Recent entries

    Shadows of Self Houston signing ()
    #7451 Copy

    Questioner

    I have a question on when you use terminology because you use a lot of regular terms. If you've read Warbreaker, Breath specifically. So as a working writer, before ever reading Brandon Sanderson's novel, I might have come up with the Breath myself. So the question being, have you ever had that, where you work working on something and then read another book and found out they were using either a similar term or something--

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah it's happened a bunch. Have I been writing a book when someone came up with a similar term? Janny Wurts wrote a book about someone called the mistwraith. There is a book called, like, The Curse of the Darkeyes, or something like that. It's hard to do something where someone hasn't used any of the terms before. Like trying to do the Steelheart books, which use superhero mythology, try and find a name for any superhero that DC or Marvel haven't had, it's like basically impossible. So I had to be like alright, ones that no one has heard of, that only appeared in one issue, if I come up with a cool name and they've used it once in like one issue, I can still use it. You just have to not let that get to you. Make the story your own through good writing and good storytelling, and no one's going to look at it and be like "Ohh this is a rip-off". And if your beta readers all say "Oh this is a rip-off", then maybe you change it, but they probably won't. That's my advice to you. Don't stress that one too much. Work on making your story great and don't worry too much if it is what someone else has done. 

    Shadows of Self Houston signing ()
    #7452 Copy

    Questioner

    Why did it take you so long to write the fifth Alcatraz book?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Why did it take me so long to write the fifth Alcatraz book... So, the Alcatraz books, the problem was I had this weird relationship with Scholastic, who was publishing them, where they didn't want to keep publishing them, but they didn't want to sell them back to me either. And it was really weird, because I was like "If you don't want to keep publishing them, why not like let us take them back and sell them to someone else?", and they were like "ehhh", so we had to convince them to sell them back to me, and I actually had to pay them a bunch of money to get the rights back, to bring them to another publisher, and that deal required that we couldn't sell any Alcatraz books until January of this upcoming year [2016]. And so the reason I couldn't do that fifth book is because of that contract. I let them sell off the remaining books that they had so that we're rereleasing them starting in January, the first four again, and then the fifth one. We didn't want to do the fifth one until the first four could come out, so people could buy them. So that's the reason!

    Shadows of Self Houston signing ()
    #7453 Copy

    Questioner

    So there's a popular theory on the internet--

    Brandon Sanderson

    Oh no--

    Questioner

    --that Brandon Sanderson is actually a robot, or a collection of robots. So they've never actually heard you dispute this. 

    Brandon Sanderson

    Right right right, well, the thing is-- the way we were programmed doesn't let us lie. So this is a problem for disputing it. So I'll just say "No comment".

    Shadows of Self Houston signing ()
    #7454 Copy

    Questioner

    The fight scenes in the Mistborn novels are incredibly visual. How do you write that, do you have to diagram it out?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Right, how do I write the visual fight scenes from something like Mistborn? Actually, you do a lot of research by watching Jackie Chan films, *laughter* but really what you're doing is actually, at least the way I approach it, you can do whatever works for you, but the way I do it is I actually approach what I want the emotional and mental beats to be in the scene and I build the scene around that. What is someone going to realize? What is someone going to feel? What is someone going to connect? How are they going to bring these things together? And then I use those to construct the scene so that even if someone is not following it, or is not as interested in the action, they'll get the emotional parts, and have these focuses for themselves. And I just construct the action around that. And often in the first draft, it's actually pretty rough. One of the biggest things I have to do in second drafts and third drafts is fix blocking for these battle sequences, which is where everyone's moving, because I'm working on the emotional beats first. And I feel like that's the way to go for me. I can construct a really awesome looking fight scene but the problem is you can't do a Jackie Chan thing in a book, like he punched him, he punched him really fast, this other person punched her twice as fast but then she kicked him twice. It's just boring right, and even the blow by blows, when they get exciting, kind of feel boring sometimes. But if you've got those emotional and mental things connecting, and pulling the reader through the story, then it's going to work better.

