitate. There are some nice moments herein, but I have to balance out the contents' worth against the reader's pocket. Here, the latter must win out.[3]

I have really enjoyed this zine and thank you for putting it together* I think you and Sarnia did a great job, especially for a first time out venture!

The front cover is wonderful. Karen River is a fantastic artist!

The back cover is a scream. I like the dedication page and the various quotes. It's a nice touch and gets you in the mood for the "goodies" to follow. My condolences to Samia on the loss of her mother. Having recently lost my dear father, I understand the pain of this separation. The dedication is a lovely tribute to her memory.

I like your logo, as drawn by River. Hey, are you going to have shirts printed up with this logo?! If you guys are thinking about it. I'll sign up for one right now! It would certainly make the most unusual shirt at any con!

I enjoyed the "Care and Keeping Of Wookiees" and loved the illo! The cartoons are fun, especially "Life on Dagobah."

"Horrorscope" was interesting and showed a lot of work behind it. I hope someone decides to write the stories listed in "Future Options for Fannish Writers" they're all good ideas. I really enjoyed all the little sayings sprinkled throughout the zine. My absolute favorite is "Why save your money? You will only spend it foolishly on food or a place to sleep." Every fan should have a copy of this to hang on his/her living room wall!

I liked "The Ballad of Lexi Cullivan." I always enjoy tales of spacers, and this is a good one. "The Ride of Your Life" is a riot—a hilarious idea; a well written "tee shirt poem"! But it makes me a little jealous I want one of those shirts!

"The Secret of the Jedi" is a lovely poem. All of the words of this piece are just beautiful! And you know what?? The last two lines are a great answer to the infamous Luke vs. Han war, and the suggestion Luke is a Darksider!

"Dreamer" is my favorite piece of the zine. I wish I could find the words to thank the author for this lovely composition. Every line is special and lovely. It is wonderful, something to be treasured and read time and time again.

Also enjoyed "Once" . . . it's beautifully worded and haunting.

I'm very impressed with Karen Ripley's writing ability. "Celebrate the Night" is a great story. The characterizations are all well done, and the descriptions are great. I love the idea of Solo wandering around that walkway on that night of victory, meeting friends and chubby Ewoks drunk on "berry juice". Karen wrote this story so well I could almost smell the rainforest and hear the muted sounds of far-off revelry! I especially appreciated seeing Luke portrayed as the man he was in ROTJ. Too often fanfic shows him to be the young person he was in the beginning of ANH, without allowing for the growth of his character through three films. And Han Solo as a virgin! What a delightfully different view of the Corellian!

I also enjoyed "The Learner" and "The Third Co-ed; A Fantasy?" by Samia. Now, Mary, how about a fantasy about "the fourth co-ed" next issue??

The artwork is great throughout zine. My two favorite pieces are those delightfully roly-poly drunk Ewoks on page 48, and Han Solo on page 51 (Gawd, what an expression on his face!).[4]

I enjoyed THE WOOKIEE COMMODE a lot! Especially "The Learner". I could hear Han, Jeni, and Chewie talking. I believe that Samia Martz has both Han's and Chewie's personalities just right. I do hope she writes more, as she tantalized me with glimpses of past and future stories to be told.

I also got a lot of laughs from "Life on Dagobah." We all need giggles in our lives. Thanks. "Force of the Future" and "Six Years Later" were cute, but rather unbelievable. "Shadows of Change" seems to hint at many secrets untold in the story; you try to read between the lines. At least I did. "Celebrate the Night" had a very interesting point of view. I have to admit that I never thought of Han as being, well, inexperienced! And I thought "The Ride of Your Life" was great. Who wouldn't like to pick up Luke (or Mark Hamill)? The tee-shirt would be a conversation piece at least!

Well, here's hoping for a WC II![4]

Firstly, I was not offended by anything in the COMMODE. Matter of fact, I'm looking forward to WC II. Maybe you can talk Karen River into doing another front cover as gorgeous as the first one. All of your contributors are to be commended for the excellence of their material. I'm sure I could not do as well, although I'm working on it. I'm considering tackling one of Sharon Saye's future options to see if I can actually write something logical and comprehensible. Michael Halloran's article was funny and informative. Now if he could only reveal to all of us where one finds a Wookiee.

Enjoyed Laura Thomas' two stories as there is not yet a lot of written fanfic on the couple after their marriage. She seems to have hit on exactly what Han's major worry would be, and she handles the characters quite nicely, and correctly, too. I hate to pick out one story as a favorite, but I'm afraid I must. The honor goes to Karen Ripley's "Celebrate the Night." Somehow the idea that Han Solo would remain virginal until he found a lifemate never entered my mind, or a lot of other fan writers' either. It's a refreshing twist, and an unexpected one. She only leaves one question unanswered who started all those rumors about the "galactic womanizer"?

THE WOOKIEE COMMODE is really excellent. With every fanzine I read, I am more impressed by the quality and care that goes into these publications, and the WC is no exception.[4]

I am writing to tell you how pleased I was with THE WOOKIEE COMMODE. It was delightful reading. I loved your poem, "The Ride of Your Life." As far as stories go, I have to say that "Force of the Future" and "Six Years Later" are my favorites. I just know that Han and Leia are made for each other. I wish that JEDI had ended with Han and Leia's marriage, that's my only wish for that movie.

Again, congratulations on a great publication. I'm just so glad that there are so many people out there willing to keep the Saga alive.[4]

I picked up a copy of THE WOOKIEE COMMODE at MediaWestCon this past May. When I read it, I found a well- written, well-illustrated, and well-published zine. My compliments to you all.[4]

Your zine should come with a warning on the envelope: Open at your own risk gorgeous picture on cover! Ha!

The zine is very nice. You can certainly tell that everyone involved took careful pains and pride in their effort. I've looked through the zine, and you do have a winner.[4]

Having read my roommate's copy of the COMMODE, boy am I sorry that I didn't pick it up at MediaWestCon. But better late than never ... My favorite stories were "Force of the Future" and "Six Years Later." (Han and Leia with three sets of twins!) Twins are supposed to skip a generation. Also enjoyed Samia Martz's "The Learner.'[4]

You promised us a back cover with a view of Harrison that we may never have seen before, and you certainly kept your promise. From a certain point of view. But personally I preferred Karen River's excellent portrait of Harrison on the front cover.

I was led to buy THE WOOKIEE COMMODE by Mary's plug in her letter to SOUTHERN ENCLAVE. I just had to read "Celebrate the Night" upon receiving my copy of WC, I dove right in to read the story that would certainly drive me to the limits of frustrated sexual frenzy and found, instead, that Mary is even more perverse than I'd originally thought! First, the back cover, and now this. I loved it! Karen Ripley's vision of a virgin Solo is, in its own way, as interesting as the more common view of Han the Stud. Pity St. George's rules wouldn't permit Karen to tell us just how this Corellian Celibate learned to celebrate. [St. George's rules might not but as Karen's friends have learned, she has revealed all in the sequel to "Celebrate": "Consummate the Night"!! Ed.]

Equally enjoyed the adventures of Han Solo and Jedi Jeni in Samia Martz's "The Learner." Despite my contention that Han had a rather active love life, I can imagine him caring for a kid like Jeni and regarding her as a younger sister. Han's emotional turmoil and guilt when the girl is hurt were very believable. And Betsy Peed's illo of Han and Jeni is one of my favorite pieces of artwork in the zine.

As one who dabbles in astrology, I found "Vader's Horoscope" really interesting. Betsy Peed has a helluva good imagination.

Love Elizabeth Cisco's "Shadows of Change." I enjoy stories dealing with what goes on (went on) in Vader's mind, and Cisco presented Vader as I believe he was: Vulnerable, but too damned arrogant and proud to admit even to himself that he could be touched by any positive emotions.

Laughed my way through Urhausen's "The Ride of Your Life." Where can I get a tee-shirt like that . . ? [It helps to buy an original Karen River at an art auction! Ed.]

All in all, I enjoyed this worth-the- price zine and am looking forward to WC II. Whaddaya mean, you're not sure there'll be a WC II?! I find your lack of faith disturbing! Get cracking on the second issue![4]

Oh, WOW! THE WOOKIEE COMMODE is great! When I pulled it out of the envelope, I just gasped. What a beautiful likeness of Harrison. Knocked my socks right off. Sigh. The contents are great. The layout and graphics are very crisp and clean. Love all the calligraphy. Your borders and doo-dahs are beautiful! This is one of the best-looking zines I've seen in a long time.

Love "The Ride of Your Life" as well as the art. I didn't know Karen Ripley was an artist, too. That's precious!

"Celebrate the Night" -- I see what you meant when you said it had a surprise twist. It sure did! Loved it!

Betsy's art throughout is wonderful. She did some beautiful drawings of Han.

Really, Mary, you women have worked mighty hard on THE WOOKIEE COMMODE, and the results are evident. You have a zine that you should be very proud of. And wasn't it fun? [I'll let you know, just as soon as these nice men in the white coats remove my straitjacket . . .! Ed.][4]

Just read THE WOOKIEE COMMODE; picked it up at the LA Con. Loved "Six Years Later"; anyone who has ever had children can relate to this. The illo was nice, too. "Celebrate the Night" what a different slant on our Han. I laugh every time I read it. What a wise girl Leia was to check out Corellian customs. Enjoyed "The Learner", but there is one question I would like to ask it seems to be a part of a series; if so, what is the series' name, if any, and where can the previous stories be found? [We have another story about Jeni in this issue. And Jeanine Hennig in FAR REALMS is publishing "First Steps" this spring the story of Jeni's first meeting with Han and Chewie. S.M.] I always find it a little unsatisfying to come in on a second or third chapter. [How about the SW Saga, Chapters 4 through 6?? Ed.] Even if well- explained, it is not the same. Liked the illos in this story, too.

Now the fantasy (who are you kidding?), are you accepting applications for the 4th co-ed yet? With those kind of fringe benefits you must be swamped.[4]

I greatly enjoyed my issue of THE WOOKIEE COMMODE. I hope that there will be a WC II . . .I hope to see more stories of Leia's past, present, and future as good as "Force of the Future", "Nothing But the Truth", "Six Years (and six kids) Later", etc. I enjoyed it all.

First off, I loved the front cover drawing of Harrison, our #1 Hero; it's the best I've seen so far.

I found the helpful hints concerning the care and keeping of Wookiees quite handy; however, I have not been able to acquire one of my very own. These hints are very good explanations of the Number One guideline: "It's not wise to upset a Wookiee."

"Six Years Later" was amusing; I roared with laughter at the thought of Han having seven kids on his ship. What we need, though (hint hint), is a story about Han training one of his boys in the fine art of piloting a freighter and all the activities associated with it.

I loved the tee-shirt poem. I think of it every time I wear one of my SW tee-shirts.

"Celebrate the Night" was a switch; I never thought of it that way.

I enjoyed the whole zine, but the one I liked best is "The Learner." I hope you put out a WC II; I'll be looking forward to it.[4]

I generally liked THE WOOKIEE COMMODE. This is my first time ever reading a zine, SW or otherwise. . . Most of the drawings were rendered pretty well. The front cover was great (I don't really need to tell you that, though), except the back cover left a bad taste in my mouth. The idea of showing both the front and back of Harry's head is cute, but you should have had the same artist do the back.

There were too many flowery borders. It didn't feel like SW. It gave the impression and atmosphere of a romance novel. They were very well drawn, though. I doubt I could have had so much patience.

TOO MANY HAN SOLO DRAWINGS! I love Han, too, but Jeez! (He's my third favorite character; first is Darth/Anakin, and second is Luke). Remember, variety is the spice of life.

The stories focused too much on Han. The touch of having Darth's note to Piett at the end of the horoscope was ingenius! Besides, after a while, the scope began to get boring.

There was too much wasted space at the ends of the stories. The drawings needed backgrounds to make them more interesting, and give the reader an idea of what was going on in the story.

Both the poetry and the calligraphy were great.

All the short stories were great, too. I especially liked the one about Darth and the Convenator. Different. I enjoyed "The Learner". I usually don't accept new characters into the SW universe unless they're George's, but I liked Jeni quite a bit. My biggest complaint I wish there were more than 128 pages!

I couldn't help but read it in one sitting.[4]

That Karen River cover is absolutely stunning. She captured my favorite Ford model perfectly. That mouth, that scar, those eyes! Sigh!

Although there was supposed to be something to offend everyone, I must have missed it. Yes, there were jibes at most of the characters, and Han seemed to be the victim more than others, but it was an affectionate rather than a vicious humor. No one was hurt by thejoke. I am a Han fan, too, but I still can laugh at his thoughts and actions.

Laura Thomas' two shorts about Han were both enjoyable. Her treatment of Han's coming to an understanding of the Force training of Leia could have been developed into a much longer, more detailed story. It is an important topic, I feel.

The "Papa" Han story was delightful. Full of that kind of humor that brings a smile to the reader's face. Personally, the idea of Han having his six children plus Luke's boy on board the Falcon is stretching it a bit. Both Han and Chewie would be grey in a week. But I did like the story.

"Celebrate the Night" by Karen Ripley was a cute turn-around story, but I don't believe it for a moment.

Mary, is this story propaganda for your S.P.P.H.S.I.S.? [Society for the Prevention of the Promulgation of Han Solo as an Intergalactic Super-stud, to the uninitiated! I don't know, Judi ask Karen! Ed.]

Who gets the credit for those marvelous one liners that filled in spaces at the ends of stories? [Believe it or not, it was Samia's father. The whole family is getting into it! S.M.] Very clever and/or devious, they are.

"The Ride of Your Life" I bet!

Giggle, giggle! [Or jiggle, jiggle?? Ed.]

J. Rogan's poem, "Dreamer", says it all. I know it touched me, because I've had the same feelings expressed in that poem.

"The Learner" by Samia Martz was good reading. Interesting to speculate about which learner the title referred to. Obviously, Jeni was to be a learner all of her life, as a Jedi; but Han also learned much on the Ord Mantell trip. [That's what I was getting at, Judi; glad it came through. S.M.] I particularly like story where Han has females as friends, and not necessarily as a love interest.

Great. Over-all, the zine was well-organized and free of errors. [Amost! Ed.] For a non-pro zine, it had high-caliber printing and binding.

Oh yes, thanks for the article on "The Care and Keeping of Wookiees" very valuable indeed. As for "The Third Co-Ed: A Fantasy?", my Han loves being called Kissy-Face. Just don't try Professor Kissy-Face (too much Indiana Jones this summer, I guess).[4]

I'm glad to say that for the most the zine is well worth the reading (if not, in these inflated times, the cash outlay . . . but this is common to all zines now, and I'll quit complaining about it soon.) To start with, the majority of the art is perfectly charming, not excluding the KR cover. Giovanna Fregni in particular does a nice job on both the current dramatic black Darth pictures and the earlier (but quite funny) cartoons. I recognize that Betsy Peed is a somewhat younger artist, but confess to liking most of her Han pictures anyway. They're a bit rough and fuzzy yet, but she has the basics and they serve to illustrate the story. I'm less fond of her female faces, which don't seem to match the characters very well in my reading mind. As for the Carleton . . . I never saw such a sexy Wookiee before . . . I never hoped to see one...but I can tell you anyhow . . . I'm going to pin up this one.

"The Care and Keeping of Wookiees" is a nice bit of leavening that doesn't over-strain its subject. Laura Thomas' two pieces are slight and not particularly to my tastes, for a couple of reasons, though the prose is smooth in style. (In fact, I could read through the whole zine without trying to reach for a blue pencil, which speaks well for both writers and editors). Both are essentially domestic history of Han and Leia, hardly an innovation in SW subjects (though the repeated sets of twins are cute) . The "Horrorscope" I'm going to skip commenting on, to preserve my sanity. Let's just say it had its moments (and the names are great!).

"Shadows of Change" is a good if lengthy vignette about some very hard issues. The kernel of the thing could have been stated in a couple of paragraphs, but it's more telling in this form, and the implications for Force-user and/or Jedi techniques are intriguing, too. "Nothing But the Truth" shows Betsy Peed as an early but promising writer as well as artist. It brings some relatively believable characterization to Bail Organa (a sadly neglected and seldom-well-done personage) and to the young Leia. The princess comes off as perhaps younger than sixteen, though this is hardly something that can be judged with precision. The events are perhaps a trifle over-described (but on the other hand, they're clear to the reader). Leia's reaction to Vader (and Bail's reaction to both of them) is very good. This vignette, too, has a solid core.

By any chance, were the illos for these two pieces reversed? [Uh, chance had nothing to do with it! Try last-minute fatigue! We blame it all on Hester Garbanzo!! Our apologies to both artists, and the author! Ed.]

The calligraphy in the titles is pretty, and even readable. I'm less fond of whole poems in calligraphy, being a firm proponent of the easy-to- read school, but "The Secret of the Jedi" repays deciphering, being simple enough to be moving. The hand-drawn fancy borders also add a unique touch, and often enhance the enclosed material- —I especially liked the one around "Dreamer". I'm not sure "Celebrate the Night" quite fits Sharon Saye's Option # 6, being tasteful but not entirely believable, but I'd hate to have missed that wonderful little expectation -reversal ending! The circuitous journey to the ending is meatier than mpst post-Endor-battle roundups, and the ending is beautifully prepared— -I shouldn't have said it was unbelievable, for in context it's the perfect twisted-but-satisfying windup. (It's not quite the usual conception of Han, is what I meant, but maybe . . .Definitely worth it for the story!)

Now, "The Learner" is the real stand-out of the zine, being that rare phenomenon, the Han-and-miscellaneous-female (a Jedi, yet) novella which is not only bearable, and indeed readable, but quite possibly believable (at least while one is reading) and illustrative of Han's character both in and away from the Canon SW events.

I hate to let this gem go without a page or two of loving analysis on such subjects as: Jeni-as-Jedi clarifies Han's and Luke's friendship without sacrificing Jeni's individuality as a character, or Han's or Chewbacca's consistency; Han showing affection to a character a created character! A female created character! This doesn't have to diminish his relationship with Leia, however offstage it is at the time, and so on. I am referring to Jeni as a "female character" overmuch and I am glad to say she comes over as a full-developed character without reference to her gender; this is regrettably rare, and I am being surprised and admiring at the author's achievement. Kinda gave me nightmares, too. Space and time prevent more comments, but I fervently hope you'll be running more stories by Martz. [It's in her contract! Ed.] Or that someone will. [Oh, they will! See the new FAR REALMS! Ed.]

"The Ride of Your Life" and "The Third Co-Ed" are both great fun, and I snickered through them about four times each on the first reading, and plan to do so again at intervals. I can't think of a better combination than sex and humor.

There was a very good-natured, light-hearted feel about this zine which I particularly enjoyed. By the way, the motto on page 55 is me all over. I think I'll have it framed and hang it on the wall. I very much appreciated "The Care and Keeping of Wookiees" by Michael Halloran (no relation, huh? A shame!)

"Force of the Future" I loved this one. Thanks, Laura. So good to read "and they lived happily ever after" stories. Got a good laugh out of the way Leia told Han about the twins by way of revenge for his spoiling her other surprise. Can just picture him lying awake pondering that one! Particularly liked the interaction between Luke and Han in the earlier part of the story. Luke's assurance to Han that nothing in the Force could ever tear Han and Leia apart was beautifully expressed and touching, while being in character and containing the hint of gentle humor we expect from these people. Han's final fleeing from Luke's description of the Force potential he expects in the baby had me grinning broadly. That I can also picture. It's being able to picture things like this that keeps the SW universe alive for all of us. Thanks again, Laura.

"Six Years Later" was a perfect sequel and even funnier . . . poor Han! They might just as well sell tickets, indeed! But on the other hand, maybe a little interruption is just what they needed . . .four sets of twins and they'd have to buy a Star Destroyer to house them all! Also very happy to see Luke depicted as also married and having a son. Would like to think that he, too, would someday find the one special person for him.

"The Ride of Your Life" . . . what can I say, except you had both my niece and I in stitches!

I think "Dreamer" was maybe my favorite piece in the whole zine. Expresses beautifully how we all feel about the dream George Lucas has given us.

"Celebrate the Night" was terrific. About time someone turned the tables completely on Han. Loved Luke's reaction to Han's unvoiced plea for another "rescue", and Leia's "It's time to play catch-up!"

"The Learner" was very enjoyable. Jeni was a real person, easy to identify with, and I really appreciated her portrayal as courageous and quick-thinking. The conversation between Hallin and Han provided many insights into Solo's character, and the first signs of those changes which would be completed by the end of ROTJ. Han's finally being able to openly admit his feelings for his friends was beautiful, and still in character. Jeni's "Always knew you could say was somethin' like that ... if you gave yourself half a chance" was just right.[4]

Over all, I was very impressed. A fine first effort. I was wondering, though, if you guys mixed up the illos on pages 18 and 32? Of all the art, I liked the HE on the cover best. Betsy Peed does a nice Han Solo, though, and I enjoyed seeing her illos, too.

There were also some very funny things in this zine. I think I will send you a story that includes all of Sharon Saye's future options. It could be a whopper, you know. I also liked "The Care and Keeping of Wookiees." It was utterly appropriate, and "The Ride of Your Life" was cute, too. "The Third Co-Ed" was absolutely my favorite in the humor department. "01' Mysterious Thighs"? Shee-it! Loved it!

I did like "The Learner" best. It was the longest, and I love a good long story. I liked Kinvig. I love a good villain. It's too bad that George had to kill off Boba Fett. He, too, was another of my favorites. He was just too good to waste. But as far as your story goes, I can see Han suddenly having "fatherhood" thrust on him, and how he is reacting to it. It's always a little different with, say, Luke, than with a girl. Han may feel protective towards Luke, but those same feelings take on a much larger proportion with Jeni. Are Luke and Han ship-brothers, by the way? How about Han and Leia? I liked that concept very much. You and Mary are probably "zine-sisters", right?

"Celebrate the Night" was good in the fact that I didn't see the ending coming. I should've, but I didn't. (Oh, somebody please give me an innocent Corellian!) "Nothing But the Truth" was also very good, but I think Leia would have more control than that. I liked the idea of Vader saying, "I think you may be my daughter." Reminded me of Thulsa Doom telling Conan, "For who is your father if it is not I?" I know that Vader meant it differently, but the idea struck me as similar.

Over all, a very good zine. Don't worry about the death threats, you'll just get a lot of confusing, poorly-typed letters.[4]

I first heard of WC through Cheree Cargill's Southern Enclave in 1987, where Mary was shame lessly tooting hers and Samia's wares. Lucky for me, or it would have been much longer before this super-neo would have known about it! Having been a professional paste-up person with both art directors and editors hovering over my shoulders for last minute revisions, I know how crazy this can be (to do a zine). I always enjoy Mary and Samia's editorial statements, plus their slightly loopy "credit where credit is due" page. Now, what could have alerted me more than a "Corellian Gothic" cover on #2 that something wonderfully strange was lurking about. That was my first glimpse of WC, in a used zine bbinin at a local sf con. [Karen] RRi ivver d i d hilarious and well-executed job!

I really enjoyed "The Beginner" as my first intro to Samia's universe. Exciting adventure, and how I sympathized with Luke and Jeni trying to dig out their Jedi past. The Mistress of the Library was a great idea. The other treat was being reintroduced to Wanda Lybarger's illo-ing. Being a neo, I had only seen two pieces of hers in an old Skywalker 6, and had no idea if she was still active in fandom. She's one of the illoer's illoers; scenes evoking the atmo sphere of the piece, as well as great action and good perspective and nice detailing.

My other discovery was Karen Ripley, whose style I fell in love with; the wonderful balance of lyrical and serious passages, spiked with all kinds of humor— silly, saucy, pithy, etc. And she surprised me with her totally different "reading" of Luke and Leia's feelings for each other. Everything I had encountered before then left no allowances (in whatever variant theme/reasoning the writers employed) for mutual attraction, and apparently without denouement. Certainly a very open minded attitude (though I can imagine some other ways it could be described by some folks) that I liked. Wonder if she ever got static for it in fandom?

I'll just say I've continued to enjoy both Samia's and Ripley's continuing sagas through all the WCs. And later I was to continue enjoying another illoer's illoer, Rebecca Carey, in Samia's stories. What I said about Wanda goes for Rebecca as well. I also enjoy Rebecca's experimentation with different techniques. Mcpherson's Luke illo was stunning! Stiple/mezzotint is a time-consuming and difficult style.

Sharon's poem was lovely. but her overview of SW zines' history and trends was indispensable for this neo. Getting it two months before my first MediaWestCon was perfect to properly prepare my shopping list![5]

Issue 2

issue #2, front cover, "Corellian Gothic" by Karen River
back cover of issue #2, Sherry Charvat
flyer for issue #2

The Wookiee Commode 2 was published in 1985 and has 208 pages. The art is by Wanda Lybarger, Karen River, Sherry Charvat, Carol McPherson, Brian Ahearn, Rebecca Carey, Carolyn Golledge, Betsy Peed, Danaline Bryant, Dani Lane, Pat Easley, Jon Sies, and Wanda Lybarger. It won the 1986 FanQ for best SW zine.

From the editorial by Urhausen:

When people ask me if putting out a second issue of the Wookiee Commode was any easier than it was first reminded of the cowboy who was trying to saddle-break a particularly fractious colt. Every time the old wrangler got on the

horse, he got bucked off and stomped on. When an on-looker asked if it was getting any easier each time he climbed on, the cowboy thought about it for a moment and then drawled, "Well . . . not exactly but at least after that first time, I knew what to expect!!" So my answer would be no, not exactly but at least after the first issue, we knew what to expect!

From the editorial by Martz:

So here we are again, huh? Personally, I still find it a little hard to believe. Obviously, my co-ed and I can't learn from our mistakes! The genesis of our second issue was even simpler than the first. I looked over at Mary Urhausen and said, "Are we gonna do a second issue?" She said something to the effect she guessed so, and the WC II was born.

What never ceases to amaze me is that we were both totally cold stone sober at the time. For a truth. But we've eased a little pleasure in on the side. In August, the WC went west to World Con. Picture it as something like The Frisco Kid crossed with National Lampoon's vacation. We followed Tommy's directions to the coast and damned if we didn't make it. We didn't get captured by Indians though we did eat breakfast with some in Price, Utah nor did we go to VJally World but we did hit Disneyland twice. The whole trip was really a great experience.

I think our only regret was not making it through the whole trilogy screening. *Sigh* Flesh has its limits, folks, and we have to sleep sometimes even at conventions.

  • Environmental Impact Statement, editorial by Mary Urhausen (2)
  • Co-Editorial Response by Samia Martz (3)
  • Letters of Comment (4)
  • Zodiac for a Galaxy Long Ago and Far Away by Barbara T ("[Barbara T] gives an astrological view of the SW universe in her "Zodiac for a Galaxy Long Ago and Far Away.") (13)
  • Loose Ends, story by Karen Ripley ("And what about the morning after the night before on Endor? Karen Ripley explores what may have gone on the next day in "Loose Ends." Art by Jenni.") (Episode 2 of "The Virgin Prince Series" -- most of the series is in "The Wookiee Commode," Episode 6 is in StarQuest.)(14)
  • cartoon by Rebecca S. Cope (31)
  • Intergalactic Laundry Advice by Debbie Billig (32)
  • word search by Lynda Vandiver (33)
  • cartoon by John Sies (reprinted in You Could Use a Good Kiss #2) (33)
  • poem by Sharon Saye (34)
  • A Debt Paid, story by Carolyn Golledge ("How did Han Solo recover so quickly from hibernation sickness that he was able to take part in the fight over the Sarlacc pit? What part did Lando play? What did Han and Leia say when finally reunited aboard the sail skiff?" Another summary: "What was Lando's part in helping Han to escape Jabba? And how did Han get that clean shirt, anyway? Carolyn Golledge tells us in "A Debt Paid." Art by Rebecca Carey.") (revision printed in Never Say Die) (36)
  • Mr. America Harrison Ford Style by Marci Erwin ("A different kind of beauty contest takes place in Marci Erwin's "Mr. America Harrison Ford Style." Art by Gordon Carleton.") (56)
  • Masters & Friends, story by Rebecca S. Cope ("Ever wonder how the partnership got started? Rebecca S. Cope gives her version of the first meeting in "Masters and Friends," a new view of Han and Chewie's relationship. Art by Dani Lane.") (62)
  • The Wookiee and the Time Lord, vignette by Tara Carstensen ("How was Chewbacca feeling that night on Endor? Tara Carstensen has a solution to his problems in "The Wookiee and the Time Lord."") (Doctor Who crossover) (95)
  • Saga by J. Rogan (96)
  • From Star Wars to Jedi: The Fanzine Way by Sharon Saye ("Sharon Saye discusses the changing interpretations of some of our favorite characters in "From Star Wars to Jedi the Fanzine Way.") (97)
  • cartoon by Rebecca S. Cope (107)
  • Confrontation, vignette by Gail Small ("What did Luke dream of on Dagobah? Gail Small's "The Confrontation" de scribes at least one of his dreams. Art by Pat Easley.") (108)
  • Gossip by Linda Vandiver ("Two Rebel techs show us their view on the daring rescue and destruction of the Death Star in Lynda Vandiver's "Gossip." Art by Pat Easley.") (110)
  • The Little Green Man, poem by Lisa Williams (113)
  • Lord Vader's Son, story by Ellen Randolph ("What were Luke's thoughts on his return to Tatooine? How did he handle the news of his parentage and come to terms with being a Jedi? Ellen Randolph provides some answers in "Lord Vader's Son." Art by Betsy Peed.") (reprinted in Sanctuary) (114)
  • cartoon by Rebecca S. Cope (14)
  • The Beginner, story by Samia Martz ("Jeni Petersen and Luke Skywalker have a line on an ancient Jedi library that has some very important answers for them. The only problem is that the Imps may get there ahead of them. And that makes Han Solo very unhappy . . . Further adventures of the junior Jedi in Samia Martz's "The Beginner." Art by Wanda Lybarger.") (141)

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 2

See reactions and reviews for Lord Vader's Son.

