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JordanCon 2016 () Copy
#1

Brandon Sanderson

*reading a personalization request* Specifically what Khriss knows about the red haze around Scadrial and if she was trying to clue Wax in on the situation.

I can't tell you what Khriss knows about the red haze. Definitely not. She knows too much and I-- ...I can say "She knows too much".

Shadows of Self San Jose signing () Copy
#2

Questioner

Was it a deliberate move on your part to make it such that on Scadrial, people who wear aluminum foil hats actually are safe from mind control?

Brandon Sanderson

Yeah, yeah that was a big inside joke. *laughter* When I realized it would work, I had to put it in. *pause* I’m doing some fun things. The gun thing is another one I’m very fond of.

Calamity Houston signing () Copy
#3

Cadmium (paraphrased)

You're in Houston, questions of Oil & Gas and energy sources will be naturally be bandied about.

Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

Naturally.

Cadmium (paraphrased)

Is the gasoline on Scadrial a fossil fuel or biodiesel?

Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

Oh. Hmm. Well It's fossil fue... No. What they're using now is mostly biodiesel, I think. It's not something we really talked out.

Cadmium (paraphrased)

Ok, we had a whole thread on 17th Shard and even discussed how scientifically fossil fuels could have been put into place during the Catacendre.

Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

Well, fossil fuels are possible, and I don't want to seem like I'm clearly giving credence to those that believe in a Young Earth, but Scadrial is a relatively young planet. Relatively.

Cadmium (paraphrased)

Young Earth doesn't bother me, though I know I'm not the majority.

Cadmium (paraphrased)

Where on Scadrial is it being produced? No mention of refineries in Elendel or the Roughs.

Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

Where on Scadrial... Well it's... I'm going to have to RAFO that for now. It starts to touch on questions of the future as they will need more fuels for travel and they'll need to look for different sources.

General Reddit 2017 () Copy
#4

TimAnEnchanter

How is homosexuality regarded across the cosmere?

I know one member of Bridge 4, though I forget who, is gay, but I'm asking more in the sense of legality, societal view, etc.

Barleyjuicer

It would probably depend on the planet and culture involved. Roshar has many varied cultures and probably has multiple different acceptance levels. Scadrial is much more progressive and really only has two cultures so it's more likely that most if not all of the world accepts it. Maybe this is something you could ask [Brandon] at a signing or during an AMA.

Brandon Sanderson

Yes, this varies widely based on the planet, and even culture, TimAnEnchanter.

Roshar, for instance, has a lot of different perspectives on homosexuality. In Iri, the more religious segment (who believe that life is about new experiences) would approve, while the more rigid modern, secular society has outlawed it.

In Azir, you'd find something like existed in middle-ages India. (Some societies there had this curious system where a gay man would be given "social reassignment" so that he was treated like a woman, dressed like one, and had relations with men--even if he wasn't actually transsexual.)

Vorin culture is concerned with oaths. Extra-marital sexuality is strictly forbidden, but homosexuality is regarded the same by most as heterosexual relationships. If the proper oaths are spoken, then the Almighty approves. (This usually means marriage, but there are certain official forms of other relationships that would allow it also.)

There are actually a couple of scenes in Book Three talking about it, for those who are interested, as the family and romantic relationships of the bridgemen are becoming a larger part of the story. (Still a small part, I should note, for space limitations.)

On Scadrial, it's going to fall between Pathian lines (each individual decides for themselves) and Survivorist lines (you follow church hierarchy, which forbids it.)

Don't even get me started on Bavadin's religions.

fbstj

What reasons do Survivorists use to rationalize heterosexuality? Thank you so much for these tidbits it's really interesting to hear more about this stuff from you. It would be great to see some of this canonized, maybe in an interlude, or random background discussion somewhere. Thank you again for your books! Also very interested in hearing why secular Iriali have decided to 'regress' on that.

Brandon Sanderson

Survivorism calls it unnatural, and not conducive to the survival of the species. More than that, though, Survivorism has become very conservative and slow to change. What early thinkers had to say is regarded very strictly in the religion. Back during the early days of the new era, repopulating the basin was of prime concern, and this became a big part of what led to moral codes in Survivorism.

