JordanCon 2021

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Name JordanCon 2021
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Date July 16, 2021
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#1 (not searchable) Copy

Brandon Sanderson

I am going to read to you from Wax and Wayne 4.

It is always a little bit of a trick to figure out what to read, because I also generally don't want to spoil too much for people who have not read the series. But the Wax and Wayne, it's always been fairly easy because the prologues of each of them are flashbacks to the past. Like I do in Stormlight with flashback characters, we get basically one flashback sequence per book in the Wax and Wayne books. So this is actually going to be from the prologue of The Lost Metal, which is from Wayne's viewpoint as a little boy.

Brandon Sanderson

Wayne knew what beds were. A few of other kids in the settlement had them. Sounded much better than a mat on the ground, especially one he had to share with his mom when nights were cold because they didn't have any coal.

Plus, there were monsters under beds. Yeah, he'd heard stories from the other kids in the settlement about mistwraiths. They hid under your bed and stole the faces of people you knew. So beds sounded real nice; soft and squishy on top, with someone underneath you could talk to. Sounded like rustin' heaven!

The other kids were scared of those things, but Wayne figured those kids just didn't know how to properly negotiate. He could make some friends with something that lived under a bed. You just had to give it something it wanted, like someone else to eat. Maybe he could ask Ma to have a little brother.

Anyway, no bed for him; no real chairs. They had a table built by uncle Gregor, before he got crushed by a billion rocks in a landslide and mushed up into a bloody pulp what couldn't hit people no more. Wayne kicked the table sometimes, just in case his spirit was watching somewhere, 'cause he'd made that table and maybe it'd make him mad. Rust knew there was nothing else in this little one-windowed home that Uncle Gregor had cared about.

Best Wayne had for sitting was a stool, so he sat on that and played with his cards, drawings hands and trying to hide cards in his sleeve as he waited. This was a nervous time of day; every day, he thought, maybe she wouldn't come home. Not because she didn't love him; Ma was a burst of sweet spring flowers in this sewage pit of a world, and he'd punch anyone who said otherwise. No, he worried that, one day, Ma wouldn't come home. Pa hadn't come home one day. Uncle Gregor (Wayne kicked the table) hadn't come home one day. So...

Don't think about that, Wayne thought, bumbling his shuffle and spilling his cards all over the table and floor. And don't look. Not until you see the light.

He could feel the mine out there. Nobody wanted to live next to it, of course, so Wayne and his Ma did. Just under the window was a pile of laundry that Wayne had done for the day. His Ma's old job, what hadn't paid real well. So he did it, while she pushed mine carts. He didn't mind the work; spent half the day trying on all the different clothes, from ones sent by Gramps to the ones sent by young women, pretending to be them. His Ma had caught him a few times and seemed angry, minding why he did it. That exasperation still baffled him. Why wouldn't you want to try them all on; that's what clothes was for! It wasn't nothin' weird; he just like it, and what harm did it do? None to nobody. Besides, sometimes folks left stuff in their pockets, like decks of cards.

He fumbled the shuffle again as he gathered the cards up, and he did not look out the window. Not until he spotted the light. He'd feel it, anyway, though, the mine, that gaping artery, like a hole in someone's neck, red on the inside and spurting out life like blood and fire. They had to go, dig at the beast's insides, searchin' for metals, then escape its anger. And you could only get lucky so many times.

Light. With relief, like fire on a frigid night, he glanced out the window and saw someone walking on the path, holding up a lantern to illumine her way. Wayne scrambled to hide the cards under his mat, then he was certain to lay on his mat with his lamp out, pretending to try to sleep with the door open. She'd have seen his light, of course, but she appreciated the effort he put into pretending.

She settled down on the stool, and Wayne cracked an eye. His Ma wore trousers and a buttoning shirt, her hair up, clothing and face smudged. She sat just staring at the light in the lantern, watching it flicker and dance, and her face seemed more hollow than it had been before, like someone has taken a pickaxe to her cheeks, digging away like rock in the wall. That mine's eatin' her up, he thought. Even if it hasn't gobbled her all whole like it did Pa, it's gnawing on her like rats on a barn wall.

Ma blinked, then fixated on something: a card he'd left on the table. Ah, hell. She picked it up and looked right at him. He didn't try to pretend to be asleep no more; she'd dump water on him. She'd done it before.

"Wayne," she said, shifting on the stool to look at him. "Where did you get these cards?"

"Don't remember."

"Wayne..."

"Found 'em," he said.

She waved her hand toward him, and he reluctantly dug the rest out from under his met and handed them over. She tucked the one she'd found into the box. He knew from experience she'd look all day through the settlement for the one who'd lost them. She didn't have time for things like that; he wouldn't have her losing more sleep on account of him.

"It's <Tarn Vestingdow>," Wayne mumbled. "It was in a pocket of his overalls.

"Thank you," she said softly.

"Ma, I gotta learn cards. See, that way, I can earn a good living for carin' for us."

"A good living?" she asked. "With cards?"

"Don't worry," he said quickly. "I'll cheat. Can't make a livin' if you don't win, see?"

She sighed, rubbing her temples.

Wayne looked at the cards in the stack. "Tarn," he said. "He's Terris, like Pa was."

"Yes," she said.

"Terris people always do what they're told," he said, "so what's wrong with me?"

"Nothing's wrong with you, love," she said. "You just haven't got a good parent who can help you."

"Ma," he said, scrambling off the mat. He took her arm. "Don't talk like that, Ma. You're a great ma!"

She hugged him to her side, but he could feel the tension in her. Ah, hell. What had they found?

"Wayne," she asked softly, "Did you take <Demmy's> pocketknife?"

"He talked?!" Wayne said. "Rust that rustin' little bastard!"

"Wayne, don't swear like that!"

"Rust that!" he said in a rail worker's accent instead. "The rusting bastard!" He looked at her innocently and was rewarded with a smile she couldn't keep in. Silly voices always made her grin. Pa had been good at them, but Wayne was better, particularly now that Pa was dead and couldn't say them no more, anyway.

But then, her smile faded. "You can't take things what don't belong to you, Wayne. That's somethin' thieves do."

"I don't wanna be a thief," Wayne said softly. "I wanna be a good boy. It just... happens!"

"She hugged him closer. "You are a good boy. You've always been a good boy." When she said it, he believed it. "Do you want a story, love?" she asked.

"I'm too old for stories," he lied, desperately wishing she'd ignore the objection. "I'm eleven. One more year, and I can drink at the tavern and prove how old I am."

"What? Who told you that?"

"Doug."

"Doug is nine!"

"Doug knows stuff."

"Doug. Is. Nine!"

"So you're sayin' I'll have to snitch booze for him next year, because he can't get it himself yet?"

He met her eyes, then started snickering as she smiled. He helped her get dinner; cold oatmeal with some beans in it. But at least it wasn't only beans, and there was some oatmeal. Then he snuggled into his blankets on the mat, pretending he was a child again to listen. It was easy to feign that; he still had the clothes, after all.

"This is the story," she said, "of Blatant Barm, the Unwashed Bandit."

"Ooooh," Wayne said. "A mean one?"

His mother grinned, then leaned forward, wagging her spoon toward him as she spoke. "He was the worst of them all, Wayne: baddest, meanest, stinkiest bandit. He never bathed, you see."

