How does one become an Herald? And is there any way for a someone else to take up the mantle of a Herald?
How does one become an Herald? And is there any way for a someone else to take up the mantle of a Herald?
I'm happy to post this update only two months after the previous one--which seems like a much more reasonable interval than the many months between two and three. I do feel bad at how long this book is taking, but I'm coming to grips with the fact that Stormlight books are just too involved to do as quickly as I once imagined. I still intend to get to them at a reasonable pace, but this year of work is showing that big epic fantasies require a lot out of even a somewhat quick author like myself.
In the wee hours this morning (3:00 am) I sent Part Three of Oathbringer to my editor. This means I've finished the rough draft (of Part Three) then done a quick revision, putting it at second draft level. (I explain in previous updates that I'm doing more revisions as I go on this one, hopefully to speed the editing process.)
Part Three is tight and fast, a nice counterpoint to Part Two, which was more leisurely and character-focused. The book stands at around 325k words right now. (Words of Radiance was right around 400k at publication.) I have on my website "73%" I believe, though I intend to move that to 75% soon. I started out counting 4k words as 1%, but I'm pretty sure that the final wordcount will be in the 450k range, which is why I have slowed the percentage bar velocity a tad. (Goal is for Part Four to be around 100k words, Part Five to be around 25k, and the interludes to take around 25k. Then I'll trim the book before publication, getting it down to around 450k.)
If you're following the general outline shape from Update Two, I moved the novella from this part to the next part, after deciding I liked the feel of this book having a narrow-wide-narrow-wide focus for the first four parts. We'll see how I feel after finishing the next part.
Next up, I'm going to dive into writing some Szeth flashbacks (which won't reflect on the percentage bar moving up) so I have his past nailed down. Then I'll expand the outline for Part Four, and write it. Goal is still to finish the book by the time I go on tour in late October, but we'll see. This part took me two full months.
Even if I'm a little late, however, having sections of the book already with the editor means we will still be on schedule. Plan is still for a late 2017 release, and it would take a major upset in writing plans to budge us from that.
Thanks, as always, for your patience and your kind words. The book is feeling very strong to me, and I think you'll be pleased with how it turns out.
The pocket companion states that there are three spren that can bond a person to make them into a bondsmith, the Stormfather being one of them. As far as I recall the books implied that the number was low, and implied heavily that it was around that number in an epigraph, but didn't actually have a straight confirmation. So, should I take that as canon?
Yes, you can take that as canon. They came to me for that information.
Sweet. I guess it hasn't been canonized which three spren these are? I seem to recall that the prevailing theory on 17th Shard was that Nightwatcher was one of them, and the third was that weird spren with too many faces that Axies the Collector looked at in the tWoK interlude.
Is Stormlight Archive going to be the most cosmere related out of all your series as I assumed (due to a lot of characters from other worlds being there).
Stormlight, particularly the front five, will be less cosmere-focused than Mistborn.
Since Order of the Windrunner has many members apart from the knights can the other non-knights member also possibly use gravitation ?
What would happen to Syl, say, if Kaladin dies? Can she transfer the bond to someone else?
So long as Kaladin did not forsake his oaths, Syl would be traumatized (as one might imagine) but be capable of forming another bond.
Good to know she can form another bond. I'm guessing she'll be a little more mindless in the interim, though?
Yes, without a strong tie to the Physical realm, she would have trouble thinking here if she pulled through to exist here.
Actually, another AA question - will the white sand graphic novel have an illustrated AA? IIRC the draft I read didn't have one. Would be neat to see how Khriss categorized things at the beginning of her career.
This is an excellent suggestion. There isn't plans for one now, but I could see including one in the third volume.
My other question is related to the Honorblades (and is most likely a RAFO for sure). Talenel's blade at the end of Way of Kings is described spike-like. We've seen that the magic systems are similar (especially with investiture) across the different cosmere worlds, even though they have different things that make the magic happen (Stormlight vs Breath etc). With this similarity, do the Honorblades imbue similar effects? I mean, the blade is not of Ruin (or is it? lol), but as a spike, does it imbue similar powers to Hemalurgy - without the obvious need to be stabbed with it heh?
The reference is intentional, as a call-back, but it is not the same mechanic. Remember, Szeth's blade is an Honorblade, and doesn't look like a spike. There is some similarity here, but it's minor.