[A Debt Paid]: Read "A Debt Paid" the other night in WOOKIEE COMMODE the other night. Great story. A little too many "ingly" words, but not to worry, nothing was spoiled. I got the zine a while back, but why I didn't read your story then, is beyond me now. If anyone has not read this story, by all means do. It fills in the gray area at the beginning of ROTJ, [in] regards [to] Han Solo. [6]

Wookiee Commode 2 was absolutely one of the best zines I've ever read. Carolyn Golledge's "A Debt Paid" was excellent, as were Karen Ripley's "Loose Ends" and Ellen Randolph's "Lord Vader's Son". Sharon Saye's poem absolutely summed up my feelings on Luke also. She hit it right "on target".

Beautiful reading through and through. The Force Lives Forever.[7]

Thanks for putting out another great issue of the Wookiee Commode. I enjoyed the zine and appreciate all of your hard work. After all, where would fandom be without all you hard-working zine-eds? ! [Slightly richer?? MU]

Karen River's cover is a delight! The subject matter is a scream, and the drawing itself is fantastic.

"Loose Ends" by Karen Ripley is another well-written story by this author. I've only read two stories by Ripley, and I'm very anxious to read more. She is a top-drawer talent in my opinion! She writes in a very believable way, her characters always "sound" right, the scenes described invariably leap off the page and come to life as I read them. Please extend my compliments to this very talented lady.

Sharon Saye's untitled poem on page 34 is beautifully written and eloquent in the way it defines the pain Hamill managed to put into his eyes for that scene. There is a bitter-sweetness to this poem that tugs at the heart. It's very poignant because there is some truth to what Saye has said within these lonely words. I have a "real man" who compares very nicely to the fictional heroes I "carry around in my mind" ...but even so, real life can sometimes be a little boring when compared to the SW universe! I go out each day and do battle with employers, family budgets, and toilet bowls; how much more exciting it would be to fight the Emperor instead!

Seriously, though, I LOVE this poem, its theme, and the beautiful way Sharon worded it. My thanks, once again, for a poem to be treasured and enjoyed many times. The illo that accompanied this is equal to such an exceptional poem. Carol McPherson captured "the pain in those eyes" in a powerful, breath-taking way. This is a beautiful piece of art work, and I stand in awe of McPherson's talent.

"Masters and Friends" by Rebecca Cope was interesting, and I enjoyed this view of how Han and Chewie met. Dani's illos were also well-done, especially the one on page 85; it manages to show Chewie's towering strength but also portrays, through the expression, his gentleness and caring.

I've never liked Dr. Who. I must be one of the few people in the world to dislike this series. [Not really! MU] Must be a major character flaw in me, because it seems to be a wildly popular show. I never could get past the poor production values of the episodes I saw. However, having said all that, I did enjoy "The Wookiee and the Time Lord". I mean, it's about time Chewie got some lovin'! Tara Carstensen did a good job with a short and funny piece... but would somebody please explain to me what a "TARDIS" is?!? (Just joking, folks!)

"Saga" by J. Rogan was a real treat! I enjoyed reading her remembrances, and it brought back some of my own. I felt a kinship with Rogan and all other SW fans when I read this piece.

Sharon Saye did a good job with "From SW to JEDI the Fanzine Way".

I found it very interesting, and it filled in some of the blank spots caused by my late involvement with SW fandom. This article must have been a difficult task, and I appreciate Saye's work.

"Lord Vader's Son" by Ellen Randolph is very good. I love the title. The story is well-written and very easy to read. It easily kept my interest through-out. The scenes and characters came alive as I read it, and nothing seemed wrong or out of place. The author's original characters are believable, interesting, and fit naturally and comfortably into the SW universe something that's not always achieved in fanfic. All of the story seems plausible; it fills in the blank spots between TESB and ROTJ in an interesting and believable way. I thought Luke's inner struggle was handled nicely. I'd enjoy reading a sequel to this; I'd like to see where Randolph would take the characters after Endor. I do wish there would have been some illos drawn specifically from this story, though. [Ahem! We agree! "Artist problems"! MU]

I enjoyed Samia Martz's "The Beginner" , a long and interesting story. I especially liked the old Jedi library and the spirit of the long-dead Jedi Mistress. I've always been interested in how things might have been before Palpatine had his way with the galaxy! As with the first issue, you did an excellent job with the layout and printing. The copy was clear, and there weren't many typos. I really missed the quotes and borders from the last issue ("Why Save Your Money", etc.). Put 'em back next time!! And, contrary to what one LoC'er said, the borders didn't remind me of a romance novel!

I enjoyed everything in the zine, even if I haven't mentioned each piece. My thanks to the artists represented in the WC. I enjoyed everyone's work.

One last thing John Sies' cartoon on page 33 is a riot! The 'toon is very funny and it seems to be of professional calibre to me. I'd like to see his work again in the WC.

Thanks, Mary and Samia. Ya' done swell again! Hope to see WC III next year![7]

I picked up a copy of Wookiee Commode II at MediaWest in May. Here are a couple of my impressions. Rebecca Cope's "Masters and Friends" was a different twist to most of the "Han meets Chewie" stories I have read. Ellen Randolph's "Lord Vader's Son" delved deeply into the possible range of emotions Luke endured after "Empire" and before " Jedi". I found the story to be quite plausible.[7]

Love your front cover. Hmm...interesting illo on your table of contents page there! [Our logo! MU] I don't care what anyone says, I adored "Force of the Future" and "Six Years Later". And "Celebrate the Night" was refreshing. [WC I.]

"Loose Ends": I liked the beginning with Luke burying his father and throwing his black glove into the grave. Terrific humor in this story! Leia's expression of her feelings about Vader/Anakin is the most understanding I've read so far. Her scene with Luke on the medical frigate is very nicely done; they can love each other and there is no wrong in it. I like the way Luke and the trooper were handled; I felt sympathetic as well. Was Ahnjihn borrowed from "Shogun"? [Knowing Ripley, "stolen" is probably a better word...! Seriously, Karen confesses to a fondness for both the character and the story. Yes, I can see Han acting just that way, putting himself between Luke and everyone else. That's just like something he would do. And to have Leia do almost the same thing; leave it to a diplomat to straight en things out. Yes, Han is fiercely loyal as well. I wasn't surprised he did what he did. His concern for Luke is so touching and so true, and Luke's response is just what I would expect; "best friend" indeed.

Is there really a "Consummate the Night", or is someone pulling my leg? [Us? Pull your leg?? There is indeed a "Consummate the Night", sequel to "Celebrate the Night"; and even a "Complicate the Night", sequel to "Loose Ends" and they are indeed, uh, non-PG!! Now Karen is threatening us with "Obfuscate the Night", a sequel to "Some Dissembling Required"! Will this madness never end?? MU]

"A Debt Paid"; Exactly what I always thought; Han must have been incredibly desperate to ever have become indebted to Jabba. All right, Lando; that's what I wanted to hear! He really put himself on the line, going into Jabba's palace alone, and I've come to appreciate the way he watched over Han. The thaw scene was handled wonderfully. I do hope Han wasn't really so bad off. I like the way Leia stays in control. (Quibble: If Lando heard Leia saying that Han's eyesight would return, why would he assume the condition was permanent?) Han trying to see Luke as a Jedi brought a chuckle. "Hard to believe, isn't it?" "His Blubbership" that's great! Luke's reaction when things didn't go according to plan illustrates his ability to think on his feet and improvise. Han's reaction to the fresh air is good. An interesting idea, his using the Force to shoot the Sarlaac, though I think it unlikely. Might as well say that I've been partial to Carolyn Golledge's stories ever since "Mindlink". "Masters and Friends": Why would Chewie warn Han against getting involved with Leia? If Han knew the funeral director would just pocket the money, why would he give it to him? How sad that Han can't take Chewie's statement that he is free at face value; he wanted it so much, now he has it and can't accept it. He seems to think that any kind of tie is a form of slavery. I like the part where he suddenly starts thinking of Chewie as a friend and not a master. Please explain why Han feels he can't marry Leia.

"From Star Wars to Jedi": I recently enumerated the awful things that happened to Han. Being popular can sometimes be a dubious honor.

Although Han is my favorite, I like all three main characters, and want to see them treated fairly and in a positive way. As to Vader/Anakin, as Lucas said, the story was about human failings, not monsters.

"Lord Vader's Son": Madine did strike me as rather a martinet. I'm glad Luke finally worked things out, because all that I brooding nearly spoiled the story for me. Nice explanation for him not telling Threepio the plan; makes sense to me. I like Luke's premonition on his future wife and children.

"The Beginner": I really enjoy Samia's stories. She handles the characters well, especially Han. He is so transparent. Just two minor complaints. First, Petersen is too much like an Earth name. [So are Ben and Owen and Luke, for my money. There's even a Han's TV Repair Shop in Irving, Texas. SM] Second, why does everyone drop their consonants?

Picky, picky, picky! But I really loved the zine. Nice art work by Betsy Peed, and that's a lovely illo of Han and Jeni on page 196.[7]

Whee! Wookiee Commode 11 was just great! Just when you think that all the stories that could occur in the Lucas universe have been written, along comes another one. "A Debt Paid" filled in beautifully what could have happened the night in Jabba's palace. A new idea and, I think, very well done. Especially well-handled was Lando. The drawing on page 38 was quite beautiful. "Masters and Friends" was also another different idea. I think most of us have had the idea that Han belonged to Chewie in a way, but not in just this way. I would have only one complaint on this one. Han's explanation as to why he would not marry his Princess a man with Han's pride would not think this way, unless he still realized he was technically a slave. I believe this was the impression the author was aiming at, but it was somewhat obscure. Again, the drawings of the young Han were very good.

"Lord Vader's Son" is another good one. A chance to see Luke really grow and realize the change in the young Jedi.

"The Beginner", Samia's story about Han and the young Petersen, is great. But I still feel she has the girl just a little too young. She really acts more like 18 than 16. Got a giggle out of the "Imperial Streetwalker" cartoon and a chuckle out of the "Acme Spacefarer's Utility Vest". And 1 know exactly how Rogan felt at the end of "Saga" mowing the lawn indeed. "The Fanzine Way" was great. The only trouble it pushed my need-to-know button, so you, dear editors or author, are going to get some questions asked, and hopefully you will fill in some badly-needed information. Sharon did a great job in telling us where most of the stories were to be found, but then she made some statements about various things or people affecting our favorite Corellian, and didn't tell us where these stories were to be found![7]

Please let me know when/if/how much Wookiee Commode 3 will be, as I am now hooked! 1 bought WC 1, then WC 2, at LoneStarCon, after a long abstinence from fanzines. [The editors do not recommend abstinence as a method of fandom! MU] While still obviously a labor of love, they have less of that often-irritating bad art, bad layout, and bad stories. In fact, I was very impressed with both issues' consistently good art, layout, and stories. [While we do aim to offend, we do not aim to do it by means of poor art, layout, or stories! MU][7]

Firstly, thanks to Karen River for the cover. I love it! From the expression on Han's face, is it possible that Chewie threatened to do something drastic with that pitchfork? A wonderful adaptation of a very famous painting.

The inside of WC II is just as good as the outside. All the contributions this issue were of the same high quality that I have found in all the zines I have been fortunate enough to get.

The Zodiac and Marci Erwin's Mr. America story I found very humorous. Using the SW characters as the signs of the zodiac was terrific. My favorite was the Archer, for reasons I won't go into here! Marci's story had me laughing so hard I nearly fell out of bed. Just the thought of all of Harrison's characters in the same place at the same time with Magnum and all those well-known judges thrown in was just too much for my weird sense of humor. I thought the whole thing was hilarious. Sharon Saye's article was very informative. I'm always on the lookout for earlier zines, since I was a latecomer to this madness, and she has mentioned some that sound very interesting.

"Masters and Friends": a new twist on the Han Solo meets Chewbacca tale, and a good one at that. I agree with Lando that Han should tell Leia about the situation. I don't think she'd hold it against him either.

Samia has written another exciting story about Jeni Petersen, and I enjoyed it. It was a good one. I have only one complaint: Where did her characters learn English? Except for Princess Leia, everyone talks like Tommy Lillard! I'm no perfectionist when it comes to grammar, but even in the movies they never spoke the English language so badly. This was a distraction in an otherwise very fine story.[7]

Congratulations! Wookiee Commode II is beautiful, high-quality, fantastic! (Chewie should be pleased but I'm not so sure about Lumpy! Loved his "letter"!) I am so very proud to have been a part of this zine; thank you for giving me the opportunity. Please thank Rebecca for her lovely art work for "A Debt Paid". That one of Lando guarding Han is absolutely superb, and I'm so pleased she chose to illo the skiff scene.

...I raved about Karen Ripley's story, "Loose Ends" it was my favorite. Loved Luke's compassion, and particularly loved the line in which Solo supports him and gives us a concise appraisal of what he thinks of "policy". Also liked the discussion re: brother/sister and feelings between Luke and Leia. Very nicely worded.

The cover and binding of WC II is so attractive that people in stores stopped me and asked me about it—it was sticking out of my handbag. Few Australians have ever heard of fanzines; they were fascinated and very impressed.

Lisa and I got a good laugh over the "Zodiac" for the SW characters. Thank you, Barbara. Had to show that cartoon on page 33 to everyone; it'd have to be an all-time favorite. Leia's expression is priceless! And the one person she may have wanted to impress can't even see! Definitely not her day!

I really enjoyed Rebecca Cope's "Masters and Friends". Couldn't put it down. A neat switch; explains Han's bitterness/aloofness/suspicion and trusting of only Chewbacca very well. But I can't believe that Chewie would have ever overlooked such an important thing as Solo's slave papers. I feel one of the first things the Wookiee would have done, particularly if he wanted to prove his genuine motives, would have been to officially free Han. A moving story, though, and one which really brings out the horror of slavery.

"From SW to Jedi" by Sharon Saye: Always enjoy articles about fan fiction and its treatment of SW characters. This one follows a coherent line of exposition and gives us a careful look at changing fan attitudes. Well-done. Loved "Gossip"; thank you, Lynda Vandiver. It was interesting seeing our heroes from an outsider's POV. And how could I have forgotten "Mr. America"? Loved it!

I am biased (extremely!), but I think my niece's poem is terrific! ["Little Green Man" MU] Congratulations, Lisa! Wish she'd write more. You really made one ten-year-old's face light up! She was so happy! And she loved your drawing. Sherry. I pass on her thanks.

"Lord Vader's Son" by Ellen Randolph was an interesting, challenging read. The introspection by Luke about his relationship to his teachers, foster parents, and his feelings regards Han and Leia's love for each other, is exactly the way I picture Luke coming to grips with his identity; discovering he loves all these people just as they are/were; and that he loved the dream-Leia, not the real one as Han does. Beautifully said. There is a certain special, happy, everyday-life real feel to Samia's Jeni stories. They take the reader in and made them feel a part of the story. I like "The Beginner" very much because of this feel for the characters, a sort of warm caring affection for them all. Luke comes across as being a little too innocent/naive, and Han seems too much the big brother sometimes; but then Luke had a lot of growing up to do before he changed from the Luke of SW to that of TESB. It is possible Han protected and nurtured him in this period as Samia portrays it. I like the way Jeni stands up to Han, cursing as fluently as he can. The moment in which Han feels the touch of the Force in the library was warming and believable. Something like this could well have been the turning point in his commitment to the Rebel cause.

All in all, another enjoyable read. Can't wait to read how these three got together originally. There's got to be a WC III! Thanks again for sharing this zine with us; it's a beauty![7]

Impressive! Entertaining! Unique! Those are my descriptions of the first two Wookiee Commodes. Please hurry and publish No. 3. I hope it will always have another Jeni Petersen interaction with Luke, Chewie, Han, and Leia. I'm thoroughly caught up in their adventures. I thought the interplay between Han and Jeni (the Corellian often assuming the role of a big brother) was precious. Samia, how about a post-Jedi adventure involving all five?

Having enjoyed Karen Ripley's "Celebrate the Night", "Loose Ends" follows nicely. I especially like Carolyn Golledge's "A Debt Paid", and Rebecca Cope's "Masters and Friends". Both pieces were moving, introspective, and enlightening.

Sharon Saye did a fine job on the poetry, and her coverage of the many fanzines issued after SW, TESB, and ROTJ. I would like to see more of her work. Ellen Randolph's "Lord Vader's Son" was packed with emotion, well-written, as well as thought-provoking. All the cartoons, the artwork, poetry, short stories, puzzles, and odd pieces were entertaining and nicely placed and executed. I have only one qualm: Some language felt inappropriate with the SW saga. Humor lightens, tongue-in-cheek entertains, but certain language debases. The stories were wonderful, and all of them held my interest, but I often found myself jarred and my concentration interrupted by certain phrases. I just couldn't see the characters saying those things; unless, perhaps the swearing had been intimated, euphemized, or, for instance, alien language substituted....

The beauty of the SW saga is for me its innocence, and by innocence I don't mean ignorance, but knowledge with the capacity to respect. That was my only qualm. [Would that we had so few! MU] Otherwise I thoroughly enjoyed WC I and II, and want to compliment both Samia and Mary on a job well-done, and on their love for the SW characters.

Only that kind of love can produce a prime quality zine for adults that fulfills a fan's needs for more SW adventures, more of Luke, Han, and Leia, and all our favorite SW characters, something Mr. Lucas refuses to give us. Are you listening, George? Long live the Wookiee Com mode![7]

I shall begin at the beginning, and oh boy, what a beginning! As the saying goes, Karen River's art is not just getting older, it's also getting better! As an artist myself, I can only bow to her fantastic talent, and perhaps turn a bit green (was that the sound of gnashing teeth? You bet it was!) Believe me, it ain't easy being green! But the pleasure of her art is worth the inconvenience.

How can a comedy-lover like me not love a zine where even reading the credit page is full of chuckles?

"Travel Arrangements: Lao Che Airlines", r-i-g-h-t! And as for Samia giving Sandi a personal little message in her Co-Ed Response, it was very gracious of her! (Hee hee!)

To continue with the art. Sherry Charvat is a refreshing new artist. Her bold lines and vivid black and white contrasts are pleasing, and she does wonderful Lukes. His expressions are hard to capture, yet she does it very well.

I giggled at [Barbara T's] "Zodiac" article, until I read her version of the Virgin sign. Being a Virgo myself, I do not consider myself a "cold shower sign"!

"Loose Ends": Karen Ripley is a wonderful writer; you feel her stories instead of just reading them. And it's great to find an author who sees Luke as a maturing man, one who now confronts his emotions and handles them, instead of hiding from them. Betsy Peed's illo in this story was nice; her talent is improving.

Hey, that's not an "Imperial Street walker"! That's Vader's girl, and he's going to get you for slander! I wish I'd read your instructions before I washed my vest. I did do No.1, but as for No.2, I left my lightsaber in the pocket, and when I tried to fish it out of the washer (yeah, I'm too poor for a sonic scrubber), I accidentally turned it on while wet to the armpit. The doc says my teeth will quit glowing in a few months!

I'm not much on puzzles, since I can't spell.

I don't appreciate you using my face for Jabba the Hutt on page 33. Just because I look that way whenever I see Luke, or Han, or Lando, or Vader or any male!

To be serious, Sharon Saye's poem, and Carol McPherson's Luke portrait, were totally wonderful. And I must say WC II really impressed me with the variety of artistic styles. Each artist is totally different in view and technique, yet all are good. "A Debt Paid" also had me feeling, especially the awful cell and Han's sickness. Rebecca Carey's illo conveys the painful emotions the story stirs up extremely well (page 44), and her other illos show that she has different styles to call on. (Boy, I am green again! Just call me Yodette!)

Marci Erwin's piece was cute, but the Harrison Ford cartoons on page 58 really had me rolling in pain from laughing so hard! Indiana Jones' expression is priceless!

I liked Dani Bryant's illos for "Masters and Friends", but I've always had trouble with stories , that have Han's relationship with Chewie starting out with Han being owned/raised by Chewie. Their' relationship appears to me as one where Han treats Chewie as an equal, a friend he not only loves, but can tease and scold, and at times command. I can't see him saying things like, "Come here, ya big coward!" and ordering Chewie around as first mate if Chewie had raised him; or, as in this story, Han had started out seeing Chewie as an authority figure. But, the story is well-written.

"The Wookiee and the Time Lord" had one fault it was too short. I wanted more!

"Saga" made me remember the first time I saw SW. Sharon Saye's article on fanzines helped me pick a couple I knew I'd like, and I really enjoyed them. Thanks for the info!

"Confrontation" was good, and the illo was great. "Gossip" was a little boring to me, and I really didn't like the illo either, but that's just my opinion...

"The Little Green Man" impressed me coming from a ten-year-old; keep going, honey! I started writing and drawing at around age 10, too!

"Lord Vader's Son" ties as my favorite story this time. This piece is filled with deep emotions, and it makes you long to comfort Luke, to ease his pain, to give him love. As I am first a Darth/Anakin fan, a story that draws me into fascination for another SW character is a true compliment from me. I really enjoyed Betsy Feed's illos on page 126 and page 136 with this story.

At last we come to "The Beginner", which actually ties with "Lord Vader's Son" as my favorite. I really enjoyed Han's reactions to the Jedi Mistress speaking to him! I love Jeni, but I'm beginning to wish, Samia, that you'd ease off the kid a bit! I mean, Lordy, the hell you keep putting that kid through! Pick on Leia, Luke, or Rieekan a while, okay? (I didn't say Han, because emotionally you've wrung him pretty dry, too!)

Loved Lybarger's illos (then again, I always do!)

"E-Wok" was cute, and I'd make Palpatine use the Wookiee commode, wouldn't you?

As for the inside back cover, I really couldn't laugh, because I cry when I wonder if there will be a first trilogy (Oh please, St. George!) The back cover is definitely having the last word![7]

This is going to be a joint LoC for both issues 1 and 2. I was a latecomer to The Wookiee Commode, and ordered both issues simultaneously and read them back-to-back. What actually decided me to order was Samia Martz's Jeni Petersen Story, "First Steps," presented in Far Realms 7. [Yes, this is a bona fide plug, Hennig—so pay up!! MU] I was curious, I was intrigued, I was enthralled. And when I found out that two further Petersen stories were in issues 1 and 2 of the WC~well, what could I do but order them? That was a wise step. Much to my delight, I found that both zines were jammed pack full of one gem after another story.

It was a wise choice to pick Karen River to draw the front cover of both zines; her "Ford" on I was absolutely stunning, and her Han and Chewie on 2 was hilarious. Sherry Charvat's illos throughout 2 were a little bit crude at times, but were fun to look at and show a lot of promise. Her Darth Vader and Luke illo on the inside back cover of 2 threw me into whoops of laughter (then I sobered quickly while contemplating the horrid possibility that the first trilogy might never see the light of a motion picture screen.

The newspaper and magazine articles reproduced in the latest issue of Southern Enclave [Another plug! Cheree?? MU] suggest that George might be pooping out on us.)

Wanda Lybarger's illos in 2 for "The Beginner" are just plain fantastic. They seem to flow so well with the tone and mood of the story. I could go on for 6 more pages just concerning the art work alone in these two zines—but I do want to mention the stories.

Please tell me that Samia is going to continue writing her Jeni Petersen series—I love it. Her changing portrait of Han's mellowing explains delightfully Han's radical personality change from "Star Wars" to "ROTJ", from that of a mercenary pirate to that of a good friend and gentle lover.

My next favorite of the stories were the two by Karen Ripley, "Celebrate the Night," and its sequel "Loose Ends." Unexpected was the surprise twist—Han a virgin! (Slightly unbelievable, but fun to contemplate, nevertheless .) I think what I liked best about the stories, though, was her handling and portrayal of Luke; he has become a mature man and his words and actions in these stories show it. He has come through a time of personal grief and internal struggle, and that slight bit of worldly-wise irony is entirely appropriate and welcome (at least by this fan.) No, before anyone asks, Luke is not my favorite character Vader is. (Yes, I'm one of those strangely-bent individuals.) But there is much to appreciate about Luke.

Lastly, I found Carolyn Golledge's "A Debt Paid" to be an entirely satisfying "fill in the blanks" rendition of what happened during the rescue of Han at the beginning of ROTJ. Thanks Carolyn!

What? No negative comments? I guess I must have liked the whole thing—you've got it![7]

My favorite of the three zines was WC 2. I very much enjoyed Karen Ripley's story, "Loose Ends." It was nice to see Luke try to aid a former Stormtrooper. I enjoyed her sequel in WC 3, too. Things look like they might be getting rather complicated! I'm looking forward to reading the next installment!

I also very much enjoyed Ellen Randolph's story, "Lord Vader's Son." Her characterizations are very well done. I enjoyed her tale of the chang es that took place in Luke between TESB and ROTJ.

Another good story in the zine was "The Beginner, or The Last Time I Went to the Library," by Samia Martz. This was an interesting and exciting story. I liked her original character, Jeni. Han was a good friend to both Luke and Jeni. I enjoyed this story.[8]

Issue 3

front cover issue #3, Karen River
back cover of issue #3, Sherry Charvat

The Wookiee Commode 3 was published in 1986 and has 256 pages.

The zine won the 1997 FanQ Award for 'Best Star Wars 'Zine.'

The art is by Ronda Henderson, Pat Easley, Christine Haire, Jim Markle, Sherry Charvat, Jean Kluge, Dani Lane, Rebecca Carey, and Melea Fisher.

From the editorial by Urhausen:

Many of the people who read this zine make the generous but totally unfounded assumption that it is a "labor of love." While it is true that we try to please our readers, and we hope that you will love our zine as much as we do, there is no way on Earth that anyone could do what we do just to satisfy someone else's expectations! So for those of you who count altruism as our primary motive, let me say this; wrongo!

There comes a time in the genesis of any zine, just as in the birth of any "baby", when all of a sudden it hits you; Whooaa! What the bleepin' frick have we gotten ourselves into!?? (And how can we get ourselves out?!) Luckily, by that point it is too late to back out! And of course by the time you read this editorial, we no longer feel that way . . . even if we are still picking rubber cement off our fingers, and whiteout out of our hair.

One of the nicest things about publishing a zine is that it gives us an excuse to go to lots of cons, peddling our wares. One of the highlights of the 1985 circuit was LoneStarCon in Austin. Where else could your two co-editors get a chance (via the generosity and general desperation of Jenni Hennig!) to be panel members at a National SF Convention?? And as for Texas well, what's not to like?! Who could fail to love a state where the food comes in heroic-sized portions, and the men drive by and bang on the doors of their pickup trucks, loudly proclaiming your physical assets to one and all?! ["Hey, blondie! Hey, red!"] It was great! And let's not forget the bats on second thought, let's forget the bats!

This issue of the Commode, as usual, was a collaborative effort of Biblical proportions. Special thanks are due to Karen River for her gorgeous cover; Sherry Charvat for art above and beyond the call of duty; and Betsy Peed Afton for her beautiful calligraphy for our titles. Thank you! And for all the authors and artists who contributed to making this the biggest and the best issue of the Wookiee Commode so far! Yes, there will be another! My co-editor, Samia, makes one very obvious and pervasive contribution to this zine; nearly every typed word you see before you was typed by her poor little fingers! But she also makes another, less obvious contribution, one that I feel is impossible to overestimate or fully appreciate; she edits.

