Recent entries

    Children of the Nameless Reddit AMA ()
    #1401 Copy

    drostandfound

    It is mentioned that the Entity is the compressed power of a destroyed plane. How does this happen? Why is it sentient? Why is one in a puddle on Innistrad? Are they related to the planar souls from M15?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Most of this will have to be revealed at a later date, but what I can say is that yes, M15 was the inspiration--and the creation of these entities happened through some very special circumstances.

    Children of the Nameless Reddit AMA ()
    #1402 Copy

    wackyHair

    How did writing this differ from writing the Infinity Blade novellas?

    Brandon Sanderson

    The IB novellas were interesting in that I was specifically looking to explain game mechanics with a narrative, something that the Wizards people didn't want me to do. (That said, I slipped a little in here and there, such as Davriel "flashing back" many of his spells, using them again and again.)

    I'd say that here, the biggest difference was knowing of an existing lore and mythos that I wanted to weave my story into, rather than creating it wholesale from the game. (Which is what I did with IB.)

    Children of the Nameless Reddit AMA ()
    #1403 Copy

    carnivorouspickle

    If you hadn't had the opportunity to write for MtG, would any of these characters have made it in one form or another into one of your other books, or would they only fit in this setting? If they would have made it into a different story, which one?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I've wanted to do this story for a number of years, and it was inspired by me asking myself (after my first visit to WoTC a number of years back) what I would do if I were to write a story for them.

    I didn't seriously consider doing this in another setting, since the concept of demons and contracts isn't really a Cosmere one--and the first ideas were for Davriel and Miss Highwater. That said, spren bonds have some slight similarities, so it's not impossible.

    Children of the Nameless Reddit AMA ()
    #1404 Copy

    Rutherfox

    Did you consider other planes for the story, or was Innistrad your go-to?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Since this story had been brewing for years as inspired by Innistrad, I didn't really consider others. I'd say that if I hadn't done Innistrad, I might have done an old-school story about one of the legends from Legends (which is the first MTG expansion I ever bought) that doesn't yet have a story.

    Children of the Nameless Reddit AMA ()
    #1406 Copy

    wiresegal

    Tacenda seemed to Planeswalk at the end. Did she, or did she just "ascend" within Innistrad? Was she an unsparked planeswalker before she accepted the Entity? If she wasn't, did the Entity give her a Spark, similar to how Slobad was grafted one? And if that's not it, the third possibility... is the Entity native to the Blind Eternities, like the Eldrazi?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I will give you both the canon and Brandon head canon.

    Canon is: ambiguous on all counts. It's not confirmed that Tacenda planeswalked at the end, or whether she (or Davriel) had sparks of their own--or if their planewalking powers are granted by the Entities. I can say, in canon, that the Entities are not native to the Blind Eternities--they are the souls of ancient, powerful planes that were destroyed, and their power harvested.

    The Soul of planes sequence from m15 were their inspiration, though something special happened with these specific planes. I can't confirm or deny how many of them there were, but at least two.

    Now, the Brandon Head Canon. (See my post at the top of this thread for an explanation.)

    In my discussions with Wizards, they gave me leave to create one planeswalker--but in the course of the story, I decided to have Tacenda spark as well. This wasn't done with canon permission from Wizards, and I promised them that I'd leave it ambiguous in case they didn't want to have to deal with me playing loose and free with creating planeswalkers.

    I personally imagine that the entities are providing the sparks for both Davriel and Tacenda. Davriel THINKS it's his own spark, and it ignited when he saw the true nature of the multiverse--and this is, right now, the canon answer. But I personally like the idea that one of the reasons these Entities are important is because they provide planeswalking ability to whoever holds them.

    That has too much lore implication for me to canonize, however--and I didn't push Wizards to do so. (I also didn't ask them to make Tacenda a planeswalker; I simply wrote the story, and left them the option of using her in the future.) So take this part all with a grain of salt.

    Children of the Nameless Reddit AMA ()
    #1408 Copy

    Brandon Sanderson

    Before we start, I wanted to say something about continuity and canon. I don't represent Wizards of the Coast, obviously. This was a very fun project, and I had a lot of freedom in developing Davriel, Tacenda, and the lore of the Approaches. However, I can't state or make official Magic canon, beyond the extent of what is in the text of the story.

    So, when I answer these questions, I'll often have a couple of different terms. If I mention Official Canon, this is (by my understanding) the current canon of the Magic storyline--as explained to me by the local in-house experts. I could be wrong on this sort of thing, but I'll try to pass along my understanding of what the canon answer is in relationship to this story. (For example, I was assured it was okay to have female demons in my story, despite it not being something that Wizards has done very much in the past.)