I've been working on a Shardplate costume and had a couple questions. Firstly, when it comes to the armor/blades of the Knights Radiant (pre Recreance), was there a specific pattern layout to the glowing symbols? Like in lines around the armor, or just covering the whole thing? It wasn't described much (yet) in Dalinar's flashback in Way of Kings, though I understand if you're waiting to describe that as a reveal of sorts.
The patterns are individual, much as the Blades are, so you can't go wrong. They look more like lines around the armor, though, in most cases.
Since the dead spren are said to have been more or less "reabsorbed" into the cosmere, why did they leave behind physical shards at all?
We'll find out more about dead spren as the books move forward.
I couldn't help note that Adolin seems to have a somewhat special bond with his Shardblade. And there have been hints about reawakening the dead spren (mostly characters speculating it wouldn't be possible). But what I wanted to know is if someone like Adolin could convince his Shardblade's dead spren to become a spear or shield, like Kaladin gets to with Syl. Or does a spren need sentience to anticipate its bearer's needs?
Adolin's Shardblade is a RAFO, as I want this to play out naturally and not squelch discussion. Suffice it to say that a dead Shardblade, under normal circumstances, is locked into a single form.
I'm pretty sure it's a case of me just forgetting that I read such a part, but where in the book does Shallan find out about Kaladin's abilities? I know once Adolin confronts Shallan for the first time about her powers, he then asks if she can fly like 'him (Kaladin)', and she just goes yeah, as if she knew for some time now about Kaladin's abilities.
It's such a small thing but it's been grinding away at me. I know Shallan revealed to Kaladin by summoning her Shardblade over his shoulder in the chasm, but how did Kaladin reveal himself to Shallan?
If you re-read that scene, I believe she's confused by the question about her being able to fly, as so far as she knows, Radiants don't fly. (She only knows about herself and Jasnah.) She finds out about Kaladin sometime around when most everyone else finds out about him, I believe. I'd have to look back specifically to see if I noted it, but by the end of that battle, everyone will be talking about it and so she will know.
I'm pretty sure moash was named after moshe, right? >.>
Wow. I'd be pretty offended if the author I got published, after something like ten huge books, named one minor vengeful, traitorous character after me. Or else I would find it really amusing.
Moash was actually named before Moshe became my editor, as Alethi has some Hebrew roots, making some of the names similar to Hebrew names. He considers it a fun homage that I left it, after he became my editor. (Even considering what Moash does in WoR.)
Alethi has Hebrew roots? Man, I'm Israeli and I didn't notice.
They're buried, but in there. The Kh that you see in a lot of Alethi (like Kholin) are a gutteral, kind of like Chet. That might help you find some. Do note that there are some other influences too, not the least of which being the Vorin idealism of symmetry. (Bonus fun fact, the Double Eye is inspired by the Sephirot, though that one's a little more obvious.)
I do have a quick question about Lift.
She is my favorite character (which is in by no means a sleight against your other AMAZING characters, I just love her dialogue and outlook on the world). I know you have intentions of giving her more space in the archive, but will any of it be in book 3.
She will appear in Book Three, but the real place for her is starting in Book Six. That's why I wanted to do a novella about her now. I might do more.
Lift is the sort of dangerous character that can cause epic fantasy series to spin off on tangents. She's fun, and I know she's relevant later--but if I start giving her big chunks now, it will distract from the important stories of the characters in these books, and might also play Lift's story out too early.
I think you'll enjoy Edgedancer, though.
Given that these Stormlight books are (understandably) taking longer than you originally planned, have you had to re-outline your plans for the Cosmere overall to keep it from getting too big to finish? If each Stormlight book were to take 3 years going forward, then after Oathbringer it would be 7x3=21 years before the whole series is finished, and then all the Mistborn sci-fi and Dragonsteel books would have to happen, in addition to any other projects you're planning. At least that's the plan as I understand it. I definitely admire your ambition!
No revision plans right now, but I am watching. Considering my career so far had only been about ten years, and I've made great progress on the Cosmere, my instincts say I will be okay. But it is worth considering.
I've been plugging away on the book, slowly but surely. Part Two went longer than I wanted. (Big surprise.) I finished it last week, though, and the full book current wordcount is at 247k. (400k is the goal. Note that of that 247, some 20k or so is for Parts Three and Four, as I wrote the flashback sequences for Dalinar all straight through.)