"'Cause it takes too much work to get properly dirty," Wayne said.

"No, because he... wait, it's work to get dirty?"

"Gotta roll around in it, you see," Wayne said.

"Why in Harmony's name would you do that?"

"To think like the ground."

She smiled again. "Oh, Wayne. You're so precious."

"Thanks!" he said. "Why ain't you told me about this Blatant Barm, if he was so bad? Wouldn't he be the first one you'd told stories about?"

"You were too young," she said, sitting back, "and the story too frightening."

"Ohhhhhhhh this is gonna be a good one!" Wayne bounced up and down. "Who got him? Was it a lawman?"

"It was Allomancer Jak."

"Him?" Wayne said with a groan.

"What?"

"Jak brings them in," Wayne complained. "He never shoots a single one.

"Not this time," Ma said, digging into her oatmeal. "He was young this time. He knew Blatant Barm was the worst killer to the core. Even his two sidekicks, Gug the Killer and No Ways Joe, were ten times worse than any other bandit ever walked the Roughs."

"Ten times?" Wayne said.

"Yeah."

"That's a lot; almost double!"

His Ma paused, then leaned forward and got back into it. "They robbed the payroll, taking not just the money from the fat men in Elendel, but the wages of the regular folk."

"Bastards!" Wayne said.

"Wayne."

"Fine. Regular old turds, then!"

Again, she hesitated. "Do you know what the word 'bastard' means?"

"Yeah, it's a real bad turd. The kind when you really got to go, but you hold it in too long!"

"And you know that because...?"

"Doug told me."

"Of course he did. Well, Jak wouldn't stand for stealing from the common folk of the Roughs. Being a bandit is one thing, but everybody knows you take the money what goes toward the city. The trick is, Blatant Barm, he knew the area real well, so he rode off into the most difficult part of the Roughs to reach, and he left one of his men to guard each of the spots along the way. So Jak, he was gonna have to fight his way through all three."

"Why's it always three in stories, Ma?" Wayne asked. "Three bandits, three guns, three mines."

"Well, how high do you think most bandits can count?"

"Probably not that high," Wayne agreed. Ma always had good answers to such things.

"Fortunately, Jak was the bravest," she said, "and the strongest."

"If he was the bravest and the strongest, " Wayne said, "why was he a lawman? He could just be a bandit, and nobody could stop him, right?"

"Well, what's harder, love?" she said. "Doing what's right? Or doing what's wrong?"

"The right thing."

"So who gets stronger? The fellow what does the easy thing, or the fellow what does the hard thing?"

"Huh." He nodded. "Yeah, I can see that."

She leaned forward, grinning in the light. "Jak's first test was the River Human, the vast waterway marking the border with what had once been Koloss land, but now was controlled by bandits entirely. The swift waters moved at the speed of a train; the fastest river in the whole dang world! And it was full of rocks. Gug the killer had set up there across the river and watched for lawmen. He had such a good eye and a steady hand with his rifle that he could shoot a fly off a man at three hundred paces!"

"Why'd you ever wanna do that?" Wayne asked. "Better shoot men right in the fly, right? That's gotta hurt somethin' bad!"

"Not that kind of fly, love," Ma said.

"So, what did Jak do? Did he sneak up? Not very lawman-like to sneak. I don't think they ever do that ever. I bet he didn't sneak."

"Well..." Ma said. Wayne clutched his blanket, waiting. "Jak was an even better shot," she whispered. "When Gug the Killer sighted him, Jak shot him, right across the river."

"How'd Gug die?" Wayne whispered.

"... by bullet, love."

"Right through the eye?"

"I suppose."

"And so Gug took sight, and Jak took sight back and shot him right in the eye! Right in the eye, right, Ma?"

"Uh..."

"And his head exploded!" Wayne said. "Like a fruit, the crunchy kind, all ripe so the shell is tough but it splats anyways. Is that how it happened?"

"... yes."

"Dang, Ma. That's gruesome! You sure you should be tellin' this story to me?"

"Should I stop?"

"Hell, no. How'd he get across the water?"

"He flew," Ma said. She absently set the bowl aside, oatmeal finished, and made a flourish with both hands. "He had powers, Jak did. Allomancy powers. He could fly, and talk to birds, and eat rocks."

"Woah... eat rocks?"

"Yep. And he flew right over the river, but the next challenge was even worse. The Canyon of Death."

"Ohhhh. Bet that place was pretty."

"Why'd you say that?"

"'Cause no one is gonna visit a place called Canyon of Death unless it's pretty. But someone visited it, right, because we know the name. So it's pretty, right?"

"Beautiful," Ma said. "A canyon carved through the middle of a bunch of scattered, crumbling rock spires, the broken peaks lined with colors. But the place was deadly; as deadly as it was beautiful."

"Yeah," Wayne said, "that figures."

"But Jak couldn't just fly over this one, for the second of the bandits hid within the canyon: No Ways Joe. He was a master of pistols, and could also fly, and turn into a dragon, and eat rocks. So if Jak tried to sneak past, Joe would shoot him from behind."

"That's the smartest way to shoot someone," Wayne said, "on account of them not being able to shoot back."

"True," Ma said. "So Jak didn't let that happen. He had to go right into the canyon. But it was filled with snakes."

"Bloody hell!"

"Wayne..."

"Regular old boring hell, then. How many snakes?"

"A million snakes."

"Bloody hell!"

"But Jak, he was smart," Ma said, "as well as bein' a great shot and able to eat rocks, too. So he thought to bring some snake food."

"A million bits of snake food?"

"Nah, just one, but he got the snakes to fight over it, so they mostly killed each other. But the one that was left was the strongest, naturally."

"Naturally."

"So Jak talked it into biting No Ways Joe."

"And Joe turned purple!" Wayne said, "and bled out of his ears, and his bones melted on account of the poison being so bad, so the melty bone juice leaked out his nose while he was bleeding, and he collapsed in a puddle of deflated skin, all while hissing and blubbering 'cause his teeth was meltin' too."

"Exactly."

"Dang, Ma. You tell the best stories."

"Wait," she said softly, leaning down on the stool, their lantern burning low. "Because the ending has a surprise."

"What surprise?"

"Wait and see," she said. "Because once Jak was through the canyon, what now smelled like dead snakes and melted bones, he spotted the final challenge: the Lone Mesa. A giant plateau in the center of an otherwise flat plain."

"That's not much of a challenge," Wayne said. "He could fly over the top."

"Well, he tried to," she whispered, "but the mesa was Blatant Barm!"

"What?"

"That's right! He joined up with the Koloss, the ones that could change into big monsters; not the normal ones, like old Mrs. <Gnaw>. They showed him how to turn into a monster of humongous size, so when Jak tried to land on the mesa, the mesa done gobbled him up."

Wayne gasped. "And then?" he said. "It mashed him between his teeth? Crunching his bones like--"

"No," Ma said. "It tried to swallow him. But Jak, he wasn't just a good shot, and he wasn't just smart; he was somethin' else."

"What?"

"A big damn pain in the ass!"

"Ma, that's swearin'!"

"I meant it in a good way, though, love."

"Oh, well, that made it all right, then."

