Recent entries

    r/books AMA 2022 ()
    #1 Copy

    jofwu

    You've teased that we might get movie/television news before too long...

    With so much of the cosmere left to write, are you concerned about movies/shows catching up to you? Would you make them hold off on a Stormlight Archive show until you finish, or are you comfortable letting adaptations get ahead of you?

    Brandon Sanderson

    It depends on how comfortable I get with the television and movie format. When Stormlight happens as a television show, I want to be deeply involved. I want to write some of the episodes, I want to be co-creator--and I am just not ready for that yet.

    If that is the place where we are (me being that deeply involved) then getting ahead of me is not that big of a deal. If it is not, if I'm not so deeply involved, I think I would resist letting people get ahead of me. This is tied up with some intricacies of how I am creating the cosmere--which lets me play with this a little. For example, we aren’t calling the first 5 Stormlight books era 1, but there is a 10 year time jump between books 5 and 6. So if I were to sell Stormlight, I could conceivably sell the first five--which will be finished fairly soon. (Knock on wood.) Then we will see how things go with the back five, afterward. (If I'm done with them, for example, or if we need to wait between the two series.)

    Regardles, jofwu, I am worried about this; it is something on my radar.

    Miscellaneous 2022 ()
    #2 Copy

    AonEne

    Do the Lenses at the start of each chapter [of the Alcatraz books] correlate to the contents of the chapter in any way? Or just whatever's fun? 

    Hayley Lazo

    I always tried to pick ones that loosely have something to do with things, whether it's a chapter where they are used or introduced, or something thematically that happens in the chapter. Sometimes there's no correlation, we just needed to pick one. 

    r/books AMA 2022 ()
    #3 Copy

    Dr_JP69

    I have a question about Shadesmar, is the Cognitive Realm round? How are landmasses "projected" here? Could I walk in a straight line and end where I started or would I end up in another place entirely?

    Brandon Sanderson

    If you walk in a straight line, you're going to MOSTLY follow the land mass on the other side. With some weird space-time deviations in places. You would not ever end up where you started, though, which is one of the things that is most disjointed about the experience. I realize that's very strange, and it's something I'll delve into in the stories eventually.

    YouTube Weekly Updates 2022 ()
    #5 Copy

    Brandon Sanderson

    My good friend Dan Wells and I are writing a book together. It's based on Dark One, my original outline that became a graphic novel. We wanted to do a novelization, because the graphic novel  (while I love it) has a lot of the graphic novel creator's vision to it, and we thought we would do a novel version going kind of back to my original outline.

    He has finished a draft, and so I am doing a draft on that. I'm only 10% of the way through that, but I hope to breeze through that because I'm very excited by this project, and I hope that you guys will all be able to experience it before too much longer.

    General Reddit 2022 ()
    #7 Copy

    Brandon Sanderson

    The problem is not that the covers [for Mistborn Era 2] are bland. The problem is that book series take a long time to write.

    When we repackaged Mistborn in 2007, this was the hot style. (When we picked this same style but with a different artist for elantris in 2005, it was right at the revolutionary point where these photo-realistic covers were hugely striking on the shelf.) You might not have liked it even then, but trust me when I say it was a very trendy and original style.

    However, visual art tends change far faster than literary trends. So covers of a series grow outdated fast. In 2010, when we we're covering Alloy, this style was still hot enough. But then it became so hot it grew stale.

    This leaves us with a problem.

    Do we change mid series to newer covers, and leave fans with an unmatching set of hardcovers? Or do we continue with an outdated style, and then recover when the series is done? I'm perfectly happy to change our method if people want, but so far, we've erred on the side of staying consistent. (And yes, paperback recovers are already being designed.)

    None of this is to say the artist is anything other than excellent. He is wonderful, and could give us something else if we asked. But again, then the books wouldn't match.

    One of the issues here is that the U.S. market prefers visually eye popping styles that are more illustrative, but then get outdated faster. While more iconographic styles like the UK uses tend to last longer but never be as dynamic. I know a lot of you prefer those styles, but they can get very bland. (If safe and stable. See the UK wheel of time covers.)

    There's a middle ground of course and all kinds of shades in the middle.

    Let me know your thoughts! I'll glance back at this thread over the weekend. Would you rather we repackage mid series and give you more interesting covers but not have the series match?

