Christian Blauvelt of Hollywood.com has just posted a lengthy interview with author Timothy Zahn about his forthcoming Han Solo novel Star Wars: Scoundrels. Here's a snippet from the interview where he talks about George Lucas and the process of working in the Star Wars Expanded Universe:
HW: Have you ever worked directly with George Lucas? TZ: No. I met him once many years ago, and from what I?ve heard he?s always been very hands-off on the novels. I think he got a bit more involved with the comic books, certainly in the early days before he was working on the prequels, because comic books are a visual medium, and he?s a visual guy, much more than he is a novel guy. So I?ve never worked directly with him, it?s always just been the Lucas Licensing people. They?ve always been very easy to work with. That?s the joy of working in Star Wars. I?ve never had anybody at Lucasfilm take a stand and say, ?This can?t be done!? or ?This must be done!? with being open to discussion. I?ve had several points in my Star Wars books where they have said ?You can?t do this,? and when I explain why it needs to be done for the story I want to tell and why it does fit the Star Wars universe, they?ve been amenable. ?Okay, now that we understand the reasoning, we?ll let you do it.? They don?t rule by fiat. At the very least there?s usually always a compromise to be found.