    Shadows of Self Houston signing ()
    #7455 Copy

    Questioner

    Any more information on like the efforts to go to the movies--

    Brandon Sanderson

    Oh the movies stuff--

    Questioner

    --or television or even maybe animated?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Television or things like this. So for those who don't know, what we do with Hollywood is they come and they option our books. This is where they give us some money not to sell the books to anyone else while they try to get things together to make a film, and most of the time it doesn't pan out. Sometimes it does, but making a film takes a lot of effort, takes a lot of time, so they want to make sure that they've got the rights looked-up while they do that. So it's basically like renting the rights, but it's a rent-to-own, because eventually they have a buy-out price they have to pay, but all the rental payments kind of apply to that. And I have had things for option since 2006 I think, and nothing's ever gotten made, and right now I have under option Mistborn, I have Emperor's Soul, I have Stormlight, I have Steelheart, and Legion just lapsed, so if somebody wants that, let me know. And all of those are in various stages of production, I've chosen production companies that I feel good about, and so I feel good about all of them, but I don't know what the chances are, right.

    The most recent one was Steelheart, with Shawn Levy's company, he did Real Steel, that's what convinced me, it's a Richard Matheson story that he adapted. He also did the Night at the Museum films. And they've been really cool, they invited me in, I got to tour Fox Studios, and they're working on a screenplay, I'm hoping that will turn out well but I have really no power to make Hollywood do stuff. Nobody really does, even the people there, I think they're all kind of confused by how it sometimes works out. So I would do animated if the right project came along, and someone offered me, and I thought it looked good. I'm not opposed to that. I'm not opposed to TV. We just have to see who comes to me.

    Shadows of Self Houston signing ()
    #7456 Copy

    Questioner

    After reading your entire bookology--

    Brandon Sanderson

    Bookology, I like that.

    Questioner

    It got to the point where I was running out of books so I went on your website and found your recommended reads and after talking to some other authors I found some other connections to you, David Farland, Brian McClellan. Is there anyone else you would recommend down the same track?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Ok, authors I would recommend-- I'm going to go in a couple of different directions because not everyone might like the same sorts of things. I'm going to tell you what I've been reading lately. Brian McClellan's very good, and Brian McClellan was one of my students but I can't really take credit for Brian because he was really good when he came to class in the first place. Brian's books, if you haven't read them, Promise of Blood is the start. They are flintlock fantasies and they kind of combine a little bit of hard fantasy magic, like I do, and a little bit of the kind of grimdark grittiness and kind of combine them together into this cool mix. So the magic isn't quite as hard as the magic I do, meaning quite as rule-based, but the grimdark isn't quite as grim as the grimdark tends to go. The mix works really well.

    I read Naomi Novik's new book, Uprooted, which is really good if you haven't read it. It's kind of like a dark fairytale YA but really twisted, so it's not intended for a teen audience because it is pretty twisted, but it's like how the fairytales really were, it's that sort of thing, it's really cool, it's very well written. Let's see-- I'm currently reading Dan's new book, that's not out yet. But I Am Not a Serial Killer. If you haven't read Dan's books they are great and they are creepy. It's about a teenage sociopath who hunts demons, to get that whole "I'm a sociopath and kind of want to kill people". Not that all sociopaths want to, but he does. And getting it out of his system is going and killing demons. 

    Let's see, what else have I really loved. I like Robin Hobb's books a lot, if you haven't read Robin Hobb. Brent Weeks, a very similar writer to me. Brent Weeks, The Black Prism. It seems like Brent and I must have read the same books, a lot of the, growing up, and have the same-- because we both kind of independently started doing this kind of epic fantasy rule-based wacky magic kind of thing right about the same time. I really really like NK Jemisin, Nora Jemisin, her books are very literary so if you're not on the literary side of fantasy-- but the new one is fantasic, it's written in the second person, at least one of the viewpoints is. It's like the only book I've ever read in second person that works. And some of my classic favorites are A Fire Upon the Deep, by Vernor Vinge, it's very Dune-like, in that it's a science fiction that blends the best parts of epic fantasy together with it, and if you haven't read that and you like Dune, you'll probably like A Fire Upon the Deep. There we go.

