Recent entries

    Supanova 2017 - Sydney ()
    #10355 Copy

    Questioner (paraphrased)

    Do you every drop hints for things that never come to pass as you change and tweak the story?

    Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

    Oh ya, all the time. Best example is Arcanum Unbounded originally had a different story that was foreshadowed through Mistborn Era 1, among others, but it just never fit in the story. It just didn’t jive once you start putting the jig saw together. You learn not to get too disappointed when that happens.

    Supanova 2017 - Sydney ()
    #10362 Copy

    Questioner (paraphrased)

    I just got a job as an editor. What advice can you give me about my job from the perspective of an author?

    Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

    The editor's job is to figure out what the author is trying to do, and how to help them make a better book than the author has written. Get them to try out options even when they don't want to listen or change the parts that don't work.

    Supanova 2017 - Sydney ()
    #10363 Copy

    Questioner (paraphrased)

    What inspired the Epics?

    Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

    I got cut off in traffic and thought, "you're so lucky I don't have superpowers because I would totally blow up your car!" And then I started to think about how I couldn't be trusted with superpowers and what the world would be like if no one with superpowers could be trusted.

    Supanova 2017 - Sydney ()
    #10375 Copy

    R.E. (paraphrased)

    Does Vasher have a different way of getting access to Stormlight than everyone else? Given that he has no spren, no honorblade and he isn't a squire?

    Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

    Yes. He can use Stormlight to stay alive, but it doesn't let him Surgebind.

    R.E. (paraphrased)

    Could Szeth get access to this method?

    Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

    Yes

    R.E. (paraphrased)

    And use it to fuel Nightblood?

    Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

    Yes he could.

    R.E. (paraphrased)

    Can you tell me what that method is?

    Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

    *smiles*

    Arcanum Unbounded Seattle signing ()
    #10380 Copy

    Questioner

    Could you give any insights as to what the Dawnshards are?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Um......(long pause)...

    Questioner

    Am I gonna get a RAFO?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Nyeaaa it's it's..nyeaa I dunno, do you think? You know what the Dawnshards are right? We haven't talked about that? Ok, I thought we had. Um. We'll RAFO it for now. But good question.

    Other person

    It's an excellent question. And we have not yet talked about that. I was like...answer that, answer that!

    Questioner

    I was trying to think of questions that could get me very close to being RAFO'd, but not quite RAFO'd.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah, that was a good one, you were close to not getting RAFO'd, on that. Coz I do want to talk about it at some point.

    Arcanum Unbounded Seattle signing ()
    #10381 Copy

    Questioner

    The thing I wanted to ask you about was in White Sand, it's actually on the map, it is...(pointing at map) is this Autonomy, or Bavadin?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Hehehe, that is a very good guess.....that is very very sharply guessed...

    Questioner

    Yeah, coz, I really, I just like kind of the idea of the Shards and stuff, and I guess I want to learn more about what they look like and, kind of their personalities and stuff.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Bavadin's a hard one, because what does Bavadin look like? Bavadin looks like what she feels like looking like, or what he feels like looking like, depending upon the day.

    Arcanum Unbounded Seattle signing ()
    #10382 Copy

    Questioner

    Is there one magic system that is, like, the one that would win all the battles?

    Brandon Sanderson

    So, the thing is, they have their strengths and weaknesses. All of the surgebinders are really hard to kill while they have access to Stormlight and that's a huge advantage. But a mistborn is way more versatile, they have access to more powers, and things like that. So it really depends how much of each do you have, how many times does the mistborn have to kill the Bondsmith; a Bondsmith's not going to do a great job in a fight because...I mean Dalinar would coz he's Dalinar, but the powers do not lend themselves to combat in the same way that windrunning does, and things like that, so...

    Arcanum Unbounded Seattle signing ()
    #10383 Copy

    Questioner

    If two of your characters from two different worlds were to duel, which would be the most interesting and exciting to watch, which two characters.

    Brandon Sanderson

    If they were to duel, like in a "we're not going to kill each other, we're just going to duel", because...I would say that a Vin / Kaladin duel would be the most interesting visually. You gotta pick two different magics, but that can go toe to toe with each other.

    Arcanum Unbounded Seattle signing ()
    #10385 Copy

    Questioner

    Was Sadeas involved with Gavilar's death?

    Brandon Sanderson

    No, good question. He legitimately thought that Gavilar was a good king and so he legitimately wanted him to live. Sadeas had...his disagreements with Dalinar, he was way more ruthless, and things like this. But at the end of the day he really did want the kingdom to succeed and he did not want to be king.

