Questioner [PENDING REVIEW]
Your 2019 writing line up?
Brandon Sanderson [PENDING REVIEW]
Stormlight 4 will take the entire year.
Found 35 entries in 0.085 seconds.
Your 2019 writing line up?
Stormlight 4 will take the entire year.
The next book, Szeth, will he be the primary character?
I'm probably going to do him as [Stormlight] Five. Eshonai is [Stormlight] Four.
The Song of Changes - just recently saw this WOB. Love the name personally, but what are your current thoughts? How likely do you think this is going to be Stormlight 4?
I think it's unlikely, but we'll see.
So...all the 3 Way of Kings books begin from a different person's perspective in the past. Who're you doing next time?
Let me see...so Gavilar is last, so he's not fourth. I think it's Navani, but I'm not 100% sure. Yes, I think it's Navani, but I will have to look at what I've got in my notes. The 4th one's been the wild card. I always went with Szeth first and Gavilar last.
What's next for you with this series and in general?
My outline for Skyward calls for four books. The sequel will come out a year from this November. Starting in January, I plan to work on the fourth [book] in The Stormlight Archive, and that'll take about 18 months. I split my time between that series and other projects to prevent myself from getting burned out. When I finish a big epic fantasy, I need something different to get excited about for a while. So I'll jump back into this series after the next Stormlight.
Updates on Main Projects
As you just read about above, I am on track for starting this book on January first. I'll begin with a reread of the first three books, as I find I need a periodic refresher, even on my own novels. This will also be important for helping me really nail down the outlines for books four and five.
As I've worked on the Stormlight series, I've shifted a lot of things around in the outlines. Famously, I swapped Dalinar's book and Szeth's book (making Book Three have Dalinar's flashbacks instead of Szeth's). But along the same lines, I moved a chunk of Book Three into Book Two, and then moved around smaller arcs for Three, Four, and Five.
The Stormlight series has a very odd structure. Each novel is outlined as a trilogy plus a short story collection (the interludes) and is the length of four regular books. This lets me play with narrative in some interesting ways—but it also makes each volume a beast to write. The other superstructure to the series is the spotlight on the ten orders of Radiants, with each book highlighting one of them while also having a flashback sequences for a character tied to one of those orders. If that weren't complicated enough, the series is organized in two major five-book arcs.
What this means is that I need to do some extra work on books four and five, as they together tie off an arc. There are some small plot lines I've been pushing back from book to book as I nail down what each volume will include—but I can't do that with Book Five, as it will be the capstone of this sequence. So I need the outlines to be tight to make certain I get everything into them that needs to be there.
Anyway, that's a long way to say, essentially, I'll start posting updates to the Stormlight subreddit in January, and you can follow along there or on the progress bar we'll post here on my website on January first. I've commissioned a special piece of artwork to be used in Stormlight Four blog posts, which we should be able to reveal next year. (I'm pretty excited about it.) So you have that to look forward to as well!
Note that while I'm optimistic about this being my fall 2020 release, delays could happen if the book doesn't come out smoothly on the first draft. I'll keep you updated with regular posts. A lot will depend on how long the revisions take.
Status: Book Four is my main project for 2019, for an anticipated 2020/2021 release.
Do you have an idea for the titles of Skyward 2 and 3? Or Stormlight Book 4?
Skyward 2 is called Starsight. I want to call book three Nowhere, but the publisher doesn't love that. I'll stay away from naming Stormlight 4 yet, though I do have a working title.
Could you tell me whose books are the next few Stormlight?
Yes. Eshonai, book four. (Even though, you know...) Szeth is book five. Six is Lift. Seven is Renarin. Eight is Ash. Nine is Taln. Ten is Jasnah.
Is Eshonai really going to be the flashback character for book 4? Don't you mean Venli?
No, it is Eshonai. (And has always been planned to be Eshonai.) As the series progressed, I knew I wanted to do some unusual things with the flashbacks to keep them all from repeating the same themes and format. My hope is to craft something that is very interesting in the way that it both informs what Venli is doing in the future, and expands upon who Eshonai was in the past.
Projected Schedule of Releases
Starsight (Skyward Two): November 2019
White Sand Three: Sometime 2019–2020
Stormlight Four: Fall 2020
Skyward Three: 2021
Wax and Wayne Four: Sometime 2020 or 2021
Previously, you told me that Hoid loves bacon. Is there any other thing that you can tell me about Hoid that we won't be able to RAFO?
Oh man, I'm running out of stuff to tell you about Hoid that I can't RAFO because I get asked this enough that I forget what I've told people and what I haven't. I'm particularly fond of his monologue for the fourth book. So, be looking forward to that. It's a little different than the others.
Are we just going to see Szeth kill a lot of people in the next book?
