Recent entries

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11552 Copy

    Questioner

    The thing that struck me is the concept of Stormlight *audio obscured* stand up *audio obscured* more powerful *audio obscured* stand up to it.

    Brandon Sanderson

    If you stand up to it?

    Questioner

    *audio obscured*

    Brandon Sanderson

    There is definitely a [view?] with the Parshendi, you need to go in and stand up to get what happens, yes.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11554 Copy

    Questioner

    Why do you do interludes? What possessed you to go that direction instead of just including it as another chapter?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I felt that one of the foibles of the large series epic fantasy genre is the tendency of authors to go afield down paths of side characters. It happened to Robert Jordan, it happened to George R.R. Martin. And so reading theirs I hoped to learn from them and say "I'm going to do this thing that gives me a pressure valve to tell these stories that are outside the main line but I'm not going to give myself enough room that I can just turn this into a full character, yet." That allows me to do goofy stuff around the world but have a form for it built into the book.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11555 Copy

    Questioner

    I was wondering when you first thought to put Nightblood in Words of Radiance?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Nightblood in Words of Radiance happened because... So I wrote the original draft of Way of Kings in 2002 and Vasher was Kaladin's swordmaster and I thought "This guy has a really interesting past, he's not natively from Roshar". So I went and wrote his backstory and that became the book Warbreaker. So he predates-- And then I came back and I re-wrote Way of Kings and I cut him out of it to save him for the later books. So when did I first think of it? Well 2003 probably? Was where that was happening.

    Questioner

    Nightblood was our apartment's collective favorite character.

    Brandon Sanderson

    I have some other quote-unquote cons going on the fans so to speak that are going to be very cool when they happen.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11556 Copy

    Questioner

    What was the hardest part of finishing The Wheel of Time?

    Brandon Sanderson

    The hardest part, I would say, was the battle logistics.

    Questioner

    So A Memory of Light took a while?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah, A Memory of Light is all battle logistics, it was really hard. And the second half was really tough to get that all right. And just to work with the assistants and things like that.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11557 Copy

    Questioner

    I noticed in a lot of your cosmere books, like for example Elantris or Mistborn, they have something to do with some sort of subject matter or school or something. For example the Steelpush and Ironpulling in Mistborn is based on physics.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes.

    Questioner

    If you push too hard it's based on...

    Brandon Sanderson

    Vector physics, yes.

    Questioner

    And then like Warbreaker is just like math, adding Breaths together. Did you intend that?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Not necessarily. I read a lot and I like science and I like philosophy and I like and things like this. And those spark most of my ideas. So yes in a term but I'm not like "Let's do this subject".

    I would say Warbreaker, the big part of Warbreaker is the idea of sympathetic magic. Which is the idea that like affects like, which is a very common type of magic throughout all cultures on the planet, on our planet. When people believe in magic they believe in sympathetic magic. A voodoo doll is sympathetic magic. And that's where the idea came from.

    Questioner

    So in Elantris, which is different and then--

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah that's basically fantasy programming, is where that one came from.

    Questioner

    And then there is The Stormlight Archive, which basically violates all the laws of physics by just saying everything comes from spren.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Well no they still have arguments on that, are spren attracted to these things or do they cause them.

    Questioner

    Yeah that's kind of weird...

    Brandon Sanderson

    Stormlight Archive was based on the fundamental forces, if you want go read on physics google fundamental forces.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11558 Copy

    Questioner

    I heard earlier, through people I know, that Syl will eventually develop her memories from before the Recreance. Does that mean any spren that are alive currently have been alive for that long as well? Or are they--

    Brandon Sanderson

    Not necessarily. Some spren-- The thing about spren is that when does the energy become conscious? So yes they will have all existed before but at what point is consciousness attained. That's kind of their birth. It happens much more rarely than it does on the other-- on the Physical Realm, like regular people and things like that. But there can totally have been spren who have been born since then. And they would count most of the spren that you see as not being alive, well not being born. Not conscious. What's the word for the difference between humans and animals, it's not just sentience, there's another word. Starts with a C. Sapient, you're right it starts with an S.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11559 Copy

    Questioner

    How has the fantasy publishing industry changed with the global popularity of *audio obscured*

    Brandon Sanderson

    It has changed, but really what we're seeing is what happened in the States in the seventies, the States and the UK following Tolkien, is now happening in a lot of countries that it hadn't happened in before. Which is cool. But it's not just Game of Thrones, since the Lord of the Rings movies, it's Harry Potter. The last ten years are wakening fantasy. See the thing about fantasy is we don't find fantasy doing well in developing countries. It's kind of the thing where if you are going to be reading about knights and wizards, you are not going to be somebody who's struggling for your bread each day. You know what I mean?