    I'll relate my own Head Canon on other items--things that I haven't cleared with Wizards. This should be taken as what I was going for, and can work for your understanding of the story, but it shouldn't be taken as gospel--and it could very well be contradicted by future decisions by the lore team. They take their continuity very seriously, and I am not up-to-date on everything they're doing with the stories of the other characters. I was pretty focused on my little corner of the multiverse.

    In other places, I'll talk about decisions I made (or didn't make) in relation to the story--if I am talking about the process, you shouldn't infer too much from decisions I didn't make. I did a lot of this work before talking to the lore team about larger continuity, so things I considered (and discarded) before the story was finished shouldn't be taken as hints for the larger story. To be honest, I didn't know much about it at that stage anyway.

    Children of the Nameless Reddit AMA ()
    #1409 Copy

    DataLoreHD

    When can we expect all your non-Cosmere novellas be collected into one anthology book?

    Brandon Sanderson

    We are quietly getting everything ready for the non-cosmere collection, just in case. The thing that would make us pull the trigger early would be if Snapshot actually gets greenlit for a film at MGM--though I don't know how close we are to that. We want want to be ready just in case.

    I feel like it needs one more story or two before publishing it otherwise, though, so I'd expect a little wait.

    Glamdring804

    I remember hearing a while ago that there was a non-Cosmere collection in the works. I too would like to know if this is still a thing, before I go and buy each novella or short story individually.

    Brandon Sanderson

    It WILL happen, so you might want to wait--but the release of the movie (if it happens) for Snapshot will influence timing. I wouldn't expect it in 2019, if it does happen. 2020 would be much more likely.

    Skyward Houston signing ()
    #1412 Copy

    Questioner

    Lopen's arm. In Stormlight, you cannot regrow if your brain-- your soul has accepted the change?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Perception is very important to this, yes.

    Questioner

    So is he just crazy enough to believe that he still had an arm?

    Brandon Sanderson

    No, it's more like, he never saw himself as being-- he saw himself as the person *inaudible* and not being disabled by what happened to him. It's not craziness, it's just a matter of perception. What you're running into Kaladin with his brands in particular is that he thinks he deserves them.

    Skyward Houston signing ()
    #1413 Copy

    Questioner

    What's the relationship between spren and seons?

    Brandon Sanderson

    They are the same thing from different magics.

    Questioner

    Okay, exact same thing from different magics?

    Brandon Sanderson

    "Exact," may be a little too strict, but yeah.

    Questioner

    So a seon can be transferred to another person, right?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes.

    Questioner

    Can a spren?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes.

    Skyward Houston signing ()
    #1415 Copy

    Questioner

    Are we ever going to see the Moon Scepter on screen and what it does?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes, you should see the Moon Scepter on screen. What it does is it works as a kind of Rosetta Stone for interpreting some of the magics.

    Questioner

    So that's why Hoid wanted it?

    Brandon Sanderson

    That's why Hoid wanted it, yes. He's  trying to figure out how to give himself-- To be able to use the magics on Sel, and that's a key that he wanted.

    Skyward Houston signing ()
    #1416 Copy

    Questioner

    If I were to alloy atium and lerasium, would I get harmonium? Or is harmonium different after the Shards combined?

    Brandon Sanderson

    It's different after the Shards combined.

    Questioner

    If I was to take harmonium and separate it out through distillation, would I get lerasium and atium or something that functions similarly?

    Brandon Sanderson

    No, you would-- It actually has become a different--

    Questioner

    Can't be split?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah. I mean, you could find a way, but you're not going to get it through normal, mechanical means.

    Skyward Houston signing ()
    #1417 Copy

    Questioner

    What's Kaladin's last name?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Kaladin doesn't have a last name because, in Alethkar, your last name is your House name. He is vacillating on what his House name would be, everyone just calls him Kaladin Stormblessed. There's a realistic expectation that if he wanted to be a Kholin, he could be a Kholin, if he wanted to adopt that as his own House name instead of having a different one.

    But right now he's just called Kaladin Stormblessed.

    Skyward Houston signing ()
    #1418 Copy

    Questioner

    To get into the mind of Bleeder, was that hard?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes, to get into the mind of Bleeder, who is an antagonist in Shadows of Self, is probably the darkest I've gone in one of my books, and yeah. It was, but it was also somewhere I hadn't explored before, and so it was really interesting to me.

    Questioner

    It's my favorite character so far.

