Mike Stackpole, in person, is a wonderful, friendly, and cheerful person. He's a witty speaker as well. I had the privledge of meeting him this past summer at con-sortium, a scifi/fantasy/gaming con in Houston, Tx. The first time i "met" him at this con, i just went to an open forum in which he spoke about his books and fielded quetions. But later, i actaully got to see him as a human being instead of just an author.

I was sitting curled up in a chair, waiting for mcc to get off a payphone. I felt a pat on my head, and a friendly "you look tired." I looked up to see Michael Stackpole standing there smiling. I blushed just a little bit, because one of the reasons i'd *gone* to the con was to meet him--he's written some of my favorite star wars books of all time. Then i just started chatting with him (and later mcc started talking too). It was slightly odd, talking to someone i'd slightly idolized just like i'd talk to anyone else. The nicest part is i think Mike could tell i kinda idolized him, and was totally cool about it.

And he told stories. Oh, did he tell stories. Two of them i recall well.

The first was a recent one... Claudia Christian from Babylon 5 was also a guest at this con. And the con staff took all their guests (about 7 invited) out for dinner and such one evening. And in the van on the way back, they passed a tatoo parlor. Someone made some joke about stopping there, and then Claudia decided she LIKED that idea. A lot. Because there was a tatoo on her foot that had faded that she wanted redone. "stop, turn the van around!" she asked the driver. And they did. The entire staff of guests for consortium sat in a shady tattoo parlor while "Ivanova" got her foot tattooed.

His second story took place some time ago. He was at Skywalker Ranch talking with lucasfilms about a new book he was working on at the time. Through a long, long chain of events he ended up staying with Mark Hamill. And Mike said his most vivid memory of that trip was sitting there in Mark's kitchen. Watching Mark bake chocolate chip cookies for his kids. Watching Luke Skywalker baking cookies. For his kids. That's probably the cutest thing i've ever heard.