Ashley Eckstein isn’t afraid of multi-tasking. Not only is she the voice actress of Ashoka Tano, the plucky Togruta Jedi from Star Wars: The Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels, but she heads up Her Universe, the fangirl-facing fashion company she launched in 2009. Her Universe has already made the proverbial Kessel Run a dozen times over, bringing sleek, chic clothing and accessories themed around Star Wars, Doctor Who, Studio Ghibli and many other fan-favorite brands. Starting this year, Eckstein will be hard at work voicing Ashoka, while designing and delegating her newly expanded fashion and publishing company at the same time. That’s right — publishing company.
As revealed during New York Comic Con, Her Universe’s fashion fandom nerds will be joined by literary nerds! During a special panel at NYCC, Eckstein and company announced the addition of Her Universe Press, a publishing imprint designed to promote female authors and artists. Permuted Press, an independent company focused on sci-fi and fantasy titles, will be overseeing this exciting publishing journey with Eckstein. Covering everything sci-fi and fantasy to fiction and nonfiction, the imprint will publish original work by sensational fangirl writers, with inspiring female protagonists and empowering messages at the forefront of the company’s agenda.
“I felt that Her Universe Press was necessary because so many fans were presenting me with their manuscripts with no professional outlet or opportunity to publish their work,” Ecktein said during the panel. “I’m thrilled to be able to provide a platform for these stories to be told via books, entertainment, merchandise and beyond!”
A true nerd to her core, Eckstein accredits the fashion line’s success and the possibility of these literary ventures to the personal fan support she’s received with Her Universe thus far.
Set for a spring/summer 2016 release, the first two books published under Her Universe Press will be widely available through Barnes and Noble, Amazon.com, Audible, and iTunes.
The first title and book one of a series, The Confidence Chronicles, written by E. Anne Convery and illustrated by Star Wars Rebels executive producer Dave Filoni, will paint a steampunk picture across the California Gold Rush of the mid-1800s. The leading lady of Confidence Chronicles is a gritty twelve-year-old named Adelaide Lenihan, who’ll be traveling and exploring a wasteland-type America. And yes, she has an automatic owl-friend sidekick!
Weirdest is the second Her Universe Press book set for release next year. Written by accomplished comic book author Heather Nuhfer (Wonder Woman, Vampire Diaries, The Simpsons) and illustrated by Brenda Hickey (My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic), the book will follow a thirteen-year-old girl as she wishes her uncool ways away, only to be left with her emotions taking control of her with weird reactions.
So, whether you’re a fan of Her Universe or a newcomer to the brand, be sure to check out their soon-to-be published literature! And if you’re an aspiring writer with some great ideas for Her Universe Press, visit their website and send Eckstein a quick synopsis. Who knows? Maybe your book could be the next big hit.
Images: Her Universe, Preston Mack