I wanted to be further by the arrival of July, but was slowed down by two things. First, touring in February and March. Writing while on tour is killer, and I tend to be very slow during high-travel times. After that, I spent most of May writing Edgedancer, the Stormlight novella that is going in the Cosmere Collection this fall. (I consider it an apology for not having Stormlight Three out this year.)
Everything is still looking good for an Oathbringer release next year. I don't have any major touring until I go to Europe in October/November, and there are no other projects like Edgedancer on my plate. So at my current rate of 10k a week, without any interruptions planned, I should be finishing up right around the middle of October.
Part Two turned out well, though it's a slower, more lore-and-character focused section. (It includes some viewpoint chapters I think you'll find unexpected and interesting, though it has less action than other sections of Stormlight.)
If you look at the visual outline from the second update, I've finished everything for Part Two. My next task is to do a quick revision of Edgedancer to be turned in this week, and then do a revision of Part Two. I'm doing an unusual thing (for me) in revising each part after I finish it, then sending it to my team for continuity and editing. We discovered that a big slow-down in getting Word of Radiance ready was me waiting for the team to get back with increasingly-complex and detailed continuity notations.
This means when I finish the first draft of this book, it will actually be the second draft, which will speed up revisions a ton. (I should be able to move right into them, and do the third draft right away.)
The biggest challenge for the book will be making sure I don't go TOO long, as (like other Stormlight books) it's important to me that the book be read as a single volume, instead of as separate books published in a split-up way. (I can't prevent this in some markets, though.)
As always, thanks for reading.
Do the other uses for those metals [nicrosil, aluminum, duralumin] currently in the RPG also work in-universe, or are they just there for RPG mechanics?
Most of the things in the RPG books relating to the metals that you don't see in the books fall under the "We need to make a game out of this somehow, Brandon" clause. I've told them they can extrapolate if they want, but that I wouldn't consider their extrapolations canon.
So does that mean that these metals will be getting updated rules in a future RPG supplement?
That's a possibility. I've said before that you should consider any games you play to be in an alternate dimension anyway, where the rules work slightly differently, and your players can control the fate of what is going on. Plus, it will be years before I can get to the nature of all this in the next trilogy, so we'll see how relevant it all is in five years or so.
Do the Allomantic and Feruchemic symbols for the metals have any extra meaning to them? More specifically, were they given those symbols on Scadrial for a reason?
As for the symbols, they go WAY back to before the Lord Ruler's ascension. So perhaps, perhaps not. (On other words, RAFO.) :)
So Mr. Sanderson, I've been wondering. Since I am a very pop-culture interested person, when you say "1980s," I think leg-warmers, shoulder-pads, bright colors, hair metal, new wave and all that stuff. Lots of mousse. I guess that makes my question to you, will we see any of that "traditionally 80s" stuff make an appearance in the next series? I'm picturing Sazed/Harmony "looking down" (for lack of a better term) on Scadrial, seeing the cosmere equivalent of a Twisted Sister or Wyld Stallyns or the Beastie Boys concert and being very intrigued by it.
I'm planning it based more on tech level than pop culture, though I do think some of these things go hand in hand. (Like the rise of certain kinds of counter cultures, and musical departures.) So you may not see hair bands, but you will likely see counter cultures that fit the society.
Out of curiosity, which cosmere book are you most looking forward to writing/letting us read?
Hmm... Right now, either Stormlight 9 or Mistborn 10.
Where Mistborn 10 is the last book in Era 2?
The 1980s era. Whatever you want to call that era.
So assuming that the other novels in the White Sand trilogy were meant to be the same length, that means White Sand will take about nine years to finish?
Well, there's a big "IF" in there. We don't know how the book will be received in the first place. If it IS well received, and people want more, I will sit down with the person who adapted my book and see if we can take my notes and do them justice in an adaptation for another graphic novel.
We'll see how things go. I'm hoping they come out faster than one a year, but I can't promise anything, as I really don't have much experience with this. My only mandate to the publisher was that we do them as graphic novel collections, instead of individual comics, as I didn't want to risk a repeat of the Wheel of Time comic situation (where one issue came out, and then a LONG delay came before the second appeared.)
Hah! As one of the people who've had the fortune to read a copy of the White Sand manuscript you sent, I have to say I find the likelihood of it not being a hit close to zero.
So we're getting at least 3 graphic novels, with a possibility of more depending on reception right?