Boy, does she edit! Thank you, Samia for all the typing, for all the editing, for all the pasting and cutting and sweating. But most of all, thanks for being the kind of friend that makes doing something like putting out this zine not only possible, but also tremendously satisfying personally.

From the editorial by Martz:

Were you ever tempted to throw a 1500-dollar typewriter out the window? I was several times this spring. You know, being a zine editor isn't fun; most of the time, it's a pain-in-the-ass. Would I trade it for anything? Not on your life! I'm bit bad.

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 3

See reactions and reviews for Requiem.

Issue 3 was premiered last year at MediaWest, and right up front as a regular contributor I am biased in its favor. Traditionally, The Wookiee Commode has published stories by new authors, and this latest issue continues in that path with a rich mixture of material.

Carolyn Golledge's "A Flicker of Light" fills in the missing sandstorm scene from "JEDI," as our favorite characters seek refuge in Kenobi's hovel. I Han is still suffering from hibernation sickness, but is overjoyed to be reunited with his friends. He senses Luke's mental anguish and, with the help of the Force, reveals what happened between Vader and him on Bespin. Renee P Hoskins and Rebecca Cope's "Dita" is another long story, in which an act of kindness on Han's part has unforeseen results.

Ellen Randolph in "Requiem" deals with Luke's grief over Vader's death, and how the past Jedi decide on Anakin's ultimate fate.

Han Solo decides he has had enough of Jeni and Luke's stubbornness, and plays matchmaker in Samia Martz's "The Master and the Mender."

And Karen Ripley moves her post-"JEDI" saga forward another step as Luke is assigned " to discover the status of the Empire's secret breeding program on the planet Spirella. The assignment may have personal meaning as well, since Luke suspects that the Stormtrooper whose life he saved on Endor may also be Lord Vader's son.

Sarah Macht-DeWitt;s "The Proving Ground" confronts Luke with a test that could be fatal. Luke's mother is the subject of two stories: "Vana," by Marti Schuller, and "Aurora," by Laura Thomas. And Vader's feelings toward Luke are examined in "Revelation," by Veronica Wilson, and "Heart and Hand," by Laura Thomas. Leia's headstrong nature is a plague to Han in "The Alycian Affair," by Paula Freda, and Han is no fonder of snakes than Indiana Jones is, in "The Serpent's Way," by Deborah Kittle and Peggy Fitzgerald.

Reminiscent of its irreverent name, the Commode has a number of humorous pieces, including "The Impatient Patient," by Lynda Vandiver; a Corellian fish story, "What a Catch," by Marci Erwin; Luke's unfortunate mistake in "A Night to Remember," by Jeanine Hennig; and, of course, who can forget Ronda Henderson's parody, "Star Chores."[9]

WC 3 had many good stories, also. In addition to Karen Ripley's story, I enjoyed "Requiem," by Ellen Randolph; "The Impatient Patient," by Lynda Vandiver (cute and funny!).

"Aurora," by Laura Thomas (a sad but touching story about the mother of Luke and Leia. I liked the nice relationship between Luke and Ben in this story, too); and "The Proving Ground," by Sarah Macht-DeWitt (an interesting, creative, exciting little adventure). I liked all of the stories and poems, but the ones men tioned above were my favorites.

As for art, in WC 2 my favorites were Pat Easley's Luke on page 109, and Betsy Peed's drawings on pages 27, 118, and 121, as well as all of Wanda Lybarger's work for "The Beginner." In WC 3, my favorite drawings were those by Jim Markle on pages 32, 40, and 44 (especially the one on page 44 of baby Luke and his mother, and the face of the grown Luke next to them), and Pat Easley's on page 46, Dani's on page 89, and Melea Fisher's on page 117 (the drawing gives the appearance of a meeting in the moonlight between Mon Mothma and Luke.)

I'm sorry that these comments are so brief and disorganized, but it is so difficult to do a good job when I'm trying to make comments on all three zines! I'm sorry that I was unable to mention everyone.[8]

I thought WC 3 was incredibly good. The amount of hard work you guys put into it really paid off. You've gotten some really good contributors, too. I loved Karen Ripley's story, and Samia Martz's, and Rebecca Cope and Renne Hoskins's. I thought Ellen Randolph's "Requiem" was good, especially since it dealt with a question a lot of people had about Darth Vader (pardon me, Anakin) joining Ben and Yoda at the end of ROT J. Lynda Vandiver's "The Impatient Patient" and Jenni Hennig's "A Night to Remember" really cracked me up. Paula Freda's "The Alycian Affair" was maybe a little overdone, but I still enjoyed it, rat and all! I think I've liked everything Carolyn Golledge has written. I really like her style, and it was nice to have a lengthy story developed from the missing sandstorm scene, too. That is what I feel ought to have happened.[8]

You have done it again! What a fantastic piece of work THE WOOKIEE COMMODE 3 is! Even though I am a die-hard Luke fan, the cover had me drooling. Karen River is too talent ed for words. While I enjoyed the entire zine, I must comment on some of my favorite pieces.

I especially liked Ellen Randolph's "Requiem." What a great idea. I also liked Paula Freda's "The Alycian Affair." Though I found Leia a little too naive in the beginning, for my tastes, the finale rang true. Veronica Wilson is a friend, but I still feel her piece, "Revelations," was very good and gave us new insights into the Dark Lord.

Sandi Jones's "The Clone Wars" was terrific. I'll take one Luke, please, to go! I roared at Jeanine Hennig's "A Night to Remember." I could see Luke's outrage at Han's laughter. "The Proving Ground," by Sarah Macht-DeWitt was also intriguing and well-written. Ronda Henderson's "Star Chores" had me in stitches, nearly literally, when I fell off the bed laughing.

I also thoroughly enjoyed Kathryn Agel's "It's Funny," and, particularly, Ronda Henderson's filksong, "Eulogy for Rancor." Oddly, perhaps, one of my favorite pieces was the shortest, "Destiny's Call," by Christine Haire. Fantastic!

Over all, a wonderful accomplishment I also wish to thank Jim Markle for his lovely art to accompany my own humble contribution.

I love this zine! In fact, I bought a copy and sent it to a friend in England, so she could share my pleasure in your excellent product. Long may you publish![8]

In my humble opinion it just keeps getting better. From Karen River's gorgeous front cover to Sherry Charvat's wonderful family portrait gracing the back cover, and everything in between what more could a person ask for? [Color?? Heh heh heh! MU] One thing, maybe, but I'll have to talk to Sandi Jones (any relation to Indiana?) about that, as she seems to have an in on what the Clone Wars were really about. "Virgin?"—I never considered Luke one. After all, what else was there to do on Tatooine? A healthy, energetic young man can't hunt womp- rats all the time, and a person's got to have a hobby.

"Requiem"—I liked this one a lot. Luke's doubts about going on alone, and his fear of being abandoned by Ben and the others are very real. I don't think I would have had any different thoughts if it had been me. I was glad that all the Jedi decided to accept Anakin again. If they hadn't, they would have been hypocrites.

I also liked the fact that Han has come to care for Luke so much that he could tell the kid was troubled and wanted to bring him back to them as he had been.

"An Easy Run"—Oh, if only he'd known "The Impatient Patient"—Yes, well, this certainly sounds like Han all right. Having spent some time in the hospital myself, I can sympathize with him, although I had a much nicer nurse. Still, I found it an amus ing piece of work. The two stories about the twins' mother I found interesting, mainly because hardly anything has been written about her or her life with Anakin. It must have been very hard for her to give up one of her children, and I would like to read more about her. "What a Catch"—I found this very funny. Marci's sense of humor is very akin to my own, and I always enjoy everything she writes. The mental picture of the Corellian and a mermaid in a compromising position was just too hilarious for words. The final scene, with Piperj and her "collection," was the perfect finale. "The Alycian Affair"—Paula has really captured the depth of caring and love that Han has for the Princess. This story is a very good read. I thought it was excellent, moving along quickly while keeping the reader's attention. Somehow it was only fitting that Triacon was betrayed by a rat.

"The Master and the Mender"—It's about time Luke and Jeni got together. That it should take Han to make them see the light comes as no surprise to me. He isn't stupid, and he has himself as a perfect example of what being stubborn can do to you. Besides, sometimes a person can't see what's right under their nose, and needs someone else to point it out for them. This certainly seems to be the case with the two Jedi, who are too afraid of hurting each other to realize that they are only hurting themselves. "The Clone Wars"—Sandi, you and I have to have this little talk....

"Some Dissembling Required"—More Skywalkers? It would certainly make Luke's task of rebuilding the Jedi easier, wouldn't it? I like this bunch of stories. They flow so naturally, one after the other, just like events would. I don't think anyone else has written a series of stories that follow several consecutive days instead of being spaced out over several months, and I like the concept.

"A Flicker of Light"—Carolyn has written another excellent installment in her series. She has a knack for filling in the missing bits and making them fit the trilogy. In her universe, Luke and Han are bound together by more than just friendship and love. I like the way she makes Han a Force-user without making him a Jedi. I always wondered why Vader didn't stay to watch the torture, and here is a perfectly plausible explanation. That Vader would bother to explain his actions to Han and even apologize for them showed that Anakin wasn't completely gone after all. Loved Han's reaction to Kenobi's presence; typical of him. And Luke's reaction to the fact that Ben talked to Han.

"A Night to Remember"—Giggle, chuckle, snicker.

"Dita"—By far the best story in this issue of the COMMODE. A super story that's marred by only one flaw: I'm missing a page. Page 228 ends with the birth of the baby, and page 229 is an excellent Lybarger illo. Page 230 starts with Han leaping onto the creature pictured in the illo. What happened in between?

[Nothing! Or at least nothing that Becky and Renee have written! There's nothing missing in your copy; it's just that one scene happened to end at the end of a page,and the next scene begins "mid-action," as it were, on the next page. We weren't aware this might be confusing to the reader. MU] Otherwise, no complaints. I'm always interested in stories of Han's life before the fateful meeting in Mos Eisley. This one was all I could ask for and more. Han's gradual change of attitude towards Dita, from thinking of her as someone to find a home for, to realizing he loved her, was well-writ ten. I felt all of Han's joy in his marriage and his child, and all his despair at their loss. No wonder he found it so hard to admit his love for the Princess.

My cats have decided they like to sit on the COMMODE. Perhaps that's some kind of comment, but I thought it's a great zine this time around. I read that there will be another issue. All I can say is, WC 4? You're braver than I thought![8]

A friend of mine lent me a copy of WOOKIEE COMMODE 3, and as a fellow fanzine editor (ONCE UPON A GALAXY getting the plug in there) I would like to congratulate you for all the work put into the last issue. It was beautiful.

Being a Luke fan, I would like to say that my favorite story was "Vana," by Marti Schuller. But not being too biased, I would like to say how much I enjoyed all the stories, and the rest of the zine.

You guys are tops. Good luck with the next issue![8]

I bought a copy of WOOKIEE COM MODE 3 at MediaWestCon VI.

I had read and enjoyed other stories about Jeni Petersen, so it was with delight that I read Samia Martz's "The Master and the Mender." I hope the author will continue to write about these characters.

It may be an oft-used plot, but I still found myself smiling and giggling as I read "The Impatient Patient," by Lynda Vandiver.[8]

Excellent cover a good Karen River is better than most anything, but a great Karen River is extraordinary. Thanks for the Bloom County and Far Side cartoons. I love 'em both.

Check out the "Far Side of Science" exhibit if it comes your way. "Requiem"—First I wanted to cry, then I wanted to smile. From despair to hope, from hate to love it was wonderful. And my favorite story in the zine. "Aurora"—Interesting explanations « in this story, particularly Leia's reaction to backing into Vader just before Alderaan's destruction. I would point out that it was Ben, not Owen, who told Luke that his father fought in the Clone Wars. "Where Is the Post-Jedi Fiction?"— An informative follow-up to Sharon's previous article. Personally, I'm enjoying SW fiction more than ever, ta and while there may be a small percent age of post-Jedi work, it certainly is good. "The Alycian Affair"—The plot is just okay, but the insights into Han and Leia, and their marriage, were quite good.

"The Master and the Mender" — Sweet story. And I like Han's directness; he's not the least bit subtle. When will we see "The Mender of Ways," and where does this story fit in the chronology?

"Some Dissembling Required" — I loved the humor in this story, so wry: Han first tells Luke they don't have to talk about "it," and then gets mad because Luke doesn't want to; Han convincing Leia to go with them; "The Fish"; Luke waltzing around the truth with Ahnjihn, and the reference to Kenobi judge not, etc.; Han's jibe about Sky walkers. Wonderful story. "A Flicker of Light"—Interesting that the group went to Kenobi's place. I hope Han was not conscious while frozen; but if he were, I hope Luke was there, as described. The whole encounter between Luke and Vader was quite odd, but then anything is possible. One thing I like about Carolyn's stories is her attempt to fill in gaps and explain situations in a unique way. "Star Chores"—Very, very clever. I got a lot of laughs from it.

"Dita"—This had a couple of draw backs, the language and Han's character being rougher than I would have liked. However, I still liked the story, and the relationship between Han and Dita was very sweet.[8]

As for what I like best, well, it's hard to say: I love everything! Let's say, in WC 1, "Nothing But the Truth," because Vader and Leia are my favorite characters. Then "Celebrate the Night," and "Force of the Future," are both great! The rest is very, very good, too. For WC 3, I think the best stuff is "Vana," "Aurora," "A Flicker of Light," "The Proving Ground," and "The Alycian Affair." Sharon Saye did a beautiful job with "Where Is the Post-Jedi Fiction?" Though I would like to know where I can get "A New Challenge" by Ellen Randolph, and "A Light From the Dark" by Mary Jean Holmes. Those stories sound more than interesting.[8]

WOOKIEE COMMODE 3 is another delightful Double D product.

I loved the beautiful LARGE graphics and LARGE print! The Karen River cover is exquisite, and the "customized" cartoons on pages 2 and 4 are hilarious, I enjoyed the striking Markle illos for "Vana," especially those on pages 32 and 44, and the cute Charvat illo on page 68. Dani's piece on page 135 had a lot of movement, and Lybarger's on page 229 is filled with action. I was touched by her picture of Han with the baby. Ronda Henderson's cartoon on page 182 is very amusing, with Leia pinching Han and Vader, Vader looking embarrassed, and 3P0 all worked up over a pizza.

Ellen Randolph is one of my favorite writers. In "Requiem," her discussion of the Jedi judging Vader was original, interesting, credible, and satisfying. When Ellen writes about these past Masters, I feel as if their stories would be every bit as fascinating every as Yoda's, Ben's, Vader's and Luke's. I wonder whether she could be persuaded to write more Jedi history? "The Serpent's Way"—Silicus is an imaginative and repelling alien. "Vana" tells a sweet story about Luke and Leia's reunion with their mother. The concept of a burial planet is interesting, and the descriptions of the cemetery are beautiful. In "Resurrection," I liked the phrase "transcendent light." There is cute by-play with the nurse in "The Impatient Patient."

I always enjoy these humorous interludes, and low-key "day-in-the-life" on-base stories. The story is well-told through dialog in "Aurora." It's an interesting point that Ben might not have wanted Luke to go to Bespin because it mirror ed Ben's own over-hasty reaction to Vader's fall. This story shows a nice relationship between Obi-Wan and Luke.

In "Where Is the Post-Jedi Fiction," I had fun inventorying all the stories, seeing which ones I had, and reliving the various adventures. A penetrating observation that it's tough to provide your own cultural, economic and social background for the entire galaxy.

"What a Catch" is a cute story about Piper and her collection. "The Alycian Affair" is a sweet story of Han and Leia learning to compromise and get along with each other. "Revelation" is a revealing vignette about Vader's discovery that Luke was his son. Clever idea that he had not known Luke was his son until the Emperor told him.

I thoroughly enjoy all the Jeni Petersen stories, and "The Master and the Mender" is no exception. Jeni's a spunky, self-sufficient person. Her relationship with Han is charming. The image of Han as matchmaker was credible and funny. I don't like to think it would really take Luke and Jeni that long to get together, though!

"The Clone Wars" is delightful! Be sure and let me know about the next recruiting run! "Some Dissembling Required"—Karen Ripley's writing is beautiful. Her descriptions of Endor are so detailed that I always feel as if I'm living the story. The idea that Ahnjihn might be a son of Vader is fascinating—I hope we're not going to be left hanging forever on that one. I felt as if the story had just begun, when it ended. The hints about the Mon Calamari culture—dreams, harmony of the pod, etc.—were so intriguing. I'd love to read a story set in their world. I'd never have thought the Mon Cala mari could be so interesting! I'm also wondering about how Jeetah and Ahnjihn know each other? And, about those unpublished stories, c'mon now, you're not going to withhold them from all us faithful readers, are you? (All you faithful readers under 18! MU]

"A Flicker of Light"—This is a great job of filling in the missing scene from ROT J. It's a horrible idea that Han was awake in carbonite, but a neat idea that Luke spoke to him through the Force. A sweet proposal from Han. It's funny to picture Han and Leia throwing cookies at eachother! Haunting notion (ugh!—I couldn't resist!) that Kenobi's presence filled his home. Also, it was funny that Han sometimes talked to Ben! The scene where Solo comforts Luke is beautiful. A riveting tale of Vader healing Han. I loved seeing this humane, gentle side of DV, such as his questions about how Luke was doing. "Heart and Hand" is a beautiful vignette, with a profound ending.

I'm looking forward to the next issue of WC![8]

Loved that front cover. Oh, that beautiful scruffy-looking man! Jean Kluge's Luke was really very fine, also, he seemed so alive. The rest of the art was above average, too, but I have to think about Sherry Charvat's drawings. They are interest ing, but to quote a saying, "Is it art?" [We think so! MU] Story-wise, Carolyn Golledge's "A Flicker of Light"—How that girl can manage to spin a tale out of the time sequences I had never even thought might exist in the SW universe, and still stay within the original framework, is amazing. I'm not sure if I have ever read anything before by the authors of "Dita," but I will be looking for them in the future. It was a beautiful story. The only complaint, I think they were a little hard on Leia. It's hard to believe that after nearly losing Han, she would be that insensitive to things that were important to him. Karen Ripley's "Some Dissembling Required"—I believe this story was even better than the first one in this universe. Only don't let the new characters take over the story from our main team. Chuckled with "What a Catch," anguished with Han and worried with Luke in "The Alycian Affair. Even felt sorry for the Dark Lord in "Revelation."

"The Master and the Mender"—Glad to see Jeni finally at a respectable age. I always had trouble with that 15-acting-like-18 before.

"Clone Wars"—Okay, Sandi, where's mine? You know, "brown hair, golden eyes"? I keep waiting for delivery—Post Office, UPS—have you lost my address?? Come to think of it, my ever-lovin' might not care for the arrangement; pictures are one thing, but a living, breathing clone well! I must admit I got a bit confused with "Requiem"; never could quite figure out where this story was head ing. "The Serpent's Way"—I realize Silicus was out for revenge, but I must admit I got lost in the convolutions here. "A Night to Remember" was hilarious. Just another pat for the Lybarger art for "Dita," especially the one of Han trying, or almost carrying Lumpy. Also enjoyed Sharon Saye's overview.[8]

First, congratulations on winning the MediaWestCon 6 Fan Q Award for Best Star Wars Zine—THE WOOKIEE COMMODE! In my opinion, well-de served! [Thank you, Paula, and everyone else who offered us their congratulations; we were thrilled! MU] WOOKIEE COMMODE 3 was truly, really enjoyable to the last page. I found this issue the best of the three, and can't wait for number 4. "Requiem," "The Serpent's Way," "Van- a," and all the stories were interesting, touching, organized, and well-written. I'd need pages to comment on each and every one, so I'll comment on the ones I related to the most. Lord, I thought Ford was going to lunge off the front cover and talk to me, so realistic and professionally drawn was the illustration on the front cover. Karen River is fantastic. From this illustration alone, I can understand why she won the MediaWestCon 6 Fan Q Award for Star Wars Artist, as well as General Media Artist. "The Impatient Patient," by Lynda Vandiver; art by Sherry Charvat— Funny, beautiful, very much in char acter; I wish I could see this one on film. Lynda has a way with words and humorous situations that always tickles my funny bone, and at the same time tugs at my heart.

"The Master and the Mender," by Samia Martz; art by Rebecca Carey—I loved it. I have been follow ing Jeni Petersen's adventures and hoping all along that she and Luke would become romantically involved. Samia, I hope this isn't the last of their adventures (Jeni, Luke, Han and Leia). More, please.

"A Flicker of Light," by Carolyn Golledge; art by Dani—I always like to read the fans' variations on what occurred during the scenes the movies skimmed over, or left completely to our imaginations. Carolyn's charact erizations are tempting morsels and I hope she offers us many more. "Dita," by Renee Hoskins and Rebecca Cope; art by Wanda Lybarger— This one brought tears to my eyes. It was so mainstream, the writing so emotional and deep, I could feel what Han was feeling for this petite young woman, so unfortunate, so gentle and giving, so uncomplicated and yet so irresistible. I hope that wherever the slavers took her and her child, she attracted kindness and love and was not made to suffer. A sequel to this story would prove very interesting. What if after all those years Han were to find her? What about Leia? What about Shuri? [What about "Dita II," in WC 5?? MU] I would like to see more of Sharon Saye's speculations on SW fiction. I agree with her that we need more post-ROTJ fiction. When it comes to the SW saga, my curiosity is insat iable. The more I read about Luke, Leia, Han and Lando, the more I want to learn about them and write about them and their future world George Lucas created, and the characters that Hamill, Fisher, Ford and Williams brought to life have an eternal quality about them. This unique and special quality that favors only a few, cries out for more adventures, more involvement, more visits to that special world, more meetings with its inhabitants. I truly believe that in the year 2550, the Star Wars saga will have become an undying legend, and it will still have fans. Finally, thank you for publishing my SW-based short story, "The Alycian Affair." Dani did a superb job with the illustrations. I always feel a double thrill when I see my work come to life, both in print and visually. The words I dreamed now have substance and reality. In all, a super issue! Art, poetry, iBui puzzles, cartoons, filksongs, each in their own style commendable. Thank you, Mary and Samia.[8]

Although I've been buying fanzines for a couple of years now, I've only Ml recently begun to buy Star Wars zines in earnest. WOOKIEE COMMODE 3 was one of the first I purchased. I was impressed, to say the least, from the first time I laid eyes on Karen River's cover, until I read the last word of the last story. That cover, I"* by the way, is suitable for framing; and if I could do it without trashing the zine, I think I would. PHI I found just the right mix of poetry, humor, action and drama in the fiction selections offered here. I'd like to comment on each story individually, but that could take forever, so here are just some of my reactions. "Requiem," by Ellen Randolph, m took a common scene, Luke pondering his father's funeral pyre, one step further to the Jedi Masters pondering the eternal fate of Anakin Skywalker's soul. I liked this notion and was pleased with the resolution.

The idea that all of Han's troubles with Jabba were part of an elaborate frame, as depicted in "The Serpent's Way," was interesting, but there was something lacking here. The story just didn't grab me. The same can be said for "Aurora." I guess I don't care for the let's-talk-about-mom format, because it never allows the reader to become part of the story. Everything that happens is hearsay narration. "Vana," on the other hand, allows Luke to confront his mother's spirit, and is a more satisfy ing tale. There is a good sprinkling of humor here. "A Night to Remember," "The Clone Wars," and "Star Chores" all brought a chuckle. And let's not forget "What a Catch," a fish story about a little trunk collection. Hee bee hee! And "The Impatient Patient," which contained all those well-worn hospital cliches, but it couldn't happen to a more deserving patient! Han Solo, matchmaker? I can just imagine this.

I loved "The Master and the Mender," Samia. As a rule, I prefer stories centering around Han, Leia and Luke, and any supporting characters have to be damned good to get my attention. Jeni Peter sen is a very well-balanced and appealing character. Now I have to go back and read the other stories in this series to find out what I've missed. While I'm on this story, Rebecca Carey's illos were great. Like Wanda Lybarger, whose work I adore, Carey is truly an illustrator. Her line drawings capture the spirit of the story and the characters with luscious simplicity. Her knowledge of the way people move make her characters fluid and alive instead of stiffly wood en. All the same comments apply in double measure to Wanda's work, and add to that her ability to capture Han's facial expression with haunting accuracy from any angle. I'm no artist, but I do know when an illo truly brings life to the story it graces. Is there any way we could get a collection of sketches from these two talented ladies for a coloring book? I have a four-year-old Star Wars fanatic who would love it. (P.S. So would her mom.) I also appreciate you listing the previous stories in Samia's and Karen Ripley's series. It is very frustrating not knowing where to find the missing pieces in a collection of short stories. As a relatively new follower of these tales, it makes it much easier to track down companion pieces this way.

I also found the article "Where Is the Post-Jedi Fiction?" helpful for the same reason. I now have some I've read Carolyn Golledge before, and I really like the way this lady writes. Her stories have just the right amount of emotional grab, action- adventure and character depth. "A Flicker of Light" is no exception. She is particularly good at getting the characters "right." Her dialogue is excellent and flows naturally, and her descriptive material makes me eel as though I am really part of her universe. If I had any complaints about her writing, it would be that some sections of her stories are a little too long, and would benefit by tightening but then, I'd rather have too much of something I like than not enough. Both "The Alycian Affair" and "The Proving Ground" are fine action tales. I prefer "The Proving Ground" for its suspense value, and found myself holding my breath waiting to see what was going to leap out of the shadows and pounce on Luke. [Hmm...great i- dea!! MU] If I had to choose which story I like the best, it would be hard to decide between Carolyn's "A Flicker of Light," and "Dita," by Hoskins and Cope. If asked to design a char acter least likely to appeal to the heart of a certain Corellian, Dita would certainly be that character; and yet I could feel myself falling in love with her right along with him. But then, the art of good writing is getting the reader involved.

I hope I haven't slighted anyone by failing to mention their story or poem or artwork. As a fiction writer, the short stories come under the closest scrutiny by me; but all of the material here was quite good. And there was so much of it! Good job, gang. Now I have to get my hands on WC 1 and 2 to see what I missed.[8]

Congratulations! A reward at last for all the offense you've given!

Ha! I was most offended by the cover so much that I want the original! Any chances? [I doubt it... it belongs to the Sarnia Martz "Harrison Ford Memorial Art Museum"! MU]

Ellen Randolph is a very polished writer. I'm sure I'm not the only one who has made a resolution not to miss any of her stories. There has been so much written about Luke's reaction to his father's death, but this leaves the others for dead—if you'll pardon the pun! Including The judgement was a great idea, and very plausibly and movingly handled. What I most appreciated was the reason that turned the tide in favor of Anakin's acceptance,because of what his rejection would do to Luke. I hadn't thought of that, and the compassion shown is beautiful and should be a trademark of the Jedi Order. The final lines will remain in my memory as the way the ending of the movie should have been. You lucked out, George, missed a great finale: "What do you think...a Princess and a guy like me?" would have had the audience laughing along with Luke and assured us that all was right with the SW world.

Ronda Henderson's poetry shows a very versatile talent. It's not easy to handle comedy. "Virgin?" and the accompanying illo are hilarious. "Eulogy for Rancor" is my favorite, however. A great tune to sing in the shower! As for "Star Chores," when do we see the movie? Monty m Python, eat your heart out!

"The Serpent*s Way," by Deborah Kittle and Peggy Fitzgerald had a very Brian Daley feel about it. In other words, I want more! Nice to see some Solo/Chewie adventures, especially when they are so cleverly interwoven with the later events of the movie. There were some vintage Solo lines in this... "She might even mi give me—us—a reward!"

"Vana," by Marti Schuller, I enjoyed. Luke seemed a little too badly shaken, however. After facing Vader and the Emperor, he would be more like steel forged in fire. This is not to say that he would be emotionally cold, just more controlled. But the story had a lovely human touch, and explored a subject largely ignored Km by fandom, and Luke did look very sad when he told Leia he had no memory of his mother. The idea of a burial planet was original and beautifully described. Don't miss Marti's future stories, or you'll miss some great suspense!

Gail Small's poems are little gems. I love them.

Anyone who is familiar with the subject matter of my stories will know why I laughed outloud over "The Impa tient Patient." Please give us more humorous stories, Lynda. I'm addicted. Sherry's accompanying illos were the icing on the cake, conveying just the right expressions.

Augh! Barry Manilow had recorded "Ships"?! What album? Loved it. The adjacent drawing of Luke by Jean Kluge is one of the best I've seen of him. I'd love to know what she thinks he was thinking.

