The Life and Times of Anakin Skywalker

by Monika Simon of the Star Wars Literary Guild


Anakin meets Palpatine

A Visit to Tresillia

The Accident

After the Accident

Anakin wakes up

Anakin tries to kill himself

The End


Admiral Piett and the Great Ewok Adventure
Like many people of my generation I was a great Star Wars fan when the films were released. I went to see The Empire Strikes Back three times in cinema - the third time even though my parents had forbidden it. I read the novels, watched the films again when they were rereleased in 1985 and gave a paper about them in school. I also started wondering what happened to turn Anakin Skywalker into the 'mechanised man of mystery', as Alex puts it in her story.

I had actually started writing my prequel but gave up after only a few pages. Only in York, when, after watching the 1997 rerelease of the Star Wars films, Alex, Michael, Kirsty and I got together, started talking Star Wars and making up stories, I started writing again.

To be able to come up with the story why Darth Vader was, to quote Obi Wan Kenobi, 'more machine than man' we scoured the films and the novelisations for information, but this brought up only scanty results:

1. Darth Vader was once called Anakin Skywalker and he was already a famous pilot when Obi Wan Kenobi first met him.
2. There was a War, called the Clone Wars, in which Anakin fought, as did Ben Kenobi. What it was all about or what exactly happened is never explained (one assumes it had something to do with clones).
3. Anakin Skywalker befriended and was 'turned to the Dark Side' by the Emperor, formerly Senator Palpatine (no first name).
4. Consequently, he fought with Ben Kenobi and this led to some sort of incident, possibly involving molten lava, that turned Anakin Skywalker into Darth Vader. Ben Kenobi was left in the possession of Anakin's lightsaber.
5. This is all tied in with the Emperor's assumption of power and the end of the Old Republic.
6. Somewhere in the midst of this, Anakin fathered two children, Luke and Leia, but never knew about them. They were left respectively with Uncle Owen and Aunt Beru on Tatooine, and Prince Bail Organa and his unnamed wife on Alderaan. The conclusion I drew was that Uncle Owen was Anakin's brother (though admittedly it would  make more sense if Aunt Beru was his sister, since Uncle Owen's surname is Lars not Skywalker). As Prince Bail Organa was Leia's stepfather, she was a princess by adoption, not by birth. Nor was her mother necessarily a princess. [1]
7. Anakin Skywalker was a also Jedi knight. He had been trained by Obi Wan Kenobi - who even admitted to making something of a mess of it. We are told that the Jedi were an ancient and noble order, who defended the Republic against its enemies. The order was dissolved and its members prosecuted and killed by the Emperor. [2]

We took the sparse information about the events leading up to Star Wars. A New Hope and ran with it. [3] After due consideration, the molten lava was tossed out, as that was just stupid (and it is only mentioned in the novelisation). If Anakin Skywalker had fallen into molten lava, he would be dead. In my story he has a very different kind of accident. [4]

Looking back, the greatest drawback of my version of the prequel is that it is way too long. My writing tends to be quite epic in length but this is really ridiculous. Moreover, since I always complain, with regard to the official prequels, that nobody is interested in Anakin Skywalker's childhood, then, by the same token, I have to acknowledge that nobody is interested in Anakin's trials and tribulations as a commercial pilot before the Clone Wars either. Particularly not, if it takes 52,000 words before he even meets his first Jedi, and at this point neither the Clone Wars have started, nor has he met his future wife. [5]

If I were writing today, I would start telling the story much later, possibly with the start of the Clone Wars. Not that I have any intention to return to writing Star Wars fan fiction, never mind how much fun I had.

Despite this, admittedly massive, drawback, and even if it sounds amazingly arrogant, I still think my own prequel is better than the official version. For one, because, unlike the official prequels, it is consistent with the information we get in the films. Anakin Skywalker is a famous fighter pilot when Kenobi meets him and Leia can remember her mother because she sometimes came to visit. [6] Mostly, however, I have grown fond of my characters. I think it is much more fun if Anakin's wife is a successful admiral in the Clone Wars rather than a princess with too much makeup.

At the end of the day, the official prequels simply came too late for me. I had my own version already.

But, despite my growling I want to thank George Lucas. Without him, there would have been no Star Wars and no Star Wars Literary Guild, and, obviously, I would not have the chance to make up my own prequel. A big thanks to him and all people involved in making the original three films.

Some parts of my prequel can be found on this page, but by far not all of it. - The occasional unevenness of the language is due to the fact that, as we used to say, they are translations from the Corellian.

Munich, January 2017


This could be the beginning of a wonderful friendship

Anakin stays with his wife's family on Tresillia

The Accident
The Accident - Part 2
The Accident - Part 3

The Accident - Part 4

After the Accident
Lee visits an old friend
The Morning after the Night before
Dr Hadasht receives a present
That's what family is for
Decisions about the future
Dr Hadasht takes a break
A Healthy Scare

Anakin wakes up
Shura watches the News
Anakin is not nice to his doctor
Dr Hadasht gives Palpatine a piece of her mind
Anakin and Dr Hadasht
Anakin is bored
Shura watches more News
Anakin tries to kill himself

An Unexpected Visit

A (mostly) happy reunion

The Final Chapter of this Prequel

This story is set many, many years later. After 'The Adventures of Darth Vader'.

[1] Why did no one ever bother to give Anakin Skywalker's wife a name? We learn that the Emperor was formerly Senator Palaptine and about the fight and so on in the novelisation, but not once we learn what Anakin Skywalker's wife, Luke and Leia's mother was called. Why? The same question applies to Bail Organa's wife, Leia's stepmother. Their names are never mentioned in the books. Were they regarded not important enough?
[2] I could go on a really long rant about the perniciousness of the Jedi here. The way Obi Wan talks about them, they were such glorious, flawless heroes, defending the weak, fighting for justice, blablabla. But he behaves as if he thought was somebody better than other people. Not to mention the whole story about not having lied 'from a certain point of view'. Yeah, right. - And don't get me started on the Jedi in the official prequels, they are creepy and their teaching techniques could be described as brainwashing kids who are too young to know better.
[3] While I had started making the story up on my own, in York it became very much a communal effort.
[4] I was actually surprised that the official version isn't that far off my story, give or take the involvement of molten lava. In fact, I think, Kenobi behaves like an even greater shit in the film. He simply leaves a seriously injured Anakin, his former pupil and "friend", to die slowly, and he nicks his lightsaber. Tss. So much for the great, good Jedi.
[5] And - seriously? - over 100,000 words describing just the Accident and its aftermath? That's the length of a whole novel! And even after 100,000 words they haven't even started thinking of turning Anakin Skywalker into Darth Vader!
[6] Uncle Owen speaks about Luke's father as if he knew him quite well. It is only one, very short sentence in the first film, but we had to use even the tiniest bit of information to make up our own story.
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Monika Simon and HM Tim Toldrum

The author writing with HM Tim Toldrum on her lap in 1997.

Tim Toldrum Publications