Yes, that's correct.
Hold on, so there are 3 GN books being made from the 1 manuscript? nice!
Yes. The book is long enough, that the script turned out to be quite long. I don't know if they're planning an omnibus eventually or not.
If an Awakener imbued Stick with Biochromatic Breath, would it say something other than I am a stick? Would it matter if it was passively stored or given a Command?
I'm going to stay away from questions like this, as the mechanics of Shadesmar is one of those things I'm planning to roll out slowly over the next few books. Ask me again sometime around Stormlight six.
I was just wondering if any of your characters from Cosmere is interested in same-sex relationships, romantically speaking. Jasnah perhaps?
There are some, but I have left main character relationship issues to be discussed until characters have progressed further in their stories. Jasnah, in particular, is complicated.
I ordered a copy of the 10th anniversary edition of Elantris (and another for a friend) and asked you to draw the Aon for Mathematics in the cover. However, I forgot to ask for the actual name of the Aon! Can you enlighten me, or do I need to wait for the next book I get signed? :P
It's actually one that isn't in the books. Should have mentioned it. Soo (Pronounced So-oh.)
You've written about a huge amount of cultures where women are expected to conform to what we think of as "traditional gender roles". In Stormlight, Mistborn, Elantris and Warbreaker all, the strong women are largely defined through how they buck these rigid gender roles. I never got the sense that you think of those as "natural" gender roles for women but more that you were using the Fantasy setting with its stereotypical Elizabethan ideas of gender to critique sexism. That's a great and well established way to address sexism in novels, but the other way is to actively challenge stereotypes in the setting, by showing that our idea of gender roles isn't inevitable (by showing a society with a very different idea of gender roles).
I'm aware of the things you say regarding sexism, and they are things I think about a lot. On one hand, you want to make stories relateable, which often requires leaning on people who struggle against the boundaries set for them. At the same time, it becomes a cliche if every young woman is forced to become a fighter for gender equality--and it lets her gender define her struggles in a way that is not heaped upon the male characters.
With Stormlight, I'm trying to take a different look at this idea in many ways. Some of which would be spoilers to talk about here.
At the danger of getting a RAFO, I have to ask: will we find out more about [the origins of] (and I quote the source) the " kind of leather bandolier and a backpack"?
That will be answered pretty soon.
Um, what about us (Wit fans)? Will we see any more of him in this book? RAFO?
:) Well, he hasn't skipped a book in the cosmere yet...!
Was he in Shadows for Silence in the Forests of Hell, or does that only count as a story, not a book?
I was meaning full novels. There are a number of the novellas where he doesn't appear.
Question about the second half of the 10 books what did you mean by having the primary characters shuffle and are the 2 arcs separate in time line or something else?
Yes, there are two arcs. Small separation in time. Not as much as Mistborn. Many same characters will appear, but some will be less prominent.
Will there be different main character PoV's or no?
There will be a completely new set of characters with flashback sequences, but some of the characters from the first five will appear quite a lot, and will provide a "through line" of people with arcs that cross ten books--making it one series, not two.
Is The Lost Metal planned to be the actual conclusion of the Wax & Wayne story then, or more of an epilogue to it and/or transition to [Era 3]?
It is an actual conclusion.
Will Thinker+Grump appear again? Or is this a RAFO?
They will appear in the cosmere some day again.
(Until the second five books, where our primary characters will shuffle. So you Renarin fans will have to be patient.)
Do you worry that assuring us that a character will likely survive the first arc of the series removes some of the tension in their scenes?
(While you've discussed the idea that a main character can have a book about them while they are dead when Dalinar was expected to be central to book 5, this seems different)
I have said many times before that Renarin and Lift are main characters for the next five, but--as you point out--I've also said that I have no problem having a main character who is actually dead, and their story told through flashbacks and the stories of the other characters. Renarin is not safe, but you will see a lot more from him in the future, even if he does die.
To say more would be to give too many spoilers about the nature of the back five books.
Hello, reddit. I figured I'd pop back in and give you a new update on your book. (I can't believe it's been six months since the last one.)
I'll give a slight spoiler warning to everything below this paragraph. I'm obviously not going to say anything story-wise that would spoil the book. However, I'll be talking a little about the structure of it and what's going on with the draft. I can see some people, very sensitive to spoilers, being concerned about learning anything at all about the book. For you who fit this description, let me just say that I'm approaching the halfway point, but I'm not there yet. The book is going very well, and I'm pleased with it.