"He," Ma said, "was always goin' about doin' good, helpin' people, makin' life tough for the bad ones. Pokin' his nose into things, askin' questions. He knew exactly how to ruin a bandit's day, he did. He stretched out his legs and pushed and made himself a lump in Blatant Barm's throat what so the monster couldn't breathe. 'Cause monsters like that needs lots of air, you know, and right then Allomancer Jak done choked him from the inside. Then, when the monster was dead on the ground, he sauntered on out down his tongue like it was some fancy mat set down outside the carriage for a rich man."

"Woah. That's a good story, Ma." She smiled, stepping over and kissing Wayne on the forehead. "Ma," he said, "is the story about the mine?"

"Well," she said, "I suppose we all gotta walk into the beast's mouth now and then, so maybe, I guess.

"You're like the lawman, then?"

"Anyone can be," she said, blowing out the lantern light.

"Even me?"

"Especially you." She kissed him on the forehead. "You are my love, Wayne. You are a whatever-you-want. You're the wind, you're the stars, you are all endless things." It was the poem she liked; and he liked it, too, because when she talked, he believed her. Ma didn't swear, and she didn't lie.

So he snuggled into his blankets and let himself begin to drift off. Because a lot was wrong in the world, but a few things were right. And as long as she was around, stories meant something. They was real.

Until, one day, there was another collapse at the mine. And that night, his Ma didn't come home.

#2 Copy

Questioner

In Celebrant, Kaladin looks at a metallic necklace. Will that necklace help a spren-

Brandon Sanderson

Is it a necklace?

Questioner

Is it a- will that accessory help a spren keep its human-esque form outside of Shadesmar?

Brandon Sanderson

RAFO!

#4 Copy

thegatorgirl00

Do spren feel any kind of sexual or romantic attraction?

Brandon Sanderson

Not as a rule. There are some orders that are more likely to do so. There are a lot of orders that you would call asexual. But it depends on the individual, and it depends on their breed or race of spren. So, it varies.

#5 Copy

Pagerunner

I would like my [cosmere constellations] map to have one more planet on it than everybody else's maps.

Brandon Sanderson

That's a smart idea. I'm on board for that.

*adds a new planet and writes "here there be Aethers!"*

Pagerunner

But no name on it? Just that there there be Aethers?

Brandon Sanderson

Yeah, I can't canonize the name yet until I write the planet, right?

#6 Copy

Pagerunner

The silver-nickel alloy that is used in Raboniel's dagger where the... Is that going to do the opposite effect (like a Pushing vs. Pulling) of what silver does to shades on Threnody?

Brandon Sanderson

RAFO, good question. Good question!

#7 Copy

Questioner

Taln. Did he actually ever give up? Or was it... Did he just get released when...?

Brandon Sanderson

You will find out, but Taln did not break. You'll find out how it happened, but Taln did not break.

#8 Copy

Pagerunner

Were all spren wounded by Ba-Ado-Mishram's capture like the Sibling was? Did it prevent them from hearing Honor's tone in the same way?

Brandon Sanderson

Alright, so first part is, were all spren wounded by it?

Pagerunner

Like the Sibling was.

Brandon Sanderson

Not all were wounded in the same way.

And no, not necessarily, to the second part.

#10 Copy

Pagerunner

There's a line in the new Mistborn leatherbound Hero of Ages, there's the stories about "mistwraiths, shades, spren, brollins." Is "brollins" a Cosmere thing that you made up or is that just something...?

Brandon Sanderson

Um, no. So "brollins" is a thing that I wanted when I... often when I make a list like that, I wanna make sure that there is some sort of local flavor. Like, for instance, that, uh... basically that's a myth locally, that's not a deep Cosmere deep cut. And I did this also, y'know, with the lines about nonsense words that Hoid uses. You're not supposed to be like, really dissecting each of those. Does that make sense?

Pagerunner

Yeah. 'Cause you changed all the other stuff and left this one and it's like "what the heck's this one"..

Brandon Sanderson

Yeah. But no, this is just...

Pagerunner

We're not gonna get to the end of Stormlight 9 and be like "ohhh the brollins!"

Brandon Sanderson

No, you're not. This is... I mean, it's relevant, 'cause everything in the books is relevant, but you shouldn't be like "ohh I..."

#12 Copy

Questioner

When a Shard changes hands, does the god-metal change names and/or properties?

Brandon Sanderson

It can. It doesn't as a rule.

Questioner

So it'll still be raysium?

Brandon Sanderson

Yes. Well, the name, you would change the name, probably. But it shouldn't necessarily do anything different. The name that it's given is cultural. So you could continue to call it that. People might call it that. I think people in-world would call it something else. But depends on the person.

#13 Copy

Pagerunner

Is the rhythm of a metal, is that a Command? Are all Commands Rhythms?

Brandon Sanderson

*makes uncertain noises* They are similarly related, but I wouldn't call them that. But I could see the argument, but I'm gonna say no, that's not how I view them. They're related, right?

Pagerunner

It's all how the magic is manifesting, but not necessarily...

Brandon Sanderson

Yeah. Yeah. Like if you hear the vibration of my voice when I'm telling you something, is the vibration the telling-you-something? I don't know.

#15 Copy

Questioner

Is there like a Cosmere-significant reason why, on Scadrial, the Investiture is hereditary, but that that doesn't really seem to be the case on any of the other worlds?

Brandon Sanderson

Yes there is, but it has to do more with the fact that on Scadrial, human beings were directly created by Ruin and Preservation. And most of the Cosmere worlds you've seen don't have that same sort of aspect. It is the case on Nalthis. It's not the case on Roshar, it's not the case on Taldain, it's not the case on Sel. And so because of that instance, that's how I'm kind of working, that changed the way people interact with magic directly. But there is some wiggle room there for me. But that's your answer, that's the actual... there's.. I'm not hiding anything there, there is wiggle room. What I'm saying is don't extrapolate that that has to happen every time that the Shards were directly involved in the creation...

#16 Copy

Argent

With Intent and Command, I've been thinking about how these things would apply to other worlds. On Nalthis they seem kind of folded together into the same thing, but I can't crack the metals on Scadrial and the Aons in Elantris. Because the Aons seem very Command-y, not very Intent-y, right? What about the metals?

Brandon Sanderson

The Aons, you should be able to eventually figure it out. With the metals, when I wrap this in, it's going to be very slight, and you shouldn't assume that every one of the permutations of the cosmere magics are going to require the same levels of... I need the freedom on each one. So Intent and Command can't be a major feature of every magic, otherwise it's too restrictive. You're going to end up with too many that feel the same. You can imagine, on Scadrial, that different metals would not have had to do what they do in the origin of the magic system. That is not necessarily innate, that is relating to the creation of the magic.

Argent

How it was built manually, almost, by a Shard?

Brandon Sanderson

Does that make sense? You can imagine an in-cosmere magic system that is very similar to Allomancy, where each of the metals do a different thing than is in Allomancy.

Footnote: While the question was being asked, Brandon was nodding the entire time until he first spoke.
#17 Copy

Pagerunner

I've got a question about fabrial epigraphs. So you've got the pewter and tin, about the augmenters and diminshers, and the tin one says you can use steel and iron to change the polarity. Then the iron one says they haven't figured out how to do...

Brandon Sanderson

Yes, they haven't been able to figure it out.

Pagerunner

Is that because they haven't found the right kind of steel? I mean, but they have it for *motions at augmenter/diminisher epigraphs on phone*.