    Shadows of Self Houston signing ()
    #7457 Copy

    Questioner

    How many scripts did you write and submit before you got Elantris picked up?

    Brandon Sanderson

    How many scripts did I write and send out before I got Elantris picked up? So novel-length things, Elantris was my sixth. It sold while I was writing my thirteenth, which was The Way of Kings. You shouldn't have to do that, I was really bad when I started. The other thing is I was not good at revising, and I sometimes wouldn't even send books out, because I was like "I can learn do that better, I'll just write another book", which was the wrong attitude to have but it ended up working out for me so I don't know that I'd change anything! I did collect rejections but really-- My first five books were very experimental. Someone told me your first five books are usually terrible, which is not necessarily true but it was the right advice for me. I sat down and I wrote five.

    My first one was an epic fantasy, because I was pretty sure that's what I love. My second one was a space opera. My third one was a sequel to that epic fantasy. Then my fourth one was a comedy, like a Bob Asprin-style fantasy farce. And then there was a cyberpunk. And then there was Elantris. I wrote those five, and after I sat down and wrote those five and said, "ok, epic fantasy's what I love, I'm gonna go with that." That's when the idea of the Cosmere started going for me, and I sat down and I wrote Elantris, a book called Dragonsteel which is kind of Hoid's origin story, and a book called White Sand which we're currently making into a graphic novel. Those three books I got the best feedback on when I was submitting them and that's when I really started to push it, in getting it published. So you can imagine that what I did is I practiced for a while, I wrote a book that I thought was pretty good and during the three years it took to sell that, I ended up writing some more, because I do that. 

    Shadows of Self Houston signing ()
    #7458 Copy

    Questioner

    Do you ever plan on writing something akin to Silmarillion for the cosmere?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Do I every plan to write something like the Silmarillion for the cosmere? Hehe. No I have no specific plans right now. I've read the Silmarillion-- Wow, he was a genius, but that's where you get to the mad genius stuff, right. Yeah, I have no plans right now to do that. Maybe you'll get me when I'm 70 and I'm like "Ennnhhhh... I must write my own Isaiah, I will do it". 

    Shadows of Self Chicago signing ()
    #7460 Copy

    Mike

    Where are you going with the lunar allegory of Wax and Wayne?

    Brandon Sanderson

    There's no moon on Scadrial, and it just cracked me up that they would have these names that were a pun that they wouldn't get. [...] I came up with Wayne's name first and then I needed a name for the straight man he played off of, and the idea of Wax and Wayne amused me. I am easily amused by bad puns, Mike.

    Shadows of Self Chicago signing ()
    #7463 Copy

    Questioner

    The Alethkar culture, being competitive and all that. Is that [like a forethought of] capitalism and stuff like that?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah, I wouldn't say that it is specifically. That could be in there in the back of my mind. There were very competitive cultures long before capitalism was around. They would certainly like capitalism, but there are other influences causing this in Alethi culture.

    Shadows of Self Chicago signing ()
    #7465 Copy

    Questioner

    Since Vasher is now Zahel to Roshar, is he still immortal?

    Brandon Sanderson

    As long as he has Breath or Investiture to consume, then yes.

    Questioner

    Can he consume Stormlight?

    Brandon Sanderson

    He can consume Stormlight.

    Questioner

    Does Zahel gain abilities from the Stormlight?

    Brandon Sanderson

    No.

    Shadows of Self Chicago signing ()
    #7469 Copy

    Questioner

    Are Cognitive elements like spren and seons only present on physical planes or worlds where Shards have been Shattered [Splintered]?

    Brandon Sanderson

    No. But it does require <Cognitive *inaudible*>. Alternately the Shard would have to give up pieces of their power for that. But it doesn't have to be that they were Shattered [Splintered] by someone. Seons existed on, sorry, spren existed on Roshar before the Shattering. Not as many.

    Shadows of Self Chicago signing ()
    #7473 Copy

    Questioner

    [In Forging], if you rewrite the history of an item, and it took effect permanently, would there ever be a potential to have a butterfly effect, out beyond the history of the item, that might directly affect something somewhere else in the world?

    Brandon Sanderson

    It would be very very hard for that to ever happen, because it's like spliced DNA or something like that. It's not real. It's a forgery. Nothing else considers it, that it did that. The only tricky bit would be if you have children, and you've rewritten yourself in an interesting way that’s actually changed your DNA, that... might have ramifications.

    Shadows of Self Chicago signing ()
    #7475 Copy

    Questioner

    [Does] the expansion of Jaddeth’s empire have more to do with greed and hunger for power, or the innate nature of Dominion?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Both. I would say both. The innate nature of Dominion probably caused the greed and hunger for power.

    Questioner

    What would you say percentage-wise?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Well, one caused the other. It definitely started with Dominion. The Skaze are pretty thirsty for power.

    Shadows of Self Chicago signing ()
    #7477 Copy

    Questioner

    Is there a particular reason behind the spelling, or is it just coincidence that Kelsier and Kaladin are both K-names?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Just coincidence. Kaladin's original name was Merin, and it was a weak name that didn't work for me, so I changed it. It took me forever to find a good name for him. It comes from "paladin". Not the inworld origin, but that was the word that [inspired it]. [...] It was more that I was searching for sounds, and I realized it sounded a bit like [paladin], but I was okay with that. Just like Elantris sounds a little bit like Atlantis. It's not like I was purposely [choosing it]. I just liked the sound of it.

    Shadows of Self Chicago signing ()
    #7478 Copy

    Questioner

    On Sel, it seems like a lot of the magic is tied-in to the location on the planet. Could you take something like Soulforging and do it on another planet, or is it just tied into Sel?

    Brandon Sanderson

    It is tied into Sel, and there's this distinct reason for that, and it has to do with one of the big differences between the magic there and other places that people haven't picked out of me yet.

    Questioner

    So is that tied into how you can get Investiture there?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah. It's all tied in. I’ve only made it vaguely - It's not obvious, but I think you could pick it out if you worked at it.

    Footnote: We now know that the reason magic on Sel is tied to location is because the investiture there comes from the Cognitive Realm (where location is important), and not the Spiritual.
    Shadows of Self Chicago signing ()
    #7480 Copy

    Questioner

    From Shadows of Self, you just sort of name Hoid. Is he just not caring anymore, or is it just space in the book?

    Brandon Sanderson

    In Alloy [of Law], he wasn't really interested. He showed up only for a wedding. By this [Shadows of Self], he's noticed something else is happening on-world, so he's come back to investigate, but he's not really relevant. You will see him taking a larger role as he becomes more interested in what's happening on-planet. His level of involvement is kind of directly tied to how interested he is in what's going on.

    Shadows of Self Chicago signing ()
    #7481 Copy

    Questioner #1

    Which world does Hoid enjoy visiting the most?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Scadrial almost has instant noodles. So he's very interested in Scadrial.

    Questioner #2

    Is he doing anything to push that along?

    Brandon Sanderson

    He is not as involved in that as certain other forces are.

    Questioner #2

    There are forces involved in the developing instant noodles?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes, oh yes.

    Hero of Ages Q&A - Time Waster's Guide ()
    #7482 Copy

    Natalie Perkins

    I'm one of those readers that gets swept in the stories and fails to come up with any theories whatsover.

    However I did notice one... 2 years ago.

    Hoid

    I can't believe this is being talked about. I remember making a thread about it shortly after I joined the forums (I can't even find it anymore) About how I thought it was odd to see Hoid in Mistborn as an informant, Elantris as a beggar, Warbreaker as a storyteller, and I had a strong feeling it was in the first chapter as Liar as well but was too lazy to investigate.

