Recent entries

    Calamity Chicago signing ()
    #7051 Copy

    Questioner

    And the characters from [the last Mistborn series], do they end up on a different planet?  Like the planet that Warbreaker takes place?

    Brandon Sanderson

    By the final Mistborn series there will be space travel between worlds.

    Calamity Chicago signing ()
    #7052 Copy

    Questioner

    About the the last Mistborn series, it's like a sci-fi thing, right? Is it going to be more in a cyberpunk vein or Star Wars?

    Brandon Sanderson

    More space opera. That’s not to say--  I’ve thought of doing a cyberpunk before, but the third [series] one will have some cyberpunk elements already.

    Calamity Chicago signing ()
    #7053 Copy

    Questioner

    For the next Stormlight [book], will there be chapters from Jasnah's perspective?

    Brandon Sanderson

    There will be, I believe, at least one chapter from her viewpoint. I could change that but the outline has at least one from her.  It’s dangerous to do too many from her viewpoint because she’s eventually going to be a main viewpoint character, and she has a large chance of taking over a narrative that she’s part of.

    Calamity Chicago signing ()
    #7054 Copy

    Questioner

    [...] The [...] written on a Shard, is there a correspondence [correlation] between that and when the Blades, and the armor in Words of Radiance and The Way of Kings [...] on a Shardplate?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yup, yup.  There is a direct correlation there.

    Questioner

    The Shard...

    Brandon Sanderson

    I mean the naming convention is the same naming convention.

    Questioner

    [from…Radiant...]

    Brandon Sanderson

    I haven’t answered that yet, and I’ll remain close-lipped on it for now.

    Questioner

    Where did the worldhoppers get their powers, because if all powers come from the Shards, and the Shards came from the breaking of Adonalsium, so how can Hoid have his powers before...

    Brandon Sanderson

    That is correct.  So before the breaking there was magic in existence.  For instance, the spren on Roshar, some of them predate the breaking-- the Shattering.

    Questioner

    So, if spren are caused by thoughts, and the Shards caused some of the humans, and humans cause thoughts, then there were people alive before

    Brandon Sanderson

    Then there were people on Roshar before the breaking of Adonalsium.

    Calamity Chicago signing ()
    #7056 Copy

    Questioner

    For characters like Hoid, who travel between worlds-- Do you have a timeline set out for them, so that they aren’t in two places at once?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I do [...] But it’s easier to keep this straight by making sure that the books aren’t, so far, happening simultaneously.  But the more short stories I write, the more simultaneous things will get, and so that’s where we need it. Like, I realized I had a contradiction--  Fortunately that I hadn’t canonized in any of the books, when I wrote Secret History.  I was like “Ah, I need to make sure he is where he needs to be.” And stuff like that.

    Calamity Chicago signing ()
    #7057 Copy

    Questioner

    With safehand culture, with one hand feminine, two hand masculine: is knitting considered masculine?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Knitting is not one of the prime arts, and so it would be considered either direction. It’s not one of the major arts mentioned, so men can knit their socks and things like that at war and not have to feel feminine, but women could knit if they wanted to, also.

    Questioner

    Okay. So, Dalinar can make baby socks.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes, Dalinar can make baby socks and not feel--

    Footnote: The questioners were walking away during the last question/answer exchange, which is why Brandon stopped talking mid-sentence there.
    Calamity Chicago signing ()
    #7059 Copy

    Questioner

    If a kandra and a human were to have a baby, what would that baby be like?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I would say that right now… It would depend... The kandra would have to remain in human form, keep the same body, and then would give birth to a human. If it was a woman [human] with a man [kandra], it wouldn’t be that big of a deal, with a kandra. Does that make sense? Because when the kandra is in human form, they can identically recreate the bodily functions and things if they want to.

    Calamity Chicago signing ()
    #7061 Copy

    Kurkistan

    How exactly does Hemalurgic decay work for Feruchemy? Is it like a leaky tube or something, or…?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah… yeah.

    Kurkistan

    So they try to store 10 units of health and only 9 gets through, or…?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Hemalurgic decay meaning someone who has been spiked is less powerful? That Hemalurgic decay, or the Hemalurgic decay when a Hemalurgic spike is left outside of blood?

