Recent entries

    Idaho Falls signing ()
    #3051 Copy

    Valhalla

    So, you talked about a weapon made by the enemies of Adonalsium, and you said it doesn't exist in it's original form. Do any remnants of it still exist in the Physical Realm?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes.

    Valhalla

    Have we seen any of those remnants on-screen?

    Brandon Sanderson

    *pause* RAFO.

    In current continuity (and people would know this), Hoid's immortality comes from this. People who have read Dragonsteel know that.

    Idaho Falls signing ()
    #3052 Copy

    Questioner

    Would a Mistborn be able to push and pull on a Shardblade?

    Brandon Sanderson

    That's an excellent question. The answer is, it would be very hard. In Mistborn, anything that's pushing on certain metals, particularly infused metals, gets progressively harder the more Investiture they've got in them. And Shardblades tend to be very highly Invested; they'd be very difficult to push on. If you got the right Allomancer, they could push on it. But I would say, in most cases, no.

    BookCon 2018 ()
    #3054 Copy

    WeiryWriter (paraphrased)

    So in the Way of Kings Ars Arcanum we get a really good explanation of the different kinds of fabrials. Then in Words of Radiance we get a new kind of fabrial, one that attracts certain substances, but they weren't discussed in the Words of Radiance Ars Arcanum. And they are not in Oathbringer's either.

    Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

    Yeah, so this is actually something Isaac has been bugging me about. There is no reason they were not included other than me being lazy.

    BookCon 2018 ()
    #3056 Copy

    Dissentinel (paraphrased)

    Would it be possibly to have a bunch of iron Ferrings store a bunch of weight into some iron, turn that iron into steel, and then use that steel to make guns as a cheaper alternative to aluminum?

    Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

    Yeah but the guns wouldn't be immune--

    Ravi (paraphrased)

    But they would be resistant, that little bit of extra time could be enough to make a difference.

    Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

    Yeah.

    Dissentinel (paraphrased)

    And the guns would be harder to see with iron/steelsight, correct?

    Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

    Yes, they would be. Do keep in mind however that we get a very skewed perception of the world and how important stuff like this is because the main characters of the books are Allomancers. This just isn't something that is important to the average person on the street. But this does relate to some things later on in the series.

    BookCon 2018 ()
    #3057 Copy

    Questioner

    *inaudible*

    Brandon Sanderson

    You know, I read comic books, but I never really considered writing them. I don't feel I know that format well. I've done a couple graphic novels, but those I always give to a script writer for comic books who's practiced it, let them do it. I haven't really considered ever since I broke-in, because I'd feel like the basketball player playing baseball, you know. You might be okay at it, but might as well let the people who are really good at it, since they're really good at doing it.

    General Twitter 2018 ()
    #3058 Copy

    Wubdor

    Can't wait to get my hands on that new Roshar map! Any chance there's going to be more, not yet released world maps? (i.e. Elendel, Threnody, Nalthis, First of the Sun) I wanna frame them all! Also, having Cognitive Realm versions of them would be sick!

    Isaac Stewart

    Glad you like the maps! We've talked about creating a poster of Elendel, so I suspect you'll see that at some point. As for the others, we'll continue to map them as Brandon explores them, so I think there's a good chance of eventually seeing a lot of the places you mentioned.

    General Reddit 2018 ()
    #3062 Copy

    Steenan

    Awakeners are useless in space. Awakened objects can't propel themselves where there is no air and can't produce air or food from nothing. