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FanX Spring 2019 ()
#151 Copy

Questioner

Does Marsh know much about what Kelsier's doing during Arcanum Unbounded?

Brandon Sanderson

Yes. 

Questioner

Okay. Anything else on that, or just a yes until further--

Brandon Sanderson

Yes. He knows. He's aware. 

Questioner

I'll read into it. It's probably on 17th Shard or something.

Brandon Sanderson

That's just me, that's not in there anywhere. He's aware, but he's - yeah, yeah. He wasn't aware of all the stuff like he is by now, though, that's what I'll say.

Arcanum Unbounded Seattle signing ()
#152 Copy

Questioner

What would happen if a Parshendi were to attract a spren and bring it into the Highstorm? Like, an Honorspren of some sort?

Brandon Sanderson

Sapient spren have a choice of whether they get bonded or not, unless you entrap them some way. But simply attracting them...simply going into the Highstorm with one wouldn't work, what you said is 'attracted a spren', so, to answer that actually... The thing is, honorspren, all the spren of Honor and Cultivation, not honorspren capital, Honorspren or whatever... The spren that create the orders of the Knights Radiant have not, in the past, been attracted to Parshendi because of certain events in the past.

Questioner

*inaudible*

Brandon Sanderson

You'll have to Read and Find Out.

Arcanum Unbounded Chicago signing ()
#154 Copy

Argent

So, the Edgedancer's resonance, the Perk? I think you've called it resonance at some point, is that still accurate?

Brandon Sanderson

Yeah, that totally works. The powers affect each other in interesting ways.

Argent

Right.

Brandon Sanderson

Um, so the thing about it is, calling it a Perk, that like saying--

Argent

It's a side effect right?

Brandon Sanderson

It's less a side effect-- It's like, when the powers merge, they are always slightly different. For instance, Lightweaving from a Truthwatcher is different from-- Slightly. There will be things. So, you're gonna see that they all have access to the Surges, but in combinations, they act a little differently from one another.

Questioner

So is the Edgedancer's resonance something to do with communication? Because we see Lift--

Brandon Sanderson

Yeah, yeah we'll RAFO that.

JordanCon 2021 ()
#156 Copy

Pagerunner

Question about primer cubes and Rhythms. There's a Rhythm associated with every metal when they're used and that's what gets sensed by bronze Allomancy. Does the primer cube sense that same Rhythm and replicate it?

Brandon Sanderson

No, it's actively like, drawing the Investiture in. The active...*hems and haws* is that what's going on? I will have to RAFO that, I'm going to have to go back to think about that some more.

Arcanum Unbounded Seattle signing ()
#158 Copy

Questioner

Who is the Willshaper?

Brandon Sanderson

Ok, of the group of the ten...

Questioner

Have we met the Willshaper?

Brandon Sanderson

You have met the Willshaper. 

Questioner

Is it Moash?

Brandon Sanderson

That's a RAFO.

Questioner

Ok. But it was a good guess?

Brandon Sanderson

Do you want me to write RAFO in this? You got RAFO'd.

Questioner

Thanks.

Brandon Sanderson

People are really interested in the Willshapers. Has this been a topic of conversation?

Other person

*inaudible*...17th Shard. *inaudible*

Brandon Sanderson

Yeah, right. The Dustbringer is harder to figure out, I feel like the Willshaper will be a little more obvious once it happens. The Dustbringer is going to be hard.

Skyward Chicago signing ()
#159 Copy

Questioner

The Ghostblood that's from the southern part of Scadrial. Does that mean she can use the [Allomantic] metals?

Brandon Sanderson

She was not born there. Iyatil is from somewhere else... She has a.. Scadrian heritage. Whether she's an Allomancer or not, I will RAFO. It is possible that someone with her lineage could.

Questioner

So she doesn't have to be born on--

Brandon Sanderson

No.

Orem signing ()
#160 Copy

Questioner

All of these steel plates in the caverns, before chromium was well known, how did they not get rusted?

Brandon Sanderson

I actually thought about this. I kind of imagine some of them rusted, but at the same time I've read about-- What was my answer to this? I have an answer. I can't remember what my answer is, so I'm going to RAFO that. Send it to me and I'll try to look it up. I had an answer to this. They were... using some sort of thing to keep it from rusting.

Questioner

So there were people in the Steel Ministry keeping it clean?