Salt Lake City Comic-Con 2014 () Copy
#8

theravenchilde

And I was trying to figure out how jazz could possibly develop on Scadrial in Alloy of Law.

Brandon Sanderson

How what?

theravenchilde

How jazz could develop on Scadrial.

Brandon Sanderson

Jazz? Okay.

theravenchilde

*audio obscured* Would it be appropriate to compare the Steel Ministry to the Catholic Church? Not so much in doctrine but...

Brandon Sanderson

Sure, that would be appropriate. I mean when I'm writing Alloy of Law era they are only hitting big band stuff.

theravenchilde

That's what I figured.

Brandon Sanderson

Their music would lag behind ours.

theravenchilde

'Cause big band stuff started around the 1920's.

Brandon Sanderson

They're not even quite there yet. In the second or the third... anyway one of the Alloy books Wax hears someone and they've added to a band brass and he's like "that's not right" he's expecting violin concertos or a pianoforte and he's hearing brass.

Barnes and Noble Book Club Q&A () Copy
#9

Chaos2651

In Mistborn, you say its planet is called Scadrial. In-universe, where (or when) did the name Scadrial come to be used to be describe the Mistborn planet? Did the Lord Ruler and his obligators use that as the name of the planet, or did it come later, post-Mistborn 3? Or is "Scadrial" just what you as an author use to refer to it?

Brandon Sanderson

It is "In Universe" so to speak, though the name itself isn't known to the people on-planet. The Lord Ruler was the only one who understood the exact nature of a planet, really, though some of the obligators and noble scholars had a general idea. Astronomy was one of the scientific areas where the Lord Ruler didn't mind people doing research, so long as it kept their interest away from chemistry or a science that could lead to advances in weaponry.

Scadrial would then have been the name that Ruin and Preservation understood for the planet, as well as certain other groups and individuals of a less directly divine nature.

JordanCon 2016 () Copy
#10

Questioner

What happened to the Ministries?

Brandon Sanderson

The Ministries, being a legacy of the time of the Lord Ruler's rule, there are trappings of them left but they don't use any of the same names or anything like that.

Ben McSweeney

Can't have the old labeling.

Brandon Sanderson

Yeah. I mean-- There are cities you can go to where there are more echoes of that sort of thing.

Questioner

Yeah because New Seran made me think of that.

Brandon Sanderson

Yeah. I mean there are cities you can go that have more echoes of that but in Elendel you can barely even find the trappings anymore-- but you can find some of them. But You won't go in there and find, like, the Ministry of this-or-that. Because it was run by Kelsier's crew, most of that did not make the transition. Though there were notable Obligators who made it through and so they have left their mark. You have to search for it though.

The Hero of Ages Annotations () Copy
#11

Brandon Sanderson

Chapter Seventy-Six

The North Pole

One of my big challenges in the geography of this world was figuring out how we could have a kingdom set at the pole of the world while at the same time maintaining a normal day/night cycle. My original plan was for the Well of Ascension to be located a distance to the north of Luthadel, up at the geographic north pole of the planet. When I was revising the second book, I realized that wouldn't work for various reasons. (More on this on the MISTBORN 2 Alternate Ending deleted scene page.) I changed things so that when the Lord Ruler held the power in the Well, he decoupled the geographic north pole and the magnetic north pole.

In our world, the magnetic north pole is located about eleven degrees of latitude south of the geographic north pole. On Scadrial, the two poles were originally in the same location. When the Lord Ruler moved the planet too close to its sun and realized he didn't have the control to place the planet in the proper orbit, he created the ashmounts to cool the atmosphere. He also wanted to keep access to the Well under his control, so he decided to build his capital city right above it. However, he realized that on a planet with a tilted axis, a city at the north pole would have seasonal daylight variation so extreme that at the height of summer the sun would never set and during the dead of winter the sun would never rise. He could remove the axis's tilt, but that would just make the sun perpetually skirt the horizon all year round.