    It was before these forums got so crazy crowded and I'm pretty sure my questions on whether the use of the name was intentional were brushed off. Weird right? Ever since then I considered my speculations unimportant (much like my speculation's on Reen's obsidian, the nobility really being Terris, and Vin being a feruchemist, by the way, don't ask about the second two, I'm crazy)

    Anyway, just wanted to add this. I sure wish I could find my original Hoid post but I'm pretty sure it was so old, it's been deleted.

    Brandon Sanderson

    I remember when you pointed Hoid out, notxaxlie. I was curious to see if others would start talking about it then, but it just kind of faded. You were certainly one of the first to spot that point.

    Hero of Ages Q&A - Time Waster's Guide ()
    #7483 Copy

    Pygmalion

    ......wooooooooooooooah......

    I still can't stop thinking that in my head. It's all that's really coming to mind at the moment.

    I made the stupid mistake of finishing the book this afternoon in a public place. Therefore I looked like a complete moron as I burst into tears when Elend died. I think it was a good ending. I'm still not totally decided on that. I'm just in shock.

    It's just so amazing how the books progressed, developing into this huge cosmic epic that I never expected from just reading The Final Empire a year ago. I guess in some sense what I'm feeling is a slight sense of... awe, maybe? I want to know how he comes up with stuff. I mean seriously, talk about not just writing another fantasy series.

    But I'm also shocked that no one else seemed to have figured out that Sazed was the Hero of Ages. I thought it might be him when I started the book, but it could as easily have been Vin or Elend. But at about a third of the way through, page 215 to be exact, there was this line from Sazed thinking in his head:

    "I am, unforunately, in charge."

    Sound familiar?

    "I am, unfortunately, the Hero of Ages."

    No one else would have used the same wording as Sazed did when he was thinking to himself. I have to assume that was intentional on Brandon's part. It was very subtle... I'm actually surprised I noticed.

    Brandon Sanderson

    I'm gratified that you noticed. The Terris dialect IS very subtle. That speech pattern is one hint, the other is the use of "I think" to soften phrases at the ending. Beyond that, Sazed speaks with compound, complex sentences using frequent hedging to indicate that he's often uncertain. (That's another Terris speech pattern, not wanting to offend with language.)

    The epigraphs in this book particularly (though I did it for Kwaan too) are intended to "sound" Terris, and like Sazed in particular. I didn't think anyone would catch it. You made my day!

    Shadows of Self Chicago signing ()
    #7484 Copy

    Questioner

    I really enjoyed the newspaper clippings that you've done in recent books, and I was just wondering what kind of preparation you've done for them, because they are really engaging.

    Brandon Sanderson

    He's enjoyed the newspaper clippings - which there is a bunch of them here, if you didn't pick one of these up, as promotion for this books... Because we have to chop it up, the broadsheet, in the book itself, we printed full ones that you can take, just because they look so nifty. I love the little one about the Soonie pups.

    What preparation did I do?

    My whole team, me, and Isaac [Stewart], and Ben McSweeney would put these together. Ben is one of the artists I use a lot, and Isaac is one of my employees. We read a whole bunch of Period newspapers and saw what they were doing. And we were like "wow, they advertised whiskey and cigars a whole bunch, stuff like that" *audience laughter* And we just kind of tried to get the tone down for those. And for these things I wrote some of them, but I didn't write all of them. Actually Ben wrote some and Isaac wrote some. With the idea being that we wanted to have a different kind of voice for the newspapers, so it felt like a bunch of different journalists were writing articles. And so we would brainstorm a bunch of ideas together, and we would all go out and write little clips about them, and we put the best ones in. And of course we hit little hints about the plot lines of this book and future books.