Brandon Sanderson

I don't think that was my answer. I thought that I had them plating it somehow, but I'm not sure. I mean we're talking ten years ago now when I wrote this. I think I had them plating it somehow, because I needed them to last longer. You can just write that one as a RAFO, but it's a RAFO that Brandon can't remember. It happens sometimes. It's one of those things Peter asked me when we were working on the books and I'm like, "Oh, we'd better have an answer for this," but now I don't remember what it is.

Kraków signing ()
#162 Copy

Questioner

So first, about Trell… He was first mentioned in the books in the first Mistborn book. Did you know what role he'll be playing in the future books?

Brandon Sanderson

When I wrote it? When I actually wrote Mistborn, no, by the time I’d done revisions and finished the series, then I knew. Mistborn was very exploratory, the first book, once I finished it then I build the outline to fit it, that’s very common for me that I write a first book without an outline and then I build the outline around it.

Questioner

Will Nalt, brother of Trell <inaudible>

Brandon Sanderson

The brother? So there’s something very weird happening with Trell, very very weird, that I’m not going to explain quite yet, so that’s a RAFO.

Oathbringer release party ()
#163 Copy

Brandon Sanderson

I have it cutting right now, but I don't know if I can have it actually completely cut because we slide it through the rock and things like that, right? So it's gotta be that, like, atomizing a little bit into Investiture or something like that. Because I use it in a way that they just-- but there's not really friction on it, so mathematically I'd probably have to say that something is vanishing... I don't want it to but I probably have to.

Questioner

Yeah, I was just sitting there, thinking about Dalinar getting that trench. That would be difficult.

Brandon Sanderson

RAFO. RAFO for you, sir.

Shadows of Self Chicago signing ()
#164 Copy

Kurkistan

If you spiked out Miles' Feruchemical gold, would he be able to burn his Allomantic reserves [read: Feruchemical reserves using Allomancy] and heal it back?

Brandon Sanderson

If you spiked out his ability to heal gold and somehow left him alive?

Kurkistan

Yeah, but still having Allomancy.

Brandon Sanderson

Still has Allomancy...

Kurkistan

And he’s like in the middle of burning a goldmind.

Brandon Sanderson

Yes, that would still work. It'd still have a Spiritual Connection to him.

Kurkistan

So if you're a Coinshot and you get [spiked] to have Feruchemical steel, and then you lose the spike after making a store, you can still Compound that for speed?

Brandon Sanderson

Yes... Yeah, that should still work.

Kurkistan

Was Paalm doing that?

Brandon Sanderson

That's a RAFO.

Orem signing ()
#165 Copy

Questioner

I've been going back over Mistborn recently, and one thing really stuck out. "I write these words in steel, for anything not set in metal cannot be trusted."  I get how Kwaan could've figured out that Ruin was messing around with records, but how could he possibly have known metal was immune?

Brandon Sanderson

That's not as hard to figure out as you think it might be. *laughter* I'm going to RAFO that. Partially because it'll dig into that story that I just don't want to canonize right now. I don't think I'm going to write it. People ask me if I'm going to write it, and I really don't think I'm going to. But some of the elements of that are important to things that are coming up, so I don't know. I'm going to RAFO that for now. It's not as hard to figure out as you would think.

Idaho Falls signing 2014 ()
#168 Copy

leftinspace

I've picked up in bits in pieces that it's possible, for some people at least, to use the Shardpools to worldhop...

Brandon Sanderson

Yes.

leftinspace

Can non-Invested people do that, or do you have to have some form of Investiture?

Brandon Sanderson

*hesitantly* Every individual is Invested to some extent...

leftinspace

Do you have to have any special Investiture above and beyond the normal spark of life?

Brandon Sanderson

I'm gonna go ahead and RAFO that.

Stormlight Three Update #4 ()
#169 Copy

mathota123

Also what would happen if I had a LOT of Breath and tried to Awaken something that was still alive...?

Brandon Sanderson

RAFO on the second question. You could say that Investing someone with your Breath, however, IS Awakening them.

crocsandcargos

Are Commands unique to Endowment and those with Breath, or do other Shards have an equivalent or similar power / ability? The girl Vasher rescues, his statements to Denth, and your quote above seem to point that Commands can be used on living entities for some purposes... I've always wondered if there was more to Dalinar referring to "unite them" as a 'phantom command'. If other Shards use commands or something similar it could also explain the mechanism of the Nightwatcher's boon/curse related to Dalinar's memory loss.