    Brandon Sanderson

    You will like, if I ever write the Threnody novel, you will like that one. Which is the Shadows for Silence in the Forests of Hell, that book. I do have a book in the Cosmere sequence planned in that world, but it doesn't have that character.

    General Signed Books 2018 ()
    #1419 Copy

    MiToRo94

    Since all matter and energy are Investiture in different forms, and the magic of Investiture depends on the Shard it is most closely connected to, could it be theoretically possible for Lift to burn food on Scadrial to have the powers of a Mistborn?

    Brandon Sanderson

    This wouldn't happen naturally - she would still get Surgebinding powers, even on Scadrial.

    Skyward Houston signing ()
    #1420 Copy

    Questioner

    Did Kelsier help in the search for [Hoid] that Galladon and Demoux were doing in the Purelakes?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Good question--

    Questioner

    He's the only one that can call him something similar, like "Drifter" so -

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah, I'm going to RAFO that-- Not quite where-- I'll just RAFO it. I'll just RAFO it. Kelsier is not on Roshar, but obviously that's not what you're asking, which is what I thought you were.

    Questioner

    He has an aura that fits in with--

    Brandon Sanderson

    Mmhmm!

    Skyward Houston signing ()
    #1423 Copy

    Questioner

    Is the cosmere, the thread connecting several of your series, something that came from the beginning, or something that kind of grew?

    Brandon Sanderson

    What a great question! So the cosmere, which is the thread connects a lot of my books together. All of my epic fantasies are connected in this world called the cosmere. Was that from the beginning, or was it something that grew?

    So I had, I often point to the fact that I had those years not getting published as a big advantage, because while I was working on those books, I didn't write the first ones as a connected shared universe. It was after I had done a number of them, that I'm like, "Hey, there's something here! There's a thread that I can weave together." But by the time I got published, I knew all of that right?

    And so, like when I wrote Mistborn, which was my, the first book I wrote knowing it would get published. Elantris was my first published, it was number 6 in those years. I sat down specifically with Mistborn and built the cosmere, using some of these unpublished books as the history of what had happened. So from the get-go of reading it, it was all interconnected. Elantris got retrofitted a little bit, to fit in with this. From Mistborn is where it all kind of starts working together and things like that.

    I was inspired to do this by authors I had read who did this really well, that I liked. Stephen King did it. Michael Moorcock did it. It really kind of blew my mind when Asimov connected the Robots and the Foundation books. Of course, you know, comics have been doing it forever. But when I saw authors doing it is what made me really excited. I would count those as inspiration.

    Skyward Houston signing ()
    #1424 Copy

    Questioner

    If you would spontaneously, prematurely die, is there any author you would consider ideal for finishing your work?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I usually pick Brian McClellan. Just because he's my student and I wanna be mean to him. I've warned him, I haven't asked him if he'd do it, I just warn him. I tell people that he will do it. And he's like, "Oh. *grumble*" We're good friends. But Brian would actually be a really good match. Properly outlined, Brian is one of the better writers out there.

    Second Questioner

    I love that caveat.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Brian is-- Brian can go off. He knows this but-- yeah.

    Skyward Houston signing ()
    #1426 Copy

    Paladin Brewer

    Previously you were asked if Hoid could have been using the lerasium to alloy with other metals to change his spiritweb, and you answered it was technically possible. Does that mean you’re finally admitting that Hoid did not digest the bead?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I am not admitting that. It was possible for him to do that, but he did not.

    Skyward Seattle signing ()
    #1431 Copy

    Questioner

    Would it be possible to Awaken a microbe, like a bacterium?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Probably not. I could imagine that happening. Awaken is the wrong term for it. I would say "No, because Awaken is the wrong term for it." But Investiture could potentially create something weird out of that.

    Skyward Seattle signing ()
    #1432 Copy

    Questioner

    I noticed during Oathbringer, is there a symbolism between the color red? Because I noticed that red is mentioned many times. Is it tied directly to the Thrill?

    Brandon Sanderson

    When I am using red specifically for spren and eye color, I'm doing it intentionally. It means something. I'm not gonna tell you what it means yet.

    Questioner

    Azure's cloth was red, and Adolin picked up a red glass sphere.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Some of that is going to be coincidence. But the color of the thing that is going to Scadrial is not coincidence.

    Skyward Seattle signing ()
    #1433 Copy

    Questioner

    What happens if there was a Feruchemist who was an Elantrian? Could they store Elantrian abilities into a nicrosil metalmind?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I'm RAFOing most of the stuff, but that one's a RAFO just because I am leaving nicrosil Feruchemy far away until I get there... I'm basically RAFOing everything about Investiture and Connection metalminds and things like that...