    Questioner

    People in developing countries read more aspirational--

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah. So you see for instance as countries transition out of that you see a lot of fantasy and things. For instance it happened in Japan in the seventies. It happened in the US even earlier. It's happening now in Brazil and Taiwan. Those are two of the places where it is just appearing. India, it's just starting in India. Mainland China hasn't quite caught on yet but there's hints that it is going to happen. But it has been in Europe for quite a while.

    Questioner

    So do you have translations of your books in Portuguese?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah, I'm in 26 languages, or something like that. But you can kind of use that as a map for the places that read-- you know. Like the only South American country is Brazil, I don't have any other distribution in South America. Not a single country in Africa, except South Africa, the UK editions. None of those. Japan, China, Korea? Yes. Europe? Almost everybody in Europe.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11565 Copy

    Questioner

    When Syl says in The Way of Kings that she had been with other men who have killed. Is she-- Why is she able to say that?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Syl's memories, the longer she's bonded the more access to them she has, from times before. She knows some of these things. She'll never get it all back.

    Questioner

    From the time before Kaladin.

    Brandon Sanderson

    From before Kaladin, from before the Recreance, yes.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11566 Copy

    Questioner (paraphrased)

    I love Writing Excuses and I'm actually going on the Retreat this year. I think the cruise is a good idea.

    Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

    See Mary did the Steampunk cruise, and she just kind of asked "Wait a minute, what are people paying for this?" and it was less than we had to charge them for the retreat at her house, because of all the food and stuff we had to do. We were like "Wait a minute, you can do this for the same price or less? Why are we doing this at her house?"

    Questioner (paraphrased)

    Cruises are a blast.

    Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

    I've been on several and I've enjoyed everyone of them.

    Questioner (paraphrased)

    The Alaska cruise has been one of the best experiences of my life. So it's going to be good for writing and inspiration.

    Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

    My cruise story is the Taravangian interlude [in Words of Radiance] was written on a cruise with my family. I sat on the little balcony to our room typing while everyone else went off and did stuff where there were people. And I was by myself and it was great.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11567 Copy

    Questioner

    I am very convinced that Adolin, with the events that happen with the last book. You're sending him down a like a dark path. Is he possibly going to be a-- *questioningly* Antagonist? Protagonist?-- A bad, eventually? Or is he--

    Brandon Sanderson

    I'm going to say this, the things that Adolin did do not contradict some of the moralities on Roshar, in fact they follow them directly. Some of the moralities on our planet would say what he did is the right thing to do. I think treating it as a "dark path" is too reductionist to say. There are people who would seriously argue, and they would have a good argument, that what Dalinar was doing by leaving Sadeas around was a good idea. And then there are other people who would say "You know what Sadeas did was a challenge and it was rightly then responded to" and then there are people who would say it was absolutely immoral. So, it depends on your philosophy.

    What would Honor say? Well, Honor's dead, so-- *lots of laughter* You know Honor would not have been behind that action, but Honor's dead.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11568 Copy

    Questioner

    My question has to do with the color of Shallan's eyes currently, because we've noticed over the books that Kaladin's eyes, as he's continued to use his Surge, changed to lighter and lighter blue. Whereas one could argue that Shallan is farther in her Ideals than Kaladin is, yet her eyes have not changed at all.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Right, 'cause they were already light.

    Questioner

    'Cause they were already light? So it only affects lightness or darkness in the eyes, not necessarily any other color?

    Brandon Sanderson

    It's not like it is-- It's not like it's saying "Light minus 50%".

    Questioner

    It's not like Honor is blue and--

    Brandon Sanderson

    No. It is not. It is just kind of the way that the changes the Stormlight is making the body and certain people are already descended from people who had repeated, over time, changes by the body which stopped physically... That's not to say that all lighteyes that's where they came from. There are some that are natural mutations.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11569 Copy

    Questioner

    You said in an earlier interview that the glittery things in Elantris...