Brandon Sanderson

Intent is one of the components of the Magic, as you'll see frequently. These things are related.

ICon 2019 ()
#171 Copy

Brutal_murder

How was it that the Lord Ruler was able to speak into the minds of the Terris and ask them if they want to become kandra while he was wielding Preservation?

Brandon Sanderson

Lord Ruler... able to speak with the minds of the kandra...

Brutal_murder

At least TenSoon said in the text that he spoke directly into their minds.

Brandon Sanderson

Send that to me, I want to go to Peter for that one. I think we have an answer for that one, but I want to make sure I'm getting it right.

General Reddit 2018 ()
#173 Copy

Brandon Sanderson

All right. So...things do get confusing whenever I'm trying to circumlocute spoilers. I could have smacked myself for forgetting to mention "no spoilers" before the Q&A. I keep forgetting that there are many readers who are not as sensitive to these things as I am. (Though one woman did gasp in the row behind that guy asking the question--as his original one mentioned Sadeas's death, I believe.)

I will say that there are multiple people I'd consider well on the path to being Radiants by the end of Book Three, and several of these would--shall we say--dispute KR traditions from the past, specifically on this subject matter. (What makes someone eligible to become a KR.) So this discussion is relevant for multiple reasons.

I wasn't trying to drop any bombs about Adolin, however, as I remain very solidly in RAFO territory about his future.

Enasor

Thank you for taking the time to clarify this one Mr Sanderson.

This WoB created a massive shock-wave all across the fandom and many readers were taking you had officially confirmed Adolin was "well on his way towards Knighthood" which I was personally convinced was very deeply into the RAFO territory, as it should be.

Perhaps in order to also settle some additional debates, would you say Adolin would challenge what has traditionally made someone eligible to become a KR or is this within RAFO territory too? Readers can never seem to agree on how perfect Adolin actually is. We seem to find rationals for both.

Brandon Sanderson

I hate to use terms like "perfect" or the like. It's even difficult to (when not speaking in world) use some of the terminology the KR have used in the past--as we have to reconcile several things.

How do you decide what is a mental illness and what is simply a person's unique brain chemistry? Usually this comes down to two factors--the person's own feelings on it and the advice of medical professionals. Even language like "Well-adjusted," as I used before, is dangerous territory because it's so subjective. One need look only to the deaf community to find examples of people who challenge an outsider's perspective of what is a disease and what isn't.

So I generally prefer to talk about this through the character's viewpoint, the lens of historical commentary (which is in world, and may not therefore be accurate--but at least offers a perspective,) and the context of the book.

And in that context, I like Adolin being a RAFO. I believe that using the text, there are multiple directions one could go in discussing him.

Starsight Release Party ()
#174 Copy

John203

So, at the beginning of Way of Kings, Kaladin's in the slave wagon. He sees an unusual cremling after the highstorm.

Brandon Sanderson

*enthusiastic* He does!

John203

Is that one that can see that he is a budding Radiant?

Brandon Sanderson

Let's just say that that cremling is more than it appears.

I'll give you a RAFO card, because I didn't fully answer, but you got kind of an answer. You'll be able to... Keep your eyes out for people saying, "That cremling looks odd."

Stormlight Three Update #3 ()
#176 Copy

goody153

Are we gonna get more hints or insight about Harmony's involvement (the dudes he sent) or other non-Roshar shards involvement in the next book ?

Brandon Sanderson

There will continue to be hints in the books.

goody153

Ah thanks ! I wasn't expecting for you to reply . Good to know, i always found it interesting how many world hoppers are there in Stormlight so i figured there might be shards like at least watching Roshar events.

Might i ask if there are one or more non-Roshar shards that would be poking around?

Brandon Sanderson

I'm going to have to RAFO this. Watch and see what you find! :)

Words of Radiance Seattle signing ()
#180 Copy

Questioner

So far all the spren that have bonded to humans appear to be emotion-based as opposed to nature-based. Is that true for all the Knights Radiant?

Brandon Sanderson

Well it depends. For instance: how would you define Wyndle?

Questioner

I struggled with that one.

Brandon Sanderson

Uh hm. So I would say that you are on the right track, that there is a definite inclination that direction.