"Heart and Hand," and "Aurora," both by Laura Thomas, were very good fill-in-the-gaps stories, especially in regard to Leia and Vader's meetings, fn* I am particularly interested in objective appraisals of the trends in SW fan fiction, so I enjoyed Sharon Saye's article very much. In answer to Sharon's question, I hope we can say there is plenty of post-Jedi fiction here!

"Revelation," by Veronica Wilson, was an excellent prelude to the events of ROT J. Samia's series always leave you with a good feeling because of her expertise in recapturing the rapport of the films. Always a good read.

"The Clone Wars," by Sandi Jones, was one of the best "and the other shoe drops" jokes yet. Watch for more of Sandi's stories, too. She has a great handle on Luke. (Snicker!)

What can I say about Karen Ripley? I'm sure it will be a challenge to find praises that haven't already been used. Her stories are the first I turn to, and the ones I most eagerly await each year. I feel at home with her characterizations, and she has a wonderfully fresh, original approach, her stories have several layers of meaning while remaining fast-paced and highly entertaining. But most important of all, she takes us with her on a return visit to the world and the people we love the best. Can't wait for the conclusion to "Some Dissembling Required." [Starting to look like the darned thing will never end... MU] (Oh, by the way, Ripley, seen any aliens lately? Beats me where you find the time to write!

"Virgin Prince Universe"? Oh really?

Congratulations to Christine Haire for a beautiful poem. I love the line, "Solo and Chewie have mastered the dance." Ditto for "Destiny's Call."

Jeanine Hennig's "A Night to Remem ber" was worth so many good laughs that I just had to read it aloud to a friend.. .then we both giggled about it all night.

"Dita," by Renee Hoskins and Rebecca Cope, was a good, long, satisfying read to finish off a winner of a zine. But oh-so-sad! A little too melodramatic for my personal tastes, but it was irresistable anyway! So many "real" moments, such as the bar scenes. I think Han prefers women with more fire and independence, but I can see how he would get involved. netheless, I think Leia is his first true love. (Hopeless romantic, that's me.) The sequel should be very interesting. If Dita shows up again, I'm glad I won't have to sort out the problems! Should make for interesting reading.

There's only one thing wrong with THE WOOKIEE COMMODE—a year is too long to wait in between feasts! What do you say, fellow readers? Samia and Mary can handle at least two a year! I Right?? Right! Cam paign for more COMMODES. Wookiees need 'em.[8]

The front cover—Gasp, sigh, pant, fair, Karen! Green is not my color!

The cartoons—I love 'em! "Bud Light"—good one! I also thought Sherry's back covers were cute. The poetry—I thought "Virgin" was almost as intriguing an idea regarding Luke as Karen Ripley's "Cele brate the Night" regarding Han.

"An Easy Run"—Ha! "Resurrection" gave me the chills. J. Rogan, wherev er you are, I adore your poetry! I really enjoyed "It's Funny." It was nice to read something from Leia's point of view.

L.A. Carr's filk is one of the best I've ever read. I loved the illo of Luke that went with it. Perfect combination!

The stories—"Requiem" was beautifully written and entirely believable. But what happened to Laura's art? Both of the stories on Luke and Leia's mother were fascinating. I haven't read many stories on this subject.

I liked all the funny, lighthearted stories in this issue!

My favorites in this issue were: "The Master and the Mender"—thank you, Mary, for persuading Samia to write this. Finally, Luke got the girl! It is more than easy for me to accept Jeni, because she is a fully-developed character that I've gotten to know and love through several stories.

"Flicker of Light" was fantastic. I love stories with lots of character interaction. Carolyn used all the principals and did a remarkable job of keeping them all in characters congratulations!

"Dita" was a very bittersweet story. It touched me quite deeply. It explains so much of Han's personality as we know him. But what a sad and tragic fate for Dita and his two children.

Omigod! My first work ever printed in a zine! Thank you so much for letting me be a part of it. I guess this means people are actually going to read my stuff (gulp!).[8]

WC 3 was my "yard stick" for perfectly balanced humor and seriousness in fandom for a long time. Shoot, I missed getting my "clone" by about a year..."Clone Wars," by Sandi Jones, was delightful silliness. And I sung along with "Imperial Girl."

On the serious side,"Requiem," by Ellen Randolph, was very moving. I loved Master Yoda's, Davelyn's and First Master's contemplations on mercy, forgiveness and love. Now if George had chopped out some of Jabba's palace scenes, and put in something like this instead. (IMHO).

I had just been introduced to Marti's work in Far Realms 9, and was glad to see more of her work. I enjoy the different versions writers have been cooking up for the still-mysteries of Luke and Leia's mother and the early days. I'm glad she worked out a believable way to have Luke meet his "lost" mother. Nice touch of detail arriving at Vana (I see there's a cave there, too.).

Two last funnies. I got great giggles out of Sherry Charvat's last two illos; Chewie's gift to Han, and Chewie and family were very funny. The family was particularly well done. Surely she must have attended one Life Day celebration!

It's so hard to stop—I must commend Rebecca for the illo of Jeni walking down the corridor of the Jedi school. Nice motion, loved her outfit and lightsaber belt, and the architecture was neat![5]

Issue 4

front cover of issue #4, Scott Rosema -- "Corellian Space Pilot"
back cover of issue #4, Laura Virgil

The Wookiee Commode 4 was published in 1987 and has 280 pages.

In 1988, it won the FanQ Award for 'Best Star Wars 'Zine.'

The art is by Dani Lane, Dianne Smith, Rececca Carey, Melea Fisher, Pat Easley, Christine Haire, Brian Afton, Laura Virgil, Vickie Laus, Karen River, Laura Michaels, Sherry Charvat, Susan Perry-Lewis, and Wanda Lybarger.

  • Environmental Impact Statement by Mary Urhausen (3)
  • Co-Editorial Response by Samia Martz (3)
  • Letters of Comment (4)
  • Nightmare by L.A. Carr (5)
  • Family Man by Ruth Radecki (30)
  • A Princess' Dream, poem by Julie Phipps (35)
  • Word Puzzle by Lynda Vandiver (36)
  • The Lieutenant and the Generals by Samia Martz (part of the First Steps Universe) (37)
  • Poem by Paula Freda (61)
  • The Battle, poem by Barbara Gardner (63)
  • Time for Themselves by Christine Haire (67)
  • Chewbacca's Chant of Joy by Sarah Macht-DeWitt (77
  • Reap the Whirlwind by Marcia Brin (part of the "The Storm Cycle" "First Lesson" in Flip of a Coin #11, and "Run Before the Storm" in Kessel Run #4. "It is a a darker universe based in part on Lucas' thumbnail bio of Han in SKYWALKING, which also tells us that Wookiees have the Force. From this bio, we know that Han, for example, spent half his childhood with the Wookiees and, therefore, at the least, was exposed to the Force at an early age. Meaning, of course, that his comments to Luke in A NEW HOPE were deliberately misleading. Even with this brief bio, Han's origins remain completely mysterious.") (Star Wars) (reprinted in Who's Scruffy-Lookin'?) (78)
  • No More Dreams by Mary St. Cyr (82)
  • Images of Darkness, Images of Light by Carol Moffat (86)
  • Reversal of Words, poem by Veronica Wilson (100)
  • Shelter by Catriona Campbell (102)
  • Knight Magic by Debra Edwards & Mary St. Cyr (This is a story in which a unnamed fan dreams and meets Luke Skywalker, the dream becomes real, and Luke takes her back his world permanently. It is an example of Tuckerazation, but it is also a tribute and memorial. The story is dedicated to Fran Carbain.) (110)
  • Truth and Consequences by Karen Ripley (Episode 4 of "The Virgin Prince Series" -- most of the series is in "The Wookiee Commode," Episode 6 is in StarQuest.) (119)
  • Images, poem by Julie Phipps (134)
  • Paths of Darkness by J. M. D'Agostino-Toney (135)
  • Corellian Centerfold by Karen River
  • Life on the Millennium Falcon by Laura Michaels (149)
  • Return to Alycia by Paula Freda (155)
  • Poem by Paula Freda (173)
  • The Emperor's Revenge by Marti Schuller (174)
  • Poem by Paula Freda (184)
  • The Wookiee Commode Guide to Star Wars Zines 1986 by Sharon Saye (185)
  • Prisoner by Jeanine Hennig (197)
  • Interview With the Sith Lord by Betsy Afton (201)
  • Word Puzzle by Lynda Vandiver (204)
  • Welcome to the Alliance by Jill Thomas (205)
  • Jedi Baffler by Marci Erwin (230)
  • Opportunities by Christine Haire (232)
  • The Significance of Ducks in the Star Wars Saga by Sarah Laker (234)
  • Journey into Darkness by Carolyn Golledge (After his rescue from Jabba, Han learns his eyesight will gradually fail. Should he go ahead with his plans to marry Leia? Can he manage the Endor mission? Will he survive being kidnapped by former smuggler friends?) (236)
  • Puzzle Solutions (280-281)

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 4

I thought WOOKIEE COMMODE 4 was extremely good, on the whole. It is certainly a beautiful looking zine. The artwork is outstanding as always, with the cover being especially gorgeous, and in color, too! I can't single out every story for comment, but here goes.

For starters, there is "The Lieutenant and the Generals," by Samia Martz, featuring Jeni Petersen. I'm very partial to this character and I think she's written in a good, realistic manner. I only hope that all these stories will be collected at some point in time, even if it does take several volumes!

"Reap the Whirlwind," by Marcia Brin, was another favorite of mine. I thought having Han be blind after all was a nice concept, well maybe "nice" isn't the word to use, but interesting at least. Also, I never thought about why the second Death Star didn't blow right away, and Marcia provided a neat solution.

For some of the same reasons, I liked Carol Moffat's "Image of Darkness, Image of Light." Two Lukes, huh? Again, a very nice plot twist, besides seeing Leia develop her own talents. "Shelter," by Catriona Campbell, was another story concerning Han Solo's background. Well, there may be a lot of them, but I thought, it was well-written. Besides, I'm a suck er for Han Solo.

"Knight Magic" is certainly in a category by itself. It is a MarySue, but when I saw who'd written it, and the way the story was progressing, I knew what I would find at the end. It was certainly a very loving and heartfelt tribute to Fran and, as such, it touched me very much.[10]

Karen Ripley has a terrific post-JEDI series going, and I loved this episode, "Truth and Consequences." The character of Ahnjihn is very interesting, and so is Jeetah. There are all kinds of possibilities here, and I can't wait for the next installment.

Jeanine Hennig's "Prisoner" was beautifully done. And 3etsy Afton's "Interview With the Sith Lord" made me laugh. Betsy, you know you could take on Vader any day!

Carolyn Golledge also has a blind Han Solo is this a trend? However, the story is, as always, completely unique, entertaining, touching; what else can I say? When it comes to a story by Carolyn, I run out of superlatives. I enjoyed every story, but I don't want to write a book here, so I'll just say a general thank you to all those whose names I didn't mention. I would also like to take this opportunity to thank all those who have been kind enough to comment on my own stories. Both the praise and in some cases the very helpful criticism have been appreciated. Feedback is vital![10]

What a beautiful, attractive, fantastic, stunning, unbelievable, etc. color cover on WOOKIEE COMMODE 4. It took my breath away. Thank you, Scott, for a super job, and thank you, Mary and Samia, for providing it in color.

I enjoyed all the stories. My favorites were "Nightmare," by L.A. Carr; "The Lieutenant and the Generals," by Samia Martz; "Image of Darkness, Image of Light," by Carol Moffat (I liked the idea of a Darkside Luke image "clone"); Paula's "Return to Alycia"; and of course, "Journey Into Darkness," by Carolyn Golledge (being the Han fan that I am). Excellent stories, poems and art. Great centerfold!

A note to Sharon [Saye] ; Please do a WOOKIEE COMMODE Guide to SW Zines for 1987. You did a great job. Some of the zines mentioned, I didn't even know existed. It was a big help. So pretty please??

Another great job well-done, so you two take a bow.[10]

Your WOOKIEE COMMODE 4 is wonderful, the best ever, better than a warm Wookiee and then some. Thank you for putting it out and saying there will be another. What with so many zines going the way of the Force, it's so very good to hear that you will be going on to WC 5, and beyond.

I loved the cover, but that inside cover by Rebecca Carey brings a smile every time I think of it; beautiful! The stories were great, with my best- liked being "Reap the Whirlwind" and "Journey Into Darkness."

You have made a zine that is a joy to read and look at.[10]

First of all let me congratulate the both of you on winning Best SW Zine at MediaWestCon for WOOKIEE COMMODE 3. The two of you truly deserve it, and let's hope it happens again next year for this one. I also want to send my condolences to Sarnia regarding her father's death. I I know what you are going through, and it was a nice tribute to your Dad.

This zine has to rate as one of the best ever. That cover sure was a mind-blower, and I want to congratulate Scott Rosema on a wonderful job of combining SW with Indiana Jones. It was a super idea. I also want to say that the inside front cover of Han and Leia really got my blood boiling. Great work by Rebecca Carey, but I sure would have liked to have seen more of Han (snicker). Also, the back cover of Luke was beautiful, and Laura Virgil should also be commended.

Dianne Smith's art work just keeps getting better and better, and the one of Han with his newborn daughter is my favorite. Keep up the good work, my friend. Your work is simply "out of this world."

I loved Ruth Radecki's story about Han's "conversation" with his newborn daughter. It really was adorable, and when he talked about Leia being the love of his life, it brought a tear to my eye. Great stuff. I'm one of those people who truly believe Han and Leia marry after JEDI, and I love reading stories in this manner.

I thoroughly enjoyed "Welcome to the Alliance," and Jill Thomas has created a wonderful "future mate" for Luke. I just loved Shayla more and more as I read on, and believe me, you will be seeing many more wonderful stories from this lady. She is a super writer.

Carolyn Golledge's "Journey Into Darkness" as always is another winner. What more can you say about this woman's writing than the fact that it is brilliant? I figured Han would have more sight problems than what he xperienced, and her portrayal of Han and Leia's relationship is beauti ful. I absolutely loved the tender ending.

I want to thank Catriona Campbell for her dedication of "Shelter" to me. I may have given her the idea, but she did all the work and she did it beautifully. A great clone story from Carol Moffat ["Image of Darkness, Image of Light"] . It was extremely suspenseful and held my interest from the first page to the last. I loved how she portrayed Han and Luke, and I hope we will see more of her stories in the future. Great work, my friend.

"Knight Magic" was super. I think it would be wonderful if Luke could come alive from a picture. I s;ire know I wouldn't think twice about taking off with that gorgeous guy. A big thanks to Debra Edwards and Mary St. Cyr for bringing to life our fantasies. Also, Mary St. Cyr's "No More Dreams" was a wonderful insight into Luke's thoughts about his father. Keep up the good work, kiddo.

Christine Haire did a super job on Han and Leia's bonding, and bringing up the point that Bail Organa could still be alive. That was a surprise ending, and I loved the story very much. I especially loved the line that Han says about Leia being a quick learner in the love-making department. That was super, Christine.

Last, but certainly not least, I would like to comment on Marti Schuller's "The Emperor's Revenge." First let me say that Marti is a friend of mine, as are a lot of the other authors in this zine, and her writing is exquisite. As a matter of fact, this is one of my favorite stories that she has written, but, Marti, how could you possibly not let that gorgeous Jedi be able to reproduce himself? Ha ha! This was brilliantly written and packed with a lot of emotion, but as Marti herself knows how I feel on this matter, Luke can certainly restore the Jedi order and still have someone special in his life and have a family. Just the thought of Luke not being able to father a child makes me shudder. Luke's been through enough in his life, to have this burden added on top of it. A great story, though, my dear, and do keep up the good work.[10]

There's only one problem with a zine the size of WOOKIEE COMMODE 4 it would take another small-sized zine to LoC the whole thing! So, I liked it all, but I will mention only those things that to me were extra special. First of all, "Journey Into Darkness Carolyn does it again. The lady is fantastic. Both the problem and the solution were beautifully worked out. The Lybarger illos for the story were also great.

"Shelter" by Catriona Campbell—This lady is great. The story was wonderful, the characters so well done, and it explained so much of why Han was the way he was. The drawing by Dianne Smith was great also—the children, young Han and his brother— you could just see the man in the boy.

"Nightmare" and "The Lieutenant and the Generals"—it was a toss-up as to which I liked most. Great stories, and both well done, so I'll just say they were both enjoyable. I especially liked the part in "Nightmare" that explained how Vader first realized Luke could be his son. As you probably know by this time, I'm a long-story addict; but this time there were two short stories that were wonderful—fantastic, just plain great.

"Family Man"—the love, gentleness, protectiveness. All the things that are Han are there. And what kind of pressure would have to be applied to get a copy of the Dianne Smith drawing—gods, it's beautiful.

"Reap the Whirlwind"—Marcia B one of my favorite authors. No, no, no, noooooo! You cannot do this to Han! Not that the story isn't well-done. I don't think this lady could do a poor story if she tried but to take away Han's ability to fly, it's just not fair. Only one solution I can see: Antoher story remedying this problem. You can't leave him like this! And again the Dianne Smith drawing; how about a copy of this one, also? Lovely.

The back cover drawing of Luke, and the centerfold, were great. (It seems that I'm using that word a lot: "great" but what else can I say? So great it is!) The Wookiee poem (?) saying? (I call them what- have-you's, since I really don't know what they are) where Chewie is worried about reaching 300 was fun. And I think that's just what that walking carpet would do.

Keep up the good work; the zine was great.[10]

Another first-rate job! I don't know how you do it, but I really don't want to, just keep it up! [That puts zine-editing into the same category as sausage-making.. .you really don't want to know what goes into it! MU]

Long live the COMMODE! All the stories were great, but here are some personal favorites.

"Welcome to the Alliance," by Jill Thomas; love to see a sequel to this one!

"The Lieutenant and the Generals," by Samia Martz; I love Jeni Petersen, please keep writing about her.

"Reap the Whirlwind," by Marcia Brin; an especially well-written story. "Truth and Consequences," by Karen Ripley; really like this series of stories. "Reversal of Words," by Veronica Wilson; Anakin/Vader is my favorite, and this was a good poem. "Paths of Darkness," by J.M. D'Agostino- Tonev: liked the Aalt woman and the idea of Luke and a woman.

"The Wookiee Commode Guide to SW Zines," by Sharon Saye; always helpful to know where to find stuff.

I also really enjoyed the art in this issue. Always love Karen River, and the Corellian Centerfold is fantastic! And I'm a Luke fan. Rebecca Carey is also exceptional. Her color illo of Han and Leia was nothing short of a masterpiece. Also liked the Luke and Jeni illos on pages 51 and 58. Dianne Smith's Han is fantastic! Where has she been hiding? Also liked Laura Virgil's Luke from page 99, and Dani's art.

You guys have a wonderful zine here. I wanted to write and tell you so you know there is yet another person who feels this way.[10]

I received my copy of WOOKIEE COMMODE 4 a few weeks ago and am still drooling over the cover. Did you know you'd printed a "coffee table book"? The inside cover was delightful.

I enjoyed all of the zine, for various reasons, but forgive me if I only comment on my favorites. All the contributors, however, should be proud of their work and for being in such a great zine.

By the way, congratulations on winning the Fan Q Award at MediaWestCon! It's well deserved, ladies.

"Return to Alycia," by Paula Freda— There were some very interesting ideas in this story and what a sad, hideous creature Aexeis was.

"Reversal of Words," by Veronica Wilson—The sympathetic insight Veronica brings to light on Lord Vader never ceases to amaze me. She gives her readers new depths of understanding into the Dark Lord's being. This particular poem is my favorite of hers. It's so beautifully presented, I can actually feel the stirring of Anakin's rebirth. Great work!

"Shelter," by Catriona Campbell—I liked this story a lot. The mental images of Han and his little brother very moving and add a new layer to the relationship between Han and Luke.

"Truth and Consequences," by Karen Ripley—This was an interesting story with good characterizations. The plot, concerning the Ahhrd Jial especially, is quite intriguing. I trust there is a sequel? The holovid filming sequence was very funny, too.

"Welcome to the Alliance," by Jill Thomas—This was my second-favorite story in this issue. Han was captured perfectly in character, as was Chewbacca. Leia seemed a bit too cool to me until I realized that this story takes place in a time when she was still struggling with her emotions and duties. The young girl, Shayla, was well-rounded and believable as a new character. I look forward to more from Jill in the future.

"The Lieutenant and the Generals," by Samia Martz—This was a nice story with a believable portrait of the young Jeni. I like the way Han comes across very much. Even Chewie is himself. I just have a prejudice against love interests for Luke, or I would have found this the best piece.

"No More Dreams," by Mary St. Cyr- —Mary knows that I am not a fan of Luke bond-mate stories (there's that prejudice again), but I do like the sentiment of this story. I do disagree about the appearance of the spectral plane dwellers being limited, but that's my personal point of view. I do believe Mary has portrayed Luke's pain with tender care.

"Image of Darkness, Image of Light," by Carol Moffat. I love the idea of this Dark Luke and the challenge he represents for Luke and Leia. "Knight Magic," by Debra Edwards and Mary St.Cyr—If only Luke would step out of one of my photos! I know just which one, too. SIGH.

"The Wookiee Commode Guide to SW Zines, 1986," by Sharon Saye—I LOVE this feature! I only wish there were more quality zines like WOOKIEE COMMODE for we poor contributors hungering for markets. Any chances of broadening this article and making it a regular feature?

"Journey Into Darkness," by Carolyn Golledge—Well, as they say, best for last. What can I say about this story? This was my favorite, and what an incredible talent Carolyn i has for capturing our heroes perfectly!

I'm SO relieved Carolyn didn't give in to the temptation to make Han a Jedi, but I love the idea of his Force sensitivities. This Australian can really spin an adventure to keep the reader on the edge of his/her chair. Incredible! Fantastic! More, please!

One final word and I'll give someone else a chance. With Father George not making the announcement at the Tenth Anniversary celebration that all SW fans were longing to hear, a great number of skeptics are beginning to pronounce gloom and doom for the future of SW fandom. I say enough! If the Trekkers can hang on for twenty years, are we less loyal? Never! Come on, out there.

Support your heroes and fine zines like this one. Keep the Force alive and[10]

Where to begin to say how much I enjoyed WOOKIEE COMMODE 4? First, a hard-earned congratulations to Mary and Samia! Fan Q again! You really musta offended a lot of people! Keep it up. Hear you will be publishing earlier next year? Good, perhaps I shall be prevented from going into complete withdrawal... and you'll have time to do two issues per year, right?

Okay, THAT front cover! What an eye-catcher! Had the privilege of thanking the artist in person. Wish he'd do more SW. This is a collector's item for sure. Attracted a lot of attention on my rather lengthy travels last May and June.

The inside cover? Watch for steam marks, folks! Rebecca, the things you do to us! And the finishing touch with that wonderfully pensive Luke by Laura Virgil (recognized by several comments in airport lounges.. .isn't that Luke Skywalker? Wonder what she's reading?). And another good laugh from Sherry on the inside cover. And in between this fantastic pack- aging? The contents more than lived up to the promise, and to tell the truth, I thought that might have been a bit much to expect! What a wonder ful feast of stories, all so carefully, painstakingly presented. The most noticeable aspect for me, and cheering, was the abundance of new writers and fresh approaches! Welcome, every one, and please keep feeding my habit! Liked having so many short stories for a quick "snack" in between the main stories.

The first story that I turned to was Ripley's. I've been waiting to read that sequel for a long time. Am so glad there will be more. For me, Karen paints all the characters just as I imagine they should be. Three-dimensional, capable of humor, affection, and darker emotions. I particularly like the fact that she doesn't leave out the everyday touches; e.g., the comments about food, and the reactions to the filming of the holovid. Am very much involved not only in the plot, but also the developing relationships between Ahnjihn and his new friends. What a cliffhanger for an ending! And I must thank Laura for the lovely illo on page 130.

This is going to be a long LoC if I don't learn control!

I liked Julie Phipps's little poems. Concise, vivid images. Couldn't quite swallow the premise for L.A. Carr's "Nightmare," but it sure had me glued to every word! Liked the background details, and smiled over the ending.

Dianne Smith's portrait for "Family Man" warmed me as much as Ruth's touching, insightful words.

Also enjoyed another installment from Samia. She just keeps on finding new depths to the relationship between Jeni and Han which intrigue me, much as their discussion about the benefits or otherwise of being treated as "special."

"The Battle," by Barbara Gardner, is a very clever telling of the throne room confrontation in ballad style.

Liked the marriage ceremony Christine Haire describes for us in "Time For Themselves." Vows were very real.

A particular favorite was Sarah Macht-DeWitt's "Chewbacca's Chant of Joy." Captured the exuberance of the celebration perfectly. Beautiful final prayer: "May all our lives be joy-brightened and the dark ever-vanquished."

Marcia Brin never fails to evoke emotion in the reader. And that illo from Dianne Smith, taken from the carbon-freezing sequence! Creepy ending. Really changed my perspective on that line!

Mary St. Cyr's work shows a very tender touch. My personal preference is for more do, less talk, but the exchange between Anakin and Maari was believable.

Carol Moffat has a talent for creating an eerie atmosphere that grabs you up and carries you along. Clever idea, a clone of Luke; hope to see more expansion of this theme. Thought Leia's skillful use of the Force may have been a little too easy, but that is probably a set-up for future stories. I am by no means an expert judge of poetry, far from it, but Veronica Wilson has what it takes. The fifth verse of "Reversal of Words" is nothing short of brilliant. A good poem is one you can analyze over and over and still find new ideas, new paths of emotion. This is very good.

I read Catriona Campbell's "Shelter" twice. A new slant, and very moving.

"Paths of Darkness," by J.M. D'Agnostino-Toney was fascinating in its wealth of information on healing and the Force and possible prejudices. "Life on the Millennium Falcon" was a welcome laugh and well-placed after the gloom of the former story. I really enjoyed this and would love to read more. Thank you, Laura Michaels.

For some reason I couldn't quite "get into" "Return to Alycia." It was a clever plot and very well-written, but seemed somehow more "Dungeons & Dragons," and so kept intruding on my attempts at thinking SW. But that's my personal bias. The characters were true to the films. Liked Chewie's "epilogue."

I liked the vivid detail of Marti Schuller's stories, but prefer her more adventure-oriented tales to the introspective, as "The Emperor's Revenge." While this would be a savage blow to Luke, I'm not sure it would affect him so badly. Still, I was touched by the conclusion, and Luke's new discovery of himself and his "children."

"The Wookiee Commode to SW Zines 1986" is a handy piece of information ...and a good way to become bankrupt!

Jeanine Hennig's "Prisoner" gives us a revealing look into the soul of Luke's mother. A shame Lucas bumped off his Mrs. Sky walker. .. Rebekah would have been a scene-stealer! Bet Jabba would like her to dance for him! Ha!

"Welcome to the Alliance," by Jill Thomas, was fun, if a little predictable, but I loved the verbal clashes and Solo was very much in character. Good action art from Dani.

Thanks, everyone, and more please![10]

"Nightmare"—a very good story and a believable alternative. Leave it to Luke to bear his father's sins in a vendetta that Han hadn't even claimed to begin with! Very touching. "Family Man—I'm not much of a Han fan, and I don't usually read his stories, but I liked this one.

"The Lieutenant and the Generals" — this is the first of Samia's stories that I've ever read, and I thought it was really good. Funny, though, that I never imagined Luke's apprentice would be as young as Jeni is. I suppose that comes from the assumption that all Jedi start at the age that Luke did, which is a false assumption because Yoda originally claimed Luke was too old to be trained.

"Reap the Whirlwind"—interesting story, although I'm not of the belief that Han was or could ever be a Jedi. My favorite part was Han think ing of Luke's claim on the Death Star and how the Force takes to heart what one declares himself to be in it. "And Darth Vader was not one to emulate." Why not?

"No More Dreams"—another touching story. "No more dreams, Luke." Loved that. But then, I'm a sucker for Vader/Luke stories. *sigh* "Reversal of Words"— I loved this! (And I am not biased, Veronica!) It brought tears to my eyes, especially with the illo accompanying it, and that single tear on Vader's mask (although it's physically impossible).

Loved that illo of Luke on page 180! I might frame it someday! Welcome to the Dark Side, Sky walker! (Who says blonds can't look menacing and mysterious?!?) [Who? Who?! Geez, not me! MU] Those eyes!

Bring back "The Wookiee Commode Guide to SW Zines" in 1988! A very helpful article.

"Journey Into Darkness"—great!