    Shadows of Self San Diego signing ()
    #10392 Copy

    leinton (paraphrased)

    Is crem made out of calcium carbonate?

    Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

    No, that it was a darker material, and wouldn’t directly correlate to any rocks on Earth

    leinton (paraphrased)

    Where does it come from?

    Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

    That’s one of the greater mysteries. Far in the future, scientists on Roshar will start asking that same question.

    Shadows of Self San Diego signing ()
    #10393 Copy

    Questioner

    Any advice for finding a good, constructive writing group?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Writing groups, your best bet is to find somewhere, like, at a convention, that's doing writing critiques, and get in on one of the group critiques that happen there, usually led by, like, an author or somebody, and see who's giving good critiques. And then approach them and see if you can start something up. I would say that's the best. University classes, you can get into one of those, some sort of writing class where you can kind of get a preview for how people critique and things like that. That's your best bet, conventions, or writing classes.

    Shadows of Self San Diego signing ()
    #10394 Copy

    Questioner

    With regards to Legion, are you planning on writing another short story?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I am planning a third Legion short story, and then I will probably let that one lay fallow for a while. I don't know when I'll do that, it might be next year. I usually do a novella every year. And so, we'll see, it might be Legion next year to kind of wrap that up, not that it's really gonna be an ending because those are kind of episodic, but it will be the end of writing those for a while.

    Shadows of Self San Diego signing ()
    #10395 Copy

    Questioner

    So, the game Mistborn: Birthright, it's been two years now.

    Brandon Sanderson

    ...I love the guys who were working on it, but I, if I were you, would consider it vaporware until you hear more. They've had some real troubles with their funding. They're great people who have just not been able to get the game going. They make a lot of easy, quick games for movie tie-ins, this one is *inaudible*, so it's just been a lot harder for them to get going. Again, they're fantastic people, and I hope that they'll get something going about it eventually, but I'm not gonna talk much about it until they do.

    So, someone's gonna ask, the movie thing. So, Shawn Levy, owns The Reckoners, optioned that in June. He did Real Steel, the Richard Matheson story. If you haven't seen that movie, it turned out really well, with Wolverine in it. He also did the Night at the Museum films. And they're working on a screenplay. DMG owns The Emperor's Soul. They were producers on the latest two Iron Man films. They're a Chinese company, they really liked Emperor's Soul, so they came and optioned that from me. The Mistborn books are with the people who have the video game rights. We've combined those together into one right, I gave them a year to work on that. They've been very encouraging on how they're working on that, but it's Hollywood, so who knows what will happen. Legion just lapsed, so if your uncle makes movies, tell him to make Legion, from Brandon. Stormlight is under contract, but I can't say with who yet. So, I think everything novel-wise except for Rithmatist, probably-- Yeah, 'cause somebody optioned the Cosmere. Minus Mistborn. They got really excited by this whole, "Wow, it's a shard universe" thing, which is really hot in Hollywood right now. They're a really good company, but they came to me like, "We can do Marvel with Fantasy," and I'm like, "I'm not gonna say no!" We'll see how it turns out, but that's where we are.

    Shadows of Self San Diego signing ()
    #10396 Copy

    Brandon Sanderson

    Will there be a follow-up to The Rithmatist? Let's go down the list.

    So, I am writing Stormlight 3 right now. So, Stormlight 3, our goal is for next fall. You can follow along on my website, the projection right now is for, like, April, which is gonna be really tight for next fall. If I can get it done before April, then we can get it out in November. Otherwise, they would probably wait until January. Usually they skip December, 'cause it's just so crazy for bookstores, you don't want to be sending new books to them in December. So, if that happens, then it will be another January release, or something like that.

    I have Bands of Mourning, the next Mistborn book, in the queue.

    I have Calamity, the next Reckoners book, in the queue.

    And I have the fifth book of the Alcatraz series in the queue. We got the rights back, and we can start publishing the Alcatraz books again in January, so we will be rereleasing the first four with new cover art. It's really cool, we're trying something out with these books, as an aside. We did this really cool full-color map, and we're putting it on the inside of the jacket flap thing. So you can take off the jacket while you're reading the book and see the map, and if this works, we're gonna try it with Stormlight, where you can take off the jacket and see the map, it's just printed in full color on the back, but we wanna make sure it looks nice, that everything's gonna work with it... And then the fifth book will be in June.