Questioner

Towards Honor?

Brandon Sanderson

Yes. There is.

Questioner

Is there other surges then, that are more Cultivation-exclusive or other Knights Radiant that are...?

Brandon Sanderson

We'll RAFO that, but the original Knights Radiant are more focused on Honor and his spren.

Arcanum Unbounded Seattle signing ()
#181 Copy

Questioner

Could a bloodmaker heal a Shardblade wound?

Brandon Sanderson

Could a...whatmaker? Oh, could a bloodmaker heal a Shardblade wound? Um, yes, yes they could. So, what...so, yes, this is possible. (Long pause) Is it possible? I haven't actually thought about it. I have to work through the mechanics of the magics. Jury's out. Jury's out. I've gotta go and look at the actual mechanics, so I'm gonna "jury's out" on that one. That's a read and find out as, you would think I'd figured that one out, because I'm planning for the conflicts but I haven't, like... So what's happening with the healing on Roshar is that they are using Stormlight to bridge the severed soul and glue it back together, right. So, the magic of bloodmaking is different to an extent, in that it is prompting healing directly from the body, right... I'm gonna go with yes, until I look at it but, jury's out.

Boskone 54 ()
#182 Copy

Questioner

What powers does Mizzy have?

Brandon Sanderson

I’m not telling people that yet, mostly because I haven’t decided 100% how I want it to work yet. I know basically what I want to do, but I haven’t decided how I’m going to play it out. I’m not telling people until I get the book actually written.

Questioner

Does that mean there’s another book?

Brandon Sanderson

Yes, if I write another book, it will be a Mizzy book.

Arcanum Unbounded San Francisco signing ()
#185 Copy

Questioner

At the very front cover of the Arcanum Unbounded there is a constellation map, that has a lot of the cosmere stars on it. What point-of-view is that from?

Brandon Sanderson

So the question is, in Arcanum Unbounded... Yes, the cover of Arcanum Unbounded has a star chart in it, a map. And the question is, is this from a specific viewpoint, and if so, what is that viewpoint. So, yes, it is from a specific viewpoint. It's the sky as seen from-- Some of the stars are enhanced a bit-- But it's the sky as seen from a specific point of reference that Isaac came up with when I told-- gave him this assignment. He's my illustrator for a lot of the interior art of the books and he RAFO'd it when we were asked at the release party. So I'm going to RAFO it until he decides he wants to reveal it.

Stormlight Three Update #3 ()
#186 Copy

Ghodicu

The pocket companion states that there are three spren that can bond a person to make them into a bondsmith, the Stormfather being one of them. As far as I recall the books implied that the number was low, and implied heavily that it was around that number in an epigraph, but didn't actually have a straight confirmation. So, should I take that as canon?

Brandon Sanderson

Yes, you can take that as canon. They came to me for that information.

yahasgaruna

Sweet. I guess it hasn't been canonized which three spren these are? I seem to recall that the prevailing theory on 17th Shard was that Nightwatcher was one of them, and the third was that weird spren with too many faces that Axies the Collector looked at in the tWoK interlude.

Brandon Sanderson

RAFO. :)

Chris King interview ()
#187 Copy

Chris King

Did seons exist when the Aonic peoples discovered Elantris?

Brandon Sanderson

When the Aonic peoples discovered Elantris, did seons exist-- Okay let me go back to my timeline... It kind of means you have to define what you mean by Aonic. The problem is if you dig back too far in history it's kind of like asking "What's a German?" You know what I mean?

Chris King

Because the Aons are based upon Elantris itself and so they don't become Aonic until they are writing the Aons.

Brandon Sanderson

And Aonic is also-- You are talking about the people and so it's like are the Normans Brits? Or are they Vikings? Or are they Frenchman?

Chris King

Why don't we phrase it as the people of Sel when they discovered Elantris.

Brandon Sanderson

No, no, that's getting, okay-- Let's go ahead and RAFO that one, just because the history of Elantris is very interesting to the cosmere. When people are starting to get an inkling of that.

Chris King

Odium was there once upon a time.

Brandon Sanderson

Yah... And the question of who built Elantris and how they built Elantris. What's going on with the Elantrians back then and things like this. So let's just RAFO that.

General Reddit 2020 ()
#188 Copy

dIvorrap

Was really Evi the voice that Dalinar heard when he opened Honor's perpendicularity?