    EDIT: I did check back, and found what I expected. (Though it's good to have confirmation.) Keeping the books consistent across a format is how I'll still proceed, though I AM going to try to get some of our newer covers to try different things to see what you all think. And a I mentioned, if this cover style isn't for you, there's a repackage coming for the whole series (original trilogy and W&W) likely in trade paperback (the oversized paperbacks) coming sometime in the near future.

    YouTube Spoiler Stream 4 ()
    #8 Copy

    Brandon Sanderson

    If the Muppets came to me and said "we actually want to make one of your things", I would not do Mistborn. What would I do? I would do a new story. I never got around to making Mulholland Homebrew's Sinister Shop of Secret Pets, which is a middle grade book about a young woman who apprentices to... In this world, everyone has to apprentice and learn a magic. And she goes to the job fair, for your apprenticeship when you're fourteen and you gotta pick a magic, and you basically have release time from school and go study your magic talent. There's like hundreds of them, and she finds one called Leekromancy that she thinks sounds cool, and she wants to rebel against the normal magic her parents want her to pick. And she picks it, but then she learns it's power over legumes. She is apprenticed to somebody whose job is taking care of magical pets and having a pet shop. And finding their favorite foods and basically being a fantasy exterminator, but a humane one, where you have some weird magical pest in your house. It's like what I thought Fantastic Beasts was going to be. You have weird magical pests, what do we do to get rid of the brownies? We can just exterminate them, or we can call this guy, it's like the beekeeper who removes the bees from your wall humanely and then sets them up. He'll take the brownies, and maybe the brownies don't make good pets, so he'll send them to a Tiffany Aching book or something like that, and has this nice little pet store. Anyway, that's a story I never got to write, and I would pick something like that of the big list of books that I will never be able to write, and come up with an outline and say, "Let's do this together, Muppets! I don't think Mistborn is a good match for you."

    YouTube Spoiler Stream 4 ()
    #9 Copy

    Striker_EZ

    Why didn't Odium take the Investiture away from the Fused that rebelled against him at the end of Rhythm of War? At the end of Oathbringer, Odium tells one Fused that questioned him that he could take "that which gave [the Fused] life." So why didn't he do that to Leshwi and the others?

    Brandon Sanderson

    This is actually an excellent question. Odium, in his previous incarnation-- we'll see how he acts now-- part of the driving force of Odium is this kind of belief, mistaken or otherwise, that Odium represents all emotion, and strength of emotion, and basically the Passions in lore. Rebelling against him in the way that they did is actually in line with Odium's personal directives. The Vessel may not like it, in fact the power may not like it, but at the same time, there's a part of both of them that acknowledges, this is what they set in motion, and this is an appropriate use of the agency of the agents they chose. And so, unilaterally destroying those who turn against him is actually not an Odium thing. It's more an Honor thing than it would be an Odium thing. It's just not in line with how Odium acts or thinks, even though it's possible and there's threats and... That's not saying Odium wouldn't do it. But acting like Honor is not something Odium would necessarily want to do.

    YouTube Spoiler Stream 4 ()
    #10 Copy

    VeryNiceName16

    Frost seems particularly worried about Hoid getting the lerasium. Is this because he knows something about Allomancy that it would be dangerous for Hoid specifically to have, or because he's worried about lerasium Allomancy in general, or something else?

    Brandon Sanderson

    He's worried about– it's a combination of both. He's worried about what his old friend is capable of doing, because his old friend... kill God once, and y'know, people start to get worried. (Or be involved in the assassination of God.) One time, and that reputation sticks with you for a while. But also, he is worried about a bunch of different things, I'll just say that. You mentioned two of them that are pretty good worries. He has others as well.

    YouTube Spoiler Stream 4 ()
    #11 Copy

    Fantastic-Eggplant-9

    It's stated that the Fused can hold Voidlight nearly indefinitely. Does this mean their gemhearts are perfect gems?

    Brandon Sanderson

    So, kind of. It does not necessarily mean that, how about that. But a similar mechanic is happening.

    Fantastic-Eggplant-9

    Is this why they are so strict with how they handle their dead?

    Brandon Sanderson

    It is part of why. You are picking up on the right foreshadowing that I have seeded into the books.

    YouTube Spoiler Stream 4 ()
    #14 Copy

    Questioner

    Who is Hoid's best friend?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Well, back in the day it was Bat'Chor. It's been various people at various different times. Who is it right now? It depends on which "right now" you're talking about. He's in a bunch of different books in a bunch of different time periods. Bat'Chor probably was the closest to a best friend for a while in the books that were relevant.

