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    MoriWillow

    You once mentioned something called "Honor's purposes" to Argent/Evgeni. Are these purposes the same or related to the core theme of each of the Knights Radiant Orders? For example, unity, protection, justice.

    Brandon Sanderson

    That gives me a lot of wiggle room. Related to, yes, but that's a wiggly answer.

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    deku12345

    In the Stormlight 5 prologue, wouldn't Gavilar have recognized that Szeth was holding an Honorblade? He was just studying them earlier that day.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Gavilar was pretty busy being killed.

    Adam Horne

    That's a pretty good reason not to notice something.

    Brandon Sanderson

    I think it is possible that he could have noticed that, yes.

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    LettersWords

    The Fused only use nine of the Surges (they don't use Adhesion), and Raboniel describes Adhesion as "not a true Surge." Does this mean, in its original form on Ashyn, Surgebinding had no equivalent to Adhesion, and it was created by Honor later?

    Brandon Sanderson

    That is a valid way of theorizing, and I would encourage you to go that direction. Raboniel is biased. So take those two sentences as separate things. Do be aware she is very, very biased, but also your theorizing could bear fruit going that direction.

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    quantumshenanigans

    Why do Cryptics have such a bad rap among other spren? The contrast between what spren think about Cryptics compared to how they come off to the reader is hilarious. They're these utterly guileless beings who never try to fight anyone or conquer anything in Shadesmar, and who literally can't lie without audibly buzzing. And yet other spren talk about them as if they're Machiavellian geniuses bent on dominating everyone else.

    Brandon Sanderson

    I love that you picked up on this. There's a couple things going on here. One is, the Cryptics are just kind of their own weird little club. I mean, all of the various different spren are, to an extent, but the Cryptics are one of those that are extra. You know, that word, extra. They're extra. I had to cut a scene that was very fun, that would explain some of this, but you get a bit of it. I reused some of the same concepts in Rhythm of War, when Shallan around a lot of them. They can get to be a bit much, and because they will start talking in numbers and in mathematical formulas, they often seem like they're planning something, when in reality they're just not quite getting what's going on in the same way. And it's kind of this, when you meet somebody that you don't quite get, sometimes you assume things about them. That said, there have been some very smart, very dangerous Cryptics in the past, and spren have long memories. So the reputation isn't entirely unearned, but it is perhaps too liberally applied as a stereotype to an entire race-- that never happens-- when a small percentage of them might have earned this reputation individually.

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    Questioner

    Does firemoss use have an effect on Shadesmar?

    Brandon Sanderson

    You could tell, if you were really good... This is going to be, as we move forward, a talent in the cosmere, to kind of be able to look and basically read souls from Shadesmar and tell things about them. It would not be-- what was Robert Jordan's phrase-- "intuitively obvious to the casual observer" that this is a person that has suffered the effects of firemoss from the other side. However, like a lot of things in the cosmere, the more skilled you are at your particular version of arcanum, the more likely you are able to do things like this, and you could tell.

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    Chaos2651

    We know Nale was the only Herald to join his Order. Based on the vision Dalinar had while touching him, it seemingly happened before the Last Desolation. Did Nale spend time on Braize while he had a Nahel bond? What happened to his highspren while he was there?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Good question. So, if you end up in Braize as a Herald with a Nahel bond, your spren most likely would end up there with you. But there are circumstances where the spren could be left in Shadesmar and separated from you. Both are possible.

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    Jofwu

    It seems that deadeyes can wander Shadesmar freely, but when summoned as a Shardblade and subsequently dismissed, they end up at the location in Shadesmar corresponding to the location of the Shardbearer. How does this work for deadeyes who are cared for by a loved one, like Captain Ico?

    Brandon Sanderson

    They would vanish if their Shardblade were summoned.

    Adam Horne

    But it's been a while since that's happened, so it's not as much of a concern?

    Brandon Sanderson

    You can assume that there are more deadeyes wandering Shadesmar whose Shardblades have been lost, than there are ones that the Shardblades are kept. Probably about an equal number, I would say, 50/50. Though I would have to really crunch those numbers. I'd say that across 5000 years-ish... not quite, but you know. That a lot of those weapons, even though they are powerful and things like that, are gonna get lost. Ships are gonna get sunk; things get covered over with crem on Roshar; people go up to cross mountain passes to go attack, and they end up freezing and dying. And I think that over the years, there's been a ton of those that have been lost.

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    Pagerunner

    In the Rhythm of War Ars Arcanum, Khriss says she sent her best agent among the Stonewards. Was that Nazh?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes.