Brandon Sanderson

So, what are you...

Pagerunner

So what does the steel and iron, how does that... Cause I would just think, if they're going to switch polarity, you'd just use both tin and pewter, and that switches the polarity. What does the steel and iron actually do?

Brandon Sanderson

I'll RAFO that for now. But yes, basically... I'll RAFO it for now.

#19 Copy

Mark Lindberg

The red bird in Rhythm of War that Lift saves... Is that Magellan?

Brandon Sanderson

It is not Magellan, the coloring is slightly different. But it is inspired by my love of parrots. So yes, the colorings are slightly different from Magellan's.

Mark Lindberg

Is that an Aviar?

Brandon Sanderson

It is an Aviar.

#20 Copy

Ted Herman

So besides Sja-anat, Cultivation, and El, does anyone know about the new Odium?

Brandon Sanderson

I think that most of the Shards will be quickly finding out, if that makes sense. Like, this is a thing that they would know. Pretty quickly.

#23 Copy

Pagerunner

In The Traveler, which you read here [at a prior JordanCon], Hoid was on Yolen. He has only worldhopped with perpendicularities. Does Yolen have a perpendicularity?

Brandon Sanderson

Yolen has something very similar.

Pagerunner

Okay, is it associated with a Shard?

Brandon Sanderson

You would call it a perpendicularity, but there is not a Shard in residence on Yolen.

#24 Copy

Questioner

Is Kelsier confirmed as the leader of the Ghostbloods?

Brandon Sanderson

He is. I can tell you that. They will make an appearance in the next Wax and Wayne book, now that the full secret is out.

#25 Copy

Pagerunner

Bronze Allomancy and tones. Normally you can only hear Allomancy--they haven't figured to use Feruchemy. Is that because they need to learn to listen on a different pure tone?

Brandon Sanderson

Not necessarily, but I like the way you're theorizing.

#26 Copy

Kingsdaughter613

What would the Surge of Transformation look like to an observer in the Cognitive Realm when someone's transitioning?

Brandon Sanderson

I will RAFO that, and I plan to show it someday.

#29 Copy

Kingsdaughter613

And I want to know if Kell has worked with Khriss since he met her.

Brandon Sanderson

Worked together...

Questioner

To study something.

Brandon Sanderson

Yeah.

Questioner

So like, they've been research partners on a paper.

Brandon Sanderson

They have worked together.

#30 Copy

Kingsdaughter613

When Warbreaker has the priest's daughter manipulate her Breath, it doesn't appear to be permanently damaged afterwards. Like, Vivenna notes it flickers, but it seems to go back to what it was before, and Hoid loses some when Odium does something very very similar. Why is that?

Brandon Sanderson

Yes. Odium was being more invasive and more destructive. And is less practiced at what was happening.

#33 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.

#34 Copy

Pagerunner

The Hemalurgy table, you wrote down "atium steals any power, lerasium is all abilities, nicrosil is Investiture"; what's the difference between those three?

Hemalurgic atium, lerasium, and nicrosil. What's powers, abilities, and Investiture?

Brandon Sanderson

People are Invested in ways that do not give them active powers. So for instance, everyone on Nalthis is Invested. Everyone in the cosmere is, really. You want to steal their Investiture, but they don't have a power. You're still ripping off a piece of their soul. So there is a distinction between the actual Investiture that's in a human being and a specific power that they have.

So that distinction is pretty easy. You can also, with Hemalurgy, steal specific things. You can steal just general Investiture. You can steal, if you want--this is where the kandra Blessings come from. You can instead steal specific things that are not like stealing Allomancy. Stealing, for instance, someone's mental acuity.

Pagerunner

So abilities is like the half that's all the strength, speed, all that kind of stuff? Those are abilities, versus the Metallic Arts are all powers?

Brandon Sanderson

Yes.

Pagerunner

Then Investiture, is that offworld magics?

Brandon Sanderson

No, no, it's the raw power.

Pagerunner

Nicrosil is their soul?

Brandon Sanderson

Yes. A piece of their soul, essentially.

Pagerunner

So how would you go about stealing an offworld power?

Brandon Sanderson

It's going to depend. A Breath, you would steal with nicrosil. It's general Investiture, is what you would probably going call that. You could forcibly remove someone's Breath from them. The ability to be a Sand Master you would steal with the power ability.

#35 Copy

Kingsdaughter613

Was Kelsier directly involved in causing the showdown with Bloody Tan that ended up with Lessie...

Brandon Sanderson

No. As I have it written right now, no. Indirectly involved, possibly, but this is not an outcome he wanted, it's not something he influenced, and not something I would even say that he was aware was happening. I haven't written Secret History 2, so that's totally possible that... But I don't have it planned for him to be involved right now.

#36 Copy

Questioner

What's the source of rubber on Roshar?

Brandon Sanderson

It's not very exciting, it is a tree. It's not an actual rubber tree, it is a Rosharan version of the tree. I actually had to think about this, cause silk doesn't come from the same place that silk comes from. And then, I'm just going too far. Silk I can at least talk about and I can name it seasilk, but for rubber I'm just like, it's a rubber tree. We'll just make it rubber. It's not petroleum based. That's gonna be a hangup on Roshar, that they don't have petroleum reserves in the same way. They are a planet that has only been around for 12,000, 13,000 years. And beyond that, there's the whole crem thing. They do have some sources of petroleum that are biological, or I guess it's all biological, but it's not, yeah. That's gonna be a problem for them, let's just say. Access to large petroleum reserves is not a thing you will find there.

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Kingsdaughter613

If a Cognitive Shadow or a Splinter gained Connection to the Physical Realm, could they just transition through a perpendicularity to manifest a physical form, or is something else required?

Brandon Sanderson

Something else would be required, because you're... But that would take you a long way. It's going to depend on the situation, right?

Questioner

Because Ishar was doing something where like he was Connecting spren...

Brandon Sanderson

Yes, Ishar was doing something, and so for instance, spren are gonna be played a little differently than a Cognitive Shadow would be played. Like, Cognitive Shadows, that's just not gonna be enough. But spren is much closer. This has to do with how much Investiture's involved and how they're Connected and things like this, but it's not quite enough. In most cases.

Questioner

So Ishar was doing something in addition to just Connecting the spren to the Physical Realm?

Brandon Sanderson

Yes. He was indeed doing something more.

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Pagerunner

The specific word "ralkalest," it appears on multiple worlds. Why did you use that instead of just saying "aluminum"?

Brandon Sanderson

This is mostly us just being cheeky. I like fantasy names for star metal, and I came up with ralkalest because... I go back and forth sometimes about how much I just want to call something what it is in translation, and how much I want to call... In this case, I decided ralkalest sounds cool, it evokes the feeling of the people in world viewing this metal, where they have this view of it as this mythical, magical sort of thing. And simply calling it "aluminum" doesn't convey that in the same way, the mythology associated with it. So I use both, but it's like there's two different languages, and when I'm using "ralkalest," it's more evoking their view of this metal.

Pagerunner

On Sel, Shai says one word, and Raboniel says another word, neither of them are saying aluminum? Neither of them are saying some other word that doesn't exist in English?

Brandon Sanderson

Right, they are both saying, ralkalest would be a transliteration of the actual word in world.

