Recent entries

    Arcanum Unbounded San Francisco signing ()
    #11601 Copy

    Questioner

    What was your favorite scene to write ever, and why?

    Brandon Sanderson

    What was my favorite scene to write--

    Questioner

    The one you enjoyed writing the most.

    Brandon Sanderson

    The one I enjoyed writing the most? The one I enjoyed writing the most did not end up in the books. I was writing The Wheel of Time, and I was writing a scene where a certain character's on the slopes of Dragonmount, and I chuckled to myself and then wrote a scene where this character destroyed the world. *laughter* It was awesome. And then I wrote "The End" and I laughed. And then I took a screenshot of it . And then I deleted it, and I wrote the scene.

    Arcanum Unbounded San Francisco signing ()
    #11602 Copy

    Questioner

    So your Mistborn leatherbounds went out tonight.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes. Mistborn leatherbound is coming out.

    Questioner

    Are there any other plans? When would the next edition be coming out?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes, let me talk about these a bit. So, I love the leatherbounds that were released for The Wheel of Time, but they were very limited print-run, and they were very expensive. They were 250 bucks. And so I don't have many of those. I have the ones that I had published, but when I was a kid getting them I would just... drool over these things. When I was a college student. So I went to Tor and said "Would you do leatherbounds of my books?" and they're like "They're just so hard to distributed. Not a lot of bookstores want to carry them?" and I said "Well do you mind if I do one?" for Elantris last year. And we did a leatherbound for $100, which had-- We tried to pull out everything we could do to make something awesome. So these have 24 full-color pages, with all of the different covers from the different foreign editions around the world, some fan art we really like, new color versions of some of the maps, and stuff like that. And so we print those and we did Elantris last year and people really liked it, so we did Mistborn. The fun thing is, some bookstores told me "Yes, we want to have those. No, it's not a pain to carry them..."

    But the question is, what are we doing next. So we will do these one a year. They're a lot of effort to put together. We have to contact some twenty different illustrators and buy rights to the covers to include in it. Peter goes through and does a really detailed copy-edit, fixing typos and trying to do stuff like that, making sure that-- Like in Elantris I had said something that-- people traveled a distance that was impossible to travel in the time given, so we tweak things like that. And so it takes a while. We'll do Mistborn 2 next year, then Mistborn 3, and then we'll see where we are. And they should match very nicely on the shelf...

    Arcanum Unbounded San Francisco signing ()
    #11603 Copy

    Questioner

    I can't take credit for this, because it is a friend's question, but he has this little theory that your more quiet and reserved characters end up being super important or just interesting characters somehow and he has this theory that Dabbid from Kings is like a worldhopper that just went there and like "I'm just going to stay quiet and watch what's going on."

    Brandon Sanderson

    The question is: Is Dabbid from The Way of Kings, who you may not quite remember, he is the bridgeman who is very quiet and displays some very strong signs of PTSD, and things like this, even though he was healed. Is it-- Yeah, what's going on with him. And that is definitely a RAFO. But it's not a RAFO-- Like sometimes Read And Find Out means "I'm going to reveal it eventually", sometimes it means "I don't want to crush any fans' theories" and I won't tell you which one it is until the end of the series...

    Arcanum Unbounded San Francisco signing ()
    #11604 Copy

    Questioner

    I really enjoy the Graphic Audio versions of your novels. I really like the Way of Kings and the Words of Radiance. I'm wondering, how long after Oathbringer comes out would Graphic Audio be able to get their hands on it?

    Brandon Sanderson

    So the question is about the Graphic Audio. So for those who don't know, we do two editions in audio of most of my books. We do a straight-read edition, which is one, or two, narrators that just read the whole book and they'll do voices and things but it's a traditional audio book. The Graphic Audio instead does a slightly abridged version, where the abridgement is only taking out the he-saids and she-saids and things like this, and replacing it with a full cast to do the dialogue instead. So it's like one step toward a radio drama, or something like that. It's not fully there but they do add in a few sound effects and do the full cast audio. So they're fun sort of ways you can read the book. They're not abridged in that there are no scenes taken out, but they do cut out a word here and there.