    Brandon Sanderson

    Oh, seons.

    Questioner

    I believe that you said that the seons on Roshar would bond similarly--

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes

    Questioner

    Would that work in the opposite direction?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Meaning what? Someone from Roshar could they bond a seon? Oh, would spren bond-- Yes that could happen.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11572 Copy

    Kurkistan

    So is that the same thing with Commands, are there like ideals that are Commands?

    Brandon Sanderson

    This is more of a-- For you to interface with the magic, you need to be able to comprehend it. And so forming a Command-- The same thing happens in Elantris, you know they don't accidentally draw runes, right? The intention is part of interfacing with the magic. So it's like your mind reaching into the Spiritual Realm and you have to like conceive something.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11573 Copy

    Kurkistan

    So, could you give us some examples of how the ideals that spren represent work in other magic systems, like we have Forging where you get plausibility, or Returned how they're beautiful or any other systems?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Okay, one more time on that.

    Kurkistan

    Okay, so you know the ideals the spren are manifestations--

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes.

    Kurkistan

    How-- Do those have impacts on other magic systems?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes, yes, in the same way the Returned- that's the exact same system at work there.

    Kurkistan

    Is it the same reason why the Lord Ruler has to die of old age, and why you can't heal yourself into being an octopus or something?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Um... Yes, that is all connected in the exact same way.

    Kurkistan

    Okay, so it's all like these highfalutin Spiritual ideals?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes.

    Kurkistan

    And are there like, median Cognitive ideals that gradually kind of influence these, or--

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah, they transcend between the three. I mean the original concept for the Three Realms is Platonic philosophy.

    Kurkistan

    So it goes up *makes absurd reverse-waterfall hand gesture*

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah, it goes up and it comes back down. A lot of the Cognitive is-- So like, the Cognitive has a bigger effect on how you can heal and things like that. Does that make sense?

    Kurkistan

    Yeah.

    Brandon Sanderson

    But the power to heal is a actually a Spiritual thing.

    Kurkistan

    So it's like the Spiritual says "I want to be like this" and the Cognitive is like "Okay I'll try really hard to be like that, but I have a limit."

    Brandon Sanderson

    Right. Right. Filtered through how you see yourself, yeah.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11574 Copy

    Questioner

    When you finish a book how do you celebrate?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I usually, unless I have a really tight deadline, I pick a video game and I play the video game. Usually once a year I'll do that and I'll take like two weeks off and just play through a game.

    Questioner

    I like that idea. I'm trying to finish up my master's thesis and deciding what I can do when I've finished it.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Oh okay, I don't know if you can take two weeks off. I can.

    Questioner

    Well I've already told my boss I'm going to take three weeks off. But I'll probably go somewhere.

    Brandon Sanderson

    See traveling, I travel so much for work that I don't really want to go anywhere. I just want to stay home where I don't have to do anything. I played Skyrim, I broke it out over the holidays. I hadn't ever played that one. That's my latest.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11575 Copy

    Questioner

    So are the rumors true are you [and Pat Rothfuss] going to write a book together?

    Brandon Sanderson

    No, but every time we are on a panel we are like "AH we should write a book together." It's highly unlikely, that we would ever do anything together. Just because our writing styles are so different. Pat's writing process-- It's not so much style it's the writing process-- is so different. But you can hold out hope. Perhaps some day I will have a pitch for Pat or something like that. But I would hate to inconvenience his fans by distracting him with something else.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11577 Copy

    Questioner

    So I'm in the middle of Hero of Ages, and I'm noticing there are constant parallels between Vin and the Hero of Ages and Elend and the Lord Ruler?

    Brandon Sanderson

    That's done intentionally.

    Questioner

    Is it going to hurt?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Is the ending going to hurt? The ending is the right ending. It's going to be satisfying, but it also might hurt.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11578 Copy

    Questioner

    Did I read that they were going to make a movie out of Mistborn?

    Brandon Sanderson

    The question is-- Somebody bought the rights. The question is whether they are actually going to use them for anything, and that I can't say. I really like the people who have them.