    YouTube Spoiler Stream 4 ()
    #15 Copy

    ncmagic97

    In Oathbringer, before the Battle of Thaylen City, Venli is able to see some of the Cognitive Shadows of the Fused waiting in the Cognitive Realm and mentions some are as large as buildings. Are thunderclasts actually a type of the Fused?

    Brandon Sanderson

    She doesn't know. Thunderclasts are something different, and that is what she is seeing. She is not correctly identifying them. Good question.

    YouTube Spoiler Stream 4 ()
    #16 Copy

    LeFlshe

    How did Autonomy isolate Taldain from the rest of the cosmere?

    Brandon Sanderson

    All of the Shards... "How"? "How" may be the wrong term.

    Adam Horne

    There's a followup question, maybe it's related. "Did Bavadin remove the perpendicularity on Taldain?"

    Brandon Sanderson

    RAFO on the second one. First one, natural processes.

    YouTube Spoiler Stream 4 ()
    #18 Copy

    Sapphire_Bombay

    You've mentioned in the past that Jasnah has some interesting brain psychology going on. I suspect if I ask you to elaborate too much, I'll get RAFO'd, but can you share if it is more due to nature or nurture?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Little of both. I would go nurture on this one, but let's wait till I write her book to really dig into it.

    YouTube Spoiler Stream 4 ()
    #20 Copy

    Questioner

    How precise can iron and steel Allomancy be? For example, could a Mistborn unscrew a light bulb just by Pushing and Pulling on the edges?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes. You see Kelsier do something like this when he spins metal poles and things like that. What you're asking for is an order of magnitude more difficult, but it is within the realm of possibility. I want to be careful not to get to Magneto-ish with it, but the more you... yeah. It is possible to do things like they just said.

    YouTube Spoiler Stream 4 ()
    #21 Copy

    Schaaschaa

    How significant of an event or time period, on a cosmere scale, was the Reod actually? 10 years seems like a blip. Do most worldhoppers even know about it?

    Brandon Sanderson

    It was a big enough event that by now, yes they do. Most worldhoppers, actually no. Because most worldhoppers are going to be common tradespeople, things like this. Running caravans from Roshar to Nalthis or things like that. The majority of them are not paying attention to things that are happening, so I'm gonna say the majority wouldn't. But the arcanists, the people who are watching the various magic systems, who know about the Shards and are paying attention to this, what happened on Sel was a big deal.

    YouTube Spoiler Stream 4 ()
    #27 Copy

    RabidHumanitarian

    We have seen that two Shards can merge into one. Is the opposite possible?

    Brandon Sanderson

    The opposite is theoretically possible.

    RabidHumanitarian

    If yes, have we heard of Shards created this way?

    Brandon Sanderson

    It has not happened yet. Unless you count Splintering into a bunch of pieces, but that's not what they're asking.

    YouTube Spoiler Stream 4 ()
    #29 Copy

    gaberz24

    In the Coppermind article for fabrials, under the trivia section it reads:

    The term "fabrial" will eventually come to be used for all magic-based, mechanical devices in the cosmere, such as the mechanism that picks Elantrians.

    Was there a mechanical device that controlled the Shaod?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Something's going on there, I'm not gonna dig too deeply into that. I'm gonna RAFO that. Continue your theorizing however you'd like. That is not where I expected that question to go.

    Adam Horne

    Do you wanna say where you were expecting it to go?

    Brandon Sanderson

    No, I mean... The medallions in Mistborn would be considered fabrials by most arcanists, once the era that they are aware of these things is all happening. That's an awkward way to say it. In future era cosmere, the scholars would point and say, "oh yeah, there were some early fabrials happening on Scadrial at that time." That's the terminology they would use.

    YouTube Spoiler Stream 4 ()
    #30 Copy

    gk-sudo

    Would you consider breaking the palindrome format of Stormlight titles to give Stormlight 5 a better title, or are you pretty committed to the KoWT acronym, since there's already precedent?

    Brandon Sanderson

    If I can find a KoWT acronym that feels right, I will use it. I would say that it's 75% likely that I'm going to, but if I can't come up with one that we all like, I will break the format. The title's more important than keeping, I wasn't even planning the ketek format until I changed book 3's title and got us, you know. And then I'm like, oh, this could actually happen. But I changed book 2's title as well. This is a happy accident that we can make it happen, but I'm not going to then become slavish to it. And I also might let the T slide, right? In actual keteks, both the "of" and the "the" can be rearranged, depending on how strictly you're following the format, so it's possible that we change the O's and T's.