What Rashek decided to do (and he had to make split-second decisions in the brief time he held the power) was to shift the crust of the whole planet so that the Well was at a latitude that would have more standard seasonal variation, and to re-create the Terris mountains in the new North (to maintain the rumors that the Well was located there). He worried that the new location of Luthadel would be too hot due to the latitude, but it turned out that moving the Well created an unexpected effect. The planet's magnetic pole followed the Well as he relocated it—and the ash from the ashmounts was slightly ferromagnetic. (Ferromagnetic volcanic ash has some precedent in our world.) So the interaction of the ash with the planet's magnetic field's new alignment meant that its protective cloak over the area of the Final Empire caused it to be cooler than the now unprotected geographic north pole.

One side effect of this is that all compasses point toward Luthadel. Since it's been that way for a thousand years, no one finds it odd–in fact, it's used as evidence of the Lord Ruler's divinity. It also makes it mathematically very easy to pinpoint one's exact location in the Final Empire using a combination of the compass reading and noon observations. Not that it's easy to get lost in the Final Empire in the first place—the geographical area of the planet's surface that the Final Empire covers is actually quite small.

Ultimately, when it comes down to sophisticated geography and astrophysics, I'm out of my element. If there are mistakes in my reasoning above, that is why I write fantasy and not hard sf.

And I still haven't said anything about what happened at the south pole.

Stormlight Three Update #4 () Copy
#12

Argent

The name Bleeder - does it come from (the incorrect) idea that bleeding a patient can make them feel better? And so Paalm sees herself as the one who needs to bleed Elendel to make it healthy?

Brandon Sanderson

The idea of "bleeding" as we had on earth as a custom of medicine did not exist on scadrial. But the idea in your post isn't too far off.

Oversleep42

What do you think about translating 'Bleeder' as 'barber surgeon'? It's the Polish translation (and the term is one-word and sounds really well). I think the translators went with the same train of thought as Argent did and since Bleeder has already described herself as a kind of surgeon - her comments about cleaning the wounds being more painful than the cut itself and so on. Is this a "on spot" translation or is it far off?

Brandon Sanderson

Yes, that's not a bad translation at all. I like it.

TWG Posts () Copy
#13

Peter Ahlstrom

The round map [in Mistborn: The Final Empire] makes it look like it takes place over a hemisphere...is that intentional?

Brandon Sanderson

Yes, actually. Though, when we put a map in the book, we'd probably fuzz the edges so we don't have to deal with that. However, after what the Lord Ruler did to the world to try and stop the Deepness, the only habitable parts on the planet are the poles.

Goodreads: Ask the Author Q&A () Copy
#15

Adrienne

In Well of Ascension, it mentions that the language of Terris had a gender neutral pronoun. If you actually constructed the language, what was that pronoun? Or did you just leave it as its English translation of "it"?

Brandon Sanderson

I didn't spend a long time on the languages in Scadrial, since most people were speaking the same tongue. I just used "it" in my own writings. Roshar has a lot more detail on the languages, because culture-clash is a bigger part of the theme of the series.

/r/books AMA 2015 () Copy
#16

FirstSelector

You have claimed that the Shardworlds had their names prior to the settlement of people and Shards. However, Ruin and Preservation created Scadrial (presumably post-Shattering). Where, then, did that planet get its name, and how did the rest of the cosmere learn of it?

Brandon Sanderson

While many of them were named, not all of them were. And the presence of a Shard warps Shadesmar much as large objects warp the physical realm (gravitation.) So if you know how to look, it's not hard to find them.

Shadows of Self release party () Copy
#18

Questioner

Is there anything I should look at as a hint for something we haven’t figured out yet?

Brandon Sanderson

Oh, that's a good question too. There are moments through the entire original trilogy that people haven't figured out yet. But they've picked out most of what they are, they just don't know why. Like they know something weird is happening, they don't know-- They haven't guessed why the weirdness is happening. The weirdness is figure-out-able, but it would be hard. But it's not outside of reason for you to figure out why these certain moments-- these moments people have not yet figured out.

Questioner

Because Odium had influence on Scadrial.

Brandon Sanderson

Yes. Not a ton, but yes.

Questioner

...Kelsier had an irrational hatred for Nobles.

Brandon Sanderson

He did, he did indeed.

JordanCon 2016 () Copy
#19

Questioner

What happened in the Cognitive Realm during the Catacendre?