    By the way, as an aside, those books I just listed, are all collectively shorter than a Stormlight book. You can add the word counts, two Mistborn books, one Reckoners book, and Alcatraz, plus a novella, all were written last year. And this year I've only been writing Stormlight, and I'm still-- yeah, anyway.

    Once I finish Stormlight, the next project will be the new new YA series from Random House, following Reckoners. It will be a new thing. I will write one of those, I will probably write Rithmatist 2, I will probably write the last Wax & Wayne book, and then I will go to Stormlight 4. Those will be the three projects I do in between.

    So, if the book you're waiting on a sequel to wasn't on that list, I will get to it eventually, but that's, like, the list for the next couple of years.

    Shadows of Self San Diego signing ()
    #10397 Copy

    Questioner

    Of all the characters that you've written, which one do you think is the most like you, and is there one you want to be like?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Understand that there are none that are specifically "most like me." There's a piece of me in every one of them, it's been very hard for me to determine. If I had one that I think the best of is probably Sazed, maybe Dalinar. But I sure wouldn't mind being as clever as some of them are. You laugh, because, like, "You wrote them, Brandon." *laughter* The thing about being clever-- and I have some clever friends, I lived with a a guy named Ken Jennings for many years in college, and his brother's just as smart as him, and our mutual friend Earl, they were all on Quiz Bowl in college together, and he [Ken] won the Jeopardy thing, like 80 in a row. And Ken, and people like this, what really makes them smart is the speed of thought. They just snap off a retort, just like that, and you get them together, it's this weird thing, where, like, spacetime seems to warp around them and they start one-upping each other with references and cultural jokes and things like that, and you just step back, and, like, they're their own power source. Of random 80's inside jokes just going at each other. And that's what really makes someone witty, is the ability to pop it off. That's not smart, that's witty, in a book. Now they're also very smart. But in a book, you can emulate that, by giving yourself three hours to think of what the perfect comeback, and then writing it in the book. And they just came up with it, and everyone thinks you're brilliant, when you're just habitually that person who's like, "That would have been smart! That's what I should have said!"

    Shadows of Self San Diego signing ()
    #10398 Copy

    Questioner

    So, there's not a lot a lot of Western books coming out these days. Is there anything in particular that made you decide to set Alloy of Law and the other books in that time period; and any challenges moving into that time period?

    Brandon Sanderson

    ...It's hard to say, you know, to reach back into my "cultural archive," so to speak, in my head. I did watch a lot of spaghetti westerns during that era. I think they're cool. But I really think it was more wanting to deal with something in the early 1900s. Because, I love that era. That era, in our world, was, like, this era of scientific discoveries-- there was this revolution that happened, right around that time, with the coming of electric lights and the coming of motorcars where, for the first time, science is a thing for everybody. Like, before, science was a thing that somebody rich got to do, and then it became something-- like, I remember reading an essay that was written in, like, 1910, about a scientist who had gone and studied ditch-digging, and gone in there with the ditch-diggers. And he taught them, he figured out the science of what makes ditch-digging easier on their bodies and on their health and faster, and basically he 'scienced' ditch-digging for the ditch-diggers. And they loved that. It made their jobs much easier. It was a time where science was like that, it was the first time that science was like that... That time period really fascinates me, because you've got this whole-- my career is based around taking cool things and superstition, and to have, like, one foot over there and one foot in science, and kind of bringing those two things together. And that fascinates me, and that was a time period where we were transitioning from superstition toward science. That's really cool to me. So, I wanted to do something in that time period, and the Western aspect was just a fun part of it. The whole pitch of "Clint Eastwood has to move to big-city New York and take over his house politics" was really interesting to me.

    Shadows of Self San Diego signing ()
    #10399 Copy

    Questioner

    Do you write non-fiction books?

    Brandon Sanderson

    ...I have not written any full non-fiction books yet. My nonfiction is my class and my podcast. Maybe someday I'll do a writing book. We did do one called Shadows Beneath... my friends and I each wrote a story, and then we wrote about why we did that story the way we did. So all of my nonfiction is, like, articles about writing. So, maybe someday, we'll do something else, but that's kinda where I am right now.

    Shadows of Self San Diego signing ()
    #10400 Copy

    halo6819

    What planet did humans originate on? Or did they originate on Scadrial when Preservation and Ruin got together?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Humans did not originate on Scadrial, because they were on Yolen, which is a planet before Adonalsium-- the story that takes place before Adonalsium was Shattered. They may have been on other planets, but they-- the very first ones you would care about are probably on Yolen.