    Shadows of Self Chicago signing ()
    #7485 Copy

    Questioner

    Do the monks of Dakhor and Forging suffer from the same weakness of distance as the Elantrian magic?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Do the monks of Dakhor and Forging suffer from the same [weakness of] distance as the Elantrian magic? Yes they do. It's a little less pronounced in the monks because of certain things they are doing. It is very pronounced for Forging.

    Hero of Ages Q&A - Time Waster's Guide ()
    #7486 Copy

    JWMeep

    A question about Goradel. His end was very tragic, and was one of the things that had me in tears. The thing that really twisted the knife into me, is that he died that horrible death thinking that he had failed. When everything he tried to survive failed, his final act was to try to prevent the message into falling into Ruin's hands, but even that was futile. With those who seem to be active in the great beyond, did Goradel ever find out about what his actions helped to bring about? Was he ever thanked for his actions?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Well... I don't want to speak too much about the great beyond in the books, as in my opinion that level of cosmology is influenced by your own beliefs in the hereafter and in deity. Beyond that, I would rather not speak of what happens to the souls beyond the three Realms, as even Sazed doesn't know that.

    Perhaps this will help, however. Like most of the leaders of soldiers in this series (Demoux, Wells, and Conrad included,) Goradel is based on and looks like one of my friends. In this case, it's Richard Gordon. He's read the book and cheered for his namesake's sacrifice and eventual victory. So the REAL Goradel knows. ;)

    Hero of Ages Q&A - Time Waster's Guide ()
    #7487 Copy

    JWMeep

    Given that Kelsier seems be keeping an eye out for everything from the beyond, how does Kelsier feel about how every turned out? Has his opinion on Elend changed? How did he react upon learning Lord Ruler's true nature? I'm guessing this may be a RAFO situation, but I might as well ask.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes, let's RAFO for the most part. (Let's just say that he is overall pleased.)

    Hero of Ages Q&A - Time Waster's Guide ()
    #7488 Copy

    JWMeep

    It seemed that Kelsier was fluent in Spook's street dialect, and even conversed with Spook in the dialect at one point. So I'm assuming Kelsier knew what Lestibournes really meant, and being who Kelsier was, giving him a new name probably was more about building the boy up, rather than just the length. That said, why Spook? If he was trying to boost Spook's self confidence, why use a name like that?

    Brandon Sanderson

    It's an inside joke between them. "Spook" means "Sneaky" or "Clever" in the street slang. It was a compliment.

    Hero of Ages Q&A - Time Waster's Guide ()
    #7489 Copy

    Chaos

    So, Brandon, it's Sunday now. Did Hero of Ages sell enough to become a bestseller?

    *crosses fingers*

    Brandon Sanderson

    We'll know on Wednesday, but the distribution problems have us worried. A lot of stores didn't get the books on the shelves until Friday or Saturday, which only gave one or two days in that market to get on the list. We'll see. It's going to be close. It will depend on how many stores got the books on time, how well other authors did, and whether or not I sold copies at the RIGHT stores. (The ones which report to the New York Times list.)

    I will post on Wednesday when I know, though it might not be until late in the day, as I've got a lot going on during tour on Wednesday.

    Hero of Ages Q&A - Time Waster's Guide ()
    #7490 Copy

    Andrew The Great

    Why can Vin fuel Elend's atium-burning, even though Atium is Ruin's Body and Vin is using Preservation? Or did I misread that and he was just burning atium and had run out of everything else?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes, as has been pointed out:

    A powerful peace swelled in Elend. His Allomancy flared bright, though he knew the metals inside of him should have burned away. Only atium remained, and the strange power did not—could not—give him this metal. But it didn’t matter. For a moment, he was embraced by something greater. He looked up, toward the sun. (From the text.)

    As a note here, the powers granted by all of the metals—even the two divine ones—are not themselves of either Shard. They are simply tools. And so, it's possible that one COULD have found a way to reproduce an ability like atium's while using Preservation's power, but it wouldn't be as natural or as easy as using Preservation to fuel Allomancy.