    Skyward Seattle signing ()
    #1437 Copy

    Questioner

    I heard you talk about the Vorin languages have a vowel shift. I'm a linguist so...

    Brandon Sanderson

    I'm kind of bad at vowel shifts, but it does have a vowel shift. You'll see Kalak being called Kelek, and some of these things like this. And I try to stay consistent with it, but I've also not been as rigorous with it as I maybe should be. Peter always points out little errors I've made. So it's a vowel shift that has some inconsistencies, how about that. But of course, real-world vowels shifts have it.

    Questioner

    You need to publish something only about the conlang.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Only about the linguistics? Yeah, having an assistant who has a degree in linguistics is really handy. Peter's been of very big use, particularly on Stormlight, because I didn't have him before those books. I just kind of had to muddle through it. And now I've got him. I'll call him up and say, "Pronounce this; pronounce this." There are lots of names in Stormlight that I can't pronounce that he can... The Arabic /q/ ...he can do, and I can't. Which we use a lot in some of the names over in Azir, and stuff like that.

    Skyward Seattle signing ()
    #1439 Copy

    Questioner

    Did you actually go through a horseback riding orientation for that scene in Words of Radiance, because that is literally how it works.

    Brandon Sanderson

    I have done it before in my life, and I was drawing on that. I did have to go get some horse experts, because I got some things wrong. That's kind of a little bit how my first experience riding horses went. I have a cousin who... rode show horses when she was younger.

    Skyward Seattle signing ()
    #1441 Copy

    AmbitionsAvatar

    Why didn't we get to see Dalinar meet Gallant in Oathbringer in the flashbacks? I was so disappointed...

    Brandon Sanderson

    I planned that for a different flashback... I intentionally didn't put that one in, because it didn't fit the rest of the narrative that I was telling. But I will do that eventually.

    AmbitionsAvatar

    Is it after he arrives at the Shattered Plains?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I will RAFO that for now, because I'd have to go look exactly at the timeline where I'm slipping it in.

    AmbitionsAvatar

    But it's around that time?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah, it's more recent than most of the things that you're reading about... Let's say, the person that Dalinar has been through most of his life would not end up with him... I will get into it. I realize that that was a hole that is not in the story, and it's an intentional one. But I eventually worked in the flashbacks with Kaladin in the last book, I found a little extra place for them. I'll try to find some of those for Dalinar.

    Skyward Seattle signing ()
    #1443 Copy

    Questioner

    Is Lhan from the [Way of Kings Prime] reading the same one from Book 2?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes, that is the same Brother Lhan. I knew he wasn't going to get to have a big part in the books once I moved Taln so far off. So I gave him a nice cameo with his own interlude so that at least he would be in the books. Because in that version, he basically wandered around, following Taln, complaining for the entire book.

    Skyward Seattle signing ()
    #1446 Copy

    Questioner

    What is the inspiration for the Parshendi?

    Brandon Sanderson

    There are a lot of different inspirations. One is wanting to build out of the setting a species that interacted with the setting and had a symbiotic relationship with the setting. The other was the idea of a people whose caste system, you could change castes and physically change into other castes of the system. So something like the hives you see, where you can switch from worker to various different tasks. I liked the cultural aspects of what that did.

    Skyward Seattle signing ()
    #1447 Copy

    Questioner

    What's your Smedry talent?

    Brandon Sanderson

    ...I usually say "being long-winded." But the truth is, when I wrote the books, I kind of did all the stuff that I do as the first powers. So I'm habitually late, bad at dancing, good at breaking things... But if you actually go "What's the core one," probably being long-winded. I can say things that could be said in one word, in seventeen instead.

    Skyward Seattle signing ()
    #1448 Copy

    Questioner

    I have a quick question about the uniforms in Skyward. Is there a specific color for Skyward flight?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Not for Skyward flight. They are all using the same jumpsuits, and things like this. By the second book, they probably will have... once they kind get ahead of it a little bit, they can start doing things like painting the ships. But in this book, really, you're basically wearing a jumpsuit--

    Questioner

    It's blue, it's unceremonial.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Mmhmm.

    Skyward Seattle signing ()
    #1449 Copy

    Questioner

    I did have a question about Doomslug and M-Bot, where they came from?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Those are questions that will be answered, I promise.

    Questioner

    Are they connected?

    Brandon Sanderson

    That's what we call a RAFO, Read And Find Out. You will find out; I'm not gonna tell you know. You'll find out some of those answers in the next book.