    Pagerunner

    Has he become a Radiant?

    Brandon Sanderson

    RAFO. But yes, she did send her best agent, and her best agent is Nazh. And he is not happy about it.

    General Reddit 2022 ()
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    u/khazroar

    "Deadeyes can't make choices," Notum said. "They don't have the presence of mind for it. I know this personally; my own father is a dead eye, cared for in the fortress now."

    Third listen of the book, and I only just clocked that. I was under the impression that every single honorspren at the time of the Recreance became a deadeye, and that all currently conscious one's were descended from those the Stormfather made later (aside from the Ancient Daughter). How in the world can Notum's father be a deadeye without him being one too?

    Peter Ahlstrom

    We became aware of this error sometime in the past year. Turns out Brandon momentarily confused Notum with the Reacher ship captain, who does have a deadeye father. The line will be changed eventually.

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    LewsTherinTelescope

    In Rhythm of War, Notum tells Adolin that:

    “Deadeyes can’t make choices,” Notum said. “They don’t have the presence of mind for it. I know this personally. My own father is a deadeye, cared for in the fortress now.”

    Is this a mistake, conflating Captain Notum with Captain Ico? Notum's father would've been born centuries or millennia after the Recreance, going off what Notum says in Oathbringer:

    “The Stormfather created only a handful of children. All of these, save Sylphrena, were destroyed in the Recreance, becoming deadeyes. This loss stung the Stormfather, who didn’t create again for centuries. When he was finally moved to remake the honorspren, he created only ten more. My great-grandmother was among them; she created my grandfather, who created my father, who eventually created me.”

    So if he's become a deadeye relatively recently, it's surprising they didn't use him as an example instead of Testament.

    On the other hand, Ico's father is definitely a deadeye:

    Ico locked the door and hung the keys on his belt. “My father.”

    “Your father?” Adolin said. “You keep your father locked up?”

    “Can’t stand the thought of him wandering around somewhere,” Ico said, eyes forward. “Have to keep him locked away though. He’ll go searching for the human carrying his corpse, otherwise. Walk right off the deck.”

    Peter Ahlstrom

    Notum did not get conflated with Ico. Ico's father is not cared for in Lasting Integrity.

    But the quote from Oathbringer apparently was forgotten. We'll have to address this sometime in the future.

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    Elsecaller_17-5

    I asked Brandon if it was possible for us to get a quick sketch of the mural so we try to dig into the symbology better and he responded (paraphrasing), "that's a good idea but I would have to talk to Isaac." 

    Isaac

     I'm also quite intrigued by the mural, and I've created a folder of ideas of how we might approach it. Unfortunately, it would take a lot of time and continuity to get right, and right now we need to be working on upcoming books. I could see this, however, being something we include in the art book. (But I'm not making any promises.) Still, this is something I'd like to put together someday.

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    simon_thekillerewok

    Would you mind shedding some light on The Traveler? It appears to be an old short story written about a conversation between Hoid and Frost. My question is - will we ever see this published? Perhaps in the sequel to Arcanum Unbounded? Is this all there is to the story or is this just a snippet?

    And speaking of Arcanum Unbounded - what's the current status of the Nalthis essay? Previously Dragonsteel said it was going to be in the leatherbound version of Arcanum Unbounded. Is that still the plan or now that there are so many new systems, will it likely be held off to serve as content for the sequel?

    Peter Ahlstrom

    I thought The Traveler already appeared in a JordanCon anthology. Am I remembering wrong?

    That is still the plan for the Nalthis essay as far as I know.

    General Reddit 2022 ()
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    [deleted]

    Given Brandon's answer to a block of Cheese stopping a shardblade, how does the last clap work?

    Brandon Sanderson

    So, I'll admit, I've been considering the cheese question since it was asked.

    I'm not sure if it has to be cheese. But any object that is sufficiently thick but also sufficiently pliable that it's going to press down on the blade while it's cutting IS going to create drag on the blade.

    The Blade does, by necessity of my understanding of the relevant physics, need to be able to vaporize a tiny bit of matter into Investiture while cutting, in order to create space for the Blade to continue to slide through. This is related to why it doesn't cut things with souls.

    At the same time, I'm not convinced that this is relevant to the actual question being asked. I think that I have to relent that, with a sufficiently large block of cheese and a Shardbearer trying to cut lengthwise through it, the drag produced on the flat of the blade is going to tire the Shardbearer. Making cheese legitimately more difficult to cut through than stone or metal. And a big enough block of cheese might stop the slice straight up, because the weight placed on the blade will be pretty heavy.