Pagerunner

But which language, which transliteration?

Brandon Sanderson

Oh, which language does ralkalest come from? I think ralkalest is probably original Yolish, but I haven't actually sat down and written that down. But that's what I would say now, that we're looking for kind of a mythological level. And a lot of times if you're gonna get a mythological term that's gonna transfer across worlds, it's gonna go back to what it was called on Yolen, right? Some of the words from Yolen are kind of like the way that we use Old English, or even... Latin's weird in English, so it's not really Latin. Latin and Greek have both been incorporated into scientific terms for things. But ancient terms, maybe more like Hebrew. Sometimes there's just some words that feel mythological. Some Yolish terms, because of that, kind of flow through the cosmere.

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Questioner

Do Sazed and Kelsier still like each other?

Brandon Sanderson

*Very drawn out and with a "but" nearly audibly hanging in the air* Yes.

Questioner

Thinking of him as Thaidakar, I have to wonder like, he can't be doing things that Sazed would approve of, right?

Brandon Sanderson

No. He definitely is doing things Sazed does not approve of. That's an astute observation. They do understand each other, though, right?

Questioner

So then Sazed knows what he's doing?

Brandon Sanderson

He knows some of it, yeah. A decent amount. You will find out more in upcoming books.

Let's say that the relationship between Sazed and Kell is... complicated and strained. But they would still consider themselves friends, would be what I would say.

Questioner

Would an Xavier-Magneto relationship be a little...?

Brandon Sanderson

Yes. Not quite so antagonistic, but yes.

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LadyLameness

The Inquisitors keep spikes in jars to stop the Hemalurgic decay. Is that clotted blood? Like, does it just work with clotted blood?

Brandon Sanderson

It will. So what's going here is the spikes have to - this is a weird Cosmere thing - the spikes have to think they're in a body and you gotta trick them. You don't need to use blood but that's the easiest thing that they could do to make it work. You could also leave it in a piece of meat.

LadyLameness

You can put the stake in the steak!

Brandon Sanderson

You can put a stake in a steak. But there are plenty of ways to do this without doing that. But yes, it's pretty gross.

LadyLameness

Not that I think they have consciousness very much, but I imagine that they're a bit stupid if they think that clotted blood is the same as a human body.

Brandon Sanderson

Yes. You're just tricking the stupid piece of metal that has a little bit of extra Investiture and has become slightly self-aware, and so it keeps its charge and doesn't... yeah. There are much better modern ways of doing this that have started to be used.

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Jofwu

Did Shallan change her last name when she got married?

Brandon Sanderson

You do not change your last names if you are...

Jofwu

In Jah Keved?

Brandon Sanderson

Yes, so she did not change her last name. She is still Shallan Davar.

And there's also some... there's some weirdness there in line of succession stuff as well, which wouldn't be the case if she had been from Alethkar, and of certain, proper, you know... But the fact that she is not, she would keep her original name and would not be in succession for the throne.

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AndyGranny

The Five Scholars traveled from Nalthis to Roshar. And Intent is very important across all of the Cosmere. But also, Sel is actually closer than it is to Roshar. And from everything we know right now, when it comes to Intent, the Intent of using the Aons mirrors sort of Awakening. So did they travel to Sel as well, and has that influenced the way Nalthians learned to Awaken?

Brandon Sanderson

That is a RAFO for right now. Let's just say that the things that happened on Sel that prevented travel were not in place several thousand years ago.

What I sidestepped is whether the Scholars had been to Sel, I heavily implied people from Nalthis had been to Sel. Don't take that as canon, that it's specifically the Scholars. That part is a RAFO.

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Jofwu

Dalinar had two really weird visions. Was that Connection-y stuff like he did with Kaladin and Tien?

Brandon Sanderson

Which ones are you talking about?

Jofwu

End of Words of Radiance, and in Oathbringer with Nohadon.

Brandon Sanderson

Yes, that would be the same sort of weirdness that's happening with Tien. Yes, so you have basically multiple different ways of interpreting this. One is just--what Dalinar wants is directly... he is starting to change the visions specifically, and some might argue he is pulling from the Beyond. Others would argue that what Dalinar wants, feels things in his past, he is actually enforcing upon the vision, and is changing and altering the visions. And that is absolutely going on. It's whether the other thing is happening or not, depends on your personal religious beliefs. But Dalinar is starting, the Bondsmithing is starting to shape the visions.

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Questioner

Has Wit's bonding a Cryptic bound him to Roshar tighter?

Brandon Sanderson

Yes, asterisk.

The reason for the asterisk on Wit is, you've seen him offworld since then. So just be aware there is an issue there, but yes, it's very similar.

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Questioner

The warrior monks in Elantris, are they a non-genetic magic system?

Brandon Sanderson

So here's the thing in Elantris. On Sel, you most usually need to be born in a certain location for the magic to work on you from that region. So, it's not genetic, meaning if you move there, your children count, right? Regardless of what your genetic heritage and things like that is. But it is regional.

Questioner

For Dakhor monks, wasn't it that they went to monasteries and trained over time and then they're...?

Brandon Sanderson

So they do have something done to them that does this. But where they're from is directly related to how that works,how powerful it is, and these sorts of things.

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Questioner

Rysn, why can't she bond a spren? Is it just to help her travel quicker, since it's difficult to travel with a spren? Or is there another reason?

Brandon Sanderson

There is another reason why she is forbidden from bonding a spren.

Questioner 2

Forbidden or impossible?

Brandon Sanderson

Forbidden. It's not impossible. It is forbidden of her.

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Questioner

It seems to me like the Shards each have a color associated with them. Honor I think is blue, Odium is gold... My first question would be, what colors would be associated with Preservation and Ruin?

Brandon Sanderson

So, I have always associated white and black with Preservation and Ruin.

Questioner

Would that have changed for Harmony?

Brandon Sanderson

It will have changed for Harmony. But I won't say what it is.

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Kingsdaughter613

Hero of Ages, Harmony in the epigraphs says that brass and copper Allomancers can become savants and never even notice. I know that generally savantism is supposed to have really extreme effects, so how does that work that they do not notice?

Brandon Sanderson

So, most savanthoods have extreme effects, some of them it's just not as noticeable. It can warp your soul without you really even paying that much attention to it. I kind of have a push and pull on how debilitating it is in some ways versus others. In this case, those are two that you can become that it would not be very debilitating in your life.

Kingsdaughter613

What effects would that have for that?

Brandon Sanderson

I'll RAFO that.

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Argent

I've been trying to figure out how the Fused and the Regals get their Voidlight. Heavenly Ones seem to be able to levitate indefinitely unless they heal, which presumably expends their Light. But then the Pursuer needs to go get spheres. And then there's the Song of Prayer, which I don't understand at all.

Brandon Sanderson

All of the Fused have an active and an inactive way to use their Voidlight. For some of them, one is way more dramatic than the other. So you should be watching for the different brands of Fused to each have that. If they don't use it actively, they get a passive effect. And if they do use it actively, it runs out. So watch for that with them.

They each only have one power, as opposed to Knights Radiant, but they have the staying power of consistency depending on what they are.

The Song of Prayer. Let's just say that Odium likes his Fused being reliant upon him. Does that make sense?

Argent

I think it does. My assumption has been that anyone can just sing the song and ask for Investiture.