    Questioner

    Would you be involved in it if--

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes. I would be involved.

    Questioner

    How much?

    Brandon Sanderson

    The contracts say I have to be able to go to the set at any time.

    Questioner

    You wouldn't be helping writing the screenplay?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Oh I don't write screenplays, it's a different skill. I think you do an expert do what an expert does. But so far they have sent me all of the stuff they've done and I've given feedback and they've taken it. It's a good sign.

    Questioner

    In your opinion what percent--

    Brandon Sanderson

    How close?

    Questioner

    --that they are going to start it.

    Brandon Sanderson

    15?

    Questioner

    That small?

    Brandon Sanderson

    That's high. I think that's very high for this business. My agent says one out of 30 gets made.

    Questioner

    So what's the criteria they would--

    Brandon Sanderson

    Investors, if there are people who are willing to give us a 100 million dollars... So if you happen to know anyone willing to sink a 100 million dollars into a film we could do it tomorrow.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11579 Copy

    Questioner

    I'm 66 in a couple months and I want to make sure I live long enough to read the whole Stormlight--

    Brandon Sanderson

    Alright.

    Questioner

    Am I going to?

    Brandon Sanderson

    You'll definitely make it through the first five. The thing about it is I'll break in the middle, but the first five come to a natural climax, and then there's an in-world break of 15 years. Not 15 years away for us but an in-world break. And then I'll do another trilogy. I think you'll make it through them all. I think you'll easily make it, you look very hale and healthy.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11580 Copy

    Argent

    Can a Returned like Lightsong go to Roshar and form a bond with a spren?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Investiture interferes with other Investiture.

    Argent

    And they have a lot of it.

    Brandon Sanderson

    And they have a lot of it. That is not-- It's not completely-- For instance you can Push on Invested metal, but it's hard. There's a resistance, the more Invested the harder-- So a bond for instance-- forming a bond-- It's, yeah-- It can be done--

    I mean Sazed took two of the powers up, right? But I kind of imagine what he did as a nuclear reaction. Where breaking an atom is hard, unless you are in the middle of a sun. And he was in the middle of the sun. At that point--

    Argent

    There was a lot of stuff going on around him that facilitated.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes, definitely. But when you've got that much power you'll-- In other words if there is a lot of power going around, these things become easier.

    Argent

    So, possible but difficult is--

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11582 Copy

    Argent

    Does Lift turn food into Investiture directly or is it similar to the metals on--

    Brandon Sanderson

    Similar to the metals.

    Argent

    So like a gate?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes.

    Argent

    Okay, that's good to know.

    Brandon Sanderson

    She can metabolize-- She can draw-- It's not actually the food, it's-- It's not like the metals, not exactly. It's not-- What she can do is she can metabolize into Investiture instead of sugar. Does that make sense?

    Argent

    Yeah.

    Brandon Sanderson

    We metabolize food into sugar. She can metabolize it into Investiture. Does that make sense?

    Argent

    That makes a lot of sense. So if she eats--

    Brandon Sanderson

    She's got to have a blood sugar spike.

    Argent

    So if she eats like a cake it will give her more Investiture--

    Brandon Sanderson

    Faster. It will give her faster.

    Argent

    Whereas if she eats a vegetable...

    Brandon Sanderson

    Vegetable... More calories is going to equal more. But the better comparison would be a sausage and bread. Because bread is a fast blood sugar spike and the sausage is not. And that's how I'm working in my head. It's kind of a magical version of a blood sugar spike and I have it happen to her faster than it could happen. Like normally you eat a piece of bread and your blood sugar spikes in a half hour, it's going to go faster for Lift.

    Argent

    Hers is like five minutes.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Hers is like five minutes, but a sausage would be slower.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11585 Copy

    Argent

    Renarin, his visions of the future are they connected to one of his Surges? Both of them? Are they a side-effect of his order?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Umm...

    Argent

    Like I can kind of fit in the two of them...

    Brandon Sanderson

    Alright, how much of a spoiler do you want on this?

    Argent

    All of it.

    Brandon Sanderson

    *Incredulously* Really?

    Argent

    Is that even a question for me?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Do you want to know something secret that you then can't post?

