Recent entries

    Warsaw signing ()
    #6251 Copy

    Questioner

    Did you ever feel trapped by the magic system you <write/create>, for example you want to change something but you can't because of scenario you set up something in other way?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes, all the time and it’s good for me. It forces me to state my rules and forces their characters to stay to their rules, so it’s very good for my writing but happens all the time.

    Warsaw signing ()
    #6252 Copy

    Questioner

    *inaudible*

    Brandon Sanderson

    So, Anna [Polish translator of most of Brandon's books] actually wrote to us and asked questions and I let Peter who's my editor assistant and continuity editor. So, they talk a lot about <how things correct>

    Translator

    <... Peter... lightning>

    Warsaw signing ()
    #6254 Copy

    Questioner

    <> <and then he flies away, end of scene> <Lift eating pancakes> <>?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes. That's intentional. There's more to that story, but I'm cutting around it a little bit because I don't want to spoil Oathbringer, where we really dig into the ramifications of that change. I didn't want-- Because I wouldn't-- that would raise so many questions, so I did cut around that idea and leave it out of the end of Edgedancer intentionally. So, next book will answer that.

    Warsaw signing ()
    #6255 Copy

    Questioner

    You often write about difference between poor and very rich. And the poor pretending to be rich. Why?

    Brandon Sanderson

    We look for stories about great conflict, and I think that class conflict is a really interesting conflict and what is it mean, why we put people in boxes and stuff like that, very interesting.

    Warsaw signing ()
    #6256 Copy

    Questioner

    Do you have any idea how <>?

    Brandon Sanderson

    No, it's really hard. It's very hard because Kaladin would look half Asian, half Arab to us, and so matching the ethnicity of the Alethi is very difficult. So I'm not sure with who they will end up getting but it's a very difficult ethnicity to match.

    Words of Radiance Philadelphia signing ()
    #6258 Copy

    Questioner

    The Seventeenth Shard—is their purpose limited solely to tracking down Hoid? Or all Worldhoppers or is it something grander than that?

    Brandon Sanderson

    No, they have other stuff. It is grander than that.

    Questioner

    He's just one of many priorities?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes. They are very worried about what he's going to be doing.

    Questioner

    But there's others they're worried about as well?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes... They have a task, they have goals, and they are worried that he is going to be [at] cross purposes to them, so is trying to hunt him down.

    Words of Radiance Philadelphia signing ()
    #6259 Copy

    Questioner

    She wanted to know earlier, when [will] you get a book with Lift?

    Brandon Sanderson

    You are going to get a book with Lift as a main character. It is going to happen, I promise. And I'll probably do some more shorts with Lift because she is so much fun.

    Footnote: Lift will be a flashback character for the second five book arc of the Stormlight Archive.
    The AudioBookaneers interview ()
    #6260 Copy

    Samuel Montgomery-Blinn

    Michael Kramer is, other than Elantris (Jack Garrett), Warbreaker (James Yaegashi), and the Alcatraz series (Ramon de Ocampo), "the voice of Brandon Sanderson" when it comes to audiobooks, handling narration on The Wheel of Time, the Mistborn trilogy, The Way of Kings, and now The Alloy of Law. What makes him such a well-suited narrator for your books?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I feel there's a fine line to walk between performing too much and not enough. When I like to listen to an audiobook, I don't want to hear just a dry read. I like a subtle shift in character voice and tone when someone is speaking, so that you can get a sense of it. But I don't like it performed so much—particularly for my own works—that it takes you out of the story. Having listened to the Wheel of Time audiobooks, as that is one of the main series I've listened to in my life, I really wanted Michael Kramer for some of my works. So I asked for him by name.

    The AudioBookaneers interview ()
    #6261 Copy

    Samuel Montgomery-Blinn

    A lot happens before this book opens—how did you pick an opening for Wax's story, leaving so much of the backstory with Wayne (and others) to be picked up and absorbed on the fly?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I usually like to start my books in medias res to an extent. It brings across the sense that I want to portray, which is that the characters all existed before the book started, and the characters continue—those who survive—to exist after the book ends. That helps with the sense of immersion. Granted, each book tells about a very important chapter of the characters' lives, and there's a distinct beginning, middle, and end to that chapter, but if the beginning or end are too hard and fast, it feels contrived to me. So I do this with all of my books.

    It's usually harder to figure out a starting point than you might think. I often have to revise my beginnings very heavily. This is no different from my other works; in the Mistborn books I've had to do this often. The prologue for [The Alloy of Law] was actually written to be the prologue to a sequel, and after I wrote it, I thought, "No, that needs to go in this book." We did a lot of shuffling around at the beginning of this book to find the right starting point.

    The AudioBookaneers interview ()
    #6262 Copy

    Samuel Montgomery-Blinn

    Wayne's ability to mimic and create accents is used to great effect in the book, and Michael Kramer really shines in bringing these accents to life in the audiobook. Did you have a sense when writing the book that these could be challenging—and rewarding—scenes when read?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I certainly did. The thing is, I'm not good with talking in accents myself—I can hear them in my head, but I'm atrocious at trying to do them. So while I was writing the book, I was thinking in the back of my mind, "I really hope that poor Michael can pull this off." It was a lot of fun to write Wayne's accents. I'm writing in a world that isn't our world, but the Mistborn world is a bit of an Earth analogue. I intentionally used themes that make it an Earth parallel, which is different from my other worlds. So you can have a character who kind of has a light Cockney accent or something like that, but it's not our world so it can't exactly mimic that accent. So it's already a challenge in that respect. I do think Michael did a fantastic job.

    The AudioBookaneers interview ()
    #6263 Copy

    Samuel Montgomery-Blinn

    How much did you focus on writing The Alloy of Law as a starting point for readers who were new to Mistborn? Was it hard to balance writing for new readers versus wanting to give your existing readers a "welcome home"?

    Brandon Sanderson

    It takes place hundreds of years after the trilogy, so there was enough that I had to bring longtime readers up to speed on that it felt very natural to write the book as a potential new starting point, just because the world had been updated so much.

    That said, I did make sure to slip in lots of fun things for those who had read the original trilogy, that are callbacks or that show how the world got updated and how it grew. I was conscious of the book possibly being a new starting point, but it's more that it felt natural for what the story required, as opposed to me sitting down and trying to force the book to be a new starting point.

    The AudioBookaneers interview ()
    #6264 Copy

    Samuel Montgomery-Blinn

    Last time we spoke, we were talking about the 45-hour audiobook for The Way of Kings. Each of the Mistborn books came in at 25-30 hours, but The Alloy of Law comes in at a tidy 9 discs. Did you set out to write a shorter book?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I knew I wanted to do more in the Mistborn world, and for a long time I played with writing a short story. The short story that I tried to write didn't work; I tossed it aside after maybe a thousand words, and began working on a different story. I can usually judge what the length of a story will be, and I knew this one would be longer, but I wasn't sure how long I would want it to be, or whether I should make it a full-blown novel. So I wrote what turned out to be three or four chapters' worth, and at that point I decided, it was a big enough story to can make a novel of it. I knew it wasn't going to be the same length as the original Mistborn books, but I felt okay with that, because for a long time I've been wanting to start writing some—I don't want to say shorter, but quicker, faster-paced stories; thrilleresque, maybe a little more pulpish. I just think of it as a fun book, that doesn't require quite as much of an investment of time and energy for the reader as something like The Way of Kings—which I love, but I want to be doing a variety of things. So writing a shorter book was intentional, but I kind of slipped into it.

    Calamity Philadelphia signing ()
    #6266 Copy

    Questioner

    Is there a correlation, at all, between Awakening steel, a blade, and the revival of spren every time a Shardblade is summoned? I mean, I know Invesiture is Investiture is Invesiture.

    Brandon Sanderson

    So revival of the spren so--

    Questioner

    Similar.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Okay. So, are you talking about a live Shardblade or a dead one, or it doesn’t matter.

    Questioner

    Like Nightblood.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Okay.