Brandon Sanderson

Um… *sighs* So, um... Have you read Secret History?

Questioner

Yes.

Brandon Sanderson

You are in the Cognitive Realm for the Catacendre in Secret History, that's some things that happened. Saying what happened there is like saying "what happened on Earth in 19--"

Questioner

Well I was thinking more like what you couldn't see on-screen, if you would comment on that.

Brandon Sanderson

"What you see is what you get for that one." Is what I'm going to say of it.

/r/books AMA 2015 () Copy
#21

wackyHair

What's the population of the shardworld's we've seen so far (even in very general terms, like one's much bigger than the others or something)?

Brandon Sanderson

Scadrial is certainly the least populated of the major shard worlds. Then Nalthis, I'd guess, followed by Roshar, and finally Sel--which likely has the largest population. I would have to look closely to see which is bigger between those last two.

Phantine

Does a population of about 100 million during The Final Empire (with 1-2 million in Luthadel), and around 15 million during Alloy of Law (with about 5 million in Elendel) seem right?

Brandon Sanderson

Have to RAFO this for now, for reasons I can't explain without giving spoilers.

Phantine

How about as far as Elend/Wax knows, at the beginning of their respective series?

Brandon Sanderson

Then those numbers, if they're off, are at least close.

faragorn

Interesting that Sel has such a large population, given that the actual numbers of soldiers shown seem to be quite small.

Brandon Sanderson

Let's just say that Opelon has an inflated opinion of its own size in relation to the rest of the world.

Footnote: The RAFO about the Scadrian population may be due to the existence of the Southerners, which had not been revealed as of this time.
Stormlight Three Update #4 () Copy
#22

BeskarKomrk

When you say Scadrial has an earth similar year, are you referring to the time it takes the planet to go around the sun? Or the year as people on the planet would measure it (e.g. Vin is fifteen years old when her brother leaves her)? Are these the same thing?

While I'm here, a selection of related questions for you if you have the time:

  1. Did the length of a year (as measured by the people on the planet) change when Scadrial was moved by The Lord Ruler/Harmony?
  2. I've assumed that lengths of time given in the books use that world's time lengths. For example, the Reod happens ten Selish years before Elantris (which may not correspond exactly to Scadrian years or Earth years), or that the 4500 years between the prelude and the prologue of Way of Kings is in Rosharan years. Is this an accurate assumption?
  3. I've assumed in the past that all the major shardworld planets we've seen have roughly earth similar years. Can you confirm/deny this for any of them specifically? I'm especially interested in Sel and Nalthis. (Specific numbers would be ideal, but even a yes/no for any of the planets would be super super awesome!)

Brandon Sanderson

  1. I mentioned in another post that I'll wait a bit to give you exact numbers, because I want to make sure Peter has run all the right calculations. But yes, changing the orbit had an effect on things--though official calendars didn't need to change, as they'd been used since before the original shift happened anyway. When we talk about 'Years' in the Final Empire, it's original (pre LR) orbit anyway. I knew I was going to go back to them later in the series, and when characters were actually aware of things like the calendar, it would be close to earth standard.

  2. Though, since you mention it, all numbers mentioned in their respective series are in-world numbers. This makes things tricky, as Rosharan years (with the five hundred days) are blatant enough to start the average reader wondering about these things.

  3. Mostly, Roshar is the big one (not in actual deviation--I think a Roshar year is only 1.1 Earth years--but in how the scope and terminology of the novel will make people start to notice and ask questions.) Other planets have deviations from Earth, but it's not as noticeable. We'll give specific numbers eventually. I promise.

Firefight release party () Copy
#28

Questioner

Is there more to the Roshar world than what is shown on the map or is it just that?

Brandon Sanderson

There is only one continent. Now if you are paying attention, that's not answering your question completely.

Questioner

It's just different realms and all that. I meant like more landmass.

Brandon Sanderson

There is only one continent on Roshar.

Questioner

Just different versions of it.

Brandon Sanderson

That doesn't mean there aren't islands out there.

Now the Mistborn world there is a whole lot more.

Questioner

We've only had that one little part so far.