    The means of getting powers—Ruin stealing, Preservation gifting—are related to the Shards, but not the powers themselves.

    Hero of Ages Q&A - Time Waster's Guide ()
    #7491 Copy

    Death Magnetic

    I'd first like to say that this series was fantastic. I was exceptionally pleased with how you tied everything together in this final book of the trilogy.

    (1) This series has the best world-building, magic system, and over-arching plot of any epic fantasy I have ever read. I think George R.R. Martin is still the master of creating memorable characters, developing them, and having them interact with each other. Other authors, like Hobb and Rothfuss, are better at evincing emotion. You are an amazing writer yourself.

    That being said, I have a couple suggestions for you.

    (2) The first contradicts itself, so take it for what it is. I would suggest that you write how you feel the story should be written. Getting inspiration from someone is one thing, but changing your work because some people want a happy ending or dark ending takes away from the purity of writing. The part you added in at the end where Sazed let Spook know Vin and Elend were happy in the afterlife really stuck me like a thorn. I think it was apparent how happy they were together in life and how necessary their sacrifices were. That would have been enough for me.

    (3) My other suggestion is more of a plea really. Please don't extend this series just to capitalize on it. If you really feel there is more story to be told, then tell it. I, for one, thought the ending would have been perfect if allomancy, hemalurgy, and feruchemy would have faded from existence as their corresponding gods did. It would have been rather romantic to have people start over with a new "normal" world.

    Congratulations again on completing a masterful work!

    Brandon Sanderson

    1. You humble me. I don't think I've NEARLY the skill for characters that Mr. Martin does, and that's not just an attempt at modesty. I hope to be there some day, however.

    2. This is a tricky one. I didn't change the worldbuilding or the cosmology of the story in order to fit what people wanted, but I feel strongly about using writing groups and test readers to see if my intention in a book has been achieved. I show things to alpha readers to see what is confusing or bothersome to them, then decide if that's really something I want to be confusing or bothersome.

    In my mind, the presence of a powerful being such as Sazed, mixed with some direct reaching from beyond the grave by a certain crew leader, indicated that there WAS an afterlife. However, test readers didn't get it, so I tweaked the story to make it more obvious. Perhaps I should have left it as is, but I liked both ways, and decided upon the one I liked the most in the context of reader responses.

    I do plan to always tell the stories from my heart, and not change them because of how I think the reactions will be. But I do think it's important to know what those reactions are ahead of time and decide if they are what I want or not.

    3. We are on the same page on this one. You can read other posts on the thread to see what kind of thoughts I might have for more Mistborn books, but I don't know if/when I will write them. It depends on the story and how excited I am to tell it.

    Hero of Ages Q&A - Time Waster's Guide ()
    #7492 Copy

    LexLuthorXIV

    So I have a couple of questions....

    I loved the book, it was all great UNTIL Vin and especially ELEND died. I can see why you did it, but I was crying so hard when Vin confirmed Elend was dead. I actually had an urge to burn the books right then and there and pretend it had never happened. Either way, I continued reading and then found some sliver of hope when Sazed said he hadn't figured out how to restore the souls YET, he said he would get better at it.

    1)Does that mean that he might someday, maybe, hopefully (pretty please) bring them back to life? I suspect that you might not answer, but can I at least hope? Cause if anyone deserved to live a full NORMAL life it was Vin and Elend. Besides, it would ROCK if Elend and Kelsier ever got to meet each other......

    Aw man.....I'm still crying over Elend....Is it wrong I get so attatched to characters? Its just that Elend and Vin got so little time together. It's so sad. Which reminds me: You mentioned, when someone asked about Sazed meeting Twindyl again, that he hadn't because he hadn't reached that space where souls were and the ones that were trapped in the in between were the ones that had a connection with either the physical or the concious world. Those weren't the exact words but it was something like that that IMPLIED that Vin, Elend and Kelsier were somehow still connected with the earth because unlike Twindyl the hadn't progressed past that in between place.

