Timothy Zahn

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Timothy Zahn
Zahn at the 2017 Phoenix Comicon
Zahn at the 2017 Phoenix Comicon
Born (1951-09-01) September 1, 1951 (age 71)
Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
GenreScience fiction, fantasy
Notable worksThrawn Trilogy (1991-1993), Thrawn Trilogy (2017-2019), Thrawn Ascendancy Trilogy (2020-2021)

Timothy Zahn (born September 1, 1951) is an American writer of science fiction and fantasy. He is known best for his prolific collection of Star Wars books, chiefly the Thrawn series, and has published several other series of sci-fi and fantasy novels of his own original creation, in addition to many works of short fiction.

Early life[edit]

Zahn grew up in Lombard, Illinois and attended Glenbard East High School in Lombard. He then went on to Michigan State University, before working towards a doctorate in physics at the University of Illinois.[1]


Zahn, right, during a Q&A discussion at the 2018 East Coast Comicon in New Jersey

Zahn's novella Cascade Point won the 1984 Hugo Award.[2] He is the author of the Blackcollar trilogy and the Cobra series (nine novels so far), fourteen Star Wars expanded universe novels, including thirteen novels featuring Grand Admiral Thrawn: the Thrawn trilogy, the Hand of Thrawn duology, Outbound Flight, Choices of One, Thrawn, Thrawn: Alliances, Thrawn: Treason, and the Thrawn Ascendancy trilogy.

Lucasfilm at times used some of the more detailed Star Wars: The Roleplaying Game supplements from West End Games as references, and West End sent boxes of their sourcebooks to Zahn when he started work on a new Star Wars novel trilogy.[3]: 190–191  At the time, Zahn was writing Heir to the Empire (1991), the first book in what became known as the Thrawn trilogy, and West End in turn released sourcebooks from 1992–1994 based on Zahn's three novels.[3]: 193 

The Thrawn trilogy marked a revival in the fortunes of the Star Wars franchise, bringing it widespread attention for the first time in years; all three Thrawn trilogy novels made the New York Times Best Seller List,[4] and set the stage and tone for most of the franchise's expanded universe content.[4] Zahn also wrote the young adult Dragonback series and the popular Conquerors' trilogy.



  1. ^ Borrelli, Christopher (May 23, 2017). "Novelist Timothy Zahn is the man who saved 'Star Wars,' according to fans". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved May 23, 2017.
  2. ^ "1984 Hugo Awards". The Hugo Awards. 26 July 2007.
  3. ^ a b Shannon Appelcline (2011). Designers & Dragons. Mongoose Publishing. ISBN 978-1-907702-58-7.
  4. ^ a b Breznican, Anthony (November 2, 2012). "Star Wars sequel author Timothy Zahn weighs in on new movie plans". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved July 21, 2016.

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