(What did I say about not being a Han fan?) Carolyn Golledge has a well-known reputation for get-Han stories, but this was the first time I'd ever read one of her stories to find out first-hand. This one didn't seem too bad to me. I've done a lot worse things to both Vader and Luke than what Solo went through. (I believe the stories about your stories, though, Carolyn! I've even heard there's a Corellian warrant out for you dead or alive!)[10]

For starters, both covers are gorgeous, with the added witty visual joke of the front cover continuing in the tradition of WOOKIEE COMMODE covers. But Rebecca's inside front cover has me green with envy (as well as shocking pink from much hotter emotions...). Wish I could handle an air brush like that!

I must again mention my sympathy for you for your loss, Samia, and give nod to the tender gesture of the dedication. Oh yes, I'll admit I was one of the ones "frantically skimming" the editorial to see if there would be a #5. What can I say, I'm a hooked die-hard, not just on SW, but on your consistently solid, meaty zine.

My apologies in advance to anyone slighted by omission. I've been remiss for some time in doing LoCs at all, and in the interests of making time to do one, I'm staying short and hitting only the personal highlights. That doesn't mean there weren't some other pieces I enjoyed—just had no comment. For artists, since I started with them, Dani is always excellent, less action content than usual (but with emotion capturing head shot of Luke on page 17), but still there's the demonic "Luke" on page 89, and very nicely composed blaster fight on page 220, which captures the tension and claustrophobia, and she always gets a natural relaxed body English in her figures, as on page 206.

If I already didn't have the inside front cover as evidence, Rebecca Carey has the kind of grasp of anatomy and sense of gestures that heightens character relationships; I could point to all her art for "The Lieutenant and the Generals," especially page 43 and page 53.

The surprise is Dianne Smith branching out from straight portraits. But the riveting Han of "Reap the Whirlwind" shows she's still good at the former, and that one a particularly good likeness.

Also, of course, Karen River contributes an excellent centerfold that shows she can catch a real spark of life, even in more informal, looser technique. Speaking of varied technique, my favorite Laura Virgil pieces are the Han on page 279 and Luke on page 99. They have more impact than her quite good pencil work and show a surer, more polished design than with similar black & white cover pictures of hers I've seen. Excellent handling of the strong blacks. TAGS also presents a strong Luke—I've seen the color version, and the drawing is tonally well-thought-out enough to hold up well in black & white.

While I miss a longer, more intricately plotted piece like your earlier Jeni stories, Samia, I enjoyed the development you offered here. For all that both Rebecca and I borrow from your appearance for the character in our illos, Jeni is no MarySue, and because she's a three-dimensional person, with whom you've troubled to develop a slow, psychologically sensitive relationship with all the movie cast, she's the most convincing love for Luke I've read so far in fan fic.

"Nightmare" breaks new ground in situation—I don't mind non-ROTJ— especially in the attitudes (or assumed reactions) which are confronted. A little different from the usual Han-and-Luke-reconcile-over-Luke's-parentage stories. "Time For Themselves" went along as at least a nicely described missing wedding scene from ROT J, if nothing new to add to similar stories (except for the very funny bikini-clad Ewok), until Bail Organa was sprung upon us. A startling and novel direction the story could have developed was tossed in with scant preparation and no explanation. (Bail is "father"?! Is this alternate universe, or Leia's determined loyalty; we're never told.) It reads like an afterthought, but if it had been a plot point built up to from the beginning, it would have lifted a pleasant rehash to a fresh, novel story. Now "Image of Darkness, Image of Light" does indeed go beyond the multiple retellings of the same scenes to pick up a fresh storyline and open promising avenues for future develop ment. Only trouble is some lack of development, background explanations to better set situations up. As it is, the story feels unfinished at the end. Granted, it leaves room for a sequel—which I hope is the case because this is an intriguing premise. But there needs to be more of a period to this particular story.

"Shelter" is more retelling, but as I understand it, Catriona Campbell is a newcomer from Scotland, and couldn't be in a position to know if certain themes have been heavily mined already through years of fan fic.

Personally, I'm pleased to see the continued healthy enthusiasm of new blood, and fan literature being so ephemeral, if we have to go through another transitional phase while old themes and situations are re-discovered and explored, at least the writing here is strong and has style. The flashbacks are a new variation on the familiar shelter story, so it's possible always to find something a little different to illuminate. A good start.

Speaking of good starts, Karen Ripley's new universe just gets more involved and more exciting with each installment. In "Truth and Consequences," she necessarily concentrates on possible sibling Ahnjihn, but not at Luke's expense, and I appreciate that Han and Leia not only sound right in character, they've not been altogether elbowed out of the picture. I hope both will take a more active part to come, but that's a personal desire. The series as developing is proof of a viable future post-ROTJ. I especially love the touches of leaven ing humor which prevents bogging down in too turgid a preoccupation with just Force philosophy and family trees, over forward action and definite story-telling. Holovid, indeed, heh! "Life on the Millennium Falcon" is amusing and thus well-placed follow ing the bleak "Paths of Darkness," which ends in bittersweet, wintery peace at best (on a purely personal bias, I can't see Leia or Han giving up on Luke that way, and the Alliance even in the films and novelizations always seemed too admiring and yearn ing for the Jedi to distrust their stability so. The whole situation seems rather a set-up to cut Luke off from Lucas's framework so the author can have him interact exclusively with her own characters.

"The Emperor's Revenge" is a good story on a fresh subject, just marred by too saccharine a device the Disney-esque animals which brings about Luke's resolution and acceptance.

Having read Sharon Saye's previous excellent—and exhaustive—surveys of SW fiction and post-ROTJ fiction, I really welcome this update, and hope it becomes an annual feature. The research is painstaking and, this time out, integrating the bibliography is very convenient.

"Welcome to the Alliance" is another tried and true tale (even perhaps too close in spirit to Samia's "Learner" series), but again the characterization is good all around and the writing flows. I look for more good stories from writers like Jill and Catriona, as they evolve on to fresher material. What can one say for "The Significance of Ducks in the SW Saga," except my sides hurt? I have missed the rollicking wit from previous parodies; seemed we'd all gotten too serious to write them anymore. How delightful. ..right down to the bibliography, wicked. . . wicked.

Last but far from least, "Journey Into Darkness," my favorite this time... yes, well, besides the fact that Han is a major character and I've a hopeless fixation, it's a long, meaty, fully-developed adventure. Hey, Carolyn's restraining herself these days about trashing the Corellian, and still retains her gift for action and unhackneyed complication.

And I'd better wind down before this is as long as a phone book! In all, another varied and moveable (and moving) feast more, please![10]

First I'd like to say something about the artwork. Well, I love the cover by Scott Rosema. It's excellent. The inside cover by Rebecca Carey left little to the imagination. The back cover by Laura Virgil was also good. Others I liked included the lovely one of Luke on page 99. And Dianne Smith's Han Solo on page 79, and several others throughout the zine.

As for the stories, I feel there are a few I should point out. Samia Martz's "The Lieutenant and the Generals" was very well written. I like the character of Jeni Petersen; she blends in well with the other characters. I hope Samia continues these stories.

I also enjoyed Mary St.Cyr's "No More Dreams." I have read several of Mary's Mari Correl Sky walker stories, and they are very good.

Carol Moffat's "Image of Darkness, Image of Light" is a very good story. Carol is a good friend of mine, and

I have watched her stories grow better and better. Together we created the "Dark Luke." Catriona Campbell's "Shelter" is excellent. Treena is another friend of mine, as well as being co-editor of my zine, ONCE UPON A GALAXY. Treena is one of the best amateur writers I know.

I just loved "Knight Magic," by Debra Edwards and Mary St. Cyr. Why can't something like that happen to me?

Karen Ripley's "Truth and Consequences" was very interesting. I also like the character of Ahnjihn.

I'd love to see the movie "The Whip Master and the Escaped Molaarian Slave Girls"! Different. "Return to Alycia," by Paula Freda, was very good, but I could never imagine the Emperor loving anyone. Marti Schuller's "The Emperor's Revenge"—I enjoy Marti's style, but I would hate to see Luke without the ability to father a child.

"Welcome to the Alliance," by Jill Thomas, was enjoyable. I like her style and I like the character of Shayla Nightstar.

Carolyn Golledge has an excellent style; her "Journey Into Darkness" was very enjoyable. But to be truth ful, I can't imagine Han having the abilities to use the Force or be a Jedi.

Next, on to the poems. I enjoyed Paula Freda's work. I also liked "Reversal of Words," by Veronica Wilson.

The rest of the zine was very entertaining and I look forward to future issues.[10]

At long last, here is the LoC for WOOKIEE COMMODE 4. To make it short, it's great. From front to back, it is an excellent zine. I love the front cover. I think it would make a great poster and it also seems slightly reminiscent of the "Raider's" poster.

Perhaps it's the style in which it's done. All I can say is I would sure like a larger version to hang on my wall.

The inside front cover—well, all the male fans of the princess get to see her sans clothes. So how come Han still has his pants on? Give all us wickedly-minded Solo fans a treat, too. [Well... how about the wicked- minded Luke fans, eh?? MU]

Before I go further, thanks for clearing up the mystery of the missing page that wasn't really missing. The story was great, but I wish that Becky and Renee had written that missing scene, if only to save on confusion. There is so much really good and wonderful stuff in this issue that it would take too long to comment on it all, so I won't try. However, there are a few things I will say a few words about.

"Nightmare"—I thought this was going to be a pretty standard Solo rescue, but it wasn't. The idea of Luke and Han having to spend the night at the old Lars farm was chilling enough, never mind finding out that memories of events there still remained. Han's concern for Luke, his frustration at not getting a straight answer from him, was well portrayed, and it's typi cal of Luke to expect that Han would follow custom and kill him because of what Vader had done to him. Also typical was the logical way that Han showed Luke that it was his place to exact payment from the Dark Lord. "Family Man"—I'm sure that Han has never expressed such thoughts to anybody before. That he is speaking to his newly-born daughter, telling her all the things that come from his heart, makes this an even more poignant story. Somehow we all knew that he's a softy at heart. Dianne Smith's illo for this piece captures all the tenderness that Han has kept i inside for so long.

Samia Martz has included another one of her stories about Jeni Petersen. They are all quite good, and this one is no exception. Pm beginning to think that Han finds it a trying experience being big brother to two Jedi Knights, but he keeps on doing it anyway. m Marcia Brin puts forward an interesting concept—that Luke will become another Vader because he chose to let his father live; and Carol Moffat has given a separate life to Luke's rejected Dark side. I have never seen a fan story using this as a premise. I would like to see more confrontations between the two, if we can only avoid damaging Han Solo in the process. "Truth and Consequences"—this series get more interesting with every new installment. Who is trying to keep Luke and company from the Ahhrd Jial records? Who stands to benefit from keeping them a secret? I can hardly wait for the next story to find out. [...But the real beauty of Karen's stories is that no one ever finds out anything! MU] The description of the holovid filming nearly had me on the floor with laughter. I could picture the whole scene in my mind, especially the collapse of the catwalk. Having been privileged to watch some behind the scenes stuff at a movie location, I know how those things happen.

"The Emperor's Revenge"—I must admit that i hadn't thought of this side-effect from the battle with the Emperor, but it seems possible.

I liked the way Luke came to grips m with the problem and learned to live with it. I always thought that he would be too busy training Jedi to ever marry and raise a family, but I also thought it was possible that there might be a little Skywalker or two out there somewhere. After all, Luke had to have had a relationship with somebody over the course of the years.

My thanks to Sarah Laker for her informative piece on ducks. I'm sure I will never regard them as simple farmyard animals again. I'll have to watch ROT J more closely next time, and see if I can't spot Han Solo speak ing those very significant words she refers to. "Journey Into Darkness"—Carolyn has done it again. It has ceased to be amazing how she integrates her stories with Lucas's and makes them part of his universe. This is also the third story in the zine where Han Solo has been injured in some way, although Carolyn is always doing some thing to him. Solo's reaction to his eventual blindness was very real, as was his decision to leave and not burden Leia with his problem. I like the way Carolyn has given him a little Force ability, without making him a Jedi. The scene where he realizes he can use it to compensate for what he has lost is a real teary one.

Carolyn, like all the contributors, has the ability to bring these people to life, and make you care about them and what happens to them. As far as I'm concerned, a good writer must do that, and I don't think I have ever read a badly written piece of fan fic.

I'm waiting for WC 5. As long as you keep putting them out, I'll keep reading them.[10]

I've read and re-read WOOKIEE COMMODE 4 since I bought it in 1987. If the pressure of eyeballing text wore down the letters, some of the pages would be blank by now. My New Year's resolution (among others) is to write the zine editors whose work I've enjoyed, so here goes! I've lusted long and hard over that inside front cover. It's not the sort of picture you'd hang on your wall if your parents were prone to visit, but in that location it's perfect. could even admire it riding to work on the bus in the morning. Great inspiration for a long workday, even if it sometimes distracted me a little.

I liked "Nightmare" a lot. That interim between escaping from Jabba and getting off Tatooine is fertile ground for adventure, along with some revealing characterization. L.A. Carr accomplished a lot in a few pages.

"Family Man" is an example of something that looks easy to do, but isn't. I admit to approaching some of these introspective reveries with a lot of caution, and was pleased to see such caution wasn't justified here. Ruth Radecki picked a moment when Han would naturally be reflective and thoughtful, and she handled it without being maudlin or overly sentimental. Hurray! Her Han sounds like a heck of a nice guy. Samia, I also enjoyed "The Lieuten ant and the Generals." Unrequited love can be bittersweet and heart rending, as it is here, but you showed Jeni was strong enough to tough it out, even though she and Han were deeply affected by it. Also, it's nice to see Chewie playing an integral part. I'm crazy about Rebecca Carey's picture of Han on page 53, too. All her illustrations in this story are appropriate, but Han looking so frustrated and just plain cute. Can you tell I'm a Han fan?

"Time For Themselves" is amusing and touching, particularly in the wedding scene. I carry a vivid picture of Han rummaging through the hold, looking for his uniform, and enjoying it tremendously. However, I have to say that the ending spoiled much of my enjoyment. Having Bail Organa show up like he did was ultimately unsatisfying. There was absolutely no place for him in that story. There was no foreshadowing. There was no purpose. It was as if the writer didn’t know quite how to end her story and said, "Aha! I'll have Bail show up, and everybody will be happy!" Well, the characters may have been pleased, but I was completely thrown off. That pat, unbelievable, unreasonable ending did not jibe with a charming story marked, to that point, with clever dialogue, wit, and a steady sense of plot and pace. The strength of the story until that point only made my disappointment with the ending more intense. The writer should have stopped when she was ahead.

I liked "Reap the Whirlwind" very much. The tone of the story is pretty grim Han blind, Luke unintentionally courting his father's tragic fate. And Han would have to tell Leia he was blind soon, if he was unable to pilot any more. "I have a headache, dear," wouldn't put her off for long she's -too smart. The footnoted refer ences to KESSEL RUN and SKYWALKING made me nuts. Of course, I had to dig for hours to find those references, which were packed away in the most inaccessible corner of Chicago. Aaaarrrghhh...but I enjoyed the story very much.

"No More Dreams" sounded like Luke Sky walker's wish-fulfillment, which is just fine. It also sounded like a fragment from a larger story, which troubles me. I wanted to read the whole story!

"Image of Darkness, Image of Light" sprang from a terrific idea. It remind ed me of the Star Trek episode (was it "Mirror, Mirror?") [You're asking me?? I have trouble even remembering the title of this zine along about this time! MU] where Kirk was split by the transporter into two Kirks, one good and the other evil. In that episode, the two halves had to be merged, while Luke's evil side can run around the galaxy for ages, causing all sorts of problems. Lots of, possibilities. Good idea! My only complaint is, why trash Han?

"Shelter" is all right. Solid but unexciting. Chewie is in again as Old Reliable, which seems to be his usual role in recent SW fiction. Has anyone ever written him as a bit of a troublemaker, or dissatisfied with the way things work out? "Knight Magic" strikes me as the writer's wish-fulfillment, instead of Luke's. It's not really a story.

"Truth and Consequences"-applause, applause, applause! Characterization, plot, dialogue, pacing—it's all there.

All, that is, except length. This is obviously a self-contained short story, part of a larger whole, that will be continued into perpetuity. p I want more! Please consider printing the whole thing soon!

"Paths of Darkness"—another j winner. Thanks for introducing a believable Force sensitive, who is not a SW version of Trek's dewy-eyed Lt. Mary Sue. By the end, Luke has realized some hard truths about himself. He accepts them in iimi an adult manner, as he accepts the Aalt and the possible consequences of meeting her sister. I liked this mature Luke a lot.

"Return to Alycia" was a lot of fun, despite poor Han getting trashed again. I like the poem at the end, too. I'm beginning to understand better how Chewie feels. He may not live to 300, poor guy, but if he sticks with Han and Leia, he may I feel like it.

"The Emperor's Revenge"—another good idea. I'm truly impressed with p the creative plots some writers have come up with. In this case, as in "Paths of Darkness," Luke has to face up to some hard facts about himself. Living with these truths, rather than fruitlessly raging against them, is one large mark of adulthood. Many of us have faced such hard truths about ourselves, without the grace Luke exhibits here. Again m in this story, Luke matures enough to realize that some of his dreams will not be fulfilled and that he must make new dreams based on disagreeable realities. Luke grows up a lot here. Again, for me, this makes him more admirable and more likeable.

"Welcome to the Alliance" is another fun story. I really like the interplay between Han and Leia. That mom at the end, when he wonders is she's psychic when she tells him to remove his feet from the table, is truly price less. I could picture the look on his face instantly. And the attraction between Luke and Shayla—thank you, author! Another priceless moment. And it's great to see Luke as something other than an apprentice-keeper. Congratulations, Jill Thomas—you came up with some terrific ideas and knew what to do with them. And you didn't have to trash Han to do it.

And thank you, Carolyn Golledge, for "Journey Into Darkness." [...An author who is a gold medalist in the "Trash Han" Olympics! MU] In this story, blindness is what made Han really see. I didn't even mind his getting Jedi abilities, which I normally dislike as much as his getting trashed for no reason. I like to think that Han is a smart, strong, talented man and has become that way without mystical aid. Somehow, making Han a Jedi, in many stories, has become a way of explaining why he has such qualities —as if he could not achieve them any other way. It detracts from Han rather than enhances him. However, the way Carolyn handled it, I didn't mind at all.

I can't say much about poetry. For some reason, poetry usually leaves me cold. Really outstanding pieces affect me deeply. Anything less just seems to pass by.

All in all, WOOKIEE COMMODE is a strong, centered zine. I'm very fond of it, and I have tremendous admiration for your efforts, Mary and Samia, in getting such diverse material together in such an attractive format. Pat yourselves on the back a few times- —you deserve it.[10]

Like its name, The Wookiee Commode boasts an irreverent attitude towards most things, but it also delivers a rich variety of fiction, articles, poetry and art to its readers. The color cover by Scott Rosema is quite attractive, as is the most eye-opening inside front cover in Star Wars zine history, by Rebecca Carey. May all their covers be as offensive.

The fiction in issue 4 continues the mix of well-known authors and new names. Marcia Brin offers a new story, "Reap the Whirlwind," in which Han accepts the punishment he must pay for running from his destiny, while he worries about Luke and his brush with the Dark Side. Christine Haire's Han Solo is more concerned with mundane problems, such as proposing to Leia, in "Time For Themselves."

Leia arranges a break from bureaucratic routine for Luke and Jeni Petersen while they accompany Han Solo on a trade mission, in "The Lieutenant and the Generals," by Samia Martz.

While Karen Ripley continues her post- JEDI adventure as Luke, Leia and Han journey to Spirella, a leisure planet, that just may hold the answer to Ahnjihn's parentage in "Truth and Conse quences." "Welcome to the Alliance," by Jill Thomas, is all Shayla Nightstar wants, but she has been burned so often trying to make contact, she has trouble believing a scruffy Corellian might be telling the truth.

"Paths of Darkness," by J. M. D'Agostino-Toney finds Luke so haunted by the Emperor it costs him his health, his friends and his freedom, until ties from the past offer him help. The Emperor continues to exact a price from our heroes in two stories. The first, "Return to Alycia," by Paula Freda, stars the Emperor's mistress, who plans her own revenge for his death; and the second, "The Emperor's Revenge," by Marti Schuller, reveals the physical damage the Emperor's Forcebolts caused Luke. The power of the Dark Side is also the theme of another story, "Image of Darkness, Image of Light," by Carol Moffat.

Dreams play an important part in several stories. "Nightmares," by L. A. Carr, are triggered when Luke and Han take refuge in his burnt-out home while escaping Jabba the Hutt. Luke is also plagued by nightmares in "No More Dreams," by Mary St.Cyr; but he receives solace from his mate's embrace and his father's love. Rebekah Skywalker is still haunted by Darth Vader in her dreams in another "Catalyst!" story, "Prisoner," by Jeanine Hennig. Dreams of Luke Skywalker may be more than imagination for a young woman in "Knight Magic," by Debra Edwards and Mary St. Cyr.

Carolyn Golledge provides the longest story in the zine, a first-rate adventure titled "Journey Into Darkness." Han learns after the Tatooine rescue that carbon-freeze has irreparably damaged his eyesight; he will be completely blind in six months. Everyone tries to cope with the impending blindness, but Han cannot endure the burden he is becoming, and leaves. It takes Luke, Leia and Chewie three months to find the Falcon after Han has flown into the Dark Reaches, and returned with a fortune of flame- gems. Luke persuades Han he can fly with Force training, but greed, and ambitious Imperials, endanger even this hope.

The Commode contains some distinctive art by Dianne Smith, Laura Virgil, Dani, Rebecca Carey, Melea Fisher, Wanda Lybarger, Betsy and Brian Afton, Sherry Charvat, Pat Easley, Vicki Laus, TACS,, Susan Perry-Lewis, and a centerfold by Karen River.[11]

Scott Rosema's cover for WC 4 was real fun and well-designed. What can I say about the inside cover? Smoking! It leaked steam all the way home from MediaWest. But artistically speaking, folks, the fluidity of Rebecca's figures is a joy.

Melea Fisher's art has always contained an exciting graphic quality, with her strong blacks, whites and grays, and her piece for Gardner's poem is a fine example. Veronica Wilson's "Reversal of Words" was a marvelous poem; the subtle shadings of Vader's hidden, ambivalent emotions and thoughts were very compelling. "Images of Darkness, Images of Light," by Carol Moffat was a good, shivery new post-ROTJ adventure.

And now we get to the Aussie Corellian, Carolyn Golledge. At that time, I'd only read one story of hers. I "knew" her better through Southern Enclave and was pleased to meet her (among others) at my first MediaWestCon. "Heart of Darkness" was quite a tale! I could see by now that she also (like Ripley) had a great balance of lyrical, or hair-raising seriousness, balanced by humor. Her emotional shadings of character were very good, but I also loved her descriptive powers of landscapes, spacescapes, etc. I could stand on that planet of the dark reaches. As one who is drawn to the shape/character of landscapes themselves, I appreciate this extra attention.[5]

Issue 5

front cover of issue #5, Joni Wagner: "Tatooine Sunset"
back cover of issue #5, Dianne Smith

The Wookiee Commode 5 was published in 1988 and 288 pages It won the 1988 FanQ Award for 'Best Star Wars 'Zine.'

Art by Wanda Lybarger, Melea Fisher, Dianne Smith, Jean Kluge, Dani, Cheryl Mandus, Jean Kluge, Christine Haire, Rebecca Carey, Joni Wagner, and Catherine Churko.

NOTE: "Shimmer" by L.A. Carr appears in this zine. Two years earlier, it was on a flyer for Fantazy #3, but did not appear in that zine. The description of "Shimmer" on the Fantazy flyer was: "Luke Skywalker, Jedi Master, takes his duties seriously. Founding a new order keeps him busy and away from his family a good deal of the time. However, this doesn't ease the loneliness he tries to hide from Han and Leia. Then, when it comes almost unbearable, Luke meets a beautiful lady, a lady who knows him, and his needs, and is there for him wherever he goes. Her name is 'Shimmer.' She remains a mystery to Luke, this strange, faeire creature, but she promised to be with him always..."

From the publisher's flyer in Southern Enclave #19: "We have a color cover, inside and out, sure to quicken the pulse of any Star Wars fans-and the ability to raise Luke fans from the dead!"

From the editorial by Urhausen:

[This is] less an editorial than a thank you note. Every issue we are privileged to print pages of LoCs, most of them thanking us for publishing the WC. I think it's time to show you the other side of that, and thank the rest of the people who make this zine possible. We couldn't do it without the writers, artists, poets and yes, the LoC'ers! We are very proud of this zine, and all of you who have contributed to the WC should share in that pride. I also want to thank our buying public for their enthusiasm, and for awarding us two Fan Quality Awards in a row. Obviously, it wouldn't be possible to keep publishing a zine if no one bought it and we've even sold out the last two issues! With the demise of so many Star Wars zines, I think it's time to go back to our roots and thank all the zines that went before. Without Pegasus, Skywalker, Far Realms and all the rest, the WC simply wouldn't exist. They broke the ground and fired the imaginations of not only your publishers, but also of most of our contributors. So here's to all the other Star Wars zines past, present and future: Thanks to you, the Saga continues.

From the editorial by Martz:

Well, this issue I finally went an' did it. Something I thought I'd never do. I went an' wrote a SW story with none of the main characters in it. It wasn't until I'd finished "The Learner's Teachers" that I realized the only people in it were Jeni and her family. "Well, hell," I said, "didn't I swear I'd never—!" 'Course, folks, you realize that all of this Jeni business was only going to be something I did for a little while. Then I'd get back to my "real" writing. Now it's five years later, the "real" writing is in on the floor of my bedroom, and Jeni and her family have taken a life of their own. I guess it's just like Jeni says, "If it was easy, everybody'd do it."


Ah—to quell those nasty rumors. Number 5 is NOT our last issue. Powers willing. We're already planning for Number 6, thank you. For those of you who are interested, there is going to be a "Dita" sequel. If you're reading this, Becky and Rene, get with it, okay?

I'm not sure what Jeni's going to be up to the next time around, but she'll be up to something, you can depend on that. "Maker, Martz," she'll holler. "Are you gonna get me into another mess?"

flyer for issue #5, contains a story that does not appear in the zine: "For Here Or To Go?—Ruth Radecki. Art by Dani. Luke and Han explore a strange planet, and discover that in space, "carry-out" takes on a whole new meaning!"
  • Editorials (3)
  • Letters of Comment (4)
  • She Who Waits by Betsy Afton (21)
  • The Learner's Teachers by Samia Martz ("A story of the young Jeni Petersen. Being a Jedi is never easy, especially when coming into your birthright so young can put your life in danger.") (part of the First Steps Universe) (22)
  • The Circle Continues by Carrie Keeler ("A strange old desert hermit once again holds the secret to both the past and the future of the Jedi.") (36)
  • Blood Bonds by Rachel Natasha Mohr (43)
  • Sweet Nothings by Marti Schuller ("Han Solo inadvertently raises anonymity to new heights when he gets "slimed" on a strange planet.") (44)
  • Paradox, poem by Veronica Wilson (59)
  • A Corellian's Dream, poem by Julie Phipps (61)
  • Shimmer ("It's a fairy tale" -- George Lucas) by L.A. Carr ("Even Jedi Knights get the blues. Find out how Luke learns to live "happily ever after," with the help of a very special lady.") (62)
  • Spacer's Luck by Madalena Mumford ("An adventure of the young Han Solo. It was supposed to be a simple why does Han end up battling both giant spiders, and a young man's "crush"?!") (78)
  • Destiny, poem by Susan Zahn (105)
  • Let the Wookiee Win, poem by Susan Zahn (106)
  • Jedi's Return Maze by Marci Erwin (107)
  • Midnight Visitor by Mary St. Cyr ("Luke's children learn the true meaning of the Force.") (108)
  • Illusion and Disillusion by Karen Ripley ("So much for a "diplomatic mission"... all hell breaks loose on Spirella when the Alliance seeks to recover Imperial genetic records, and our heroes acquire a new ally, an alien of uncertain allegiance and great taste in clothes.") (Episode 5 of "The Virgin Prince Series" -- most of the series is in "The Wookiee Commode," Episode 6 is in StarQuest.) (113)
  • Dark Knight by Carol Moffat ("Who is this man who looks just like Luke Skywalker—and why does he keep doing these dreadful things?? A sequel to "Image of Darkness, Image of Light," from WC 4.") (128)
  • Ghosts of the Past by Christine Haire ("Luke and Leia discover their mother's love." This story is an immediate sequel to "Time for Themselves" in "The Wookiee Commode" #4.) (149)
  • The Wookiee Commode Consumer's Guide to 1987 Star Wars Zines by Sharon Saye (reviews and comments) ("1987 was not a good year for Star Wars zines; it was a rare zine that did not begin with a farewell editorial. Far Realms, Outland Chronicles, Circle of Light and On a Clear Day You Can See Dagobah [12] all ceased publication with the 1987 issues. Since the total number of zines was down, from nineteen in 1986 to ten in 1987, Star Wars fan fiction appears to be in trouble. The zines that were published had an interesting variety of stories, moving from material set before the first movie, to quite a number of stories focusing on the future of the characters after JEDI. More zines had color covers, and designs were fairly clear and readable. But typos were multiplying and often interrupted the readability of a story. As in last year's guide, this is not a critical analysis, but a general overview of the contents. The emphasis is primarily on fiction; cartoons, poetry and art are not dealt with unless of an outstanding nature. Not every contribution is discussed, mainly for reasons of space; but everyone who participated in a zine deserves recognition and praise.... Don't be downcast about the state of Star Wars zines. If you are reading this, another issue of The Wookiee Commode is here to offend everyone. And Southern Enclave, the letterzine of Star Wars fandom, reports plans for at least four additional Star Wars zines in 1988. Star Wars fandom is still here!") (156)
  • Enemy Territory by Carolyn Golledge (Sequel to Flicker Of Light. There was no explanation given in Return of the Jedi for Han becoming a General in the Alliance, where the Imperial shuttle for the Endor mission came from, and what the rebels’ feelings were about the cloned stormtrooper POWS. This story also explores Han’s misunderstanding of the relationship between Luke and Leia and his offer to stand aside for them.) (From a flyer: "Ever wonder just how the Rebels managed to steal the Imperial shuttle Tyderium? Ever want to read one of Carolyn's stories where someone other than Han gets trashed?? Love and hate, fear and loathing, morality and expediency, blood and gore—this story's got them all!") (168)
  • Just One More Child, poem by Barbara Gardner (224
  • Here Comes the Bride, poem by Susan Zahn (224)

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 5

[Shimmer]: Cute story I've read lately which proved to be an unexpected, pleasant surprise was "Shimmer" by L. A. Carr. All Luke fans should read this one! It's a sweet, touching story with a surprise ending that, despite the fact that I considered it a bit too cross-universe, was written so deftly that I smiled. This story is one of the few I've read that gave me that same uplifted feeling first felt at the end of ANH.[13]

The Wookiee Commode has a reputation for irreverence, but after multiple Fan Q awards, it also has a reputation for quality. Number 5 continues this tradition with a gorgeous color cover (and even more delectable inside cover). This issue really does have some thing for everyone, from fairy tales to cross-over aliens.