    Argent

    *sighs* How-- Is it something that is going to come up in Book 3--

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes.

    Argent

    --or later.

    Brandon Sanderson

    It comes up in Book 3.

    Argent

    I'll bear the burden.

    Brandon Sanderson

    You'll bear the burden meaning I can tell you?

    Argent

    I'm going to pause this actually... *Audio paused*

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11586 Copy

    Argent

    Awakening and Surgebinding, Stormlight and Breath seem really similar in some aspects--

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes.

    Argent

    --except Breaths seem to stick to things better--

    Brandon Sanderson

    They do.

    Argent

    --than Stormlight. So when you are holding the Breath it doesn't expire when you put it in something it doesn't go away. Can you tell me something about why that's happening?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Part of this is kind of inherent to the Shard and the power it's coming from. I mean the power of Endowment is just going to stick, that's part of the nature of its magic. Does that make sense? But it also kind of has to do with how the ecosystems are working. For instance the Stormlight is essential to the ecosystem of Roshar, it needs to be expended, it needs to get out and-- It's like evaporation, does that make sense?

    Argent

    Recycling? Not the recycling but the cycle of--

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah, yeah like the cycle of water. And so just part of the way the nature of it works, it has to get out, it has to leak out, it has to run out. I mean it leaks even from spheres, right?

    Argent

    And when you lash things it's temporary--

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yep. And even though Szeth says that he thought Voidbringers could hold it they can't. Like it is just not the way that it works.

    Argent

    Can they just hold it better?

    Brandon Sanderson

    They can hold it better. It's not permanent. Now there are things that can do it permanently but--

    Argent

    Like the black sphere for example?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Well we are not going to... The black sphere is something different. You guys have guessed what the black sphere is, right?

    Argent

    Well we have some ideas. I support that it holds an Unmade. Am I wrong?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I'm not going to answer that.

    Argent

    But you said--

    Brandon Sanderson

    I'm just curious what the theories are. Book 3 the black sphere is-- Everyone who reads the books will know what the black sphere is by the end of Book 3.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11587 Copy

    Questioner

    Do you set out to write a specific-- like a teen book or an adult book? Or are they just--

    Brandon Sanderson

    I usually do set out these days. Originally I was not as cognizant of it, but I do think keeping audience in mind is an important attribute of writing. The thing is when you are doing a teen book it's not about writing down it's about dealing with issues, like it's the type of conflicts that really make something a teen book in my opinion. And those conflicts can transcend into adult books but-- I don't know it's just there's a feel for it.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11588 Copy

    Questioner

    I really like your idea with the whole Mistborn series, taking it further in history and we are both PhD physicists.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Oh sweet.

    Questioner

    I always think about that and I was wondering if you were worried about going that sci-fi fantasy route? Like for instance--

    Brandon Sanderson

    I'm not worried about it, I'm just excited... In my mind all of my books are sci-fi as well as fantasy because I'm making weird new branches of physics and trying to adhere to as many of the laws as I can.

    Questioner

    Yeah that's one of things I love about how well thought out the magic systems are.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Like I-- You are actually not the first physicists to come through another one came through earlier tonight and talking about the quantum mechanics that are in The Way of King.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11589 Copy

    Questioner

    At the end of Firefight when it says that if you overcome your fears that the corruption kind of ceases to exist. Does that mean an Epic's weakness is resolved also?

    Brandon Sanderson

    That is a question for the sequel.

    Questioner

    So would that imply that maybe David has a power but he doesn't know it because he overcame the water fear?

    Brandon Sanderson

    That's entirely possible... You're asking good questions.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11590 Copy

    Questioner

    Is there any possibility of the novellas being released in like a bound--

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah, we will eventually do-- Tor really wants to do a collection of all the cosmere novellas. So like... *Brandon stumbles over the words* Shadows for Silence, The Emperor's Soul, Sixth of the Dusk. But I was trying to say Shadows for Silence but I almost said Shadows of Self, that's going to be a problem for me going forward, using "shadows" in two. But all of those in one collection is what we're probably going to see.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11591 Copy