    Questioner

    Awakening the steel, like that, Shardblades <are like Awakening metal> and stuff.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. The big difference here is that in one you’re using a physical component, right, and Investing it. In another, a more pure Investiture is passing into the Physical Realm and taking on an embodiment, a shape. Does that make sense? And so, similar but different things. There is a correlation, but it’s not--yeah.

    Calamity Philadelphia signing ()
    #6267 Copy

    Questioner

    What’s your favorite part about touring? Like the q&a’s or the readings?

    Brandon Sanderson

    No, the readings get old.

    Questioner

    *inaudible*

    Brandon Sanderson

    Well each signing I’ll do a different little speech. The q&a’s are more fun because they are different. The reading gets a little old, but the first few times it is good because I’m refining it and it’s fun. So, I’ll say the actual interactive part is my favorite.

    Questioner

    *inaudible <compares signing to marathon>*

    Brandon Sanderson

    Though I will admit that sometimes the best part on tours is going back to the hotel and going to sleep. But that really depends on how late the signing is going. Like starting at 4, it’s easy here.

    Questioner

    What’s the latest you've ever gone?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I’ve gone ‘til 5.

    Questioner

    AM?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah. That one started pretty late but they went pretty late. Normal signings, 1 or 2, is as late as they go.

    Calamity Philadelphia signing ()
    #6268 Copy

    Questioner

    Are you going to make a sort of [Mistborn: Secret History] for Vasher?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah, you’ll get some more Vasher stuff. I will write a sequel to Warbreaker that shows Vasher kind of bridging--but you’ll also see some more of the stuff behind the scenes that he did.

    Calamity Philadelphia signing ()
    #6269 Copy

    Questioner

    So the last several books you’ve been bringing the whole cosmere together, has that changed how you are putting your books together? Now that you're tying everything?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Not really, it’s been planned for a while to do that. For instance, Stormlight will still kind of remain its own thing and Mistborn was always going to point that direction. Now I accelerated it a little bit because of the Wax and Wayne books, which I kind of put in as interim stuff.

    Calamity Philadelphia signing ()
    #6270 Copy

    Questioner

    In the alternate reality, where David’s father is still alive, is there another Steelheart?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Nope.

    Questioner

    Was there ever another Steelheart?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Nope.

    Questioner

    He is the only Steelheart.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah.

    Questioner

    So who killed David, <Deathpoint>?

    Brandon Sanderson

    So...

    Questioner

    Was there never a bank scene?

    Brandon Sanderson

    No, there was a bank scene. And yeah.

    Questioner

    There was a bank scene, and it was Deathpoint. Okay.

    Footnote: It says either "Deathpoint" or "that point", audio is obscured.
    Calamity Philadelphia signing ()
    #6271 Copy

    Questioner

    Are you interested in seeing any of your books become video games?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I would love to see my books get made into video games. Yeah, I’m a gamer. So if I had the right company, I would love to do it.

    Questioner

    Have there been any offers, anyone vol--

    Brandon Sanderson

    Someone optioned--or bought the rights--to Mistborn. They were never able to get a game off the ground. I don’t think it’s going to happen. They still have the rights for another year but it’s looking really slim that they’ll get it made.

    Questioner

    That’s unfortunate, that’d be a great game to play.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah. And consoles are doing better, there was this time between the last generation and this generation where mobile took off and it was mobile that just kind of--and there was all this question about console, that’s when they were working on this and a lot of people were really timid about jumping in and making a big budget fantasy game.

    Words of Radiance Philadelphia signing ()
    #6272 Copy

    Questioner

    Would Vasher be able to use Stormlight in the same way that he can get Breath?

    Brandon Sanderson

    That would not be immediately easy, but Stormlight could feed Nightblood.

    Questioner

    Which is why Szeth can wield Nightblood?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Eh, you'll have to see if but yes. That could theoretically happen. You can use most of the magics on most of the planets to fuel the other magics, if you know how to do it, it is not easy.

    Warsaw signing ()
    #6275 Copy

    Questioner

    Will we ever see such things as... in the future Mistborn books... the unkeyed metalminds, will we see something like people donating <brothers>?