Brandon Sanderson

Yeah, but it's basically almost all empty because... Which is actually very fun for the worldbuilding, is this idea of a mostly unpopulated world.

Oathbringer Houston signing () Copy
#29

Questioner [PENDING REVIEW]

How did all the characters learn about the different magic systems?

Brandon Sanderson [PENDING REVIEW]

So, it really depends on the character, and the situation, and things like that.

Questioner [PENDING REVIEW]

How did the first person discover, like--

Brandon Sanderson [PENDING REVIEW]

Oh, Mistborn powers? Ruin and Preservation, in that case, were actively cultivating the society, particularly Preservation. Some of it comes through that. Some of it comes through, if you have the Investiture, part of you kinda knows about it. But it takes experience, so you have to know the right things, and stuff. I'll get into it more eventually.

Shadows of Self London UK signing () Copy
#32

Questioner

Can Odium or any other [Shards] edit text like Ruin could? ...Or is that a special Ruin thing.  

Brandon Sanderson

This is possible for others as well. The trick about it is, [Ruin] saturated everything on Scadrial in a way that not all Shards saturate their planets.  

Questioner

Okay, what do you mean "saturate"?

Brandon Sanderson

Creating it, does that make sense? And so this was partially an aspect that everything on that planet, every atom was, y'know, had him in it... I mean he didn't create the atoms, let's say that, but yeah... The whole planet existence and particularly the people on it are [Ruin], attuned to [Ruin].

Shadows of Self Portland signing () Copy
#33

Questioner

I've noticed that Seons and Spren are very, very similar but i haven't seen anything like that in the Mistborn world.

Brandon Sanderson

In Mistborn the Investiture took other forms. It never obtained sapience in the same way. Its theoretically possible that it could have but it.. yeah.

Questioner

So it wouldn't be like the Mist?

Brandon Sanderson

Yeah, you could say that the Mist has a bit of sentience to it, so yes, but there are a bunch of different things going on. On one hand, you've got, right up to the end, Preservation's Cognitive Shadow still around doing stuff, basically still there, so that's preventing it. It's just a very different situation.

Shadows of Self San Francisco signing () Copy
#34

Questioner

Aradel doesn’t sound like he is from Scadrial, seems out of place with his dark - well, tanned, - skin.

Brandon Sanderson

Aradel is actually based off Goradel, he is a descendant of his. So he is local. The skin, there are streaks of dark skin in Scadrial, they don’t associate them 100% with ethnicities because of the small [gene] pool they were building from, and they are stronger in the Terris bloodlines. So if they see someone with darker skin they will likely think they are from Terris, but there’s so much intermixing so that you can’t really say. Wax would have a darker complexion, maybe like a tanned caucasian.

Mistborn: The Final Empire Annotations () Copy
#36

Brandon Sanderson

Chapter Eight - Part Two

In this chapter, for the first time, I straight out mention that plants aren't green. I hoped that this concept would come across in the first few chapters. However, this sort of thing is difficult to enforce in people's minds. The fact that there are NO green plants in the world is something that most people will probably just skip over in their heads. So, I had to make Kelsier aware of the way that things should be, so that he can explain it to Vin, and therefore point out to the reader–in no uncertain terms–how the landscape works.

The other thing to notice is, of course, that there are no flowers in this world. But, we'll get to that later.

17th Shard Forum Q&A () Copy
#37

PricklyBear

When Scadrial was closer to the sun, can we safely assume that the middle section of the planet was scorched clean of anything living? Could there have been some underground life thing going on? Anything cool or interesting sitting out there (like ruins or some lost technology)?

Brandon Sanderson

The middle section was scorched pretty clean. I know of a few interesting tidbits, but it's not technology. (The tech level before the Lord Ruler took over was nothing particularly special, early industrial era.) The cool and interesting things are on the southern continent.

Salt Lake ComicCon FanX 2016 () Copy
#38

Questioner

This is about certain people from Nalthis... living on Roshar and how they are living on Roshar. Could they also do that on Scadrial?

Brandon Sanderson

Scadrial would be a lot harder because getting the Investiture out of things on Scadrial is tough, there are ways you could do it but it would be much more difficult.

Questioner

Does that have to do with the Investiture being more directed?

Brandon Sanderson

Yeah, it's more the genetic component is a big part of it. The directed component-- In Roshar its just flowing around all over the place. For instance, if he could get to a Shardpool he could feed off that, but then he's at the Shardpool and that's kind of dangerous and things. Roshar is really the easiest place in the cosmere for him to consistently get this sort of stuff. Taldain would not be bad either, that's the White Sand world but it is inaccessible currently in the cosmere

Barnes & Noble B-Fest 2016 () Copy
#39

Questioner

Does the name [Wax & Wayne] foreshadow anything that's gonna happen?

Brandon Sanderson

No. I named them that because the pun made me crack up. It's not meant to be foreshadowing. The fun thing about that pun is, Scadrial not having a moon, means that those words exist in their language, it's not part of the common parlance like it is here, so they don't get the pun.

General Reddit 2015 () Copy
#40

amilynn

Are there any black people in Scadrial? Or any other races? I couldn't find an answer online, but the descriptions in the book all seem like white/European people.

Brandon Sanderson

The Terris had a lot more skin color diversity than the people of the central dominance. A large number of those preserved had darker skin, so in the W&W era, you are starting to see skin color become associated with them. During the Final Empire, skin color was basically ignored.

Note that for even people in the Elendel Basin, darker skin won't get nearly as dark as what you will find on Roshar or Taldain.

EDIT: Now that I'm on my computer instead of my tablet, I can dig into this a little more. What other posters have been saying is true--the region of the Final Empire we see in the first trilogy is very small, and the Final Empire itself isn't terribly big. There's not a lot of racial diversity at all.

That said, the Terris are a distinct ethnic group. I carefully didn't describe people in the original books with regard to a lot of racially identifying features. One of the Lord Ruler's goals over the years was to stamp these things out, to create a single unified people. While he couldn't change genetics, his work here did make people start to look at things like class and clothing more than accents or racial identifiers. In addition, it was important that the Terris be diverse enough that, while some looked Terris from just a glance, with others, you could meet them and (for obvious reasons that are spoilers) not know they were actually Terris.

That isn't to say they aren't there--they actually are. Elend and Straff would have a bit of an accent, and Cett a fairly strong one. Sazed would look racially distinct from Vin.

As we get further from the Final Empire, we see these things becoming more of a marker. The Terris work to preserve their cultural heritage, and this distinctiveness highlights other aspects about them, including the dark skin that many of them brought through the end of the world. The next trilogy (1980's era) is planned to star a Terriswoman right now, and she would likely resemble someone ethnically black to many of us on Earth.

sirgog

How far off your impression of Sazed was I in imagining him looking like Teferi from MTG?

Brandon Sanderson

I often give him a Teferi-like-look in my own head, but in actuality his skin tone is probably more akin to someone like Keegan-Michael Key.

Phantine

>While he couldn't change genetics, his work here did make people start to look at things like class and clothing more than accents or racial identifiers.

How did the 'skaa/noble' class genetic tinkering work out, anyway? Did the leadership of every nation just wake up the next morning and find themselves taller, more intelligent, and less fertile?

Brandon Sanderson

Most genetic differences between skaa and noble were exaggerated, even fabricated, by noble culture as justification for their perceived superiority. Height differences due to nutrition, 'intelligence' due to education and societal expectations, fertility due to common factors in urbanization. The LR did try some minor tinkering, to be played out over time through genetics, but in the end these changes weren't very successful.

emailanimal

This is actually good to know. I've seen your other responses to similar questions, where the inference was that there was indeed a significant difference.

The main changes were for dealing with the atmosphere, correct? And they were reverted by Sazed/Harmony?

Brandon Sanderson

There were also some general hardiness changes for the skaa and some fertility changes, but as I said, by the time of the books those were basically gone. And yes, Sazed reverted the ones designed to help survival in the ash.

JordanCon 2016 () Copy
#42

Questioner

What color are Marewill flowers?

Brandon Sanderson

Marewill flowers I've always imagined as a kind of bluish-white. But I don't know if I ever describe that, so it's possible that Peter pushed me once and I said something else. But I'm assuming I've never done it because you don't know. So I'm imagining a bluish-white… with a green actual plant.