    Kurkistan

    Less powerful. So like the Inquisitors are less powerful Feruchemists so they had to spend longer storing: so why did they have to spend longer storing?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah they lose a little bit, it’s a leaky… You’re there, exactly. It just doesn’t quite… it’s not as efficient: it’s an efficiency thing.

    Calamity Chicago signing ()
    #7062 Copy

    Kurkistan

    So when that cork [in The Bands of Mourning] was thrown above the train, if the cork had been thrown by someone who was standing besides the train, what would have happened when the bubble hit [the cork]? So the bubble's moving at 60mph and the cork [is not moving laterally relative to the bubble] and gets hit by a bubble...

    Brandon Sanderson

    Right. Right right right... So... this one's complicated. Let me see if I can... So anything that touches the bubble will immediately be lodged into the bubble, and be hit by that... So say you throw something up, the bubble hits it, is what you're asking?

    Kurkistan

    Yeah.

    Brandon Sanderson

    But it does not have momentum the same as the thing? So it would probably be in the bubble for a short time.

    Kurkistan

    So if I threw the cork straight, and then the bubble came from the right, the cork would shift to the right within the bubble as the bubble thought it was moving or something? So the bubble thinks the cork is travelling like 60mph North, the cork thinks it's not moving at all... So does the cork move the opposite direction of the bubble or something?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Ask Peter the math on that one, and I'll have him run the math. That one's kind of... it's kind of like the time travel train experiment stuff, with the flags and things. So let's go ahead and PAFO that one.

    Calamity Chicago signing ()
    #7063 Copy

    Kurkistan

    How broadly can a time-bubbler control the attributes of the bubble? Like could he make it ten times smaller to make it ten times more powerful?

    Brandon Sanderson

    It is more controllable than I have generally shown in the books.

    Kurkistan

    And does the size correspond inversely to the strength?

    Brandon Sanderson

    No.

    Calamity Chicago signing ()
    #7064 Copy

    Alterodent

    If a hermit were to take a whole lot of cadmium and go off and live by himself, how far within a lifetime, reasonably, could he get into the future by essentially time-capsuling himself? Assuming they live to be 70 or 75.

    Brandon Sanderson

    They could get pretty far.

    Alterodent

    What would the savantism do to them?

    Brandon Sanderson

    The savantism would probably allow them to get further… It’s completely reasonable… you can treat this like relativistic travel.

    Calamity Chicago signing ()
    #7067 Copy

    triforceorder

    Is the dying process - death, to Cognitive Realm staging area, to the Beyond - a universal process in the Cosmere?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes. it is a universal process. People don’t always hang out as long, depending on how much Investiture is around.

    Calamity Chicago signing ()
    #7068 Copy

    Questioner

    In Secret History, we see an Aon written in the steel Alphabet, have we seen any other kind of-- examples of something similar yet?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I don’t think we’ve shown you any, that doesn’t mean they don’t exist. For instance the Aon written on the wall in Emperor’s Soul would probably not look exactly like an Aon, because it’s different culture.

    Questioner

    Similar to the Dakhor monks use different...

    Brandon Sanderson

    No, more along the lines of, if you start writing-- if Chinese characters became a big part of everyday life in America, we would probably end up changing them so they don’t actually look like one 100%, does that make sense?  So yes and no, like that.  I don’t think I’ve ever drawn one out like that, but there are references to other characters and other cultures [across the cosmere].

    Calamity Chicago signing ()
    #7070 Copy

    Eric

    In Secret History we learn the 16 Shards that Shattered Adonalsium. Was that done [on behalf of the anti-Adonalsium force]?

    Brandon Sanderson

    You’re focusing too much on this idea of an anti-Adonalsium. It—the original question I believe that was asked me was “is there a force that is opposed to Adonalsium” and it left me a lot of wiggle room. In other words, the people who killed Adonalsium, you could say were a force, any person who opposed Adonalsium... What they were trying to get was a “devil” but to do that you must assume Adonalsium was a more Christian-style God, and I haven’t confirmed any of that.

    Calamity Chicago signing ()
    #7075 Copy

    Dragon13

    Of the short stories included in the Mistborn Adventure Game, I know you were involved in The Eleventh Metal. Are the others considered canon?