Brandon Sanderson

Yes, this is true, because most of the time he's not going to be paying direct attention, and it's just going to... yeah.

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Questioner

Could a retired Radiant actually have just like, passed their bond to their kid or to a squire or something?

Brandon Sanderson

So this is tricky because the spren's involved, and the person's own disposition and things like... you can't just pass it on, they would have to be saying the oaths, they would have to be right for the order, the spren would have to be on-board. I would say there is a better chance that a family member would than a random person, but it's not guaranteed.

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Argent

In the Syl interlude in Rhythm of War, she is speaking with Dalinar about his powers and the things those powers have done in the past. And what she says is "a Bondsmith bound other Surges". First of all, what other Surges?

Brandon Sanderson

One potential interpretation for you on this, remember they use Surge and spren sometimes interchangeably in-world. Just making you aware of that.

Argent

Yeah I'm aware of that. Bound other Surges....

Argent

Then the term Bondsmith. To me it seems like she's talking about Ishar and the Ashyn stuff. So would they use Bondsmith to describe him in that place?

Brandon Sanderson

That might be what she's talking about. I'm not guaranteeing it.

Brandon Sanderson

So one other thing to keep aware of in the cosmere - for instance they call "Lightweaving" any illusion-based magic working on the same fundamentals. And so you could argue - and people will use it that way in-world - that Bondsmithing is both an order [of Knights Radiant] and a power that exists outside the order.

Argent

And that would be maybe the power of Connection, the way Lightweaving is the power of illusion?

Brandon Sanderson

Yes. And for instance, there were not Elsecallers to get people between Ashyn and Roshar, but on Roshar they would explain what happened there as Elsecalling. Does that make sense?

Argent

I mean, as much as these things make sense, yes.

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Questioner

I was wondering if there is a written Shallan and Adolin wedding scene?

Brandon Sanderson

There is not a written one. Sorry, sorry. If it was written, I would release it for you, but there isn't one. Maybe I'll need to write one. I do get this request decently often. I thought people would be tired of wedding scenes, we already had a wedding scene. I'm like, "Ah, we could skip this one. "

Questioner

That was like different. That was like a "you just need to get married," there wasn't like a love, a whole experience with the scene. 

Brandon Sanderson

Yeah, yes. Maybe I need to write that at some point

Kellyn

You can just blame it on me, everybody else does. 

Brandon Sanderson

Why is that?

Kellyn

Because it's the beta readers' fault you didn't write that scene. 

Brandon Sanderson

Is that what they think?

Kellyn

We apparently told you to take it out of the book. 

Brandon Sanderson

Ohhhh, ok. So there's mythology associated with it. Now I can write it and put Kellyn in, and they can be, like, making fun of you, and then they'll think that I cut it because it was unflattering to you

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Chaos

Another friend, the one who needed to eat a shoe because Eshonai died, is obsessed with direforms, the Regal forms, and would love to know their ability set.

Brandon Sanderson

You can tell her, or him, or them, that the ability set will be decided upon as they are relevant to the nature of the story.

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AndyGranny

If you used a Lifeless body, would a Lifeless be able to access an untapped metalmind...

Brandon Sanderson

An unkeyed type of metalmind?

AndyGranny

Thank you, I could not think of that word. Would they be able to access an unkeyed metalmind if the intent when the Lifeless was created, if the intent was that they could...

Brandon Sanderson

Right, I see what you're getting at. Yes, they could. As they could access and use any tool that is appropriate for what they're Commanded to do, they could indeed access a metalmind in the same way.

In fact, doing so may, depending on the metalmind, be dangerous for keeping your Lifeless a Lifeless.

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Questioner

The Lord Ruler used a lot of metal for shielding and stuff. But if he had had an aluminum helmet himself, would it have protected him from Ruin's influence at all, or would the spikes overcome that?

Brandon Sanderson

Aluminum helmet would help in that situation. Aluminum could very well have been something useful for resisting, yeah.

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thegatorgirl00

If a tree falls in the Forests of Hell and no one is around to hear it, do the shades still get angry?

Brandon Sanderson

Hah hah, the tree in the cosmere is self-aware to a very small extent, so it's impossible for a tree to fall with nobody being there.

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Questioner

I was wondering about the spirit behind "strength before weakness." It's one that, the more I think about it practically, the more I think I'm missing it. 

Brandon Sanderson

So there are several sort of ways that I interpret it, and like all of them, I want to interpret them differently through the books. Rhythm of War digs into the "strength before weakness" a little bit more. Like the other two, there is a natural sort of sense of it. We are strong and everyone will be weak. And the idea is that you are strong for the weak when the weak cannot be strong, because someone will need to be there for you to be strong when you are weak. Is like the core concept of it. Everybody is weak sometimes; everybody is strong sometimes, and we need each other. And that's kind of the philosophy behind "strength before weakness."

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Kingsdaughter613

Considering the philosophy on Roshar, someone's probably come up with the concept of Occam's razor. He [DM of my RPG] wants to know what it's called and who it's named for on Roshar.

Brandon Sanderson

I have not come up with that, so it's named for him. What's his name?

Kingsdaughter613

I only know his name on the Shard, which is Peace.

Brandon Sanderson

Peace? It's Peace's Theorem.

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Kingsdaughter613

He [my husband] wanted to know what's going on with Bastille.

Brandon Sanderson

Bastille is written, art is being done. I'm hoping next year, Tor's been a little dodgy on when those come out. We wanted them this year, and they promised they'd have it out by next year, so we'll see if they keep that promise.

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Kingsdaughter613 (paraphrased)

Is the Ghostblood symbol a stylized marewill flower?

Isaac Stewart (paraphrased)

RAFO! No, actually that’s WAFO - wait and find out.

Direct submission by Kingsdaughter613
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Kingsdaughter613 (paraphrased)

I got this from Isaac regarding the Steel Alphabet:

I has a dot on top of tin; E is under

There is no C, just a K

Q is written KW

An alternate version of the Allomantic alphabet was created, but not used. Isaac may now repurpose it for a typewriter font.

He also mentioned that he may release a handwritten version of the alphabet soon.

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Billy Todd (paraphrased)

You previously said that there's a Shard that has decided to go into hiding, looking to survive.

Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

Yes.

Billy Todd (paraphrased)

It's sort of practicing the art of not being seen.

Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

Yes.

Billy Todd (paraphrased)

 Is that Shard the same Shard as Autonomy, or is it a different Shard?

Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

I like the way you worded that; no, it's not the same Shard as Autonomy.

Billy Todd (paraphrased)

The other Shard, have we seen it on screen?

Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

RAFO.

Billy Todd (paraphrased)

Have we seen it "practicing the art of not being seen" on screen?

Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

RAFO.

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Pagerunner (paraphrased)

I asked Isaac to personalize my cosmere system chart set with snarky comments from Nazh complaining about every planet.

Isaac Stewart (paraphrased)

He said that they were not canon, but he would write them. For several, he made interesting comments about them.

Threnody: "Would love to get back here, if you'd just loan me that thing." This is the one that's the least canon of all of them. Isaac has some ideas about what the "thing" might be that Nazh wants, but he hasn't run any of them past Brandon yet.

Taldain: "Darkside parties are the best!" After he wrote it, Isaac noticed that it wasn't a complaint, but he said that it was true and that we'd see why.