    And usually what happens is we do the straight edition first and eventually do a Graphic Audio edition because they take longer to get the full cast together-- to make the proper abridgements and things like that. I can't-- I have no idea how long it will take them, but I can ask. I actually haven't gotten this question, because we only just started doing dual editions. We started by doing some of them Graphic Audio, some of them not, and then figuring out what fans liked. And it turns out that what fans like is having both. So then we started Mistborn and caught Mistborn up, and then are doing the Stormlight books as well. So I'm hoping we will get to the point where we can do them simultaneously in both editions, but I can't promise that that will happen.

    Arcanum Unbounded San Francisco signing ()
    #11605 Copy

    Questioner

    What does RAFO mean?

    Brandon Sanderson

    ...Okay. RAFO. RAFO-- Jason do you want to explain what RAFO is?

    Jason Denzel

    Clearly you've not read The Wheel of Time. *laughter* RAFO is an acronym that says-- that stands for Read And Find Out. It's a term that-- I don't know if he coined it but he certainly popularized it in our genre-- Robert Jordan came up with it. And really it was because at every signing, like this or anything else, there were two or three questions that he fielded-- He would even say "Please do not ask the following questions" and he would still get two or three people asking him those very questions. Does anyone know what they are? There are Wheel of Time fans here, right? "Who killed Asmodean?" and everything else. So what he would do is tell them-- he would just say "Read And Find Out" and so that, online, turned into "RAFO". And Brandon took it and-- Actually I think Maria took it to the next step and she--

    Brandon Sanderson

    Actually I asked for it.

    Jason Denzel

    Okay, so Brandon asked her to make RAFO cards, so instead of just saying it he would start handing them out. And if you actually get one of those cards-- you have to earn them-- on the back of the card it explains what the acronym means and why you received it.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah, I felt really bad saying RAFO to people, right? Like I am a-- I have the attitude that I very much want people to be happy and I don't want to tell them "No I won't answer". So instead I had them print the cards so I could at least give them something? And now fans trophy hunt for those.
    Arcanum Unbounded San Francisco signing ()
    #11606 Copy

    Questioner

    At the very front cover of the Arcanum Unbounded there is a constellation map, that has a lot of the cosmere stars on it. What point-of-view is that from?

    Brandon Sanderson

    So the question is, in Arcanum Unbounded... Yes, the cover of Arcanum Unbounded has a star chart in it, a map. And the question is, is this from a specific viewpoint, and if so, what is that viewpoint. So, yes, it is from a specific viewpoint. It's the sky as seen from-- Some of the stars are enhanced a bit-- But it's the sky as seen from a specific point of reference that Isaac came up with when I told-- gave him this assignment. He's my illustrator for a lot of the interior art of the books and he RAFO'd it when we were asked at the release party. So I'm going to RAFO it until he decides he wants to reveal it.

    Calamity Seattle signing ()
    #11607 Copy

    Questioner

    If you starred in a buddy cop movie with Pat Rothfuss, would you be the good cop or the bad cop?

    Brandon Sanderson

    If I starred in buddy cop movie with Pat Rothfuss-- If you know anything at all about us, I'm the good cop and he's definitely the bad cop. Oh yeah, oh yeah. Definitely. I mean come on. Good question though.

    Calamity Seattle signing ()
    #11610 Copy

    Questioner

    What was your favorite Mistborn character to write? Personally I hated Elend and Vin but loved Zane.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Oh wow, hated Elend and Vin and loved Zane… *stumbles over words* I'm going to stay away from you. *laughter* I'm just joking. Who's my favorite? *sighs* Picking a favorite character is almost impossible, it's who you're writing at the moment but I kind of have a weird personal connection in a weird way with Sazed so I'll say him. And it's okay if you say "Sah-zed" I say "Say-zed" but I don't say everything right, I say "Kelsi-er" too and his name is "Kelsi-ay".

    Calamity Seattle signing ()
    #11612 Copy

    Questioner

    Particularly in the Mistborn series, is there any-- Do you have a favorite emotional moment that you have written?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Do I have a favorite emotional moment that I wrote in the Mistborn series. I am an ending person, so I would say endings of various books, and endings of series in particular, are among my favorite. I'll just leave it there.

    Calamity Seattle signing ()
    #11614 Copy

    Questioner

    For the Wax and Wayne series, how do you come up with all of Wayne's little wisecracks?