Szeth has some better influences than he's had in a long while. He did have some good influences early on. But it's been a long time since he has had as good influences as he now has. I wouldn't count Nightblood as one of those. But at the same time, he's had worse influences than Nightblood.
Is Book Four still planned to be Eshonai's viewpoint?
And, would she have been a Willshaper?
She would be the same Order as her sister.
I want to know if we're ever gonna get to see Hoid and Jasnah and the journey back at the ends of Words of Radiance, 'cause I was so hyped to read that and then they didn't interact at all.
I will promise you some interaction in book four but I won't promise you a flashback...
So in one of your State of the Sanderson posts you said that the "Wax and Wayne" series was going to come out in late 2019, but then you decided to write another trilogy that lasted two years, so...
So Wax & Wayne 4 - abandoning Apocalypse Guard has put me a little on the rocks for when I'm going to do that. Right now I'm planning Wax & Wayne 4 to be a book I use as a break from doing revisions on Stormlight 4. Stormlight 4 I have to start in January if I'm going to meet my stated goal of having them come out every three years, which I realize is a long time between books - but remember that they're four times longer than a normal book! *laughter*. You're laughing, but Oathbringer was 450,000 words, Skyward is 110,000 - so Oathbringer is longer than four Skywards. I do have Skyward 2 done, and am going through the editing process right now. So Wax & Wayne 4 is very much on my radar - I wrote the first one taking a break from Towers of Midnight, so the chances are good I'll need a break from Stormlight 4 and write it there. I don't know if it'll be out next year or the following summer. Stormlight 4 we're shooting for the fall of 2020, and I should be able to get it right around that time if I start in January, so that's the plan.
Updates on Main Projects
It's time to take a little breather. I've begun working on the outline for book four, which is kind of a mess right now because of things I've been moving around between books as I write. My goal this year for Stormlight will be to have rock-solid outlines for books four and five done by December 2018.
My current projection is that I'll spend half of my time writing Stormlight, and half of it doing other things. (I spoke last year about just how big an undertaking a Stormlight book is–and why I can't write them back to back.) I realize that many of you would prefer to have only Stormlight, but that would drive me insane–and drive the series into the ground.
I think this is a realistic schedule. So, I'm giving myself 2018 to work on Skyward (hopefully a trilogy) and other projects. Then on January 1st, 2019, I go back to Stormlight refreshed and excited to be back in Roshar, and I write on book four until it's done. (With a 2020 or 2021 release, depending on how the writing goes.) I do hope to find time for a novella, like Edgedancer, that we can put out between books. This one is tentatively called Wandersail.
For those who don't know, The Stormlight Archive is a ten-book series composed of two five-book arcs.
Status: Writing outline for book four.
Are we gonna see the old love that Kaladin had, in Book 4?
She is still alive. Whether or not you'll see her again is a RAFO.
So, I have to wait until book three to get Szeth’s book?
Yes, Szeth is 3. Eshonai (she is the Parshendi Shardbearer) is probably 4. Dalinar rounds out the first five.
What's the thing you're most excited about doing for Stormlight 4?
I've got a really cool thing set up for Wit's epilogue that I've been planning to do for a long time. So the Wit soliloquy at the end is going to be a little extra special.
Well, on Friday Brandon was explaining what's in book 4 and 5, and after he got well into it I said, "So we're in book 5 now, right?" and he said, "No..."
Since each book is getting longer than the others and having heard what he wants in book 4, do you think he will have to split book 4? I don't want to look past the mark, but it seems like he's on track to have to publish Stones Unhallowed parts 1 and 2.
In this case, he could probably move some plot elements from book 4 to book 5. The issues that make Oathbringer unsplittable probably won't apply then.
The Stormlight Archive
Book Three is done! Edgedancer is out!
I'll be spending about four months of 2017 doing revisions on Oathbringer, then will have a tour in the fall. (Might manage to get to the UK on that one too.) Things are looking good for Stormlight and Roshar, and not just because we are working on a film. I'm excited for you to read the next installment.
I'm officially adding "Oathbringer (Stormlight 3) third draft" to the progress bar, now that I'm almost done with the second draft. (Most of which was completed during writing the first draft, as I explained above.)
Book Four will probably not be released until 2020—I'll start managing those expectations now, rather than trying to promise 2019 like I thought I might be able to do, once upon a time.
As I always promise, I'll see if I can speed that up. But if you take the year it took to outline Book Three and add eighteen months to actually write it, we're already at 2.5 years—not counting other projects I want to do.
Status: Book Three in revisions, out in 2017.
What is the order of the Stormlight books?
First one's Kaladin's. Second one's Shallan's. Third one is Dalinar's. Fourth one is Eshonai. Fifth one is Szeth. Sixth one is Lift. After that, I'm not sure if it's Taln or Renarin next. Probably Renarin.