Sel: "I cannot tell you how much I hate Sel. Yet you keep sending me back, you sadist." Before he wrote it, isaac said that Nazh had been stuck on Sel before, so he had a special dislike for this planet.

Nalthis: "Too colorful. It makes me sick... Shadows!"

Drominad: "Do not skinny dip on First... just warning you!"

Scadrial: "This place just hasn't been the same since the change in management."

Roshar: "Aggh... This place again? It smells like fish."

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Karen Ahlstrom

And so we had a brainstorming meeting and said, okay, "Ais should be a woman rather than a man. We need more gender balance in the story."

And one thing that a couple of us thought about and talked about ahead of time was the very ending, because the conflict between Kenton and Drile was: are we gonna sell our services as mercenaries and betray our independence? Or are we gonna keep going the way we always did?

And over the course of the book, Kenton says, "Okay, we're going to sell you ourr services and we're going to sell you our services, and we're going to sell you our services." And so by the end, when he realizes that Drile is not the bad guy, having him die in that battle just seemed wrong. So that's why we had him survive and had Kenton say, "Okay, you had a good idea, and I didn't like the way you went about it, but having your input in that can be a very valuable thing."

That was that was one of the big changes that got made. And when we talked to Brandon about it in that meeting, he was like, "Oh yeah, you guys are totally right. Over time, you guys got better story instincts than I had when I wrote it in the first place."

Some of those big changes were kind of a group brainstorming thing. And that was a fun process to do.

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Questioner

The third Mistborn series will be the 1980s, and the fourth one will be the space opera one.

Brandon Sanderson

Yep, unless I do a cyberpunk in between.

Questioner

Do we ever see... I know in [The Bands of Mourning] is when we see the Allomantic grenades. Is that a setup to use, like, Allomantic engines for space travel at the end?

Brandon Sanderson

Yep. So, that is a setup for various uses of mechanical Allomancy and Feruchemy, is where we are pushing the technology. We're not there yet, but you should be able to extrapolate from some of those things for the future.

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Questioner

(Disclaimers so that you can't say, like, "well if a Shard...") If a regular Awakener, just a mundane Awakener with nothing more than a few hundred Breaths and not any other outside influences, is there some Command they could give a blanket to get the blanket to turn warm? Generate heat; is that a normal thing you can Command?

Brandon Sanderson

Not in just a normal situation. I mean, technically, you could tell the blanket "start rubbing one part against another part" or something like that, or "set yourself on fire," right? But that's not what you're asking. For Awakening to work, you have to work within the intrinsic properties of the matter you're making, except it can move around a bit and with a few little other things it can do.

It's not outside the realm of possibility you could activate those Breaths as Investiture to do something else, but you would need more than just the simple magic system of Awakening. 

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Questioner

Is there a significance between Harmony and Discord being musical terms? And would they be considered different Investiture tones? 

Brandon Sanderson

Yes and no. So what's going on here is that... it is significant, I chose those two terms very specifically. Not gonna tell you a lot about Discord or things like that, but the idea is that idea of Harmony is in... the sounds are in harmony, they are working together. In Discord they are not. I wouldn't call them Investiture tones, more the way the two tones are responding to each other.

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Questioner

With regards to certain experiments, would it be fair to say Ishar and a certain Scadrian have similar goals? 

Brandon Sanderson

*hesitation noises* I don't know that I would say that 100%. The certain Scadrian you reference has been able to achieve the goals that he wants. Let's see if I can circumlocute this: there's a certain set of bones floating around that already has a Connection to this individual, which was useful in achieving what he wanted to do, which is not a luxury that Ishar has. 

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Argent

Investiture in the Cosmere when used goes to the Spiritual Realm, except in one place. What determines which Realm Investiture returns to when it's being used? 

Brandon Sanderson

Too many factors for me to actually say right here, Evgeni, so I'm gonna RAFO this one. There are lots of reasons that it could go in different ways and different places. 

Billy Todd

How many of those reasons are rule of cool? 

Brandon Sanderson

Rule of Cool is definitely a reason. I think he's trying to get at why on Sel things are weird, and I have not explained why things are weird on Sel yet. 

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Questioner

On Roshar, it's kind of tradition men eat spicy foods, women more sweeter. Could it be possible that a sort of euphemism for gay men or gay women is, "Does he eat sweet food? Does she eat spicy food?"

Brandon Sanderson

I could see people saying that, yes. 

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Jofwu

The Seventeenth Shard was looking for a certain individual on Roshar. Have they found him yet? Or, what are they doing?

Brandon Sanderson

They never managed to find him. He is tricksy, as you might imagine, he is a tricksy hobbit. And so they have never managed to find him. They think they got close a couple times, but they actually didn't. And by the point of Rhythm of War, they have given up and left planet, because he kind of went behind their backs and was talking to people and things like that.

We will catch up to those three at some point, I hope, and find out what they've been up to. They kept looking in the wrong countries.

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Questioner

Does ice cream and popcorn exist on Roshar? 

Brandon Sanderson

Unfortunately, neither of them do. You can go to Scadrial and get some, right? But Roshar... so, they do get cheese and things on Roshar from sow's milk and things like this, but they are just not as milk-based as some cuisines on Earth. Ice cream is just not a thing. Also, like, ice is not a thing that they're really doing a lot with. And popcorn, y'know, requires maize, which... 

Questioner

But you said lavis is the corn? 

Brandon Sanderson

Yes, it is the corn, but if you pop it it's gonna pop a lot more like barley. It's not gonna be the same, right? That's what lavis is gonna be like. So it is the corn, but more in the idea that it's, uh... It's probably more similar to a barley. 

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Questioner

That first chasmfiend hunt, in Way of Kings, did not go as planned. Was that sheer bad luck? Or was someone or something making that happen?

Brandon Sanderson

Excellent question. Sheer bad luck. Sometimes bad luck is just bad luck. There were no mysterious people pulling the strings behind the scenes on that one. It just went as it went.

Good question, though. I'm always glad when I can appropriately dispel one of those so that people don't have to theorize too much.

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Ted Herman

A certain person went to a certain spren and got a boon and a curse, and later on, very recently, their fortunes have risen very high very fast. Is the boon and curse still in effect? 

Brandon Sanderson

RAFO, but you will get answers in the fifth book about that. Excellent question, but this is a RAFO with a "yes it's coming", not a nebulous RAFO.

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Trae Cooper

In the past we deeply discussed the mechanism with which Breaths are decided to be doled out or endowed on Nalthis. And you said that there is an intellect that is doling them out, but that their intentions or that their goals are difficult to predict or nonstandard. And my question is: are they nonstandard because the base Vessel behind them does not have, at its core, a standard human psychology? 

Brandon Sanderson

RAFO! Good question. Excellent question. RAFO, I like the way you're theorizing. I have said before, that there are multiple nonhuman Vessels in the Cosmere. So, your theorizing perhaps is going to bear fruit. 

Did someone say "chulls"? No, it's not the chulls. There are no chulls that are holding Shards in the Cosmere. 

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Questioner

Can Hoid eat Soulcast bacon? 

Brandon Sanderson

Yes. He could probably eat lab-grown meat if he knew it was (or magic-grown meat). He probably could. His psychology will be influencing this, right? Which is why I say "probably." But the magic would allow it. 