A perfect example of the Commode brand of fiction is Marti Schuller's "Sweet Nothing," in which a mineral inspection leads to unique complications when Han Solo is rendered invisible. Another wicked example is "Illusion and Disillusion," by Karen Ripley, who continues her "Virgin Prince" saga. On Spirella to investigate the Emperor's secret breeding program, events escalate quickly with a bombing, kidnapping, exotic brothel managers and a filmed escape. What can one say about a story with whips, ambisexual male brothels and a chance for Luke to be a holostar? Another humorous entry is Ruth Radecki's "For Here Or To Go?", where Luke and Han meet up with an alien that Ripley could identify.

On a more serious note, Samia Martz continues her Jeni Petersen stories with "The Learner's Teachers"; Jeni is only seven when she displays her Force skills, and her parents must take drastic action for fear of the Emperor's spies.

The cycle of mistakes repeats itself in Carrie Keeler's "The Circle Continues." Luke's alter-ego is determined to bring about his Lightbrother's death,, and uses Leia to accomplish this goal, in "Dark Knight," by Carol Moffat.

Famiillyy visits are the subjects of two stories; Christine Haire's "Ghost off tthe Past" has the rescued Bail Organa telling the twins about their mother. And in "Midnight Visitor," by Mary St. Cyr, Luke's son is visited by Kenobi, who explains that not all Jedi have to be fighters.

L.A. Carr's "Shimmer" is a lyrical fairy tale, when a dance with an elusive lady leads to more mysterious meetings for Luke, and finally a chance for happiness.

Madalena Mumford's "Spacer's Luck" is a young Han Solo adventure story, where the desire for Luzzari gemstones blinds Han to the dangers of an undisclosed cargo. And finally, Carolyn Golledge has a fondness for filling in missing scenes from the films, and in "Enemy Territory" she explains how the Alliance acquired the shuttle they used to penetrate the Endor shield by sending Han, Luke and Leia on a fateful encounter with a clone Stormtrooper.[14]

Another absolutely fantastic issue! Y'all just keep getting better and better. For starters: those covers. stories. Unfortunately, extremely Whoa! Very nice. I bet those increas ed heartbeats and wildly eratic pulses could be heard around the world.

You did a fine job on "The Learner's Teachers," Samia, even without our favorite people in it.

Another well- done story was "Sweet Nothing," by Marti Schuller. I couldn't help but laugh at poor Han's predicament. I liked "Shimmer," by L.A. Carr, and "Spacer's Luck," by Madalena Mumford. Susan Zahn's poem, "Let the Wookiee Win," was one of my favorites, as well as Dani's cartoon below it. I loved the graffiti!

Karen Ripley's continuing stories are great. Her "Illusions and Disillusion" is no exception. That holovid scene with Han as the 'Whip Master' (shades of Indy!) had me rolling on the ground. Can't wait for the next installment.

Carol Moffat's sequel, "Dark Knight," was good. This is like all those "Friday the Thirteenth" movies where Jason doesn't die, he just keeps coming back for more. Will we be seeing more of the Darkside Luke? I hope so.

The "Alien" monster in the SW universe?! Oh, no! Mavbe we could get him off-loaded onto a Star Destroyer and have him munch out on the Imps. Ruth Radecki's "For Here or To Go?" was cute.

I loved Carolyn Golledge’s "Enemy Territory," but then I love all her stories. Unfortunately, extremely little of the "Trash Han" theme. I did like her idea of the clone-rehab. Very nicely done.

To the ones I didn’t mention, fear not. I liked everything in WC 5, from cover to glorious cover. I can hardly wait for WC 6.[15]

Would you believe me if I told you it's taken me this long to write this LoC because I haven't really gotten a chance to read it, due to the fact that everyone keeps borrowing it? Honest! I show it to someone, they see that eye-popping inside cover and instantly want to investigate The Wookiee Commode in greater detail. I finally got it back for a little while, so I'll say my two credits worth.

First off, I want to congratulate everybody involved with WC on their second consecutive Fan Q Award! It's certainly well-deserved, and from the looks of WC 5, I get this 'feeling' that you guys're looking at another one. I'm just honored to be included with this issue, and here's to MediaWestCon. May our dreams come true again![15]

Starting at the beginning, Joni Wagner's color cover is great! I like the eyes. As for Jean Kluge's art, what can I say? It's almost enough to make a loyal Solo fan like me falter. That's saying a lot!

I must comment on the size of your LoC section. Although I haven't been in the positive fandom action of writing for very long, I can appreciate the importance of reader feedback, and seeing eighteen pages of your zine dedicated just to other peoples' opinions is absolutely wonderful. That means you care, and that makes us work even harder.

"She Who Waits" has got to be my favorite short piece in the whole zine. Betsy, in my opinion, has managed to capture an extremely elusive part of Leia's character, and done it beautifully. It's always the first thing I turn to whenever I pick up the zine, for it sets the mood for reading the rest.

It's about time Samia covered how Jeni actually got into such a mess, and "The Learner's Teachers" filled in a lot of questions. Her family's worriment was obviously well-founded and, for me, knowing ahead of time what would eventually happen to her parents made the story even more moving.

"The Circle Continues" was a true tale with an interesting twist. The irony of it must have been awfully painful for Luke. I expect a sequel, Carrie!

"Blood Bonds" was an insightful look at Luke's reasoning to commit suicide rather than face the dream- shattering truth of who/what his father really was. The hopeful ending made the piece complete.

Marti Schuller's "Sweet Nothing" was sweet, but far from nothing. The idea of invisibility has been used by so many sitcoms that I thought it had simply run itself into the ground but she managed to give it a new twist: Han Solo invisible? Geez, the possibilities are endless! His sneaking into Leia's apartment time and time again is right in character. Also liked the way she described his sinking into that mucky stuff; very vivid. By the way, what happen ed to that little bit of liquid that had oozed into a crack in the Falcon's floor plating? It could still be lurking around the ship's innards, waiting to pounce on some unsuspecting passenger! Han's line at the end left me with a wide grin. Cute.

Veronica Wilson has got to be the only writer I can think of who gives Darth Vader a true human side. Although still determined to turn his son to the Dark Side, there's real kindred emotion there, as if to show that it really wouldn't take much on Luke's part to make Vader see the Light again.

I liked "A Corellian's Dream" as well. (Hell, I liked everything in this zine!) Julie summed up Solo's involvement in the SW saga in half a page, and another universe to boot!

"Shimmer" has got to be one of the best Luke stories I've ever read. I tend to be picky when it comes to Luke, perhaps because few writers actually give him a good ending. "It's a fairy tale..." is true, but this tale spun by L.A. Carr left me feeling good inside. And another beautiful drawing by Jean Kluge! Although I can't quite recall reading anything else by Madalena Mumford, after reading "Spacer's Luck," I get the distinct feeling that she's been writing for quite a while. It was great; well-written, compelling and right in line with the Han Solo portrayed in the movies. She managed to keep up in intangible mystery of Nehron/Neriphtha right up to the time she wanted us to know, and I respect her for that, because I like to think I'm usually pretty quick at that sort of thing. As for Dianne Smith's illos, what can I say? I look for her artwork, for it not only captures Han Solo, but Harrison Ford as well. But, to almost-quote one of my favorite archeologists. "Spiders" Why did it have to be spiders?

"Midnight Visitor" is probably my favorite piece by Mary [St. Cyr]. A touching scene with Luke's children that warmed me up inside. Dani's artwork, as usual, was up to her sky-high standards!

What a tease! Karen Ripley, you did it again! Reading your stories is like chasing a tail: just when you think you've finally caught up to what's just happened to our heroes, you throw in a new twist, and then I have to wait until the next issue! (Hey, Mary and Samia, think you could turn out more WC's faster, so I don't have to wait so long?) [Uh, Sue, we'll just pretend we didn't hear that...! MU] Now I have to wait until next issue to find out if Han keeps the whip! That's masochistic, Karen! Needless to say, "Illusion and Disillusion" was great!

Ah, now we finally know where that extra Luke came from in Carol Moffat's continuing saga. Interesting. I believe many writers (myself included) avoid Leia's training because it's so difficult to think up a way to test her resistance to the Dark Side and make it convincing. The tree wouldn't be original, and that's something we all try to achieve. Carol has managed to prove Leia's strength, and still have it turn out for the best. I've been a strong fan of Melea Fisher's artwork, and I wasn't disappointed.

Thanks, Christine, for giving me an idea as to what Luke and Leia's mother, and Leia's foster father, could have been like. "Ghosts of the Past" was a touching piece.

And thanks should go out to Sharon Saye. I, for one, would probably have never heard of some of the more obscure zines had I not read some of her guides in this issue, as well as in previous ones. It's got to be hard to narrow down an entire zine to just a couple of paragraphs (obviously!), and I want you to know you're not being taken for granted, Sharon. "For Here or To Go?" left me laughing and sweating at the same time.

I'd had the privilege of seeing "Aliens" with only five other people in the entire theater during the midnight showing; that had to be the scariest movie I've ever seen! The ending was wicked!

Oh boy, where do I start to describe Carolyn Golledge's latest installment in the Falconer's series? She never ceases to amaze me. Having been fortunate enough to know ahead of time a little of what "Enemy Territory" was about, it made the waiting even worse, but worth it. In particular, I liked the camaraderie between Han and Rieekan. I guess I'd always sensed that in TESB, and she brought it out beautifully. And it's about time somebody covered Han's sudden generalship! She also managed to keep that uneasy tension and uncertainty between Han and Leia, which I myself find hard to do, since I know they'll finally get together. Oh, I could go on and on, and she knows that, so I'll just say she's weaved yet another story that's totally conceivable and well within the realms of George's universe. Bravo, and you better keep writing or I'll send my cat down there to straighten you out! Kato's worse than a Wookiee!

Finally, Barbara Gardner's poem really makes a person stop and think, which is usually a feat in itself. "Just One More Child" was a very moving piece. I knew Vader had a good side to him.

Well, I think I've said it all. This is a little longer than I'd planned, but, heck, it's only testament to the quality of the zines Double D Press has been turning out. Keep up the good work, please!

P.S. I almost forgot to mention Wanda Lybarger's wonderful artwork. I'm addicted! The one on page 170 is my favorite, probably because I'm a neck person, and Solo's got quite a neck![15]

I loved it! I hope that you will continue on for many more issues. There is a disturbing dearth of SW out there these days. Your WC is a bright spot in that universe.

I loved "Sweet Nothing." A purple Corellian would be a sight to behold. The idea of Han smelling like a French house of ill repute is interesting.

"Enemy Territory" is yet another gem by Carolyn Golledge. I liked the development of Kiren's character, as well as the interaction between Han, Leia and Luke. Wonder how he made out with the Alliance? I hope Carolyn will be able to tell more of his story.

That irritating "Illusion and Disillusion" by Karen Ripley, why can not it be longer? The story is getting very interesting, and there are some intriguing possibilities, but to have to wait until the next issue is so frustrating.

Last but not least is that lovely "For Here Or To Go?" It was great!...

I will be looking forward to WC 6. Thank you for making such an enjoyable zine.[15]

Again I find the Commode well worth the money. As usual, there are a multitude of differing views of the Star Wars universe, each and every one as fascinating as the next. What can one say about the inside front cover that hasn't already been said? Legions of Luke fans everywhere will be thanking you from the bottoms of their hearts, and the rest of us won't complain either.

Thanks for letting us know that you're going to carry this "bad taste" over into at least one more issue. You'd better. Of course, it would be even better finish if you had enough issues to finish Karen Ripley's story. It's really getting interesting now, and I'd like to find out how it ends. Will Jeetah be found before she translates the Imperial records? And where did Han really learn to handle a whip like that?

"She Who Waits"—I liked this. Betsy has gotten Leia's thoughts and feelings down perfectly. These are the things she would say to Han if only she had the courage to admit them aloud.

It's nice to see a little more background on Jeni Petersen, although I would like to read a bit more about her parents. Think that could be arranged? I guess it's because no one seems to write about what it was like to be a Jedi during the Purge. Maybe it's a subject no one figures they can do justice to.

"The Circle Continues"—So Luke's life became like Obi Wan's, exile in the desert, watching over the last hope of the Jedi. Interesting. Is the problem one of human failure, or is history bound to repeat itself, as has often been said? Seems to be a case of people not learning from their mistakes.

"Sweet Nothing"—I thought this one was funny, a nice bit of humor. An invisible Han is certainly a novel idea. Lord knows, the man can get himself in enough trouble when people can see him, without that, too. "Shimmer"—If you're going to give Luke a love interest, why not a fairy princess? The Force is akin to magic after all.

"Dark Knight"—I'm looking for another installment here. I don't think the clone is dead, but I believe he will pop up every now and then to cause trouble, and be a constant source of temptation.

"For Here Or To Go?"—Oh, this was too, too cruel, and I loved every word. Ruth has a terribly warped sense of humor. Hope to see more from her, although not necessarily in the same vein. Finally we come to "Enemy Territory," in which Han is spared a physical trashing, but do his feelings ever get a working over! Carolyn is just full of little revelations—Rieekan being a friend of Han's family, the Alliance trying to rehabilitate clones, that sort of thing. It does seems a little strange that of everyone associated with the Alliance, only Han viewed the clones as people. It leads you to wonder what the Rebels had planned to do with the clones once they won the war. Again, Leia is amazed to find that Han actually has feelings. It's almost as if she thought he had lost them somewhere along the line and had never gone back for them. However, it all worked out in the end, and Han actually did get the girl.

That's it for now, except to say that I can't wait for the "Dita" sequel. I'm dying to find out Leia's reaction to the first Mrs. Solo. I just hope the problem can be resolved without offing somebody.[15]

Congratulations! You guys have done it again. The Force is certainly with you. Issue 5 of WC is wonderful. The front cover of Luke, in "Tatooine Sunset" is excellent. Joni should be congratulated. It was the inside cover that made me drool. Jean Kluge has an excellent talent. And I just loved the title, "Let Sleeping Jedi Lie." Just the thought of it sends shivers down my spine! And, uh, elsewhere!

As for other artwork I loved, include the one on page 67 by Jean Kluge. That girl's amazing! Keep it up, Jean! I also liked Melea Fisher's art for Carol's story, "Dark Knight," especially the Luke on page 130. Dianne Smith's "Han Solo" on the back cover was also very good.

The poems were also very good. Especially Veronica Wilson's "Paradox." I hope she keeps writing poetry; it's not easy, as I should know.

On to stories: "The Learner's Teachers," by Samia, was very good, as I always enjoy Samia's little tales.

"The Circle Continues," by Carrie Keeler, was a nice little fill-in, very enjoyable.

Marti Schuller's "Sweet Nothing" was up to her usual standard, excellent. The end of the story was a giggle.

"Shimmer," by L.A. Carr, was really sweet and well-written; one of my favorites in this issue!

Madalena Mumford's "Spacer's Luck" was an interesting insight into Han's past life. "Midnight Visitor," by Mary St. Cyr, was also sweet. I love Mary's style, too.

Karen Ripley's universe gets more interesting all the time. "Illusion and Disillusion" was well-written, as are all of Karen's stories.

"Dark Knight," by Carol Moffat, was excellent. Carol's stories get better and better. Keep writing, kiddo! The Dark clone Luke is indeed a scoundrel—drool, drool!

Christine Haire's story, "Ghosts of the Past," was enjoyable, and the bit at the end when Luke and Leia saw the holographic image of their mother was really sweet.

Carolyn's stories go from strength to strength; her style is excellent.

"Enemy Territory" was a good example! I thought Kiren was an excellent character. Well done, also, Carolyn, on winning an award for your "Witness" story. Although I've yet to read it, I'm sure you deserved the award. I look forward to more of your stories!

Lastly, I really enjoyed Sharon Saye's 1987 SVV fanzine guide, which is very useful!

I really enjoyed the whole zine, and I can't wait for issue 6. The Force will be with you...always.[15]

I was so glad to see another issue of your fine zine that I read it too fast again. But I'll re-read and enjoy it for years. Keep up the good work, and congratulations on a well-deserved Fan Q!

The inside cover was beautifully done, and I'm sure you'll received lots of drooling comments. I love the title, but I could never follow it's good advice, of course. Ahem. But WOW! and Thank You!! on behalf of all we Luke fans for that glorious cover! I fairly swooned when my copy of WC 5 arrived and I innocently slid it from the envelope. This is the most gorgeous cover I've seen in ages. The colors are perfect and so vibrant. Ms. Wagner's talent is awesome; what a treasure this is. There is so much expression captured in Luke's eyes by this talented lady that every time I look at it, I feel as weak-kneed as a schoolgirl. WOW.

The rest of the artwork is excellent as well. Wanda Lybarger's illos for good as "Enemy Territory" were as good as kick out always, and I really got a kick out of.

I loved of Dani's cartoon on page 106. I loved Melea Fisher's ai-t for "Dark Knight," too. The illos for "The Circle Continues," by Cheryl Mandus, were great.

What especially the one on page 42. What talent can I say, so much artistic talent in one zine!

Now to the scrumptious stories. "The Circle Continues," by Carrie Keeler—While I whole-heartedly disagree that this scenario's set-up could ever happen, I found the idea at least an interesting one. "Paradox," by Veronica Wilson— Once again, Veronica brings chills to my spine, g goosebumps to my flesh, and strange s sympathies for the Dark Lord to my heart with her skill, She has such .a firm grasp on Vader's IS very soul, that it character, his never ceases to awe me. Bravo.

"Shimmer," by L.A. Carr—Okay, I'll admit it: I'm a sucker for romance and happy endings. So needless to say, I adored this story. I have long argued—unsuccessfully with most, I must confess—that Luke cannot have a personal commitment with anyone and still rebuild the Knight hood. This author has overcome all obstacles and dissolved all my arguments. Shimmer is perfect for Luke, and I applaud this union. A true gem of a story. Loved the art by Jean Kluge as well.

"For Here Or To Go," by Ruth Radecki—I'm fast realizing that I really like this lady's style. This particular story is a joyous example of excellent cross-over writing, never giving away the twist until the right moment, building the reader's suspense with skill. Marvelous! It was a shame the artwork, good as it was, gave away some of the surprise.

"Illusion and Disillusion," by Karen Ripley—Okay, you got me. This story was another nice piece, but I certainly wish someone had warned me in the beginning that it was indeed more of the same storyline from the previous issue. If a lengthy story choice must be divided, by author's choice or space necessity, how about either a recap of the prior part(s), or at least a "continuation of". Now, seriously, is this unfair to ask? Still, it's a good story, and I look forward to further installments.

"The Learner's Teachers," by Samia between Martz—The strong bond between father and daughter was very touching in this story of Jeni's girlhood. I also liked the protectiveness displayed by Sandor. Nice characterizations, and obviously a loving family caught in unhappy times. Well-told.

"Spacer's Luck," by Madalena Mumford. Being a devoted fan of Luke Sky walker, I seldom find stories when he is absent to be satisfying. However, I'm glad I took the gamble on this one. Not only is this story well-plotted and exciting, perfectly capturing the pre-SW, ANH young Solo, but the writing is of professional quality as well. A terrific read by another author I'll remember.

As they say, best for last. "Enemy Territory," by Carolyn Golledge-Carolyn's stories are always so superb, her characters so perfectly fleshed out, her talent so evident, that it is impossible to invent new ways to praise her work. All I can say is that we are all lucky to enjoy this lady's efforts. Carolyn, long may your imagination soar!

To close, once again thanks for the "collector's" cover (Sigh). and your hard work in producing such a quality zine. I hope it continues for years![15]

First of all, I would like to congratulate the WC on winning the Fan Quality Award! I hope you win it next time around! Well, this is the first time I've written an LoC, so I hope you folks out there are not offended by any of my comments. I haven't been writing long, and it was my friend Julie Phipps who first asked me to try working on a story, and it went on from there. So I owe Julie one! As the Corellians would say, "Ha ha!" I've also had a lot of help and encouragement from my friends Marti Schuller and Janet Mary Madden, so I would like to say a quick thank you to them here. Now, on to my comments.

My two favorite stories were "Enemy Territory," by Carolyn Colledge, and Marti Schuller's "Sweet Nothing." Carolyn is sooo talented, her stories are always excellent; I love how she depicts the Imperials as victims just as much as the Rebels. She portrays the characters so well, especially Han Solo! Keep up the good work, Carolyn! Marti's story has to be one of the funniest I have ever seen. I especially liked the ending; another excellent writer here.

I thought Carrie Heeler's "The Circle Continues" was extremely interesting! This sounded like an alterna tive story, and I do like them. I have read quite a few of them, but the idea of Leia and Han as Empress and Emperor is a totally original one. I enjoyed this a gi-eat deal, and would like to see moi-e of Carrie's work.

L.A. Carr's "Shimmer" was, as the quote said, a fairy tale. This I think was an original idea, to combine two concepts. By the way, whoever designed the pattern for the border on pages 63 to 77 for this story de serves a mention; I thought it was beautiful! [Border and letters were by Jean Kluge. MU]

"Midnight Visitor," by Mary St.Cyr was one of my favorites. I have always liked the character of Ben Kenobi, so I especially loved this! I thought Ben's character was captured perfectly.

I must mention "Paradox," by Veronica Wilson. She always seems to read Vader like no one else can; great stuff, Veronica!

"A Corellian's Dream," by Julie Phipps, was well-written; her poems are always clear, exact and direct.

Also, I must mention "The Learner's Teachers," by Samia Martz. I really enjoyed this story. The love between parents and children, Mira, Dorn, Jen and Sandor was put across to the reader so well! You could almost feel it.

Rachel Natasha Mohr's "Blood Bonds" brought to mind the moment when Vader told Luke in TESB of their kinship; and the pain in Luke's face when he realized the truth—great! I also liked "Destiny," by Susan Zahn; and "Let the Wookiee Win" was light- hearted and very funny. "Here Comes the Bride," I loved! "JJuust COne More Child," by Barbara GaGradrdnn<er, was a very moving poem, aind very well- written. The story, "Ghosts off the Past," by Christine Haire,, was one of the best in WC 5, I thought. I almost moved me to tears; and the idea of Luke and Leia's mother being a Jedi is an extremely interesting one. I also loved the idea of Bail Organa surviving to see the birth of the New Republic. If Christine is going to write any more of this series, I would love to read it! Great stuff!

Now I will say a word about the art; first of all, the inside cover, "Let Sleeping Jedi Lie," by Jean Kluge. Hubba Hubba! It's gorgeous! Jean, I want you to know I think your art work is fantastic! I am a Luke fan, so you can imagine my reaction when I saw this.

I also must mention the front cover, "Tatooine Sunset," by Joni Wagner. It's a beautiful portrayal of Luke; love those blue eyes! I also thought the artwork for the story "Shimmer" was excellent.

Well, those are my comments. Oh yes, I must mention "She Who Waits," by Betsy Afton. It was an excellent poem and well-written. I love reading poems, and I'm looking forward to reading the next issue of WC. Keep the Force![15]

Well, The Wookiee Commode did it again. Another great issue. I really cannot decide which story, "Spacer's Luck," by Madalena Mumford, or "Enemy Territory," by Carolyn Golledge, was my favorite. Both were very good, well-thought-out pieces.

"Illusion and Disillusion"—one of my pet love/hate relationships. It's a very good story, but since I hate continued stories with a capital passion, I get simply furious when I run into something like this. But since it's so well done, you keep wondering what is going to happen next. [Looks like Karen has anticipated this unrest...see the "prologue" to her story in this issue! MU] "Shimmer"—a lovely fairy tale. I do not generally like the mystical approach to SW (no, not even the ghostly reappearance of the Jedi), but this was a beautiful story and setting it off with the fancy letters and trimming was a grand idea. A very different approach to our SW universe.

"Sweet Nothing," and "For Here Or To Go?" -- both fun stories well worth five-star chuckles.

"The Learner's Teachers"—Well, none of the main SW people are here, but in this case it really doesn't matter, even though I'm a person who doesn't like what I call the "Hi, Luke/Goodbye, Luke" type of story. You know, those writers who use the SW universe as an excuse for really other story lines. I can't say this fits into that category. Granted, if one has not read any of the other "Learner" stories, it might seem strange; but in context with the others, it is very satisfying.

"Dark Knight"— I really did not like this story; it just seems to me that these characters are much too childish.

The cover art—wow! And Luke has such cute buns.

I particularly liked the art and the borders for " Shimmer."

Well, enough for now; please keep up the good work. I love your zine.[15]

I bought The Wookiee Commode 5 because of the front cover—it still melts my Luke-lovin' soul. The inside front cover was just a bonus! Many thanks for all the pleasure, Joni and Jean. Now, if I could just figure out how to hang it above my bed with out dismantling my WC... [This might be a good time to explain the origins of the gorgeous art that has graced our covers over the years. Although accolades and appreciation for the artist is always appropriate, the unsung hero is always the owner of the art! Very seldom is a piece of artwork of this quality just offered to us gratis, for publication, by the artist. (The covers of this issue are a pleasant exception—thank you, Dianne!) Usually our right to reproduce the art is granted by the" owner of the original piece, with the artist's consent. We wish to thank our generous, impoverished, art-collecting SW friends who have provided us with the use of such stunning pieces over the years! By the way, this is also why we can't provide our readers with prints, or extra copies, of the covers—the art belongs to the person who bought it, not you or us! Now, back to Janet's LoC! MU]

The Jeni Petersen stories are beginning to grow on me, I must admit to an intense prejudice against any female who gets too close to a certain blond Jedi, but Samia Martz writes so well! She's exceptionally good at dialogue, a bugaboo for the majority of fan writers. And the illos that went with the story! I especially liked the one of the dreaming Jeni.

I enjoyed "The Circle Continues," but the dialect was distracting—it's a delicate art to write the way people really talk without miring a reading down trying to decipher it. Otherwise, this might have been my favorite piece of the zine.

I've enjoyed Tasha Mohr's poetry since I first read it in the International Brotherhood of Jedi Knights' newsletter —and "Blood Bonds" was no disappoint ment. Tasha's very good at evoking a whole constellation of emotions in a few words.