My projected publication schedule looking forward swaps The Apocalypse Guard out for Skyward and moves the Legion collection into the place of Wax and Wayne 4, reflecting what I actually wrote this year. (Note, these are always very speculative. And Peter is probably already worried about Stormlight 4.)
September 2018: Stephen Leeds/Legion Collection
November 2018: Skyward
Fall 2019: Wax and Wayne 4
Sometime 2019: Skyward 2
Sometime 2020: Stormlight 4
Sometime 2020: Skyward 3
Will Eshonai's in-world book be, like, geography or an atlas?
Right now, her book was named after a song, one of the Rhythms or Songs, but I haven't picked the actual name. That's the working title.
In the Stormlight Archives, do we ever find out how the Assassin in White, how he gets the sword?
Yes, that should be next book.
And does it intertwine any more with Warbreaker?
Oh, that you're gonna have to wait a little while for. You're talking about Nightblood. I thought you were talking about the Honorblade. Next book will explain how he got the Honorblade. How he ends up with Nightblood, really how Nightblood got onto the planet, is gonna take a little while. I will work it in. But it's gonna take a while.
Does that sword have a character arc?
The sword is important and relevant to multiple series.
It's getting better.
He has learned some things in the intervening years. He learns real slowly.
Any idea when we'll learn more about The Lost Metal?
Yeah, probably middle next year you'll know more about it. It's going to depend on how working on Stormlight 4 goes.
With the Stormlight Archive, when you created this, do you know everything? Do you know the end of the book at the beginning?
I do, but... You have to be willing to change as you go, as the characters mature and you mature. For instance, Adolin wasn't gonna be a main character in the original outline. And as I developed the first book, I realized I needed another perspective of somebody who could offer perspective on the things that were happening. That was Adolin's perspective. So I brought him in as a main character. So that wasn't in the original outline.
And for instance, the ending of Book 2, with Kaladin, was actually originally the ending of Book 3. So I ended up switching those around. So things like this happen.
Books 4 and 5, my dividing line, where those two divide, is not really strict right now, and so one of the things I'm doing in outlining is saying, "Let's make sure Book 4 feels like a book, rather than half of a book that Book 5 ends."
Now when Oathbringer is finished have you already chose a flashback character for Stormlight 4?
Yes. It's Eshonai.
Who is going to be the antagonist for Stormlight Archive 4?
I can't answer that without giving spoilers, so you get a RAFO.
Szeth has trained with all ten surges, is he going to also help train new Radiants?
That is something you can expect has been an advantage to them in the intervening time, so yes.
Any new Dustbringers in Stormlight Four?
Yes, there will be.
Is there anything you can tell me about Maya that wouldn't be a [RAFO].
Oh wow, not a lot, let me think. You will see her again in Book 4. That's not a RAFO!
Hoid is not capable of hurting anyone, but in Way of Kings we see him wearing a side-sword, is that simply for show?
That's just for show. He is going to do that again in the next book. It's symbolic.
Title of the next Stormlight book? I have decided I'm not gonna answer that yet. Still working on it.
Eshonai is flashback character [for Stormlight Four], but she is dead in the present. So...who will be main protagonists in the main timeline? Hope for Dalinar, Shallan and Kaladin will be as important as they were in first three books)
Eshonai will still be the flashback character, and Venli will take a larger role to provide counterpart past/present. But, as always, you will find a focus on all five protagonists from this sequence. (I view them as Dalinar, Kaladin, Shallan, Eshonai/Venli, Szeth.)
I heard it would be one year time gap (in world) between books 3 and 4, which make me think about structure of the book. Does it mean, something important could happen during this year, and then it will be explained in some form(maybe another set of flashbacks)? If so, it's hard for me to visualize the book structure: main timeline, Eshonai's flashbacks and another set of flashbacks for past year? Seems like a mess. Or it will be like Mistborn era 1 time gaps between each book? Main narrative just continues without getting stuck with one-year break, and nothing important happens off-screen. It will be nice to get some qualification from you, if possible. Cause now I'm a bit confused.
Right now, I've got it like Mistborn--we're checking back in a year, as I need to give some things time to progress in world. We'll see when I actually write it, though.
Thanks! But please, don't do things like Alien 3-movie, if you know what I mean. It's when they did a time gap between two movies and at the beginning of the new movie they told you that your favorite character died during the time gap, deal with it. This is the worst thing ever and a reason I'm always a bit skeptical about time gaps in fiction. Just hate when things like that happen off-screen. Just don't do it with your books, please. At least can you promise you wouldn't? And what do you think about this trope in general?
I actually want to write an essay about that very trope (I call it the Newt Principle.) You might see it on my website at some point.
Things will happen during the gap, I'm afraid. You might like it, you might not, but I do plan some of the flashbacks in the second half to help cover this time--so you'll see it eventually. If it helps, I'm pretty sure I understand the dangers of the Newt Principle, and how to not fall into that trap.