    Brandon Sanderson

    How do I come up with Wayne’s wisecracks. Here's the deal, it’s kind of hard to write people who are more clever than you are, but it's one of the tricks you have to learn as a writer. The big difference is, they make it off the cuff in the moment, and you can spend like a week or two trying to find the perfect thing to say in that moment. And that's really how it does. Often the characters who are more humorous, or something, that are more-- Like Wayne's a great example, it's very natural for him how he says things, it can take me weeks to come up with a couple of lines of dialogue for Wayne. Where other things get written very quickly. My favorite Wayne-isms are when I can have him use a word that looks, when you're reading along, you just assume it's a word but if you go back you go "Wait a minute, did he actually say 'defecation of character'?" or something like that. So you don't even notice it on the first read through. The things where a copy-editor is "Oh, you used the wrong word here" those are my favorite Wayne-isms. Those take forever.

    Calamity Seattle signing ()
    #11615 Copy

    Questioner

    With all the characters that you design-- And what you just about putting a character in and spinning a story around them. Are there any that you keep on a backlog to try and mix to see if--

    Brandon Sanderson

    Oh yeah, good question. Are there any characters that I keep on the back burner that I'm like "Eventually I'll find a place for this character they haven't worked yet". Totally. What I have is this notes file, it's literally called "cool stuff that I need to use sometime" *laughter* and it's like when I see something in news or I see some-- I meet a person and I'm like "I'm going to use that someday" and it can be years before I end up sticking them in. One of the-- Let's see if I can remember, there was a cool example of this actually, from one of my book. Oh I'm trying to remember what it was that I eventually managed to stick this into a book it was years later. But it happens all the time, I'll try to think of it. When you come through the line ask me and I'll try to remember it.

    Calamity Seattle signing ()
    #11617 Copy

    Questioner

    I want to say that I really admire that your characters are people first and not gender first. And I want to ask if anyone calls you Branderson? *laughter*

    Brandon Sanderson

    She gave me a very nice compliment and asked if anyone calls me Branderson, and yes, it is starting to kind of catch on among the community. I don't know-- I don't know if it'd be my first choice but I will accept being called Branderson as opposed to-- People have called me BS since I was a kid *laughter* This is a step up.

    Calamity Seattle signing ()
    #11618 Copy

    Questioner

    So in The Stormlight Archive series--

    Brandon Sanderson

    The Stormlight Archive? How old are you? *laughter* How old are you?

    Questioner

    Nine.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Nine?! You're reading The Stormlight Archive? You are awesome! *cheers*

    Questioner

    So the character Lift, for her powers, why does she have to eat food instead of sucking in--

    Brandon Sanderson

    So why does Lift have to eat food instead of sucking in Stormlight. So Lift is a really weird one, she visited the Old Magic and asked something very strange. And the Old Magic didn't know how to treat that and answered with something equally strange. So you will eventually see what happened with Lift and things like that but suffice it to say some really weird things are going on with Lift.

    Calamity Seattle signing ()
    #11619 Copy

    Questioner

    What level of completion do you write your novels and then submit to editors?

    Brandon Sanderson

    What level of completion do I write my novels and then submit to the editors. So here is a quick look at my drafting process. Draft 1, hopefully no one ever sees. That-- I'm a momentum writer, a lot of writers are like this, where I can't stop in the middle and revise unless something is really broken. So if there's something I want to change I just keep going and try it out for the next chapter. "Oh I needed another character in here" I will just add them in and everyone will act like they've always been there. And I'll try it out for a chapter and if it works I'll keep going that way, and if it doesn't I'll cut them out and try something else in the next chapter. So first drafts can be really weird, right? Like "Am I supposed to know this person that everyone else knows? Have I forgotten who this was?" and things like that, characters just vanish, or I'll leave out the foreshadowing. Foreshadowing is really easy to put in later on, you're just like-- Stuff like this.

    Second draft is to fix all that stuff. I can sometimes send that on, but what I really like to send is third draft which is the first polish. Where I actually try for the first time to make it pretty, or at least non-cringeworthy. So that's what I send to an editor. That's what also I'll send to alpha readers, which are my writing group, my agent, my friends and family, and things like that. Once that gets back I do a bunch of revisions until it's good, and then we'll get beta readers, who are usually community beta readers… If you want to be one of those I'm not the person to convince, Peter is the person to convince. He is the executi-- editorial assistant, not executive--I've three assistants, they all have different titles--He's my editorial assistant. He's the one who picks the betas, and they do a bunch of reads and then I do a bunch of drafts based on what they say. And then it goes to like proofreads and things like that.