Enjoyed "Sweet Nothing"—but whatever happened to the slimey goo that trickled through the Falcon's deck? Why mention it if it wasn't going anywhere in the story? (The things that keep a reader awake at night!)

The fussy border of "Shimmer" matched the baroque quality of the excellent story, but was just a little too much! Lucy Carr's poem, "Starting to Drift Darkly," was the first fan fiction I ever read that totally captured my love of Star Wars, and Luke's frustrated vulnerability, and I still turn to anything she's written first in a zine.

Spiders bite, not sting; and how the heck did the little simian get aboard the Falcon in "Spacer's Luck"? And then avoid constantly setting off the life monitors, if those things are supposed to be for the purpose of detecting stowaway vermin? A four-year-old Corellian child is certainly a lot bigger than a mouse. Okay, so I'm over-picky; but part of the fun of writing is the discipline to get out all the glitches!

"Night Visitor" was very nice, and I'd like to meet young Ben again. It's difficult to be a pacifist when everyone in your culture seems to glorify prowess in fighting, and I was glad Mary pointed out that there are other uses for the Force than war.

I must say that if not another story in Karen Ripley's endless saga is ever published, I wouldn't miss it. I like interrelated stories in an author's universe, but each one should stand alone. When you have to wait four or five years to finish one story—well, it's pretty difficult to sustain interest, no matter how good the story is. Karen writes very well—I very much enjoyed the first story in this series—but I really wish she'd get her act together and finish this story, and get on with another one!

The spirits of the murdered Jedi and the slaughter of the Order that Carol Moffat constructs in "Dark Knight" were interesting.

Sharon Saye's "Guides" are one of the best things in WC. I can't afford to buy many zines, and it's wonderful to have her comments to help choose which ones I'll buy, instead of groceries! (Of course, she makes me want them all!)

Since her story "A Debt Paid" in WC 2, I know I can depend on Carolyn Golledge to tell a good story, and do it well! I really loved "Enemy Territory"—the excellent dialogue, the believable and in-character interact ions of the characters, the hints into Han's past—until I got to Leia's react ion to the clone. No matter what her reasons, she was so irrational and out of control in her prejudices that my only reaction was "With people like this in charge of the Alliance, maybe we'd better keep the Emperor!"

Totally enjoyed Wanda Lybarger's illos for this story!

Here's wishing The Wookiee Commode a long and illustrious life! Thank you for being.[15]

Wookiee Commode 5 ought to break ground for the new Fan Q Award, best double-whammy covers!

My favorite story was "Enemy Territory," by Carolyn Golledge. I loved the interplay between the characters— not easy to sustain for such a long story, but she pulls it off, and tells a good, fast-paced story, and makes it fit into the framework of the films. Whew!

I also enjoyed "Sweet Nothing," by Marti Schuller. The image of Han being pelted by powder, then dunked in purple perfume, is impossible to resist. Being a Vader fan, I liked the poem by Veronica Wilson, "Paradox." It was a good, juicy one—almost prose, with believable inner dialog with my favorite Dark Lord.

Now if someone would come up with an inside front cover, "Let Sleeping Dark Lords Lie..."[15]

Holy Salamanders! The back cover of WC 5 is great, the front cover is great, and the inside front cover is... well, I still could not recover! Jean Kluge, whoever you are, you have made the sun come up, and exactly the right time. I had office troubles, and as I was facing a bunch of miserable deskworms, your picture shone in front of my eyes and poof! everything seemed trifling compared to those breathtaking square inches of skin. Thank you.

Thanks for the great "Jeni Petersen" story; I want more.

"The Circle Continues" — Carrie, you are cruel!

"Sweet Nothing"—very funny. "Paradox"—loved it.

"Shimmer"—usually I resent anything less scientific than the Force, but this time I forgive, for a good story.

"Illusion and Disillusion"— splendid background details!

"Enemy Territory"—thanks for the character of the clone, Kiren; we need more like him (no pun intended!).

Apropos, if the writer of "The Significance of Ducks" [WC 4] would want to contact me...? Sarah, your humor is very similar to mine; I want to see more of what you've done. We could exchange something here.

Thanks again for a great WC 5; looking forward to WC 6. Sharon Saye said 1987 was not a good year for SW zines Okay, we are in a tough position, with Lucas doing absolutely nothing to feed the flame. My fellow SW fans, it is in our hands. We cannot sit here whining to Lucas, "Gimme more." We have to keep this miracle alive.

A last sentence; Do you know of anyone else interested in making costumes for Luke dolls? I'd like to exchange ideas on the subject. Sometimes I feel I must be the only maniac scanning the closet for old purses to make spacer's boots out of. Tell me it is not so. [It is not so! I have seen other SW fans at cons with their Luke dolls faithfully clad in homemade costumes—so I know there are other "maniacs" out there! Maybe some of them will read this, and write to you. MU][15]

No doubt you will get a lot of comments on your inside front cover. It nicely done.

I loved "Journey Into Dark ness ." "The Circle Continues"— Well, I don't think Luke will necessarily make the same mistakes Kenobi did. Also, I have an aversion to Han or Leia becoming the next Darth Vader. But that's not the author's fault.

"Shimmer"—what a lovely, lovely story, complete with a happy ending, just like in a fairy tale. Luke simply was not meant to be alone.

"Illusion and Disillusion"— Karen Ripley's stories are funny, serious and just hugely entertaining. I guess that was an in-joke, Han with the whip?

"Enemy Territory"— my favorite. Thank you, Carolyn. There was a lot of missed communication, misunderstanding and missed opportunities, but it all came out right in the end. Everyone learned something.

Thanks for another entertaining issue.[5]

"The Circle Continues"—although I can't see Han and Leia turning (certainly not both) to the Dark Side, Carrie Heeler's story was intriguing enough to make me want to know what had happened, and what was going to happen. I've never seen her work anywhere else, and I hope she has, or will somewhere, expound more on her post- ROTJ story. I enjoyed Mary St. Cyr' s "Midnight Visitor." Her conversation between Ben and Ben was very realistic. Liked the conclusion that little Ben reached in coming to accept his gift. The story was nicely written in general. Dani is one of the first illoers I ever saw in print, and I have always enjoyed her work. She's good with her emotional responses of the characters, and good with backgrounds, too.

Usually Marti's stories let the laughter leaven the seriousness, but "Sweet Nothings" was a twist, an nearly continuous comedic romp. And the final specter (no pun intended) of Han doused and dyed in all that cheap cologne was hysterical.

Even though it didn't happen "in official," I enjoyed Christine Haire's "Ghosts of the Past," saving Bail from oblivion. It was comforting to see him sit down and tell the tale of Luke and Leia's past. I think I have read a (very) few stories where Anakin's wife or lover was a Jedi, but the twist on her coming along to confront him was pretty unique!

"Enemy Territory" was another great piece from Carolyn. The emotional reactions, fluxes and mis-readings by the characters is good, packed into an exciting adventure. She does very interesting explorations with the reactions to Kiren, Kiren's reactions and his inner battle, all in the double service of "story telling" and contemplating on acceptance, "person- ness," etc. And, though it happened before this story in particular, she was one of the first writers I read who really filled out Chewie's part. I liked that! And right with her, one of her "partners in creativity," Wanda generously lavished a whole bunch of good illos on us—thanks!

Yes, Mary and Samia, that was the condensed version of the previous WCs LoC! Onto WC6! I suppose we could go on a diet, but (urp) who wants to? Oh, I see—you don't want any more sore backs from mailing those "hefty, hefty" zines![5]

Issue 5 equals its predecessors, great! For starters, it's beautiful to look at with superb covers. I would like to give a special bow to Jean Kluge for her wonderful Luke, appearing on the inside front cover, who took my breath away when I saw it for the first time. In fact, it still does that whenever I open my copy. WOW.

Hot inside front covers are becoming a habit in the WC, and I' m sure none of the regular readers will complain about it. Who's next? More! Jean really has a stunning sense of anatomy; she's one of my favorite zine illoers. As always, I want to express my admiration for your usual illoers: Rebecca Carey, Dianne Smith Wanda Lybarger and the others.

Most of the stories are truly interesting. My particular favorites are "Sweet Nothing," sort of a very hilarious remake of "The Invisible Man," and "Enemy Territory," by Carolyn Golledge, a real pro writer. (How does she cope with her private life, being one of the most prolific zine writers, if not the most?) Please, keep on including the WC "Guide to SW Zines in issues to come, as I do appreciate being kept informed of what is going on in SW fandom in the USA.

Samia Martz and Dani's cartoons are incredible fun! A "Dita" sequel? My, my, great news! I absolutely loved that story, whose end was very unfair in my opinion. The letters of comment are also very interesting to read; in fact, I have a terrific time reading them in each issue. It is pleasant to see you publish them uncensored, and give everyone the opportunity to express their feelings about the WC. May the WC keep on offending absolutely everyone for a long time! To me, a French SW fan, isolated in a country far, far away, zines such as the WC are very precious. They are the evidence that SW fandom is still alive in our hearts and minds. I only had four and a half years of English at school, and even though comprehending the WC's contents isn't always easy for me, I manage to get it because of my big interest in your fanzine.[5]

Issue 6

front cover of issue #6, Dianne Smith: "Two Scoundrels"
back cover of issue #6, Wanda Lybarger: "An Ewok by the Shorthairs"

The Wookiee Commode 6 was published in 1988 and has 386 pages. Cover art is by Dianne Smith. Other art by Rebecca Carey, Nancie Renee Grove, Z.P. Florian, Wanda Lybarger, Catherine Churko, Melea Fisher, Mark Fisher, and Pat Easley.

flyer for issue #6

From the editorial by Urhausen:

Welcome to The Zine That Is—also known as The Zine That Devoured Lansing, The Incredible Expanding Zine, and The Zine That Didn't Know When To Quit! What can I say? People kept submitting stuff (and I hope they never stop)! Curiously enough, I find that each issue, as the zine gets longer, my editorial gets shorter. Maybe the zine speaks for itself. As you will soon discover, we have several continued stories in this issue [no, not—for once—one from Ripley!]. As a zine reader, I have mixed feelings about this fanfic phenomenon; but as a zine editor, I understand the necessity. We received some excellent, near-novel-length stories for this issue. Rather than have to reject these long stories for reasons of space, we have decided to divide them—even though we realize that this creates some... annoyance among some of our readers. (Look on the bright side: You know there'll be a Wookiee Commode 7—we have to finish all these continued stories!) My advice is this: If you really hate continued stories, don't read them!

  • Editorial (3)
  • Look What They've Done To My Son, Ma by Samia Martz ("Those darned Jedi! Han Solo is frustrated and infuriated

when his son. Bran, comes to grief while training with his aunt and uncle.") (from the First Steps Universe) (15)

  • Destiny Realized, poem by Sue Zahn (32)
  • Past Shadows by Marti Schuller ("Frustrated in his fruitless search for fellow Force sensitives, Luke rejects an angry young would-be apprentice, a decision that seems fated to haunt the Jedi Master. Part 2, "Shadow Clash," in WC 7.") (34)
  • The Smuggler, filk by Christine Haire, to the tune of "The Gambler" (56)
  • The Cave by Julie Phipps (57)
  • Word Puzzle by Lynda Vandiver (58)
  • The Galactic Inquirer by Z.P. Florian (59)
  • Mutiny by Carolyn Golledge ("Han tells the story of his and Leia's adventure with god-like droid aliens years after the Endor experience with Threepio. On honeymoon, Han and Leia uncover an Imperial plot to murder new Republic Senators. Luke too, is tracking down another angle on Imperial counter-revolution." Another summary: "Assassination attempts, hallucinogenic drugs, droid-worshipping cults, skinny-dipping— this fast-paced tale has them all, told in Carolyn's renowned and inimitable style!") (winner of a 1990 Fan Q Award.) (68)
  • Who's in the Mirror, poem by Marci Erwin (107)
  • Truly Disgusting & Tasteless Limericks by Irina Ozernoy & Rebecca Toon (107)
  • The Return of the Virgin Prince Series (Maybe): Preface to Union and Reunion Karen Ripley (108)
  • Union and Reunion by Karen Ripley ("Due to increasing consumer complaints about the seemingly endless episodic nature of my stories, "Union & Reunion" will mark—finally—the end of this tale. I'm not saying that it will mark the end of the "Virgin Prince" universe, since literary purists will undoubtedly argue that as long as even some of the characters remain alive, this alternate universe potentially lives on. But this episode will conclude, more or less, this particular story line. The following is a listing of the preceding episodes in this series, where they were published, and a synopsis of the plot to this point.") ("The end of the "Virgin Prince" series? With the help of Luke and Leia's Force powers, the Rebels are reunited with Jeetah. Will Luke and Leia and Ahnjihn's true parentage be known? Will the renegade Anti- Imperial Delegates yield to the Alliance? Will we ever find out who was kissing Jeetah in the docking bay??") (Episode 7 of "The Virgin Prince Series" -- most of the series is in "The Wookiee Commode," Episode 6 is in StarQuest.) (109)
  • 1988 in SW Fanzines, Or: The Year Luke Burst Cheerfully, article by Sharon R. Saye ("Nineteen eighty-eight was a much better year for Star Wars fanzine readers than expected. Many zines in 1987 were cursed with the dread burn-out editorial, and ceased publication; by the end of the year, only two zines were pledging to continue. Prospects did not look very promising for the future.... The results ranged from the amateur to the polished, with a nice mixture of new and old writers. Fortunately, the plague of typos that cursed Fortunately, the plague of typos that cursed 1987 zines seems to be in remission, except for one that gave me endless chuckles: "Luke burst cheerfully at the old Han Solo charm." Typos are y at the old Han Solo charm." Typos are a lot more acceptable when they are funny.") The zines reviewed were: (124)
  • The Captain of Her Heart, filk by Christine Haire, to the tune by the same name by "Double" (133)
  • Love's Strength by Sue Zahn ("Driven by his newly-professed and consummated love for Leia, Han Solo risks revealing an unsavory aspect of his past.") (134)
  • Star Wars Word Game by Lynda Vandiver (144)
  • Serenity, poem by Barbara Gardner (149)
  • Heat of the Night, filk by Christine Haire, to the tune by the same title by Bryan Adams (148)
  • Chal and Haccucha by Eric Goodman (145)
  • The Edge of Darkness, poem by Julie Phipps (156)
  • Warm Fuzzy by L.A. Carr (157)
  • A Jedi's Dream, poem by Julie Phipps (160)
  • The Jedi Way, poem by Julie Phipps (161)
  • Through the Eyes of a Jedi, poem by Julie Phipps (161)
  • Missing by Catriona Campbell Boyle (part one -- "During a fierce battle, Luke is badly wounded and the last Rebel transport leaves without him. He is stranded with a family who insist he does not mention his name for fear of Imperials." Another summary: "Wounded and stranded on an Imperial-controlled planet, presumed dead by the Alliance, Luke Skywalker struggles with an assumed identity as a simple farmer.") (162)
  • Truly Disgusting & Tasteless Limericks by Irina Ozernoy & Rebecca Toon (220)
  • The Princess and the Pea by Janet MacLellan (221)
  • Dark Odyssey, part one by Carol Moffat ("Luke Skywalker's Dark Clone returns, leaving Han, Luke and Leia for dead,

as he takes Luke's place as Jedi Master, and discovers a Jedi apprentice with a secret past.") (229)

  • The Traitor by J.M. D'Agostino-Toney/Janet Toney (246)
  • 101 Corellian Knights by Madalena Mumford ("Escaping from an Imperial labor camp, the young Han Solo meets hostile^ natives and a sympathetic Wookiee, and finds himself running afoul of an ancient curse.") (248)
  • Prometheus Bound by Roz Wheadon (the inside front cover art is for this story) (281)
  • vignette by Sarah Cohen (282)
  • So Let It Be Written, So Let It Be Done by Sarah Laker (283)
  • The Power That Is by Becky Cope and Renee Schiber (""Dita, Part 2," or "Han the Baptist"! Can Han and Leia make their mismatched marriage work? Will Luke find happiness in a surprising union of his own? A powerful and controversial tale of love found and love betrayed, of discovery and loss, of despair and redemption—and "the power that is."") (284)

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 6

Z.P. Florian's "Galactic Enquirer" is very funny (a clone war prequel) but also very clever with her unique creation "Hoth Industries". "Dark Odyssey", Part I by Carol Moffatt.. A really fine post ROTJ story pitting the Dark One (you know who isn't dead, after all) against our heroes... a nicely done Jedi Academy and apparent time twist. "Union and Reunion" by Karen Ripley. The infamous (some would say insufferable) KR wraps up her "Virgin Prince" universe, post ROTJ serial. Clever ideas, good characterizations and funny and lyrical writing (and yours truly did the illos for it).[16]

It's definitely a shoo-in for the Fan Q Awards! Thank you for sending such a good edition of THE WOOKIEE COMMODE. It was worth the wait.

There wasn't one thing in it that I didn't like. Everyone can write/draw well.

"The Power That Is"—Ms. Cope and Ms. Schiber really know how to keep the suspense going, I just had to see how the story was going to end. Are there going to be any more "Dita" stories?

"Look What They've Done To My Son, Ma""-—Anything by Ms. Martz is fun to read. I love the humor in her stories.

"Missing"—Ms. Campbell did a superb job! But waiting for Part 2—that's cruel and unusual punishment!

I enjoyed everything in the zine, but I kept the letter short. Otherwise it would match the size of the zine!

P.S. The back cover by Ms. Lybarger was a scream! The one of the inside front cover was an eye opener, and the front cover was great! That Ms. Smith can draw![17]

What a tome WC 6 is, and what a treasure! You have again produced an excellent zine, full of good writing and intriguing art. I'd say there's another Fan Q on the horizon for sure. (Tired of them yet?) Your hard work is much appreciated and so, from my padded cell, I repeat, I hope you continue to support SW fandom for years to come. (Don't groan? we know you love it, or your zine wouldn't be sooo good.) May the Force shine on your work always. Now on to my comments on this issue:

Since in the past I have often neglected to mention the fine artists that grace the zine pages I will refer to their work now. Dianne Smith's art, as usual, is lovely. I especially liked the cover. I also really liked Rebecca Carey's illo on page 22, Renee Grove's illos on pages 51, 170 and 247, as well as Wanda Lybarger's illos for "Mutiny," and the back cover was a scream. Catherine Churko's illos for Karen Ripley's story show a slightly different style than before, but one I personally prefer. Z.P. Florian's art for "Serenity" is also in a style I enjoy very much.

"Love's Strength" by Sue Zahn —this was a nicely handled love scene for our favorite twosome, with some good writing.

"Warm Fuzzy" by L.A. Carr— Ms. Carr paints a bittersweet picture I find quite believable and appealing. Nice work.

"The Traitor" by J.M. D'Agostino-Toney—This story was a new and interesting angle on a familiar figure. I liked it.

"Prometheus Bound" by Roz Wheadon—How timely! I received my WC 6 in the infamous month of tax-time, April, so this story was perfect. A fun (?) story.

"So Let It Be Written, So Let It Be Done" by. Sarah Laker . One of my two favorite short pieces! I love the scenario. A great idea!

"The Princess and the Pea" by Janet MacLellan—Wonderful!

My other favorite short story. I laughed aloud while reading this story, and I rarely do that. A delightful fairy tale send-up that I shall remember for a long time. "The Wookiee Commde Guide to 1988 SW Zines" by Sharon Saye—where does this woman get the money to buy all these zines? Can I arrange a loan from the same source? I really enjoyed the reviews, seriously, and commend Ms* Saye for her efforts on behalf of we more financially restricted readers who appreciate her opinions.

"101 Corellian Knights" by Madalena Mumford—As I've often said, I rarely enjoy SW stories that lack the presence of certain blond Jedi, but a well- written tale is always a pleasure to read and this story is no exception. I like the explanation for no Force-sensitives on Corell, and even the image of of Han Solo as a hero of tribal legend. How about a follow-up story when Han keeps his promise, though? (Sorry, I just love that Luke!)

"Union and Reunion" by Karen Ripley—First of all, thank you for the episode guide and story summary. It really helped re fresh a flagging memory on a good tale. Having followed this story from the start, more or less, I was very pleased to find its conclusion as satisfactory as its beginning, unlike other multi-parters that have fallen flat at their endings. I hope we will see more of Ms. Ripley's work soon.

"Dark Odyssey, Part 1" by Carol Moffat—Carol has such inter esting ideas, and this story is no exception.

"Mutiny" by Carolyn Golledge— Once again our Aussie authoring issue.

WC has provided us with an exciting, well-plotted story. I always love the humor of Carolyn's stories, and the special way she deftly handles the relationships of all the characters. Good job, mate!

"Missing, Part 1" by Catriona Campbell—although I've been lucky enough to be familiar with this epic tale for a long time, it still remains my favorite of this issue. Treena has taken an intricate story and filled it with believable characters while maintaining the SW people we know and love. Brett is delightfully authentic as a small child (so many authors depict children as mini-adults) and so impish! The humor throughout is well handled and a terrific break from the tense excitement. The Irian family is one of loving, comfortable identifiability and "Ryder" should consider himself blessed to have been welcomed by them, no matter how reluctantly. I look forward to the conclusion with eager joy. I love this tale and thank Treena for the undeserved dedication. This lady has talent galore!

Again, thanks for an outstanding issue. I await WC 7 with bated breath.[5]

I tell you, after the marathon LoC I did for issues 1 through 4, it will be a pleasure to just have to comment on one issue.

"Look What They've Done to My Son, Ma"—as always, this latest installment in Samia's series is extremely well crafted, with characterizations which are right on the mark. I do feel that Han over-reacts a bit to something as relatively minor as a broken arm (but perhaps we are intended to feel this way) . The situation was used well to show the over protective Han learning that he has to allow his son to be what he is by nature; that not doing so will hurt the child far more than the situations themselves would.

Of "Past Shadows"—Intriguing story. The parallels between Marcus and Palpatine, as well as Darth himself, are ironic. Nasty touch about Marcus being fathered by Vader, as opposed to Anakin. This storyline has a good deal of promise, so I'm glad to see that a sequel is in the works.

"The Cave"—well done tie-in. Explains how Luke became convinced of the good in Vader. It seemed to come out of nowhere in the films.

"Galactic Inquirer"—cute view of Imperial history.

"Mutiny"—as soon as I see Carolyn's name at the beginning of a story, I know I'm going to enjoy a rousing good action/ adventure. This story is certainly no exception. The cult was well-drawn and plausible; a good working in and use of the Ewoks' beliefs from ROTJ.

Thank you for continuing the overview of this past year's SW zines. For someone such as myself, who's gotten involved in other fandoms and thus isn't as involved in SW fandom as I used to be, this guide is invaluable.

"Love's Strength"—well and plausibly done tale. The loose ends were explained quite neatly and the characters were handled quite well and most importantly of all, kept in character!

"Warm Fuzzy" — ouch I Talk about bad puns; titling a "warm fuzzy" "Warm Fuzzy"—that's low, even for an inveterate veteran of word plays such as Lucy.

"Missing" — interesting story. Good use of detail in establishing the setting and new characters. Both new and established characters were well-handled; the medical detail was obviously well researched. This made the story as a whole both plausible and realistic. Parallels of Alex to Owen, etc., deepen the story. Will history repeat itself?

"Princess and the Pea"—deliciously sick story. Nice point about the test only finding a lazy, spoilt, selfish and arrogant person.

"Dark Odyssey"—marvelous open- ing. Story continues well from there. Minor quibble: If the Falcon crashed, why weren't any of them more seriously injured, and how can the ship still be repairable? Seems awfully convenient—or maybe it was supposed to be? Plot was well done and not predictable? can't wait to see what happens next.

"The Traitor"— nicely done. Fits what was established in the movies. I've seen a number of stories using this idea, but each of them without exception has contributed their own particular and original slant on the situation. "101 Corellian Knights'" — Involving story. Backgrounding for both Solo and the Corellians well thought out and established. The culture was believable and the action well handled.

"Prometheus Bound"—(Groan!) knowing Dianne and Roz, which came first, the story or the illo? Evil punchline.

"So Let It Be Written..."— nasty idea, but cute. Hit upon just about every cliche in SW's (and every other fandom's) fanfic.

"The Power That Is"—absorbing story, although the characterization of Leia (and in some places, Han) doesn't fit my personal perception of the characters. Guess that's the mark of good writing? the story absorbs you (watch out, Landru) even when you don't agree with the characters and the decisions they make.

Suffice to say that the art and poetry were more than up to your usual high standards. The covers, both inner and outer front, speak for themselves. [Yeah, and when you get a couple of boxes full of these zines together, the chattering is nearly deafening! MU] As for the back cover, what can I say? Wanda's usual wonderful work, a fun cartoon situation and an in-joke on Frantic to boot. You have your work cut out for you in trying to put together an issue 7 which will top this one. [Especially in tonnage... MU] A big thank you to both of you for the hard work and effort which went into making the zine a reality. The contributors are the ones who usually get the kudos, but rest assured that the work put in by the editors is both realized and greatly appreciated.[5]

At first I couldn't imagine why you were sending me the Manhattan yellow pages...seriously, I suspect you'll get few complaints for size. You have to remember that most of we addicts have been on a year's starvation diet, and you've not only beaten the MediaWest pack to the post, but done it with a gargantuan feast! Slurp! Looks go-jus, too; your new artists are intriguing, especially Catherine Churko's variant style, and then there's Dianne Smith's branching out ever more toward actual story illustrations...ahem. Lots of Han in bondage, sweaty...uh, where was I?

I admit, though, once past the art I went first to Sharon's article and was pleased to find it hopeful, if settling into a smaller, more compact fandom. I'm getting a little weary of so many fans constantly taking the patient's pulse even as they shout "Fandom isn't dead!" If we spent half the energy just sitting down and writing the darn stories as we do holding forums on its non-demise, we'd have a strong fandom! [Amen! MU] And the way to revitalize is to get out of ruts. Yes, that means me, too—I need to stop talking and sit down and write the dozen or so stories sitting around in outline stage

First though, I'm going to munch happily through WC 6, and be grateful its not only there, but going strong.[5]

I just finished wading throughreading WC 6—wow! I know you promised a big issue, but this was immense. Uh, I hope they won't be getting "bigger and better."

With all these stories it was tough to choose a favorite, but I think it must be "Mutiny." I don't know how Carolyn Golledge does it, but her stories are always so good—lots of Lucas like action plus a fine story. The Lybarger illos didn't hurt any—a bare-chested Luke and Han. I must be dreaming.

I also really enjoyed "Missing," even though it was only Part 1—arrgh! The Lasjaws were interesting characters and I'm fully expecting more Tamara and Luke stories, but only after "Missing, Part 2."

Cope and Schiber's "The Power That Is" was such a strong story but it went off in such a strange direction! I'd like to see more by these authors, but I sure hope Han doesn't have to go through anything else like that!

"101 Corellian Knights" was also good and very intriguing. All the background information on Corell was fascinating.

And' Chewie was certainly given a lot more characterization than usual.

Now, about those covers... You've got to stop doing this to me! There are just so many heart-stopping covers I can take. And they aren't at all good for my blood pressure (once the heart gets going again....) The Dianne Smith front cover was wonderful—love the express ions! And the notorious inside front cover—well, where do I go to get chained up in that dungeon?[5]

I haven't finished reading WC 6 yet because it's as thick as a directory! I'm having a great time! So far my favorites are "Love's Strength/' "The Power That Is," "Mutiny" and "Missing, Part 1." The front cover is a real wonder, and the front inside cover left little to the imagination! [Oh, I don't know...we can imagine quite a bit! MU] I always thought that the song, "The Captain of Her Heart," would perfectly suit Han and Leia! As always, I enjoyed very much the illos by Rebecca, Dianne, Wanda and all of the other regular gifted illoers who collaborate on your fabulous zine! I would immensely appreciate seeing more of Jean Kluge's work, and read some wonderfully- written stories by Ellen Randolph and Mary Jean Holmes in the next WC! Doing better than WC 6 will be a rather difficult job, but I guess you WC girls can make it![5]

Carolyn's "Mutiny" is yet another of her gems. I was able other of her gems. I was able to have a sneak preview of it last July when I traveled "down under." The complete story was even better. Her writing style is one of the best and was a direct cause of my journey there to say "g'day." Racing camels also played a part, but I try not to talk about how much I enjoyed camel riding in the Australian outback too much.