    That said, the top replies to this thread are pretty relevant, and are correctly explaining the mechanics of the situation. There is this little "shield of vaporization" around a Blade while it cuts, so a thinner Blade (like Szeth's Honorblade) might not have this drawback at all. It depends on how far back the shield of vaporization extends, and how thick the blade is.

    My current instinct says that wider blades would be stopped by this, and so those of you planning to make ten-foot-thick walls of cheese to stop an invading Shardbearer can continue in your...endeavors.

    Remember, kids, keep your Shardblade thin for actual combat (for multiple reasons.) Only make the big showy forms when you're trying to look intimidating. (With a nod to the fact that a thick blade does tend to be better for getting through Shardplate, giving you more mass to hit with. Choose Adolin's Blade for Shardplate Duels. Szeth/Jezrien's Honorblade for cheese.)

    Skyward Flight Livestream ()
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    Questioner

    In a 17th Shard interview, Janci said that it would be really cool if there were a new Young Adult pre-Mistborn story to serve as a bridge for YA readers to jump into the adult Mistborn stuff. Is this something that you have thought about, YA books to introduce readers into the Cosmere?

    Janci Patterson

    More than any other question, I get asked this all the time: if I was gonna write something in the Cosmere, what would I wanna write? So many times. And what I always say, every time: "I'm not writing in the Cosmere. This is not happening. I have never been asked. I don't expect to be asked. Don't spread rumors."

    But people get excited by things. So, what I told them (and what I'm referring to) is that I think it would be really awesome to have (because Mistborn gets shelved in YA, which is awesome) to have an actual YA Mistborn story that is actually YA that happens before The Final Empire so it serves as a bridge for your YA readers. And that's the answer I give people.

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    LewsTherinTelescope

    Do you have a team? If so, how is it set up? Does everyone do a bit of everything? Is there an astrophysics division, artifabrian division, what-the-heck-did-Brandon-just-say-Shallan-did-with-a-single-broam division, etc? And how did you find the right people for the job?

    Peter Ahlstrom

    My team is Karen as continuity director, Betsey as do-whatever-Peter-asks-next minion, and starting in June, Kristy G as production editor. I also have a huge team of beta and gamma readers. And then there’s the Investiture Project, which is a group of 17th Sharders who keep track of magical minutiae.

    People fall into these jobs. It has developed organically over time.

    Secret Project #4 Reveal and Livestream ()
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    Questioner

    What would you call a citizen of the Cosmere? Cosmerian? Cosmerite? Cosmerenaut?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Oohs ahhs and hmms That hasn't been asked before. We've talked about cosmerenaut but I've used that more for fandom people. I'll have to think about that. Do we have a term for a citizen of the Milky Way galaxy? 

    Matt Hatch

    Maybe this is the question then: how much of the people that live in the Cosmere recognize or know they live in the Cosmere? 

    Brandon Sanderson

    A small percentage of them, depends on where your timeline is. If you're at the timeline where we are for the mainline books, very few recognize- are what we call Cosmere-aware. By the future timeline, a decent number of planets know, but more planets don't know than do.

    Matt Hatch

    Is "decent" a ten percent?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah, yeah, ten percent's a pretty good rule of thumb there, I would say.

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    natetcu

    The technology and cost of having an entire society that is constantly on the move because the day side of a planet is too hot to be exposed to, would be beyond immense. For someone to endure that cost there would have to be some huge upside for colonizing the planet. Does this planet have some awesome natural resources? Will we find out what they are?

    Brandon Sanderson

    You will find out why the people are there in the book. You are correct in assuming this. It does have a really awesome natural resource, it is the sun. You've already seen it, it is highly Invested, if you could channel that power it would be a very very useful power source. There aren't many people who could do what has happened here, and I will just say I chose the group of Cosmere people that I put on this planet very intentionally.

    Secret Project #4 Reveal and Livestream ()
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    dalici0us

    Is there similarities between what happened to Aux and what made Nightblood what it is? The way Aux was talking about needing large sources of Investiture to work properly reminded me of Nightblood's hunger.

    Brandon Sanderson

    This connection is not as deep of one as you seem, though there is a small one. As it seems to seem to you, it's not as deep as that but there is some connection there.

    Secret Project #4 Reveal and Livestream ()
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    SilverG347

    Could one assume by what Nomad said that Radiant oaths can circumvent the consequences of holding a Dawnshard? Also, if so, since Hoid has Design as his spren, what does it mean for him?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes, potentially, and RAFO. Reference earlier discussions in this stream, however.