    YouTube Spoiler Stream 4 ()
    #32 Copy

    Questioner

    The makeup of Bridge Four is nearly perfect: a cook, a surgeon, a sergeant, a scholar, two Hoid-touched individuals, etc. How much effect on the composition of Bridge Four did Cultivation have?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Not a ton. They got lucky. Granted, understand a few things that are gonna explain some of this. The Hoid-touched is, there's certainly something going on there with Sigzil. But having a cook and a sergeant, if you actually run the numbers, a lot of military people are going to be trained in a variety of jobs. The chances that you end up with someone experienced as an armorer, some experience with cooking-- granted, Rock wasn't in the military before, but you know. That you have a person that has done leadership on an NCO level, and things like this. These are things that would have existed on other bridge crews as well. The coincidence is not as big a one, Sigzil's the big coincidence.

    Adam Horne

    People were asking who's the other after Sig, is that something you want to...?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Kaladin. If you want to count Kaladin, as someone who has drawn Hoid's attention and he is watching. The real first interaction is the Wandersail one, but Hoid had his eye on Kaladin. You pay attention when people start to form Nahel bonds around you and you're trying to figure out how they work.

    YouTube Spoiler Stream 4 ()
    #33 Copy

    Questioner

    Is someone limited to how many Nahel bonds they can form, or could someone go play Pokéspren and catch them all, getting access to all Surges?

    Brandon Sanderson

    There are limits to what a soul can handle. These limits are soft caps, not hard caps. Pokéspren is theoretically possible, but there would be hoops, not just the normal "I want to bond two spren" hoop, which is already a pretty big one.

    YouTube Spoiler Stream 4 ()
    #34 Copy

    ArgentSun

    Prior to the arrival of the Everstorm, what happened to the Heralds who died? Were they immediately sent back to Braize to wait until the rest arrived and started the Isolation, or could they return to Roshar, similarly to how the Fused can return multiple times?

    Brandon Sanderson

    So, the mechanics of this I've been dodgy on on purpose because I know I'm gonna want some wiggle room in the books when I write them. Right now they can't return. They go, they're done. I have to make sure that works with the magic and with the narrative as I write them, so you can take this as one of those Words of Brandon that the books might contradict, but the original outline has, you die, you're there, you can't go back. But there are various incarnations of this where they were holding the Fused back by doing that, from being reborn, if that makes sense. And that's one of the parts that I'm not 100% sure where I'm going to go with, because when I came up with all this stuff, I wasn't working with the realities of the books, where I was writing the Fused, and things like this. And now that I have, this is very natural to be like, alright, let me do a reset, and make sure that the lore and worldbuilding all is consistent now that I've done five books-- I haven't done the fifth one yet, but you know what I mean. It's one of the reasons I have the break in between, is to give myself a chance to go to my outlines and make sure. Originally they were holding back... you could kill Fused and they wouldn't return, because Heralds were holding them back, the Oathpact was. But that meant when the Heralds died, they couldn't return either, and so the war could actually happen. But the Everstorm and things like that have changed that. Anyway, that's the answer until I write it in the books and get you some canon in the flashbacks of the Heralds we will be writing eventually.

    YouTube Spoiler Stream 4 ()
    #35 Copy

    PhoenixKnight777

    Each Order of Radiant has some resonance between their Surges, correct? Can you give us some examples of what would happen in a Surgebinder somehow achieved an impossible pairing, such as Division and Illumination or Transformation and Gravitation?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I haven't really thought about it. You go ahead and theorize on that, I'm sure you can come up with interesting ones. Totally possible in the cosmere. The structure that is on Roshar prevents it from currently happening, but totally possible. I mean, very plausible. I haven't theorized on those yet, so I'm not going to right now.

    YouTube Spoiler Stream 4 ()
    #38 Copy

    quantumshenanigans

    We know that Returned generally can't be inebriated, but Vasher has learned to suppress some of his outwardly Returned-ish aspects. When we see Zahel with a bottle of wine in Stormlight, is it actually having an effect on him, or is he just doing it for the vibes?

    Brandon Sanderson

    He can get a little drunk. Maybe not as much as he would want to.

    YouTube Spoiler Stream 4 ()
    #39 Copy

    Kael_the_Adventurer

    Did Nightblood's Awakening transform it into a God Metal?

    Brandon Sanderson

    *hesitant* Yes, you could say that.

    Adam Horne

    Was that a permanent change, or was that just while...