    Questioner

    You are releasing a graphic novel version of White Sand, which one is going to be canon to the Cosmere, the graphic novel or the novel you originally wrote?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Oh definitely the graphic novel. The book I originally wrote has its problems, and I never released it. The books don't become canon until I release them. This will be the canon release of White Sand. I don't think-- If the graphic novel does well we are not going to write novels, I'm going to do the second one as a graphic novel original. That's just how we are going to do it-- is my plan right now. There are things when we went back to it that we tweaked, for instance Hoid's appearance in the original novel was only a reference. He was mentioned by, what did I end up calling him, Eis? Ais, I had both names for a while, it was only a reference to one of his old cases, that's his only appearance. And we're like "Ehh people are going to expect more now". So we are writing in a better appearance for him. Stuff like that, I feel Khriss' character needs better development than the novel had, so we are working on that. Stuff, you know. Things you would do in a major revision.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11592 Copy

    Questioner

    So a lot of your books are very cinematic in nature and lend themselves very well to other forms of media and I was wondering if you had to choose what would you do-- video games...

    Brandon Sanderson

    I would want to do all of those.

    Questioner

    All of the things?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes, I would love to do a big cross-media sort of deal. Whatever I can get away with, right? So we're doing a White Sand comic book right now, you probably know about that. White Sand, my unpublished novel, we're doing a graphic novel of that. I'm working hard to get the movies made, I will do anything I can get made. Just because I love storytelling in all its different weird varieties.

    Questioner

    There's the Mistborn dice game, do you know of anything for The Stormlight Archive? If they're ever going to do something with that?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I think the thing we are going to do with Stormlight Archive-- We're going to try a chasm assault board game. Where you put together chasms and bridges and things like that. That's what we think would work really well. We have a developer-- well game designer who wants to do one of those so we're going to work with them and try to get it made.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11593 Copy

    Questioner

    How did you sort of develop and write the character of Vin? 'Cause her upbringing is so different from anything we-- that I have experienced and I'm guessing you had a similar experience. So did you have a model or somebody you could talk to?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I-- Not really. Now I did have two sisters, which helped, but my sisters were not raised in such a manner. It is more just trying out personalities, like I talked about in my speech until I got one that worked. Lots of practice if you want to be a good writer, lots and lots of practice. Try writing people very different from yourself and try to get them right. Give it to people and have them see if anything "Yes this feels right" and things like that. Just do lots of practice.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11595 Copy

    Questioner

    Where did you come up with the idea for Allomancy?

    Brandon Sanderson

    It's a combination of several things. One is I started with wanting a group of powers that would complement a gang of thieves. So I designed the powers to work within the roles of a thieving crew. The burning metals came from reading about biology and metabolism and it felt very natural to me because that's how we get our energy as human beings. The whole connection of the metals and the visualization stuff came from mixing the periodic table of the elements with alchemy. All of those things kind of spun together to make it.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11596 Copy

    Questioner

    Assuming that it's possible-- There are alternate Physical Realms, is Shadesmar common between them?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes... They don't always call it Shadesmar.

    Questioner

    Sure, but there is one Cognitive?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes. There's one Physical too if you think about it.

    Questioner

    Well... Between the books...

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah but there's one Physical-- There's one universe, it's all the Physical Realm, just like there is one Cognitive Realm.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11599 Copy

    Questioner

    Was Vin's mother under Hemalurgic influence?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Vin's mother was under influence of Ruin.

    Footnoe

    The epigraphs from The Hero of Ages say this: "The point, however, is that people with unstable personalities were more susceptible to Ruin's influence, even if they didn't have a spike in them. That, indeed, is likely how Zane got his spike." In the annotations Brandon confirms that the same applies to Vin's mother.

    Firefight Chicago signing ()
    #11600 Copy

    Questioner

    In, I believe it was, Well of Ascension, when Hoid-- Vin was going to talk to Hoid and get information but she sensed something.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes, she did.

    Questioner

    Can you reveal anything about that.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Nope!

    Questioner

    Okay.

    Brandon Sanderson

    But you can have a RAFO card... Do you have a theory?

    Questioner

    No, I don't.

    Kurkistan

    Spidey-sense.

    Brandon Sanderson

    The clues are all there. They're very obscure.

    Argent/Kurkistan

    *theorize*

    Brandon Sanderson

    *mock-annoyed* Stop theorizing! I shouldn't have said anything.