Now, on to a deeper discussion of the novel. The first thing I did for Stormlight 3 was work on the flashback sequences for Dalinar and Szeth, as I hadn't yet decided which one would match this book. Through this process, I decided on Dalinar--a decision contrary to my original outline from the start of the series. This didn't concern me; the decision was made based on how the series had developed, and it's always good to expect some things to change during the actual writing. (For example, much of Kaladin's plot from book two was originally slated for book three.) Being too slavish to an outline isn't ever a good thing.
This decision made, I sat down and wrote Dalinar's flashbacks in their entirety. By the end of them, I was completely convinced these were the best paring for this book. That meant, as this was "his" book, I wanted Dalinar viewpoints to show up in all five parts of Oathbringer. You see, Stormlight Books have a kind of strange format. I plot them in this bizarre fashion that likely makes sense only to me. But I'll try to explain.
I split each book into five parts, which group together to form three chunks plotted like individual volumes of a trilogy--with a large, over-arching plot that ties into the five-book arc of the initial sequence, which in turn is half of the complete ten book arc. Each volume, then, has a complete trilogy's worth of arcs and climaxes for the primary characters (Kaladin, Shallan, Dalinar) while also having a self-contained flashback sequence, at least one secondary novelette about a character that hasn't had viewpoints so far, and a related short story collection. The "main character" for the book gets, beyond their flashback sequence, a role in each part of the story.
So this means a slightly larger plot for Dalinar, and a slight scaling back for Kaladin and Shallan. (Don't worry; both will be in the book around as much as Kaladin was in Words of Radiance.) Now, the plotting for Oathbringer--as I mentioned--is broken into five chunks, which combine into three chunks. (I call them books here for lack of a better word, as the novel--like each other in the series--is a trilogy bound in one volume. Don't be confused. This doesn't mean I'm splitting the book for publication, only that it is plotted in a way with divisions between the story arcs.)
"Book One" of Oathbringer is all of Part one, plus the interludes. "Book Two" is parts two and three, plus two sets of interludes. "Book Three" is parts four and five, plus interludes. Of these, part two is going to be the biggest oddball, as I'm putting another novelette (separated into six chapters) in here as I feel I need a glimpse at another character. So it's going to have the least focus on primary viewpoints.
I've finished all of the flashbacks, all of the viewpoints for part one, the novelette for part two, and part of the other novelette (the one that will take the place of Szeth from book one or Eshonai from book two.) This, so far, puts me at about 180k words written--with 130k of that being part one in its entirety, and the rest being scenes listed above.
If that sounds confusing, I apologize. These books are somewhat involved to write, and more complex stories demand some outlining that gets a little crazy. However, I did whip up a visualization of the viewpoint structure, which I've posted below.
This doesn't give an exact view of scale, as--for instance--part one will likely be the longest of the five. Part Two looks the most full, but it's likely to have only three or four chapters from each of the primary characters (well, one chapter from one of them) so it should actually be shorter than part one. Part Five isn't cut off; I know it will be short, as it was in the other two books.
Next up is to do a revision of part one. (I don't often do revisions in the middle of a book, but with books this long, it's helpful for me to keep the plot under control and maintain continuity through the parts.) From there, I'll write Dalinar for part two, interweave with the appropriate flashbacks and the already-finished novelette, then look at the detailed plotting of the other three viewpoints in the part. I hope to bring this part in at around 70k words, bringing the total book to 200k and getting us to roughly the halfway point.
If this makes your head spin, then don't worry, you can ignore it. It is important to me that these books, though epic in scope, retain a tight view of the primary characters through all volumes. You will see a lot of Dalinar, Kaladin, and Shallan. You will see a moderate amount of Szeth, Eshonai, Jasnah, Adolin, and Navani. There will be a few surprises regarding other characters who have slightly larger places in the plot, but in general, anyone not on one of the above lists isn't allowed more than a viewpoint here or there. (Until the second five books, where our primary characters will shuffle. So you Renarin fans will have to be patient.)
I'm determined to maintain momentum in this story without letting it veer too far away from the primary plot. I feel that a careful outline and a consistent structure are the methods by which I will achieve this.
Thanks for your patience.
I've been wondering for a while whether it is significant that Ash's name so closely resembles Shashara's from Warbreaker?
No, nothing significant there.
Aww, was really hoping to get a Rysn book. Hopefully we still get a lot more of her anyway.
She can team up with Adolin and make their own club for people too cool for books.
Rysn will appear again. Not getting a book does not mean someone isn't an important character, just that I don't consider them as having a flashback sequence worthy of structuring a book around.
One thing that I'm slightly confused about is who the primary POVs will be for the second set of 5 books in the 10-book series. I've heard a bunch of names being floated around on various online forums--such as Jasnah, Renarin, and Taravangian to name a few--but are any of these confirmed? Any word of Brandon as of yet?
It's possible this will change. But the back five have been planned as Jasnah, Renarin, Lift, Taln, and Ash. Though, once again, this isn't a promise that these people survive. You'll likely see at least one flashback set in the series from a character who has died in a previous book, and then you get to see something they experienced through flashbacks before their death.
I'm having trouble locating Ash. No direct matches on coppermind.net, 17th shard forums or google.
Do you mean Ashir from one of the WoK interludes? Or perhaps someone we haven't met yet (at least by name).
There are a lot of weird things going on with Ash, so what's up with her will be something you'll have to wait on for a long while.
But how about the characters we currently love? Are they all gone in the second half??? This is terrible :-(
No, they will be around. (Well, if they survive.) But the second series will be taking place years later, and their roles may have changed.
Is the plan still to take a break after book five to do the modern day Mistborn trilogy or does the schedule of a new Stormlight book every two to three years mean that the second set of proper Mistborn books will fit in between those smaller gaps?
Yes, that's still the plan. Stormlight 5 is an end of a distinct arc, and Mistborn era three's outlines are getting very close to being done. This schedule makes a great deal of sense to me.
As someone else has posted, I have finished the rough draft of Dalinar's flashbacks for Stormlight Three. I consider the experiment of writing his flashbacks for this book, instead of waiting for book five, to be a success. Therefore, I'm proceeding with the Dalinar/Szeth flip.
The reasoning for this is something I can't discuss in detail until the book is released. I'd be happy to revisit this topic once you all have a chance to read the novel. But for now, a few statistics.
I'm working at about 2,000 words a day on average. That's slow for me (a better rate is around 3,000 words) but Stormlight is difficult to write. The complexity of the worldbuilding and the narrative structure require extra attention and detail. At this rate, though, I should be finishing the book sometime between December and February. We'll see--I have a tour for the new Mistborn book, as well as several weeks in the UK, coming up. They'll impact my ability to write.
I'm doing a revision on these Dalinar scenes right now, and I'm very pleased with them. At fifteen chapters and 55k (rough draft) they're significantly longer than the other two sequences--I had a lot more to cover in them. I still anticipate the finished novel being about the length of the other two; Dalinar's flashbacks will simply eat a little into his other narrative. Also, expect the wordcount to shrink as I do revisions.
Next step is digging into Part One. I anticipate this book moving well in the coming months; my outline is solid, my enthusiasm high, and I will finally get to write some scenes I've been planning for over a decade now.
Thank you for putting up with the delayed pace of Stormlight releases. I know you all think I'm freakishly fast, but the truth is that even if I can get this book in on time, it will be two and half years between Stormlight releases. I've accepted that this is just how my process has to work. The difference between me and other writers (ones I wish readers would disparage less) doesn't seem to be one of actual speed. It's just that the thing that relaxes me for the next book happens to be writing side projects that, hopefully, you all enjoy reading.
Edit: As a bonus, here's the first line from the first flashback: "Rockbuds crunched like skulls beneath Dalinar’s boots as he charged across the burning field."
Have you written/will you write something equivalent to the Silmarillion for the cosmere?
It's not impossible, but I'm not planning on it currently. There WILL be a prequel series, dealing with the events leading to the shattering of Adonalsium, but will focus mostly on Hoid and not really be equivalent.
Is that planned to be completed/released after the main overall Cosmere story is completed? Or will it lead up to the finale of the main Cosmere stories?
It will lead up to the finale.
Hi Brandon I don't know if you will answer, but. Did "earth" ever exist in the cosmere? There seems to be humans on all the planets. so where did humans come from? or even the idea of humans?
Earth did not exist in the cosmere. Humans existed on Yolen (and other planets) before the shattering of Adonalsium, and it is assumed Adonalsium created them.