    [From notes and Polish clarification: Can unkeyed gold metalminds be used in hospitals? That people would just turn them in so others can heal?]

    Brandon Sanderson

    You're likely to see such things in this. Not a RAFO. <It takes> figuring it out, <they didn't figure it> out yet.

    It's possible, they didn't figure it out yet.

    Warsaw signing ()
    #6276 Copy

    Questioner

    <Did the man Lift met is Hoid>?

    Brandon Sanderson

    It is Hoid.

    In book three, right? In book three.

    Oh *inaudible* Lift? *inaudible* No, that's not Hoid. So she references having talked to him but it's not someone she meets in this. In the beginning, she mentions him but he's not specifically in this. Right? Sorry, I thought you meant *inaudible*.

    Questioner

    *Inaudible*.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah, of course, that makes sense. But yes, so, she met him - but she talks about him, she didn't - it's not him on the street.

    (From my notes:

    In Edgedancer, Lift references talking to Hoid but he doesn’t show up himself there. She met him, she talks about him but he doesn't appear in Edgedancer.)

    Words of Radiance Philadelphia signing ()
    #6278 Copy

    Questioner

    When does a person become a Surgebinder? Cause Kaladin talks about when he was a child, talked about it being a familiar feeling, and Shallan obviously was younger. Or is it when they speak the Words?

    Brandon Sanderson

    The bond starts forming before the Words are spoken, but if the words are never spoken that bond will eventually evaporate and get broken. But the bond will start forming before. Just like an emotion attracts a spren, acting in the way that the spren you would eventually bond will start drawing them toward you and that will start to create that bond.

    Warsaw signing ()
    #6279 Copy

    Questioner

    <Could you tell me something about the Shard that is hiding>?

    Brandon Sanderson

    That is a pretty big spoiler. I can give you a RAFO card. Yes, the Shard that wants to hide, let's just say, they are quite intelligent in their decision to not get caught.

    Footnote: based on Oversleep's notes it's probably about Survival Shard
    Warsaw signing ()
    #6280 Copy

    Questioner

    *inaudible*

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes that is common.

     

    Questioner

    *inaudible*

    Brandon Sanderson

     Will there be a what spren?

    Questioner

    *inaudible*

    Brandon Sanderson

    Oh, yeah yeah yeah. So most of the spren are involved in either-- are kind of involved in all three. And so it's mostly Honor and Cultivation. But some lean one direction or the other: you'll see that lifespren will pop up more commonly around Wyndle then they will around <Sylphrena>.

    Words of Radiance Philadelphia signing ()
    #6282 Copy

    Questioner

    If someone—Vasher says that Nightblood would kill him, is that just because he has this one deific Breath? Would it kill an ordinary person, like a drab?

    Brandon Sanderson

    It would suck the Breath from anybody, and if they were unable to feed it he would feed on their soul.

    Questioner

    So they would die?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes. Anyone wielding Nightblood, he will suck their soul. If for too long, he will eventually—if you draw him—will suck your soul.

    Warsaw signing ()
    #6284 Copy

    Questioner

    How many bridge runs did Kaladin make in the Way of Kings?

    Brandon Sanderson

    How many what? Bridge runs, oh boy. Fewer than he thought, but still a lot. Several dozen. He would have said hundreds but it wasn’t hundreds.

    Words of Radiance Philadelphia signing ()
    #6285 Copy

    Questioner

    The letter in the epigraphs in Way of Kings, the recipient—is he or she—are they in Words of Radiance?

    Brandon Sanderson

    They are not in Words of Radiance in person.

    Questioner

    Will they be in the next book?

    Brandon Sanderson

    That's a RAFO. But they have not appeared in person in the series yet.

    Footnote: The letter in The Way of Kings was written from Hoid to Frost.
    Words of Radiance Philadelphia signing ()
    #6288 Copy

    Questioner

    Which of your characters do you think would win in a fight?

    Brandon Sanderson

    At what stage in their career?