Billy todd

If somebody lied to him about the nature of the meat, could he eat that? 

Brandon Sanderson

No. Well, okay, if they lied and said it was Soulcast, yes, then he probably could.

Questioner 2

It's based on his perception. 

Brandon Sanderson

It's based on his perception, yeah.

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Joe

I really miss Rock. Is that going to be part of the Words of Radiance Kickstarter?

Brandon Sanderson

Yes. It will be part of the Words of Radiance Kickstarter. There will be a novella about Rock as part of the Words of Radiance Kickstarter. If I don't give myself the deadlines, then it might turn into, like,  Rithmatist 2, where it's like "oh I'll do it someday." I've committed to doing that. It will be the thing I write right after Book 5, and it should come out right before Book 5, in the same way that I did with Dawnshard. That's, at least, the plan right now.

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thegatorgirl00

Assuming they have the same years of practice, who would have a better understanding of objects' souls: a Radiant Soulcaster or a Forger? 

Brandon Sanderson

It's gonna depend on the individual, I think that they both could make an argument, and I'm not sure. I think it's gonna go neck-and-neck. 

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Questioner

Do seons automatically know what they mean? Like, was Ashe created being like "I am Ashe and I mean 'light,'" or did he have to have someone draw him and see what happened? 

Brandon Sanderson

No, he knows intrinsically. Good question. 

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Questioner

Now that you've gotten all four Wax and Wayne books out, what was your favorite scene to write in that series?

Brandon Sanderson

Probably the Wayne church bar scene, that chapter was just a blast to write. This prologue [for The Lost Metal] was a lot of fun, if you can't tell. But that's probably my favorite chapter, I think. We'll see; I haven't finished this book yet. Maybe there'll be another one that's more favoriter then.

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Brandon Sanderson

Wax and Wayne [Four], I will have, probably... the full draft, the goal is to have it done by January, and then it's not coming out until November; we're eleven months ahead. Which is not as ahead as, like, the eighteen months that's normal [for the publishing industry], but for us, it's just gonna be, like, so much breathing room.

And, theoretically, I'll be finishing the fourth Skyward book soon thereafter for a release about a year after that. We're looking at spring of 2023 for that, and then Stormlight Five in 2023 fall. I think that's what we're looking at. And I am warning up front, Stormlight Five is the ones I will let slide a little bit if I need to. Because it's the end of a sequence, and the deadline doesn't need to be as strict because it doesn't bump back things as much. So it's possible that Stormlight Five goes into the spring of 2024. We'll see what happens there.

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Questioner

A few years ago at a panel, you mentioned that with the interest in the Marvel Expanded Universes, that Hollywood suddenly had an interest in expanded universes. Now, with Wheel of Time, clearly they're looking for expanded universes. Can you tell us anything about the interest you've had lately?

Brandon Sanderson

I've had a ton of interest lately. A few years ago, I mentioned that I got a lot of interest because the Cosmere was a naturally shared universe; this was hot in Hollywood for a while. As evidenced by the terrible ones that they made and tried to force to work. So a lot of people were really interested in this. One of the big problems being that epic fantasy is super expensive, and they were really worried about doing epic fantasy. But epic fantasy is now becoming more of a thing that is just "the Lord of the Rings movies were good"; now we've got multiple good fantasy adaptations. So, yeah, the interest is high.

The issue is: I am now at a place in my career where I don't have to say "yes" anymore. For the longest time, I needed that money from Hollywood. But these days, I'm not in that position. I don't have to worry about when someone comes in with a large check and says "here you go, Brandon!" I can say "no." And I've been saying "no" quite a bit, because there are certain guarantees I want that most places in Hollywood don't want to give me. And that's fine; they don't have to. But they also don't have to get my book series. And so I have said "no" to a surprising number of things lately as I have been targeting working with people that I really like. And been taking a lot of meetings with people whose films I really liked and impressed me, and have been working with some people... just doing a lot of things that I think will make the movies the way I want them to make (and potentially television shows).

I can't announce anything, if that's what you're asking. But if you read in between the lines and things I said, and various things, you might be able to pick together some of what I'm trying to put together.

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Questioner

I know that it has been important to you to authentically and sensitively portray characters with disabilities. So I was wondering what research you have done or are planning to do to appropriately portray a character with a visual disability?

Brandon Sanderson

I think I made a good level up on that with Dawnshard through some really good help from some beta readers. I would probably use my same method, though my gut tells me that people with visual disabilities are one of those things that authors think they can write when they can't, does that make sense? So I'm going to guess, not knowing, that there are far more bad portrayals of people with visual disabilities than some other disabilities, because of the assumption people make by, like, "Wearing glasses? I know what it's like to have a visual disability," and things like that. I could write Rysn by doing the legwork up front, writing the book, giving it to people, and them telling me what I'm doing wrong. I might need to get somebody onto the ground floor from before I write the chapters or books, if I were going to do someone with a visual disability. Which I do want to do at some point in the future. My gut just tells me "be extra careful with this one."

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Questioner

The Wheel of Time fandom has been talking about the concept of episodes being released weekly, as opposed to a bulk release. Since you're actively trying to adapt things, if you had something adapted into a television show, what would you like to see? And would that depend on which story you're telling? What are your general opinions on that?

Brandon Sanderson

I thought that I would prefer the full dump, until I've started watching several of these Disney+ shows. I think it would depend on the story, it would depend on the format. They can get away with it better on Disney+ because they are properties that people know are worth waiting for. And one of the reasons I released Elantris as a standalone is I'm like, "I want to introduce this to people. I want them to know that I can tell a story," and things like that. So if it were my very first thing, I think I'd be more likely to do a full dump, and just be like, "Here. Trust us. Here is the show; watch the whole thing." People who know more about all of this than me are watching really carefully the ratings and the social engagement and things like that, and I think they will be the ones who ultimately decide, in all of these cases, how to do it.

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Questioner

If there were adaptations of any of your books, but you had to play one of the semi-major characters, who would you play?

Brandon Sanderson

I have to think about this. Can I have acting lessons?

Probably Breeze is gonna match me. With acting lessons, I could maybe do Breeze.

Billy Todd

I was wondering how well you would fit Sazed.

Brandon Sanderson

I would fit Sazed probably poorly, I think. Get me a fitness coach, and possibly. I don't think it's impossible. I just think that sitting in a chair and telling people what to do is (for those who know me) a pretty good role for me. Brandon's life is grand ideas, and then those people *motions to Dragonsteel team members* actually having to make it happen.

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Brandon Sanderson

I just outlined a non-genetic magic system that I think is kind of interesting. I don't know if I'll ever get to write this book; I outline a lot of books that I don't get to write. But it was a really interesting idea for a magic system where a child was chosen by society when they were a newborn to gain the powers. You know, kind of for the good of society. And being one of these people, instead, I thought... Like I said, the implications are really interesting for that narrative story, is that you're forced, even from childhood you were chosen by everybody. You weren't born to it; but how do you choose a newborn? They just chose one, and now you've gotta live the rest of your life (Hope you picked a good one!) dealing with these implications. That's been very interesting to outline and think about, the effects on the character.

Questioner

Is that Cosmere or non-Cosmere?

Brandon Sanderson

That one is Cosmere.

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Date July 16, 2021
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