Welcome to Arcanum, the Brandon Sanderson Archive. We're here to collect everything Brandon ever says about his books--the "Words of Brandon," as they are called--with a focus on collecting information related to the cosmere.


  • Viewing Arcanum
  • Editing Arcanum
  • Coding Arcanum
  • FAQ

Viewing Arcanum

Guests on Arcanum can:

Users who have created an account on Arcanum can also:

  • Create Collections, user-curated lists of WoBs. See the Collections Help page for more details on this feature.
  • View Suggestions, which are edits other users have made that have not been approved by an Arcanist.

See the Navigation Help page for more details on how to find your way around the site.

Editing Arcanum

If you want to contribute, you first need to create a new account on Arcanum. You cannot log in using an existing 17thshard.com account.

Users who are signed in can:

  • Edit existing entries to make corrections or add tags.
  • Create new entries for untranscribed audio.
  • Create new entries for text-only WoBs, like social media posts.
  • Upload audio or images (of signed books or Reddit DMs).

These can all be done from any event page. All edits will appear as suggestions, causing the background of the WoB to turn orange, until an Arcanist has approved them.

We know it's daunting to contribute. We have several resources available to you as you transcribe or upload WoBs:

  • The Creating Entries help page will walk you through how to use find and transcribe audio others have uploaded, add links to WoBs from social media, or upload images of signed books.
  • The Style Guide will show you how to format entries you add (or entries other users have already added).
  • The Recording Audio help page will give you guidance on when it's appropriate to obtain audio recordings and how to upload them to the site for transcription.
  • Any questions about transcribing can be asked in the Arcanum subforum on the 17th Shard forum, or in the #arcanum channel in the 17th Shard Discord server.

Coding Arcanum

Arcanum runs on custom open-source software called Palanaeum. If you would like to contribute to the ongoing improvement of the site, or if you would like to implement your own instance for your own author archive, please see the Palanaeum github page and contact Mestiv in the #arcanum channel in the 17th Shard Discord server.

There are several bots that you can add to your Discord server or subreddit.



  • WoB – An acronym for “Word of Brandon.” Anything Brandon has said, outside of his published books. Statements by some of Brandon’s employees are sometimes referred to as WoBs, as well, although you can also substitute the individual’s initial. (WoP for Peter Ahlstrom, WoI for Isaac Stewart.)
  • RAFO – an acronym for “Read And Find Out.” It is Brandon’s particular way of telling you he is declining to answer the question.
  • Arcanist – a staff member for the site. They can approve edits other users make and create snippets.
  • Entry – the Arcanum website element containing a single WoB.
  • Event – a group of WoBs that all originate from the same place. An event may be a signing on a book tour, a convention Brandon was at, a Reddit AMA thread, an interview Brandon did with a website, or even a collection of miscellaneous social media tidbits over the course of a year.
  • Snippet – an audio file containing a single WoB. Recordings from events will often be hours long and contain dozens of different WoBs mixed in with long periods of other fan interactions. When new audio is uploaded, Arcanists will break up that audio into smaller chunks, finding the relevant portions and making them into snippets.

How long has this site been around? And who takes care of it?

Arcanum is managed by the 17th Shard staff, but anybody can feel free to contribute. It is a community effort of the entire fandom to keep this archive up-to-date. You can learn more about the history of the site on our Staff Info page.

Someone shared a new WoB on another site, but I can't see it on Arcanum. Why not?

It is most likely a transcription that a user submitted, but that has not yet been reviewed by an Arcanist. If you are signed in, you can see what others have suggested (and are able to offer further suggestions on that entry). If you are not signed in, you do not see these suggestions.

Why do some WoBs appear orange?

When a user makes an edit, it needs to be reviewed by an Arcanist before it is released to the public. If you are signed in, you can see suggestions that other users have made. Make sure you check it against the audio before you share it, especially if you’re concerned with the specific wording.

How do I know when there’s new audio to transcribe?

We have a worklist of any audio files containing snippets that still need to be transcribed. You can also keep an eye on the 17th Shard Events and Signings forum, or the 17th Shard Discord's #arcanum channel, which is where new audio will often be announced.

I got a brand-new WoB. How do I get it added?

You can check the Creating Entries help page. That will tell you how to add different kinds of WoBs and which events they should go in. You can also make a post about it on the 17th Shard forums, and other members of the community who see your post there will add it to Arcanum.

How do I get my name on a WoB I asked?

Just log in and do it. We believe you!

Modified by Pagerunner on Oct. 27, 2022, 8:07 p.m..


Welcome to Arcanum, the Brandon Sanderson Archive. We're here to collect everything Brandon ever says about his books--the "Words of Brandon," as they are called--with a focus on collecting information related to the cosmere.


  • 15550 entries
  • 490 events
  • 487 audio sources