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    simon_thekillerewok

    In your first livestream, you told us to watch for your take on the Monte Cristo revenge narrative. Is that Secret Project 4?

    Brandon Sanderson

    It is not.

    simon_thekillerewok

    If you can't say, could you at least tell us whether or not it is going to be in the Cosmere and whether or not it is in one of the projects we already know about.

    Brandon Sanderson

    RAFO

    Secret Project #4 Reveal and Livestream ()
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    donmicherone

    Hey Brandon, do you hate Threnodites? They seem to be getting the short end of the Cosmere stick now that we've seen them in two extremely volatile worlds. What did they ever do to you (or any shard)? I feel so bad for them.

    Brandon Sanderson

    I don't hate them, but, you know, sometimes we hurt the ones we love.

    Secret Project #4 Reveal and Livestream ()
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    Voidblessed27

    Can Hoid “Skip” like Sigzil?

    Brandon Sanderson

    RAFO. He hasn't been able to in the past. You have not seen him able to do so in the books that you have read. If we take the current Cosmere timeline as being where basically Stormlight is, with maybe the Wax and Wayne books. That's where we are in the real timeline of the Cosmere, without the glimpses of the future that some of these books are providing. Hoid has no idea how to do this. 

    Matt Hatch

    I like how you're timelining your RAFOs. Like this is a RAFO but with information.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah. Like I consider where the Cosmere is right now in its main timeline to be right around the 10 to 15 year period that Stormlight and Wax and Wayne are happening. And that's where we are in the Cosmere right now. But this is taking place way in the future. Actually, all three Secret Projects are fairly future era Cosmere. Basically I'm just kind of building out- what's going on with some of these things is, I want the Cosmere to be pushing towards a Star Wars/Star Trek-esque large universe of planets where lots of interesting stories are happening. And that's the future of the Cosmere. And so as I'm reaching to build more stories, I'm reaching to stories on those planets.

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    dalici0us

    Sigzil sound and feel like a totally different person from what we've seen of him in Stormlight now that he has lived a (presumably) very long life and seen a lot of the Cosmere. How do you balance consistency with what was shown of him in prior books with centuries of off-screen character development to avoid making it feel like he is just a brand new character with some name recognition?

    Brandon Sanderson

    This is a balancing act. That's actually a really excellent question. And it depends on how long the person has been gone. Like, I did a time jump between books 3 and 4 of Stormlight. And so, wanted some thing to have happened and some character development to have occurred to characters, but that to be very slight and them to be mostly still who they were before. But you can't skip a year and have people be exactly the same. I felt like with this one the length of time between was really relevant in the things that had happened to him. And so what I have doing with him is this balancing act of him frequently thinking about the person he used to be and seeing that person pop through. And that's the difference between just new character and what I'm doing with Nomad is, you will see the old him more and more as the story progresses, popping out in certain cases and places. He is the same person deep down, but he's been through a lot. I don't know if there's a science to this. It's just an art of saying, "Can I write someone like this, that has been through the things he's been and the time that it's taken and what would be the realistic way to do that?"

    Secret Project #4 Reveal and Livestream ()
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    VeryNiceName16

    Sigzil mentions that perhaps billions of people die every day in the Cosmere. This would require about 6000 modern earths. Was this a mistake, or has the scale dramatically increased from the 50-100 stars you mentioned?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Nah, it's Sigzil exaggerating. He's Hoid's apprentice, he has dramatic license and hyperbole as a tool that he can use at will. He has no idea how many people actually die, he's not gonna run the- well, he could run the math, he's that type of person, but he has not run that math.

    Secret Project #4 Reveal and Livestream ()
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    Staufar

    Nomad and Auxiliary refer to each other as knight and squire, even though Auxiliary is also referred to as a spren. Auxiliary also calls himself dead, even though “dead” spren usually cannot talk. However, we know that cognitive shadows are also referred to as spren by various people on Roshar. Based on this language, can we infer that, at some point before Nomad left Roshar, surgebinders learned how to Nahel bond with the cognitive shadows of deceased Knights Radiant instead of true spren?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Excellent question, that is a stretch of an assumption.

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    Nollitoad

    Is there a specific quality that Hoid looks for in his apprentices and why are there so few of them? Given that Hoid has lived for thousands of years, the Cosmere could be swarming with them if he wanted.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes. He has a different term for apprentice than just someone that who's learned at his feet. He looks for ineffable things that are difficult to put a finger on. Potential. He looks for potential.