    Calamity Seattle signing ()
    #11620 Copy

    Questioner

    So with the depth of the novels, and the number of novels, that you create, do you have an assistant, or some sort of system--

    Brandon Sanderson

    Do I have an assistant--

    Questioner

    Well I mean--

    Brandon Sanderson

    A system to remember everything... Yes I do. What I use is a wiki. I use a personal wiki, just like Wikipedia that is called-- I use an open-source software called wikidpad... and I have someone whose job it is to read my books after I write them, go make all of those notes into the wiki with page references so when I write the next one I can look them all up in the book and things like this. They have a very fun, yet tedious, job.

    Calamity Seattle signing ()
    #11621 Copy

    Questioner

    As a writer that has written a lot, do you still struggle with certain aspects of writing, like punctuation slip-ups or--

    Brandon Sanderson

    Do I still struggle, as a writer who has written a lot, with certain things. I would say my biggest weakness as a writer is repeating words or phrases, which is a very common thing for writers to have who are not really-- There are people like Pat Rothfuss who don't have this problem because they slave over every sentence. For years. *laughter* I love you Pat, you know I love you. But for most writers that's one, and that's one that is mine. And one way I try to fight this is I try to highlight the ones I use a lot, I have my assistant watch for them and do a search and replace in Microsoft Word for the word with brackets around it, so it leaves the same word, it just brackets it, so I can really decide, do I want to use that word or did I just use it because that's the word I always use? So there's that. The other big thing as a writer is I still don't like revision. I still get-- Revision-- I want to be writing a new story not revising an old one. But fortunately this is a battle that revision won like twenty years ago. More like fifteen. But I've gotten used to how I have to do it and when a book is done, and the number of drafts it requires to really make a great book. So I do it even though, you know.

    Calamity Seattle signing ()
    #11622 Copy

    Questioner

    Do you have any ideas for characters in different series meeting each other?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Do I have any ideas for characters in different series meeting each other. Yes I do. You will see a bunch of that. And if you haven't seen the little behind the scenes Mistborn novella I did called Secret History... that involves characters from different stories meeting each other.

    Calamity Seattle signing ()
    #11624 Copy

    Questioner

    One of the things I really appreciate about your series in general is the depth of your magic systems, whether it's Investiture or-- Whatever the rules are, they're very detailed, very internally consistent. There's never anything where I can point out "Oh that contradicts something that somebody said two books ago". To what degree do you come up with--I guess--the universe before you write the novel or the--

    Brandon Sanderson

    Good question! So he's talking about my magic systems and how internally consistent they are. And the question is, do I do the worldbuilding first and then write the novel around it or do I do it the other way around. And the answer is: Yes! Which is one of those unsatisfying authorly answers. It depends on the story. For instance with the Wax and Wayne books, I already had the world built and so in that I'm building a story around a setting that already existed. With The Reckoners what happened is, I had the idea for people who gain superpowers all going evil and that concept spun me into building a story about it. And so that's more of an idea that spins a story rather than a setting.

    Sometimes I've had a character that I really want to tell a story about, like Raoden or something like this, and then I build magic to match. It happens all different ways, and really what it is is a give and a take. Once you start with a character, you start building a story around them, and then you stop and work on the magic for a while and then you go back to the character and then you go back to the magic and then you go to the setting, then you go to the plot. As you build an outline you weave all these things together, you're not just spending time on one until it's done, and then the next 'til it's done, and then go. But it's happened all different ways for me.

    Calamity Seattle signing ()
    #11625 Copy

    Questioner

    So I listen to your podcast, Writing Excuses, and you've been, this year, breaking down stories into different parts. Was Bands of Mourning an attempt, for you, to write a pulp novel?