Janet's "The Princess and the Pea" was a wonderful switch on that old story. The pictures that come to mind are priceless. I had the honor of seeing Dianne Smith's art work at Norescon, as well as meeting her. Her portraits are even better in their original forms, even though that is hard to imagine. Just lovely! Wanda's cartoon of Han and the Ewok cub is priceless! The thought of that drawing brings a smile. As always, her other drawings add to the excellence of Carolyn's and Becky and Renee's stories. Her use of line is brilliant. Becky and Renee's "The Power That Is" is by far the hardest story to write about. Please don't take it as a negative comment. The story was excellent in every respect, but it was one of the hardest stories I have ever read. Why? I guess too much truth in the possible direction of the relationship between Han and Leia. I do want part. Just a few more parts, please? Twenty or thirty should do.[5]

This is my first attempt at writing a LoC, mainly because I've only just discovered the fantastic world of fanzines. That' s what comes from being stuck in the wilds of Germany. Initially, I only ordered WCs to satisfy my SW-crazy son, but what SW-crazy mum wouldn't take a peep inside, especially after seeing the glorious cover? I'm a fan of that irresistible Corellian, and just love anything about him. Well, having read WC 6 from cover to cover, here are my comments.

Starting with the artwork, I only wish I could draw as well as Dianne Smith. Her cover picture was wonderful; even Chewie looked like Chewie, and he's not easy to draw. The inside cover -- well, what can I say? Pity he had his leg up -- I know the zine is PG-rated -- I have to use my imagination instead, I guess. Same with the back cover, only this time a with a baby Ewok! The guy certainly likes to cover his modesty.

Liked the rest of Wanda Lybarger's artwork, too. A quick mention of the other artists, who were all very good, and it certainly adds to a story to have artwork.

Now to the stories. I think it's best to start with my two favorites, which were "Mutiny" and "Love's Strength." Carolyn Golledge is such a good writer, she should consider going pro. Her "Mutiny" had everything in it—humor, love and plenty of action. I don't mind her trashing Han, as long as it's not permanent. Sue Zahn's "Love's Strength" really captured the depth of love between Han and Leia, which seemed to be lacking sometimes in the movies, although we knew it was always there. Can you guess I'm a romantic at heart and just love happy endings?

In stark contrast to those two stories was "The Power That Is." Although Becky Cope and Renee Schiber wrote the story very well, I just hope that's not the way things turned out to be. I can't help feeling that in this story Leia was too much of a super bitch (getting rid of a small problem without even telling Han), and Han was too much of a bum (sinking to the depths of self-destruction). Luke marrying Han's daughter? That's another thing: Just how old is Han supposed to be in this story? A granddad indeed! I always thought Han was in his early thirties at the end of ROTJ. At my reckoning, this story makes him about forty-six. He certainly didn't look twenty years older than Luke and Leia in the movies. Having said all that, please, ladies, I'd like to see a sequel. Hopefully, they can work out their problems.

Loved "101 Corellian Knights." Another well written story and an interesting idea about how Han and Chewie got together. There's room for a sequel, I'm sure.

"The Traitor" nicely explains why Ozzel acted the way he did. Samia Martz's Jeni Petersen series has always been very good, and "Look What They've Done..." was no exception. Unfortunately, I've only read a few of the pre vious stories, but Jeni seems quite a character, truly believable.

"The Princess and the Pea" -- what a laugh! I love these fun stories, even though they don't have much to do with the Saga. The same goes for "Prometheus Bound" and "So Let It Be Written..." Great stuff. My favorite poem was "Destiny Realized," and a special mention to the two shorts on page 14 — very funny.

I'm not going to say much about the continued stories, only that I can't wait until WC 7 is out!

If I've left anyone out, sorry! Needless to say, there really wasn't one bad thing about WC 6, and a big applause to Mary and Sarnia for all their hard work and the loving care they put into the fanzine. My only regret is that I didn't discover WC before now, and WC 3 and 4 are now unavailable. Anyone out there have a spare copy? P.S. My son liked the fanzine, too![5]

Bravo, guys, on another wonderful issue of WC. When I see such time and care go into a SW zine like this, it makes me feel great that SW fandom is still alive and well. The cover by Dianne Smith absolutely blew me away. This woman just keeps topping herself. Great work, Dianne, and it was great to see some of your other wonderful pieces at WorldCon this year. Can't wait to see what you have in store for us for WC 7.

"The Princess and the Pea" was positively wonderful. A great comedy and well written. "Look What They've Done..." was another wonderful Jeni story, and I like how Samia brought out some fatherly qualities for Han as he worried about Bran.

"Mutiny" has to be one of Carolyn's best stories. A delightful action/adventure story mixed in with Han and Leia's marriage. Great stuff, Carolyn, and Wanda's illos (especially the one of them just coming out of the lake from swimming) were super. I can't wait to see what Carolyn has planned for the next one. Of course, it couldn't have been a Carolyn Golledge story without her trashing Han, but now it seems she has started on Luke. Now, Carolyn, leave the kid alone, okay?

Sue Zahn's "Love's Strength" was wonderful and well on the mark on how Han and Leia's relationship should be handled. She really portrays them so much in love and it was a wonderfully romantic story. The "R-rated" illo by Me lea was gorgeous, and one of the best I've seen dealing with Han and Leia making love in a long time.

"Missing" was pure excellence. Catriona portrayed Luke at that time exactly how he should be. A super action story interwoven with family love and trust, and I'm sure the conclusion will be wonderful.

"The Cave" was a wonderfully written poem by Julie Phipps. She seems to get better and better with each one of her poems. Also, "Past Shadows" by Marti Schuller and "Dark Odyssey" by Carol Moffat were exciting and extremely well written, and real ly kept my interest. I hope these two wonderful writers have something scheduled for the next issue, also.

Finally, I saved my negative thoughts for "The Power That Is." My thoughts have nothing to do with the writing style of Becky and Renee, but I wonder, if these two ladies saw the same trilogy that I did. How anyone could portray Han and Leia so coldly and so un-in-love, after seeing what they pledge to each other in TESB, and how she is the one who releases him from carbonite, is crazy. These two people are so in love with each other by the end of the Saga, and the way they have been portrayed in the "Dita" stories is totally out of character. I know that Leia was stubborn in the first movie, as was Han, but their love grew from that? they showed just how much in TESB. Also, I never see Han having been married before Leia. Now that's not to say our favorite Corellian didn't have a few women along the way ["The Virgin Prince" notwithstanding? MU] , but I feel his first trip to the altar is with Leia, and that their love is truly special. Also, I cannot see that Leia would abort a child that she and Han conceived in love together. Give me a break here, guys. Yes, she is a dedicated member of the Alliance and I'm sure she has responsibilities after ROTJ, but she is also committed to Han, and I never see her doing something like aborting their child behind his back. I also could never see Luke marrying the widow of the Emperor. This is way off track in my opinion. I would rather see the man stay single. Granted, the woman was not portrayed as evilly as the Emperor, but I still don't see Luke with a woman like that. Furthermore, portraying Han as a drug addict didn't hit home for me, also. I mean I'm sure he ties one on once in a while, but these stories have his whole life falling apart, and I feel that after ROTJ they all work hard to start rebuilding the Alliance; but I feel that Han has totally committed himself to Leia, and she to him, and that they certainly aren't that hateful to each other. I know that it sounds schmaltzy and corny, but I feel that with all that those three have gone through that they would be thankful for life, and celebrate it, and not destroy it in any way. Well, these are just my opinions, and I know that everyone has their own view of how life is for our heroes after ROTJ; but the characterizations in my opinion are way off base.

I shall be looking forward with much anticipation to the next WC, and let's hope that George will stick to what he said on "Prime Time Live" and will do the next three movies soon. We need to keep SW fandom alive forever.[5]

Well, you two certainly keep getting bigger and better. WC 6 was absolutely, utterly, fantastically great. I don't think I can find any more marvelously descriptive words to say (that haven't been said before) how much I loved WC 6, but I think you get the general idea. First off, I've decided I'm not going to save the best for last. Those covers! Force, they were breath-taking. Thank you, Dianne and Wanda! You two have done it again. My heart never had such a workout. That scene in "Frantic" is of course my absolute favorite!

I loved all of the work in this issue. Samia did a nice job with "Look What They've ..." I loved the interplay between Luke and Jeni. A truly enjoyable story.

"Past Shadows" by Marti Schuller was good, too. I can't wait to see what happens to Menog/Marcus and Luke.

Carolyn Golledge's "Mutiny" was another fine masterpiece by this talented lady. And she ran true to form: attacked by a meat cleaver, beaten up by 'droid people' and almost drowned. Nothing unusual for our favorite Corellian in her stories. Thanks, Wanda, for adding a lot to the story. The end (or is it?!) of the "Virgin Prince" series by Karen Ripley was a good conclusion (?) to the story. I've loved all seven installments, and can still picture Han and the whip.

I was glad to see the 1988 SW zine guide. I can say I've read most of the ones Sharon's reviewed, and it was nice to have a recap of them as well as reading about the zines I missed.

I thought Sue Zahn's "Love's Strength" gave a new twist to the SW saga. Having Han be an Imp spy and then not going through with his assignment was really a great idea.

You know, there seems to be an over-abundance of continued stories. I can't stand the suspense! The time between issues is too long!! [Actually, we've always felt it was never long enough! MU] I know there's probably nothing I can do but SCREAM.

"Missing, Part 1" by Catriona Campbell and "Dita 2" or "The Power That Is" by Becky Cope and Renee Schiber were both well-written and enjoyable, and I can't wait for the conclusions/continuations.

I loved Janet MacLellan's "The Princess and the Pea." I couldn't stop laughing, it was so adorable.

"Dark Odyssey" by Carol Moffat was an excellent story about the Dark Side Luke, and I still can't wait for the sequel.

"So Let It Be Written..." by Sarah Laker was truly perfect. I'm smiling even now as I write this.

As for the other stories, artwork, puzzles and poems (I liked the truly tasteless limericks a lot) , they all were so well done. You both turned out an other truly enjoyable (etc...) zine, which I just couldn't put down.

So here's to the next great issue of WC, namely #7, which I'm anxiously and impatiently waiting for. Thanks to all, you did good.[5]

My pal Marti Schuller is al ways reminding us how writers thrive on LoCs, so I better do my share here. To save my sanity, I'm only going to ... concentrate on #6. Really, there is very little, if any, I had outright total dislike for. I always look .for something to appreciate, if I can't get into the overall piece (whether prose, poetry, art, etc.). Z.P. Florian's "Galactic Enquirer" was real funny. But aside from the rib-tickling and fun illos as well, she really comes up with a different and clever history, such as her "Hoth Industries." Another rip-roaring adventure from Carolyn, with excellent food for thought about droids.

I also particularly enjoyed the drama and composition of the cage illo by Wanda. Too bad she didn't tackle either of the dance scenes with Han and Leia, or Han and Luke.

"Missing" was the first piece I've read by Catriona Campbell, and I enjoyed it quite a lot. I like her cross-cutting between Luke and his new "family," and our other heroes and their tra vails in the Alliance. She handled the tone of the family well, especially sibling tensions and the care between Tamara and Brett. She did equally well with Han, Leia, Chewie and the rest's worries, sorrows and levity back at the Rebellion. Her "action" was quite good, and I'm waiting, eagerly to see what happens to everyone! I liked Renee's illos best in this story; they were the most fluid. (Also liked her costumes; I'm such a fan of great clothing.) Since Renee had all these other illos, it's a shame you couldn't have gotten another illoer to share this long story with her. Two illos for a 60-page story is a little...sparse. But I do remember you said there were difficulties getting illoers last year.

Uh-oh, another stomping-down adventure with Carol Moffat's "Dark Odyssey." Twists and turns indeed, especially in the last scene! I loved the "essence" of the New Jedi Academy fighting against the Dark One. And the old academy sounded beautiful. Where our gang ended up—clever. Definitely ready to turn the pages on part 2!

I, for one, am sorry to see the "Virgin Prince" universe melt back into the Creative Ether. So many unanswered ques tions! (No quaint "just like life" homilies from the editors, please!) [Who, us?? We didn't say a word! MU] Hope Karen will continue to dabble in the SW universe, beyond the current offering. Both Karen and Carolyn have rendered our gang so well in prose. But they also consistently have a knack for developing all kinds of peoples/sophants/ beings for our gang to interact with/against, etc. They truly eludicate one of the prime ideas of sf—infinite diversity of the universe(s?).

And back to the laughs again. I tittered all over the pages of Janet MacLellan's re adaptation of "The Princess and the Pea." Really liked her adroit retelling and also her commentary on archaic "royal types." Now, how hysterical can you get over one page of writing? Your sides can ache pretty good if you ran into Sarah Laker's "So Let It Be Written..." Such fun, and pith observations. I wish there had been an illo for that one!

Thank you for your compliment and putting me in the illustrious company of my art pal, Wanda. Some times it's really been difficult, but also fabulous reclaiming my illoing the SW zine way. And thanks again for Mary and Samia making a home for all of us to experience the fun, wonder and adventure. And now just two questions remain appear to remain in my mind...

What aarree these rumors I hear about a strange and rather garish van delivering scant copies of "Escaped Rumellians and the Whip Master" to certain video stores across the country? And to our reticent editors, what ever did happen to the fourth co-ed? Force be with y'all.[5]

This is one of my first LoCs, and long overdue.

What can I say, your fanzine is fantastic. I loved the inside front cover by Dianne Smith. I love her art work to begin with, but this one of Han—What else can I say but Oh wow!

I have to begin my comments with "Dark Odyssey." This story by Carol Moffat was one of the last that I read. But the worst part is that I almost passed this fantastic story completely. When I read it, my eyes never left the pages. Carol had me going through every moment. From Han, Luke, and Leia supposedly trapped in the past, to a Dark one taking Luke's place at the new academy, to the clincher—Palpatine's son. The one good thing about reading this story late is that I only have four months to wait for issue 7, and the next installment. A great story, Carol, and beautifully done.

"The Princess and the Pea" -- Janet's take-off on the fairy tale was a riot right from the beginning to the end. Imagine Han being the uncomfortable occupant of the stacked mattresses holding the tiny pea.

Next were two stories that dealt with the victory celebration on Endor and what may have happened. "Warm Fuzzy," by L.A. Carr, was just so sweet, with Luke cuddled up by the little Ewok. "Love's Strength," by Sue Zahn, started out to be a story of romantic love concerning Han and Leia, but with a twist. I didn't expect the confession. That part of the story had me going, but I loved the ending and the love scenes, their thoughts, etc. It was a beautiful story on Han and Leia's love.

"Look What They've Done..."— Sarnia Martz' s story of Han's son and his first stint in the Jedi Academy was interesting. Bran certainly is Han Solo's son, for sure. Sarnia did a great job with his character.

I enjoyed "The Cave," by Julie Phipps. It was a different outlook on Luke's trip through the dark cave on Dagobah.

I really like Janet Toney's story, "The Traitor." It gave me a feeling for the obvious individuality of the soldier in the field. They weren't all alike, blindly following Palpatine. Once there was a Republic, before Palpatine took over. This story about Ozzel's feelings abd allegiances before Vader had him terminated was well done.

"One-hundred-and-one Corellian Knights," by Madalena Mumford; I wondered where all those Corellian Jedi disappeared to. No, just joking; this was good and it was different.

There are three to-be-contin-ued stories I found interesting for different reasons. "Missing," by Catriona Campbell, has me wondering how Luke is going to handle his "new" family, and what he has discovered. "Past Shadows," by Marti Schuller, left us hanging in the dark with Menog. It will be very interesting to see how Luke gets out of this situation. "Mutiny," by Carolyn Golledge, had a very intriguing plot line. Very different.

On the comical side were "So Let It Be Written...," by Sarah Laker. A very funny farce about what Han, Luke and Leia would say if they could give their opinions on how they are portray ed and illoed in zines. Plus "Prometheus Bound," by Roz Wheadon, had me entranced until the last line. I never expected it to be the Imperial Revenue Service. It was a riot, sort of like the song, "Taxman," by the Beatles.

Before I mention the "dark side" of my reading venture into your always enjoyable fanzine, I'd like to add that if I haven't commented on a piece, it's prob ably because I haven't read it yet, or there're parts before I haven't read, etc. But WOOKIEE COMMODE 6 was well done and enjoyable. You deserve any congratulations you get on it.

Now, after all this praise, I must say something dark and negative. I don't want to, but I felt this particular story needed it. "The Power That Is," by Becky Cope and Renee Schiber, really had a great plot line; giving Han a wife in his past, a Pertitoun woman named Dita who was spirited away by slavers. I thought it was very imaginative and had lots of potential for sequels, etc. The damper was Han, Luke and Leia. I have never seen these characters so badly abused before in stories. I know it isn't easy to keep the known characters in character. It's hard work. But Han as a drinker, who sits around wallowing in his now seemingly uneventful life as the mate of Leia, the great diplomat? And Leia, the cold wife who, without telling her mate, aborts their child? And Luke, marrying a woman he doesn't love? There had to be another answer there. I couldn't see Luke doing that, or Leia being that cold, and finally Han turning to drugs. Did Becky and Renee see the same STAR WARS trilogy that I did? After reading this, I started to wonder. Please do something about Han, Luke and Leia. Especially Han and Leia. This reader wonder ed seriously why the authors even bothered to marry them. They would have been better off never mating at all.

Well, that's all I have to say. Keep up the good work, Samia and Mary. I loved the artwork, also, especially Lybarger and Smith. I'll be waiting anxiously for issue 7.[5]

I received my copy of WC 6, and found it just as incredibly beautiful and fascinating as the previous one. The covers were great: Smith, with the warm skin tones, and Lybarger, with a truly visual joke!

I loved "The Power That Is," especially because all the characters appeared true to them selves. The cape episode was masterful! Han and Okhendi— great! And Leia really hits it off with Lando! I can't wait to see how it all ends. "Serenity" is a magnificent poem, and I was honored to have the opportunity to illustrate it.

Well, Han really got it in this issue. Sarah Laker was right! I wonder why we all love to put our favorite characters through the meat grinder—is it because the torture allows us to see the deeper hues of their noble character, or is it good clean S&M? I loved "Prometheus Bound"— aren't we all in the same fix? "Warm Fuzzy" was a very warm story, and not at all fuzzy. "Princess and the Pea"—even my ten-year-old girl found it the best fairy tale ever! And again, a splendid "Jeni Petersen" story. Luke seldom gets lucky with girls, and I love to see his happiness with an extraordinary woman.

"Mutiny" had a few excellent cliffhangers!

"Love's Strength"—Lady Zahn, I feel like challenging you to a duel for the honor of Captain Solo! Hired by the Empire, indeed!! It was a good story, though.

"101 Corellian Knights"— I particularly enjoyed the excellent portrayal of Chewbacca, and the great background details on Han.

Now all I have to do is wait for WC 7. I hope it won't be long.[5]

If The Wookiee Commode keeps winning Fan Q Awards, it is going to ruin its reputation for irreverence. And if Mary Jean Holmes ever retires Shadowstar, then the Commode will become the "senior citizen" among SW zines—which is somehow not in keeping with its traditional off-the-wall image.

At 376 pages, this latest issue provides plenty of material for fans; it contains new writers, old favorites, zany send-ups, multi-part beginnings, and the conclusion of the "Virgin Prince" epic. And of course, there is the obligatory striking color cover, and sexy inside front cover, designed this year to send the body temperature of Han fans into triple digits.

Carolyn Golledge continues her winning ways with "Mutiny," in which a religious cult that believes droids have souls turns into a dangerous Imperial plot. A witty escape, the expected torture sequence for Han, and a Jedi rescue for Luke pi-ove why Golledge is one of the top SW writers.

Samia Martz adds another chapter in her Jeni Petersen series, "Look What They've Done To My Son, Ma." Set at the New Jedi Academy, Luke and Jeni welcome a new recruit named Bran Solo; unfortuntely, training the son of Han and Leia is fraught with all sorts of hazards.

Another of the Commode's regular authors, Karen Ripley, finally ends her "Virgin Prince" saga with "Union and Reunion." The gang is on Rekarp still searching for the Imperial genetic records on the Sith offspring, and a kidnapped team member. Of course, complications ensue, but Ripley manages to tie up most of the loose ends, and leave the reader only slightly mystified. Although this series moved at a pregnant bantha's pace, it was a lot of fun, and I am hoping for a story on Luke the holo star.

In the Ripley tradition is Sarah Laker's "So Let It Be Written, So Let It Be Done," which pokes fun at the trash-Han-and-Luke zines. Roz Wheadon's "Prometheus Bound" also meets the Commode's standards of craziness, when it shows a famous Corellian what happens when you cross the IRS Imperial Revenue Service. Fairy tales take strange twists in the SW universe, with "The Princess and the Pea," by Janet MacLellan. And even the Empire is plagued by "The Galactic Enquirer."

Three short works reflect different tones. L.A. Carr's "Warm Fuzzy" is as cute as its name, when a bereft Ewok finds a sleeping Jedi on a lonely walkway. In Julie Phipps's "The Cave," Luke revisits the tree after Yoda's death, with very different results. And "The Traitor," by J.M. D'Agostino- Toney, is Admiral Ozzel; but that depends on your point of view.

Two stories focus on the dangers of the Dark Side. In "Past Shadows," by Marti Schuller, Luke's refusal to teach an angry young man has dangerous results; while Carol Moffat's "Dark Odyssey" strands Luke, Han and Leia in the past, at the time of the Jedi purge, while Luke's Dark twin takes his place as Jedi Master.

Han's startling revelation to Leia in "Love's Strength," by Sue Zahn, about his involvement with the Empire, may doom any hope they have of a future together. And in Madalena Mumford's "101 Corellian Knights," a twenty-five year old Han Solo escapes the Imperials, only to be captured and imprisoned with a Wookiee. Another Wookiee-human duo become involved with the Alliance in "Chal and Haccucha," by Eric Goodman.

Part one of Catriona Campbell's "Missing" finds Luke injured and left behind in an Imperial trap. Rescued by a local farmer, Luke has to accept a new name and life if he is to survive. And both Han and Leia must maintain their roles without their best friend.

The longest story in the zine, "The Power That Is," by Becky Cope and Renee Schiber, continues the "Dita" series. Our heroes may have defeated the Empire, but things are not going well for them in the Alliance. Han and Leia's marriage is in deep trouble when they cannot adjust to their new roles; and Luke interferes with the Alliance's plan for Palpatine's widow and child, by claiming them for his own. Dinner at Luke's new home brings everything to a head, and Han flees a startling discovery, starting a destructive spiral into drug abuse and assassination; while Luke slowly wilts under the attacks from the Emperor's spirit.[17]

Issue 7

front cover of issue #7, Dianne Smith: "Cool Corellian"
back cover of issue #7, Dianne Smith: Light Knight"
flyer printed in Below the Surface #3

The Wookiee Commode 7 was published in 1990 and contains 274 pages.

The art is by Wanda Lybarger, Dianne Smith, Catherine Churko, Renee Grove, Rebecca Carey, Z.P. Florian, and Sherry Lambert.

From the editorial by Urhausen:

It doesn't seem possible that this is the seventh issue of The Wookiee Commode. That six years have passed since the debut of our first issue is in itself enough to totally dumbfound me. But what I find even more incredible is that after all this time—seven years since the premiere of the last SW film—the complex, intricate and entirely self-motivating machinery of producing a fanzine can still by summoned by everyone involved. Over the years we have been privileged to present some truly amazing works of fannish writing and art, both serious and satirical, all donated by some of the most talented, witty and just plain entertaining people I have ever met. Our contributors' only return for their efforts, beyond the intangible reward of seeing their works published, has been a free copy of the zine. But as long as they consider that to be payment enough, there will continue to be a Wookiee Commode.

  • Editorials (2)
  • Letters of Comment (4)
  • Kill or Be Killed by Carolyn Golledge (Rebels celebrate one year anniversary of Endor Victory. Han and Leia add one year wedding anniversary. Leia tries to find right moment to tell Han she is pregnant. Imperials attack -- Chewbacca is taken for sale as slave. Han attempts rescue, winds up pitted against a drugged Chewbacca in gladiatorial combat. Reprinted in Never Say Die.) (20)
  • Dies Irae, fiction by Samia Martz ("A simple accident leads to a lesson in responsibility and forgiveness for both Han and Jeni. A Jeni Petersen story." (part of the First Steps Universe) (58)
  • Dark Odyssey, part two, fiction by Carol Moffatt ("Luke's Dark clone continues his reign of terror in the second installment of this post-ROTJ adventure series.)
  • A Night in the Life of Han Solo by Carolyn Golledge and Karen Estabrook (A slight "equipment failure" for Han leads to a misadventure of impressive... proportions.") (66)
  • A Consumer Guide to 1989 SW Zines, or The Year of the Disappearing Fanzine, commentary and reviews by Sharon Saye ("Nineteen-eighty-nine might have been a momentous year of change on this planet, but in the small world of Star Wars fanzines, it was a year of quiet retrenchment. Only seven zines were published last year, and one of them. The Key, was a one-shot novel. Nineteen-ninety promises at least a continuation for one more year of the Star Wars fanzine, with the promised publication of From A Certain Point Of View, A Tremor In The Force, Shadowstar, and The Wookiee Commode. Considering the intensity of the squabble in Southern Enclave, the Star Wars letterzine, over the issue of xeroxing, the interest is still strong, and newer fans are scrambling to find Star Wars zines, old or new. That older zines continue to publish is certainly a good sign; but newer zines are needed as well to maintain the tradition, if readers in the future will have anything to satisfy their craving for Star Wars material. Off of the soapbox, and on to practical matters: As in past years, this article is not a critical analysis, but more in the nature of a consumer overview, concentrating almost entirely on fiction. If you are interested in purchasing any of the following zines, please write to the editors and include a self-addressed stamped envelope (SASE) for further information on price and availability. It is quite possible that other Star Wars zines have been published in the past year, but they are more difficult to obtain. If you know of any zines not mentioned in this article, please send me the information, and I promise to include it in future issues. (That is, if these two slightly crazed and usually lost Corellians plan to continue with this madness.)") (83)
  • Star Wars Crossword Puzzle by Z.P. Florian (88)
  • Seeing Clearly, fiction by Matthew Whitney ("Han Solo is a changed man following his brush with near-death by carbon freezing.") (90)
  • Kessel Slave by Carolyn Golledge (The reason for the Life-Debt Bond between Chewbacca and Solo and Carolyn's version of their first meeting. Takes place before Star Wars: A New Hope. Note: written before the SW novels appeared, contains Carolyn's own background for Solo’s life. Warning - by virtue of its subject matter, violent. revision reprinted in Never Say Die. Winner Best Long Story Star AWards 1991.) (100)
  • Valee, fiction by L.A. Carr (129)
  • Nightmare by Barbara Drake (Leanna Skywalker faces her brother, Darth Vader, and defies his deadly plans for the Jedi.) (135)
  • Chewbacca's Dance, fiction by Z.P. Florian (148)
  • A Reflective Matter by Karen Ripley (A non-continued tale of first times and family ties.) (156)
  • Shadow Clash by Marti Schuller (Luke must once again confront his evil half-brother Menog in this conclusion to "Past Shadows.") (164)
  • Imperial Interlude, fiction by Ming Wathne (181)
  • A Night in the Life of Han Solo, fiction by Carolyn Golledge and Karen Estabrook (188)
  • Missing, part 2 by Catriona Campbell (The exciting conclusion to the gripping story of Luke Skywalker's exile on the Imperial-controlled planet of Irlam.) (202)


  1. ^ For some background information regarding the "Clone Wars Treaty," see the remarks at Ethics and Etiquette: A Proposal for the Buying and Selling of Fanzines.
  2. ^ from Southern Enclave #28
  3. ^ from The Southern Enclave #6
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o from a letter of comment in "The Wookiee Commode" #2
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r from a letter of comment in "The Wookiee Commode" #7
  6. ^ from an LoC in Southern Enclave #13 (1986)
  7. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k from a letter of comment in "The Wookiee Commode" #3
  8. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o from a letter of comment in "The Wookiee Commode" #4"
  9. ^ from "The Wookiee Commode Guide to Star Wars Zines -- 1986", from "The Wookiee Commode" #6
  10. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n from a letter of comment in "The Wookiee Commode" #5"
  11. ^ from "The Wookiee Commode Consumer Guide to 1987 SW Fanzines," in The Wookiee Commode #5
  12. ^ Actually, On a Clear Day You Can See Dagobah went for another six more issues and ceased eleven years later.
  13. ^ from Southern Enclave #26
  14. ^ from "1988 in SW Zines," in "The Wookiee Commode" #6 (1989)
  15. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l from a letter of comment in "The Wookiee Commode" #6"
  16. ^ from Southern Enclave #24
  17. ^ a b from "A Consumer Guide to 1989 SW Zines, or The Year of the Disappearing Fanzine," in "The Wookiee Commode" #7