From a writing perspective, stepping back, I feel like other book series (like the Wheel of Time, Pern, Shannara) really covered the idea of, "This is Earth and/or earth people in another dimension/after an apocalypse/or far in the future." It's been a common enough theme in fantasy that I felt I wanted not to touch on it. So there are no plans to connect the cosmere to Earth in any way.
Is Szeth immortal now since his...change in WoR? (From a "doesn't age physically" meaning of the word, not invincible)
RAFO, I'm afraid.
Is it possible to make an artificial shard? And not in an easy manner but if one had the resources and time could they make one?
I'm not sure what an artificial shard would be. You'd be using the power from Adonalsium to do it--so it wouldn't be 'artificial,' by cosmere terms. You'd just be collecting power. The question becomes if you gather enough of it, would it combine back together--which is a RAFO in the world. Nobody knows.
1)Flashback characters for books 4 and 5 are Eshonai and Szeth.In previous books "main" character got a role in all five parts of the book.Will it be the same for these two?Szeth and Eshonai are important, but had very little "screen time" so far.So, in their books will they get a huge role in main narrative?Or will they have flashback sequence only, but main narrative will still focus on our three main heroes(Kaladin,Dalinar,Shallan)?
2)How you deal with multiple POV's?Their amount increase with each book, which means less "screen time" for each character.I know, in series with such big cast, it's very hard to keep balance.What is your possible solution for this problem?Just don't say, you will kill some characters to free space for new ones :D George Martin style.
4)Is it possible, that main characters from first five will show up in last five books?
1) Having not read those books, I can't say 100%--but the original plan was to do it this way, and Book Three continues the trend. Shallan/Dalinar/Kaladin will continue to be very important, but I might pull back on side characters. We'll see.
2) This is the biggest challenge in writing epic fantasy. For me, I divided the series into two halfs (books 1-5 and books 6-10) with a focus on some characters for the first half, some for the second. But also, I do plan for certain characters to step back a little in other books. It's a balance I'm still juggling.
4) Yes, many of them will--and will still be important.
Interesting.So you consider Szeth and Eshonai as supporting characters now?And characters like Rysn, Zahel(I heard, he's a character from your other book, but I haven't read it yet), and Taravangian...can they be considered side characters too, with supposed bigger role in the future? Have you chosen a flashback character for Book 4 yet?(Eshonai or Szeth?)
I hope, you plan a distinct ending for first part of SA(books 1-5) with conclusions of the story arcs of all main heroes, instead of cliffhanger ending:)Did you have an ounline for all five books(major plot turn, destinies for all characters) when you started the series, or you deciding in the process?
"I do plan for certain characters to step back a little in other books." You mean situations like Shallan being absent from two parts in Way of Kings?And Dalinar in WoR.
These are all things that will be clear as I write further. If I say too much, it will give spoilers.
What happened to Taln's honorblade after Words of Radiance?
Would Mistborn with mixed [Threnodite] blood be able to burn silver? What would happen?
No, blood line would not change which metals are allomantically viable and which were not. (Sorry.)
I know the Fourth Mistborn Era is to be sci-fi and FTL... but would we get some cyberpunk Scadrial at all? Because from what I gather it sounds like only space faring and travelling to other worlds.
I've toyed with a cyberpunk era Mistborn. It will depend on how quickly I move getting through the series.
Are we ever going to see a steel compounder in the Mistborn series? Next to gold compounding I think that would be the most powerful compounding.
I'll space these things out, but you're likely to see everything, eventually.
If you Awaken an object, then give your Breath away, can you reclaim the Breath of that object?
Yes. (It allows for splitting up of Breaths among those who have more experience.)
Has an Idrian Returned ever realized he was going to die (again) and went to Hallendren to be revered instead?
This sort of thing happens.
Are there a set number of palaces for the Returned in Hallendren? Are any ever vacant or are there a set number of Returned?
I just finished Arcanum Unbounded and I have to ask: Who's the "dangerous" guy in the corner of the waystop in Shadows for Silence in the Forests of Hell? That's not Hoid, is it?
This is not Hoid. I toyed with a cameo for him in the story, but decided that forcing him to be at every little point in all the smaller stories was just having him be there for the sake of having him be there. It's better for the cosmere if I don't force him into every story, but let him be involved in the ones where he has a legitimate reason.
Beyond that, getting on and off of Threnody is not particularly easy.