    Questioner

    Not the Slivers.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Okay, so they don't count, the Shards of Adonalsium don't count… Does Kelsier have atium?

    Questioner

    Yes, atium exists.

    Brandon Sanderson

    A Mistborn burning atium is really hard to beat in any other way.

    Questioner

    So you think that Kelsier would beat Vin?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Oh, Kelsier would beat Vin if he had atium and she didn't. If they both did? Vin has more raw talent, Kelsier has a lot more experience. So if you can pick Vin after she's had more experience she will give him a fair fight, but before that she will not.

    Words of Radiance Philadelphia signing ()
    #6290 Copy

    Questioner

    Szeth a lot of the time throughout Words of Radiance is referring to the fact that he's hearing his victims screaming in his head. Is that actually just his conscience screaming at him or has he possibly already bonded to a spren in some way, that is displeased with his actions?

    Brandon Sanderson

    That is not his spren, good question... It is not the spren—it is not a spren that is for one of the orders.

    Questioner

    Okay, but it is related to—

    Brandon Sanderson

    I didn't say that. I just said it is not a spren—it is not a Blade. It is not one of those.

    Email to Nepene - Re: Population of the Final Empire ()
    #6291 Copy

    Brandon Sanderson

    Blast. I've got that in my records somewhere. It's been a while, now. Off the top of my head, I believe Luthadel was the biggest city with around two million. (Peter might have a better read on this.) I was shooting for 1920 London, but with a slightly better flow of food in because of the imperial structure an absolute monarch offers. It was the biggest city by a long shot, though. Others would have trouble topping 100k. Probably a 25%/75% split urban rural, weighted on rural, through the entire empire. Scope is relatively small. Smaller than the US. Bigger than Korea. If you email [email protected], he might have the actual scale.

    Brandon

    Warsaw signing ()
    #6293 Copy

    Questioner

    *Inaudible* How long will we have to wait for Arcanum 2?

    Brandon Sanderson

    A long time, I'm afraid. I don't want to write it until I have Stormlight 10 done, so it's a long ways off.

    Questioner

    *Inaudible*.

    Brandon Sanderson

    You will. And you'll definitely get some bits and pieces.

    Footnote: Based on Oversleep's notes, it's possible the question was about the Conflux book.
    Words of Radiance Omaha signing ()
    #6294 Copy

    Kythis

    How did Pattern actually become a Shardblade even though he hadn't been fully pulled into the Physical Realm?

    Brandon Sanderson

    He had been pulled into the Physical Realm before when Shallan was younger, and she almost broke her bond.  And in so doing . . . 

    Kythis

    But he didn't go mad.

    Brandon Sanderson

    She didn't completely break the bond.  She didn't reject him completely.  But it was dangerous there for a while.  

    Words of Radiance Omaha signing ()
    #6298 Copy

    Brandon Sanderson

    So, since I was doing other things.  Hemalurgy-when you spike, you place the spike in a place that determines which charge the spike gets.  

    Kythis

    Through the heart seems to pick up universally.

    Brandon Sanderson

    It depends on where in the heart. It's like acupuncture. This was designed from acupuncture and you get very specific on which nerve you're hitting and things like that

    Kythis

    So the spike will never pick up more than one power.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Well, the way they know how to do it.

    Footnote: This clarifies two previous questions.
    Words of Radiance Omaha signing ()
    #6299 Copy

    Kythis

    Would the spike that has all four charges, could you actually reuse it and give a different person a different power, or even the same person a different power?  

    Brandon Sanderson

    No.  When you first spike. . .

    Kythis

    It loses all the other ones?

    Brandon Sanderson

    No.  Where you place the spike.  

    Words of Radiance Omaha signing ()
    #6300 Copy

    Kythis

    When you spike somebody, say a full Mistborn, with a steel spike, it could end up with four different charges.  Does it get all four of them it just depends on where you place it?  

    Brandon Sanderson

    Where you place it it can get all four.  Spiking a full Mistborn wastes a lot of power and the way that it's known, I mean, it doesn't have to, but the way that it's known to do it right now.