/r/Fantasy_Bookclub Alloy of Law Q&A () Copy
#43

Ace_of_Face

How was Sazed/Harmony able to communicate with Waxillium near the end of the book? During the original trilogy, Ruin could occasionally implant thoughts into people's minds, but he couldn't just listen in whenever he felt like it. Is Harmony just way more powerful?

Brandon Sanderson

There is interesting discussion about this one below, which I like to see. I thought this might spark some discussion. Remember that human beings were given more of Preservation than Ruin during their creation, which led to Preservation eventually being overwhelmed by Ruin. That was the bargain; people would be of Preservation at their core, but in turn Ruin got to claim the world once Preservation wound down.

Another factor to consider here is that Wax was given a special earring designed for communication with a being that he actually worships.

Firefight Chicago signing () Copy
#44

Questioner

If you could live on any one of the worlds, which one would it be?

Brandon Sanderson

If forced to, because I would stay here if I could 'cause internet, internet's really cool, mac & cheese, I like mac & cheese, I like instant ramen. But if I were forced I would pick Scadrial, the Mistborn world, because it's the closest to all of those things, but beyond that it would, post-Catacendre, a very good place to live...

General Reddit 2016 () Copy
#46

jpterodactyl

Kwaan might have understood realmatic theory.

In the chapter 19 epigraph for the final empire, the author of the journal says "When we first met, he was studying one of his ridiculous interests in the great Khlenni library - I believe he was trying to determine whether or not trees could think."

I wonder if that means he was looking into trees have a cognitive aspect. It seemed weird to me the first time I read it, but knowing what I know about the Cosmere and Sanderson loving worldbuilding, I feel like that's what this was about.

zuriel45

Was pre-ascension scadrial cosmere aware?

Brandon Sanderson

The OP's theory is correct. The rest is a RAFO.

Bands of Mourning release party () Copy
#47

Questioner

*audio obscured*

Brandon Sanderson

Honestly? I just, these days, say "It kind of looks something like this" and he [Isaac Stewart] reads the book and finds any references I've made and comes up with something. I can trust him to the point that I don't have to worry too much about it. On some I'll give him a shape. On Roshar I gave him the shape, and said "It's like this" and then I split things up. Because that one shape was very important to me. But like Mistborn I'm like "It looks kind of like this. Go for it."

Isaac Stewart

*audio obscured*

Brandon Sanderson

Oh yeah I sent an MS Paint thing.

Stormlight Three Update #6 () Copy
#48

yafeshan

I am space nerd with a love of fantasy, so; Why is Scadrial prime example planet to invent space travel. Is its allomancy/ferruchemy/hemalurgy combination more suitable for that kind of technology or do they have other incentives to invent space travel other than regular technology development? Is it related to the intervention of unknown metal/shard/beings we saw?

Brandon Sanderson

There are a bunch of reasons.

The most technologically advanced of the planets (Taldain) is extremely isolationist because of its Shard, while Harmony is very interested in the progress of his people.

Scadrial has an advanced understanding of metallurgy, and for many years was quietly open to visitors from across the cosmere. In the modern era, that has enhanced. It's a much safer place to visit than, say, Sel, Threnody, or First of the Sun.

There are other reasons, too, which we'll get into as the world progresses. Having some prominent cosmere-aware people pulling strings behind the scenes is a big help. If you know other worlds are out there, and are populated, then you're more likely to push toward space travel.

Arcanum Unbounded Chicago signing () Copy
#49

Questioner

Why did Hoid in Secret History have to ride on another person to get to the Well, when that person could float on--

Brandon Sanderson

Sooo, what he's floating on is a Cognitive Shadow. It's a spirit, it's not an actual person. He is floating on someone who is--

Questioner

Do we know them?

Brandon Sanderson

You did not know them, don't worry about them. But see, he's using that as a boat because it's easy to sink through the mist. And if you notice, he has to coat his oar with Investiture in order to move him. So yeah, he's floating on a person's soul... It was so much easier with the Pits, but that's because there were boats and things.