    Brandon Sanderson

    The question is on Writing Excuses we've been breaking story down into different parts. Was Bands of Mourning an attempt to write a pulp novel? Actually all of the Wax and Wayne books are a hearkening back to classic serials and pulp novels. So yes, it was me looking at that-- I kind of pitched those books to myself as "Mistborn: the television show. The action serial" if that makes sense. Where the other ones were the Mistborn epic fantasies, these are the action serials. And I did try to kind of vary the genre, the first one is kind of more straight-up detective novel, the second one is psychological thriller, and then the third one is kind of a classic serial adventure story. So yeah, that was very intentional, it's me trying to take different tones and mash them up with different stories and see what comes out.

    Calamity Seattle signing ()
    #11626 Copy

    Questioner

    neuroatypicals

    Brandon Sanderson

    Oh, my pleasure. She says that she has Asperger's and when she read the book The Bands of Mourning, and the other ones that have Steris in them, she identified a lot with Steris. I appreciate that.

    Questioner

    Brandon Sanderson

    What research did I do, did I talk to autistic people. I have several people in my life who actually have Asperger's specifically, and they were a huge resource, as you might imagine. One of the things that I like to do, kind of a mandate I have in my fiction, is to try to get people who are heroic who have different types of psychology than we usually see in heroes. Because the more I've lived in life, the more I've realized that we all are really distinctive in our own way, and our psychology all works differently. And yet we see a lot of heroes that all kind of have the same brain chemistry, it seems. Which has always felt really weird to me. And so it's kind of one my mandates to do that.

    What research did I do? When I was in college, one of my favorite things to do was sneak into classes I wasn't signed up for, and the psychology classes were my favorite. This friend, who coincidentally was the one who wanted to be a chef, actually got a psychology major. His parents were "You should do something useful with your life." and so he got a psychology major, which he ended up going to med school. He didn't become a chef, he went to med school. He likes that too. But I would sneak into his classes and they were so useful as a writer, just listening to the different types, and to start to see personality not as-- We like to look at a lot of things as being normal or abnormal, but that's not the way it is. Everyone's personality is on this interesting spectrum and what is normal and what is abnormal is completely a matter of perspective. Where you stand on this line as opposed to-- It's like trying to make a value judgement that shouldn't really exist. And to come to see these personalities as great swathes of interesting color is what the psychology classes taught me. And so there was that and I did do some specific research for Steris and then I interviewed people as well.

    I'm glad that you picked up on it without me ever having to say what she was, and things like that. That's when I really feel like I've nailed something, when you can read something and say "Yeah that's who this person is" instead of someone outside pointing and saying "this is who this person is, who they are"

    Bands of Mourning release party ()
    #11627 Copy

    little wilson

    How many Shards are whole at the time of [Shadows of Self]?

    Brandon Sanderson

    How many Shards are whole at the time of Shadows? I'm just going to RAFO that because-- because I don't want to do math right now.

    Bystander

    More than half or less than half?

    Brandon Sanderson

    At the time of Shadows? How many Shards--

    zas678

    Or about half?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Ha! *long pause* *really high and stretched out* Half-ish?

    zas678

    Half-ish?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Half-ish. It depends.

    zas678

    Give or take?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Give or take. Like it de-- Are there now only 15? Like what's the number? ...So-- I'm not going to-- I'm not going to--

    zas678

    RAFO.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah, RAFO.

    Bands of Mourning release party ()
    #11628 Copy

    little wilson

    Is the gender of a spren bonded to a surgebinder based on sexual preferences?

    Brandon Sanderson

    It-- A lot of people are curious about this one… Not strictly but there is an influence there. But it's not strict. In other words Renarin having a male spren does not necessarily mean--

    zas678

    What some think it means?

    Brandon Sanderson

    -what some thinks it means. How about this you are more likely to bond a spren of an opposite gender-- a spren who identifies as an opposite gender, because spren don't actually have gender. But you are also more likely, statistically, to like members of the opposite gender. Those things have a correlation. Whether they have a causation is not a thing I am canonizing.

    Bands of Mourning release party ()
    #11630 Copy

    zas678

    It seems to me that members of the [LDS] church generally like Elantris a lot more than people who aren't in the church and why do you think that is?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I haven't noticed that but if that were the case… boy. I don't know that whole Raoden just pushed through it has some sort of tying your spirit to it and that's definitely-- I could see that being relevant.

    zas678

    I've been told it's Hrathen's struggle with faith.