    Brandon Sanderson

    The Allomancer Jak [and the Pits of Eltania] one, yes. Everything else, no.

    Calamity Chicago signing ()
    #7076 Copy

    Questioner

    I’m interested in Adonalsium. Out of the people that were leftover from just before its Breaking [Shattering], did they think it was a good idea or a bad idea?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Uhhh… Opinions are mixed.

    Questioner

    Is it mixed between the Vessels and the non-Vessels?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Most of the Vessels support the decision that they made. I would say of those remaining, who are not Vessels, the majority think it was a bad idea. I would say it’s split between them (?), it’s not 100%

    Questioner

    What’s the number of [people on Yolen?] remaining that are not the Vessels

    Brandon Sanderson

    Not many.  It is a number that you could count to reasonably.

    Calamity Chicago signing ()
    #7080 Copy

    Questioner

    Shardblades, they sever <limbs? people’s?> connection to the Spiritual Realm. So, that being said,  they cut inanimate matter like a regular sword but inanimate matter is projected into the Cognitive Realm.  So does inanimate matter have a Connection to the Spiritual Realm? In the same way living things do?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes, but it doesn’t have the same thing going on.

    Calamity Chicago signing ()
    #7081 Copy

    Argent

    At the end of The Bands of Mourning, Wax starts seeing what seems like souls, as he’s holding the Bands. He sees lines. He ponders that man/metals they’re same thing. Is he seeing Investiture there?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah, to an extent he’s seeing—yes. He’s seeing the Cosmere equivalent of atoms, Investiture, and energy waves all being the same thing.

    Argent

    Okay, so kind of a building block of things.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes, it’s almost like he’s seeing the axi, right, the atoms.

    Calamity Chicago signing ()
    #7082 Copy

    Argent

    About the Returned, they don’t quite fit the other Splinters, their Breath rather, because it’s the divine Breath that’s a Splinter, right?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Ehhhhhhh…. Ehhhhhhh....

    Argent

    Okay, that was vague.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Not a 100% correlation there.

    Argent

    So in that case it’s not entirely fair to say that the Returned are like vessels for--

    Brandon Sanderson

    No… Well, more vessels than the people that are in [T’Telir…]

    So, Endowment is in control of what’s happening, right?

    Argent

    The giving of Breaths.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes. So what you’ve got to remember-- and this is something that people keep mistaking is-- something like a spren is still part of the god, right?  And it’s not that different from the fact that the rock has a part of the body in it, and that everything is kind of made—Like in Mistborn world in particular, everything is made out of their essence. And so, the Breath are similar, but it’s less that-- they’re not autonomous in most cases and it’s more like-- it’s like a hybrid of what’s happening in Mistborn where everybody’s got a bit of Preservation in them. Everyone’s got a bit of Endowment in them.

    Argent

    Innate Investiture.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Innate Investiture that they are born with.

    Argent

    I was looking to divine Breath, more specifically.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Oh divine Breath! … Divine Breath is its own special thing, and it’s more like what happened with the Honorblades, in that the god is pouring a bit of its Investiture, infusing the magic.

    Calamity Chicago signing ()
    #7084 Copy

    Questioner

    So did you come up with the weakness of the Epics being from fears out of Steelheart book or did you already think of that ahead when you wrote Steelheart?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I had that.  In fact there’s a deleted scene where I dug into the nightmares in the first book, and it didn’t end up getting into it.  Plus it was a little too--

    Questioner

    Reveal?

    Brandon Sanderson

    --foreshadowy, yeah.  But it was from the beginning.  I always kind of thought the fears being your weakness would be a really cool way to approach superheroes.

    Calamity Chicago signing ()
    #7085 Copy

    Questioner

    What race is Sazed? We have an argument on this but...

    Brandon Sanderson

    The Terris have intermixed to the point that they-- Skin tone run the gamut, from being indistinguishable to being darker-skinned. When I write them and say darker-skinned they get as dark as perhaps a dark Indian, East Indian. But they can range in that skin tone.

    Words of Radiance Seattle signing ()
    #7088 Copy

    Questioner (paraphrased)

    How do you pick names?

    Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

    It really varies based on the book. I'm often picking a linguistic paradigm. Alethi - there are two separate paradigms because I like linguistics to be messy. Usually based on symmetry being holy, so they'd pick names one letter off from symmetrical to avoid hubris.  Also suffix - like Kaladin is Kalak (Herald) + din which is a suffix, all of them mean things, like the old Hebrew names have "born of" or "comes through". Stick that on and drop the last letter. Dalinar, Elhokar, all of those have suffixes - nar, kar.  In Mistborn, I didn't want linguistics to be your focus, for in that I picked a simpler naming paradigm - I lifted linguistics from the real world. Central Dominance is French. The Germanic area, we have Elend and Straff, and then we have Spanish on the other area. I just kind of took Earth cultures and appropriated them. That's an easier way to do it, because Mistborn is kind of an earth analogue. But Roshar is very different. Mistborn I didn't want you to think of the difference, which is why I gave everyone nicknames that are easy to say.

    Words of Radiance Seattle signing ()
    #7090 Copy

    Questioner (paraphrased)

    When do we get to officially get to know what's going on in the Cosmere?

    Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

    All of my epic fantasy books are connected with continuing characters. That's a way off, and that's because I don't want people to feel like they have to have read all my previous books to enjoy the series. It should be about the characters. Eventually I will write one that's a mashup, but we're not there yet. I'll be very upfront about it when I do it. For now it's just easter eggs.

    Words of Radiance Seattle signing ()
    #7092 Copy

    Questioner (paraphrased)

    When do you expect to finish Shadows of Self?

    Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

    It was on the schedule for this fall to finish, but the third Stormlight book has pushed that aside, so it'll probably be the next book after that.  Tom Doherty didn't want to have a four-year gap twice in a row, and I don't want to let it go so far. It's better to establish that I'll be doing Stormlight regularly before deviating. When I pitched Mistborn to my editor, I pitched a series going to modern times to space opera in the same universe. There will be another trilogy of thick books at 1980s technology, I pitched to my editor as "Tom Clancy Allomancy" and we will eventually get to the space opera, which will be allomancers in space.

    Words of Radiance Seattle signing ()
    #7097 Copy

    Questioner (paraphrased)

    Speaking of Rothfuss, can you tell us how far along he is...

    Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

    No, I don't know how far along Pat is, when I hang out with Pat I don't ask him because he gets that enough.  I'll tell you this, in my outline from ten years ago, the third book is named Stones Unhallowed, and his third book is named Doors of Stone. So either I've got to beat it or change it - I thought, "I have to write this book faster".

    Words of Radiance Seattle signing ()
    #7098 Copy

    Questioner (paraphrased)

    Travel time frame of reference - how long is a day's ride?

    Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

    There's two answers. One is the official answer, and that depends on the horse, what you're feeding the horse, how you're pushing the horse - I think a wagon can go 1-2 miles an hour, a good horse if you're trading horses can go further. My expectation that it's usually 20-30 miles but that's pushing the horse hard. You're usually not going that much faster than people can walk, 2-3 miles an hour. Humans are better at going long distance than horses. But horses are more comfortable and can sprint if they need to. This is not something that I do a ton on because most of my books take place in one location - that's what we're looking at for a day's ride. Eight hours between 16 and 24 miles, but someone can correct me if they know better.

    Words of Radiance Seattle signing ()
    #7099 Copy

    Questioner (paraphrased)

    Strategies for the Sagging Middle.

    Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

    Middles are tough. My experience has been that the writer thinks the middle sags more than it does, because you're not at the exciting beginning wherever everything's fresh and not at the end with the climax. Stagger the climaxes. For instance, Words of Radiance, I built it and plotted it like three books with multiple climaxes from major characters at the end of part 1, at the end of part 3, and at the end of the whole thing. It'll make your novel read like a trilogy.

    Words of Radiance Seattle signing ()
    #7100 Copy

    Questioner (paraphrased)

    Best fantasy author debuted in the last year

    Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

    Brian McClellan with the Powdermage books, but that's a year and a half ago so it doesn't count. I'm reading a book right now by one of my former students that's really good but it's not published yet. Most of the books I've read in the last year are either friends or things I needed to catch up on.