    Brandon Sanderson

    You can argue that Nightblood is a God Metal. Is he? You could argue otherwise as well. How about that?

    YouTube Spoiler Stream 4 ()
    #42 Copy

    asmodeus

    You've said before that a lot of the magics we see across the cosmere come from an interaction of Shards and their Investiture with the planets they Invest in. What does this mean practically? If Scadrial explodes tomorrow, will Hemalurgy stop working across the cosmere?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Hemalurgy wouldn't stop working, most likely, but it could. There are ways that you could make it stop working. I kind of mean that the Shards are an innate part of physics in the cosmere, and the magics that arise are an innate part of physics because of that. Like atium seeped out into the Pits of Hathsin, in the same way, these magics are just gonna leak out, and different places are going to affect them. You'll see Lightweaving happening in different places, and the way the Shard is interacting with the local... The way the Shard is is going to affect how Lightweaving is administrated in the various magics, but it's still gonna be there. Hemalurgy is kind of a similar thing to that. You will see Midnight Essence, you will see some of these recurring ideas popping up, and these are like natural parts of the physics, but they're influenced by the Shards on the local planets.

    I don't know if that answer, that's gonna be a really fun one for them to transcribe into the Q&A thing, because I go around in circles on that question a ton. Put this part in when you do it.

    YouTube Spoiler Stream 4 ()
    #43 Copy

    Questioner

    Would it be an advantage to have dandruff as an Awakener?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes.

    Adam Horne

    Is that a regretful yes?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah, I mean, it's not a very big advantage, but I suppose. Being able to easily, yeah, sure? I don't think it's an appreciable advantage.

    YouTube Spoiler Stream 4 ()
    #44 Copy

    Questioner

    Hey Brandon, did TenSoon become more loyal to Vin because he was in a dog's body and started to adopt the loyalty of a dog?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Nope, I did not work that into it. There are certain things that the body, like getting scratches and things like that, he did start to adopt some of that sort of thing. I kind of explain this to myself as, the way everyone's treating you does affect your self image, but also getting into another body and realizing, "Hey, it kind of feels okay to get scratched on the head." That's not something that's as socially acceptable among humans. In some situations it is, but when you're in the dog's body, it's like "I can just enjoy this," and enjoy the perks. He ended up really liking a lot of things about being in a dog's body, and they were just a good fit for him. But I wouldn't say there's any sort of Spiritual, "dogs are loyal, therefore TenSoon is loyal" thing.

    YouTube Spoiler Stream 4 ()
    #45 Copy

    Aradanftw

    Kaladin and Vin both have used magic subconsciously. Kaladin while training with the bridge plank and drawing in Stormlight, and Vin burning pewter while being beaten. Does that mean that Intent is not always required, or is a simple Intent like "I will be strong" enough to activate the magic system?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I'm going to go with the simple Intent answer that you're giving there. So, at the basic level... the more specific and the more powerful you want to be, the more you need to understand your Intent, is where this is. The body has an Intent. Kaladin uses the magic while he's unconscious, right? The Intent is survive, basically the body knowing it needs to survive. And this is possible to an extent with a lot of the magic systems, just kind of in the base, physical sense, your body knowing how to use what it's been given, is going to happen. You're going to see this with other instances in the magic as well. And even kind of not knowing or not wanting to face it, you can get some base level of power in most of the magics. Yes, it's the second one in that you can make the argument that your body just wants to survive, and things like this, but Intent really starts to play into it when you're doing distinct and increasingly powerful things with the magics. Intent is like your ability to focus, right? You can fire a sniper rifle on accident, but hitting the thing that you want to hit with it requires a lot of practice and focus. That practice and focus in the magic systems is often Intent-related.

    YouTube Spoiler Stream 4 ()
    #46 Copy

    NeedsToShutUp

    If a Shardblade were to cut a Feruchemist's limb and turn it grey, could the Feruchemist still tap a metalmind below the cut?

    Brandon Sanderson

    What a great question, I've never thought that. I'm going to say they could not. That's a really good question. We'll see if I go back on that, if it ever happens in the series.

    YouTube Spoiler Stream 4 ()
    #47 Copy

    DoritoJH

    Is what happened to the singers on Roshar when Ba-Ado-Mishram was imprisoned mechanically [comparable] to what happened to the Terrismen on Scadrial when they were turned into mistwraiths?

    Brandon Sanderson

    It's more like what happened on Sel with the Elantrians than it is like what happened with the Terrismen. I can see where you're going, but that's not the [analogy] I would've gone to.