    2) Am I right and maybe going somewhere, or am I talking total nonsense and simply trying to cope with the loss of Elend?

    Brandon Sanderson

    One of the reasons for that line at the end is to give you, the reader, the power and authority to bring to the characters the ending you wish. I may do more in this series, but until then, please take the future of the characters wherever you want in your own mind. (Also, you mention that they had such little time together—which is true, but also remember that there was a year between books one and two, then another year between books two and three. They spent most of this time together.)

    The door is open for a return of Elend and Vin. Will I write it? It isn't likely to be soon, if I ever even do. Does that mean it won't happen? No. Not at all. If I write more Mistborn books, they will be hundreds of years in the future. During that time, Sazed could have learned to get souls into bodies, given Vin and Elend a life together somewhere away from the others, where they wouldn't have to struggle quite so much like they did through their lives, then ushered their souls on to the beyond. Or they could hang around with him, working with him as he takes his next steps to shepherd humankind on Scadrial. Or neither of the above. Imagine it how you wish, for I'm not going to set this one in stone for quite some time, if ever.

    Hero of Ages Q&A - Time Waster's Guide ()
    #7494 Copy

    Comatose

    So here's my last question. If there ARE people on the other side of the world, did Vin kill them all by placing the sun on their side, or do they have they're own Ruin/Preservation battle going on over there as well? Do they also have allomancy feruchemy and hemalurgy?

    Brandon Sanderson

    No, they're not dead. Yes, Rashek was aware of them. In fact, he placed them there as a reserve. I knew he wanted a 'control' group of people in case his changes to genetics ended with the race being in serious trouble. All I'll say is that he found a way other than changing them genetically to help them survive in the world he created. And since they were created by Ruin and Preservation, they have the seeds of the Three Metallic Arts in them—though without anyone among them having burned Lerasium, Allomancers would have been very rare in their population and full Mistborn unheard of.

    Hero of Ages Q&A - Time Waster's Guide ()
    #7495 Copy

    Comatose

    I also wondered if you could explain that circle in the cave some more, I didn't quite get it.

    I was sure Vin was the hero right up until the end, even though originally before I read the book, I was sure it would be Elend or Sazed. But then the epilogue author started naming people off, so I knew it wasn't them. But it only mentions Vin as 'she,' when talking about how she got her spike. I was sure one of the epigraphs was going to be: "And that girl is me."

    The Sazed thing totally made sense in hindsight, I can't believe I didn't figure it out. And we were right about the "on the arms," bit being the part Brandon was referring to, good find Vintage!

    I'm a little sad that the lake doesn't come into it more. But the Mist spirit and the Deepness were BOTH Preservation. That was cool.

    Brandon Sanderson

    I think I did a post on the circle. The short of it is, that is drawing too much attention. Just because Vin didn't quite understand it doesn't mean it's important. (Though, of course, there are other things she doesn't understand that ARE important.) Also, the lake might be involved more at a later date. See the other posts.

    Hero of Ages Q&A - Time Waster's Guide ()
    #7497 Copy

    Xandeis

    What is RAFO? 

    Brandon Sanderson

    "Read and Find Out." It was one of Robert Jordan's favorite phrases, and I have inherited it. (Symbolically, actually, through his bookmark, which was given to me by his wife. It's a little string one with weights on the end which spell out RAFO.) When I say it, I don't mean it rudely at all—it is intended to mean "I'd rather not say, as this will spoil future books." It doesn't indicate how I'll answer the question, or even if I will answer it. It simply means that if I were to do so now (even to say "I'm not going to include this") I feel it would spoil the enjoyment of future books.

    Shadows of Self release party ()
    #7500 Copy

    Questioner

    [Kaladin] gets his arm and various things cut with shardblades a couple times… and he regrows his soul more-or-less. Is that a function of his being a free Radiant or is that from being able to absorb Stormlight?

    Brandon Sanderson

    It is by being a Radiant. Which allows him to absorb Stormlight so--