    Brandon Sanderson

    I think they like the whole-- the whole evil missionary thing would be something thing that members of the church would be like "Ahh evil missionary?! That's cool!" *laughter* So I think that's totally possible but I hadn't noticed that specifically. I think that it is also a book that is less focused on the action and fighting. Like Mistborn is more focused on that, and so I would expect that there's that relevant issue, perhaps, as well.

    Bands of Mourning release party ()
    #11631 Copy

    Questioner

    Why don't Northern Lights ever appear in the Era One Mistborn trilogy? If Luthadel is situated at the Magnetic North Pole?

    Brandon Sanderson

    It has-- ‘Cause as I understand--has to do with-- what is it coming off the sun--

    littlewilson

    Solar flares?

    Brandon Sanderson

    That cause the aurora borealis. It's not just the magnetic-- There's physics involved which are not relevant in the Mistborn world.

    Bands of Mourning release party ()
    #11632 Copy

    zas678

    Are twins more likely to be Allomancers?

    Brandon Sanderson

    They are more likely to share--

    zas678

    --to share Allomantic attributes.

    Brandon Sanderson

    --to share Allomantic attributes.

    zas678

    Does it make a difference if they’re identical or fraternal?

    Brandon Sanderson

    It does… Yeah, it does. Fraternals are still more likely. But identical are even more likely.

    zas678

    Okay so fraternal are more likely than siblings--

    Brandon Sanderson

    Than siblings, yes.

    zas678

    And identical are more likely than--

    Brandon Sanderson

    Mmhmm.

    Bands of Mourning release party ()
    #11635 Copy

    Brandon Sanderson

    *referring to a personalization request* That is a R A F O, but you do earn a card for your RAFO... Now let me just say--

    Questioner

    I'm not asking about Nightblood, I'm asking about the shardblades.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah-- Oh, OH. You're asking-- okay. You're not asking what other shardblades made, but if somebody brought a shardblade to another pl--

    Questioner

    Like if Kaladin went to Nalthis.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Okay, his shardblade would manifest exactly-- it would do exactly the same thing.

    Bands of Mourning release party ()
    #11636 Copy

    Questioner

    The size of the metal, does it matter to transfer Allomancy or can it be really really tiny or really really big?

    Brandon Sanderson

    For Allomancy? Or what, a bead of lerasium? Is that what you're talking about?

    Questioner

    Yeah, when you're transferring the powers, like to make someone a Mistborn...

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah it has to be-- The size of it is going to influence how strong a Mistborn you are.

    Questioner

    It couldn't be a sliver.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah-- Well it could, you'd just be really weak as a Mistborn.

    Bands of Mourning release party ()
    #11637 Copy

    Questioner

    Is it possible to Compound your Spiritual Connection to a location on a planet while storing your Spiritual Connection to all other locations on the planet to kind of pull yourself through the Spiritual Realm to that location?

    Brandon Sanderson

    That's not how that would work. Parts of what you say are possible, but the teleportation aspect wouldn't actually do anything.

    Questioner

    Was Hoid trying to Compound his Spiritual location in the scene you added in the 10th Anniversary [Elantris]? Was he trying to Compound Connection to that location to try to become Elantrian?  

    Brandon Sanderson

    ...So at that point chronologically he was not an Allomancer.

    Bands of Mourning release party ()
    #11638 Copy

    Questioner

    *referring to his personalization request* Just that one. Wayne is a wise man, wrapped up inside of a sad man, wrapped up inside of a silly man.

    Brandon Sanderson

    He likes a hat to be nice and stiff. To mean something. And a fedora is going to be too weak for him. Too... too floppy. It's not a hat you have to commit to, in Wayne's opinion.

    Bands of Mourning release party ()
    #11640 Copy

    Questioner

    Given equal footing with weapons, who would win in a fight: Batman or Kaladin?

    Brandon Sanderson

    ...Batman or Kaladin?

    Questioner

    Given that they have equal weapons.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Does Kaladin have Stormlight?

    Questioner

    Only if Batman gets Stormlight too.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Batman can't use Stormlight.

    Questioner

    Then Kal-- Equal footing. So if Kaladin gets to use Stormlight, so does Batman.