Brandon Sanderson

RAFO. (You knew it was coming.)

So here's the thing--I'm never going to confirm or deny anything from Beyond the Spiritual Realm. Because it is unfair for me to do so. I believe there is an afterlife in our world, while others (quite rationally) conclude there is not.

The Cosmere has systems in place for ghosts and things to be real, yes, but I want it to always be possible for intelligent people to disagree about things like Evi's voice. Spiritual Connection creates visions in the Cosmere that are quite realistic (like all the ones Dalinar experienced.)

What Dalinar heard here could very rationally be a version of such a vision. That's what the Death Rattles are, for example.

Or, it could be his dead wife speaking to him from beyond the grave. Navani would say that's what it is; Jasnah would say it's the first. I try very hard (despite my personal biases) to not undercut the viewpoint of someone who doesn't believe in an afterlife. It is vital to me that the author not sweep in and say, "Yeah, it's cool some characters are Atheists at all who doesn't believe in an afterlife...but nudge nudge, we both know there is one."

The existence of an afterlife (not Cognitive Shadow style, but in the Beyond) in the cosmere is subject to your own personal interpretation. Everything that happens like this CAN be explained by Realmatic Theory, with very valid examples from the books.

Kraków signing ()
#190 Copy

Questioner

Are you planning to resurrect Kelsier?

Brandon Sanderson

Well, how far have you read in this book?

Questioner

I have read it all.

Translator

So he's not really dead.

Brandon Sanderson

Well, it depends on what you count as Cognitive Shadow. So resurrect… no… but…

Questioner

There was this quote about the kite that was without a string.

Brandon Sanderson

Yes, he’s looking for a string. He’s indeed looking for a string, so what’s actually going to happen is RAFO.

Salt Lake City ComicCon 2017 ()
#192 Copy

Questioner

I want to know if Kelsier and Hoid will ever get along?

Brandon Sanderson

They, uh-- that's a RAFO, but I wouldn't hold my breath. There are mashing of egos that just don't mesh well going on there.

Questioner

How long will Kelsier's story go?

Brandon Sanderson

Kelsier's story has some more stages to it. I'm gonna RAFO that... But the stuff that's happening right now is set up for a later story with him.

FanX 2018 ()
#193 Copy

Questioner

I want to know if Nightblood can be killed in the same way as a spren.

Brandon Sanderson

Well, that's a RAFO. Nightblood does not have the same spren bond, and so the renouncing of Oaths is not going to affect him, but there are certain things that could.

Firefight San Diego signing ()
#195 Copy

Leinton (paraphrased)

Can you use Hemalurgy to power machinery?

Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

He was initially confused as to what I meant, so I said I got the idea from thinking about FTL travel, and he said that it was a RAFO, but that I was thinking along the right lines, there needs to be a merger between magic and technology.

WorldCon 76 ()
#198 Copy

Sparkle Hearts

The Girl That Looked Up. Is that a real story that happened in Roshar? Or just a metaphor?

Brandon Sanderson

So, Hoid heard it from someone. He did not make it up.

Sparkle Hearts

Because I think Shallan told the story...

Brandon Sanderson

Well, he told the story, too- He knew the story, she knew the story... What you're asking is if it's actually historical?

Sparkle Hearts

Yes. Did it happen?

Brandon Sanderson

I'll give you a RAFO. Because there's actually a little bit to it that I can't talk about. That probably tells you more than I even should already...

There are some weird things about that story, particularly the version that Hoid is involved in.

...Shallan tells half the story, and then later on, Hoid comes, and the story happens again differently. But there are weird things when Hoid is involved in the story that are relevant.

OdysseyCon 2016 ()
#199 Copy

Blightsong

How does corrupted investiture work, like Nightblood?

Brandon Sanderson

Oh, Nightblood. Again, this is a definition of what somebody feels is a corruption. For instance, there are spren that people would feel are corrupted. But that's corruption where the mixing of different Shards has changed things, and I think a lot of times when people say corruption, what they're meaning is the mixing of Shards' powers.

Blightsong

So is there a mixing of Shards' powers happening with Nightblood?

Brandon Sanderson

*smirks* RAFO. That's the natural question, I'm glad you asked it.

Blightsong

Ok, uhhh, so something similar is happening with Gavilar's sphere, right?

Brandon Sanderson

*contemplative silence* RAFO.