    Brandon Sanderson

    But he can't use it. See this fight doesn't make sense, because it's like-- You know-- Well, I mean, if you give Batman Stormlight does it make any sense? If you give a bunch of Batarangs to Kaladin, he's like "What do I do with these?" I don't know. Does Batman have time to prepare? Because if Batman has time to prepare... If Batman has time to prepare then he's in good shape.

    Questioner

    Maybe Batman just gets Shard-Batarangs and nothing else.

    Brandon Sanderson

    If he meets Kaladin on the field of battle, Kaladin's a soldier and Batman's not. Batman's not going to do well in a war.

    Questioner

    Yeah-- But if Kaladin doesn't have any powers, Batman has extensive hand-to-hand training.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes, yes he does.

    Bands of Mourning release party ()
    #11644 Copy

    Questioner

    We've got Kaladin's name meaning, do we have Shallan's?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Shallan is-- Her name comes from Shalash, the herald, so it's kind of like naming somebody Christian in a lot of ways. Or naming someone Michael, though Michael has a meaning. Shalash does too but it's so old-- Like-- Yes, it will have a meaning but really what you need to know is "she is named after the Herald Shalash", right? But I'm sure we can dig out what the meaning is because it does have a meaning... I mean Kaladin's has a meaning even though he's named after Kalak.

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    Questioner

    I do have one question that I have no idea if you'll answer. Aronack?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes. Wow, you're going way back.

    Questioner

    Well it gets worse, I noticed the name both in Dragonsteel [Prime] and in some chapters from Liar of Partinel--

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes.

    Questioner

    Was that a cannibalization? Or is that two separate appearances?

    Brandon Sanderson

    So Liar of Partinel was a re-envisioning of... Dragonsteel and so there were certain things I was changing but that's not one of them. That's the same person.

    Questioner

    So was that story arc just-- Okay it's just the same thing?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah.

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    Questioner

    How has the process of portraying women changed from Elantris to the more recent books?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Portraying women? A couple of things. I would say the primary one is just getting better at characterization all around. And the other one has been kind of this-- *sighs* struggle to figure out how to make every female character's conflict be about her role-- Not just her relationships, that one's not as big a deal because-- I mean if you look at the male characters, they all have relationship issues too, right? But it's more like fighting against-- Like if every woman is fighting against society's expectations of her that becomes a cliche very quickly and there are plenty of people, of both genders who are fighting against society's expectations but people of both genders are like "This is my society, I'm part of this" it's not fighting against it it's "finding my place". It's very difficult though when you are writing characters in states of conflict. So, I don't know.

    Questioner

    I read Shadows of Self and Elantris back-to-back, and that was really interesting to see the differences between the first published and most recent published.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Right, yeah. Those books will have some very big differences.

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    Questioner

    How did people-- So apparently Zahel... who is teaching Kaladin shardblade stuff... He's Warbreaker?

    Brandon Sanderson

    He is Warbreaker.

    Questioner

    How did people figure that out?

    Brandon Sanderson

    The color metaphors. He displays BioChromatic Breath. It's not that great because I didn't put a lot of color metaphors into the book, even though I wish I had, I've gotten better about adding flavor to books. But really he notices when Kaladin is coming to knock on his door before Kaladin gets there. That's one of the big clues that people got.

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    Questioner

    Are you considering doing and more digital versions with the annotations kind of baked in, similar to Warbreaker?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I'd have to write more annotations for it to really be relevant and the time do that has just vanished on me. So maybe we'll get the original Mistborn trilogy done that way. But I'm less certain I will ever get any more annotations written.

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    Seonid

    I noticed that you-- Was that a retcon on the way iron Feruchemy works?

    Brandon Sanderson

    What do you mean?

    Seonid

    There's a researcher who talks to Wax, asking him about whether he's changing his mass of whether he's changing whether the planet perceives him-- affecting his gravity.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Right. It's more a re-- Defining something I didn't pin down strongly enough. I wouldn't call it a retcon because it's something that nobody really did until Wax, really, in the series. The only one really capable of doing that in the original trilogy would have been the Lord Ruler, maybe some of the Inquisitors, but we don't have viewpoints from them. So I wouldn't call it a retcon I would just say it’s something that didn't come up in the first series that now I have to make sure is clear.

    Seonid

    So is it Higgs field stuff going on?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah. Mmhmm.

    Seonid

    My idea was right.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Mmhmm.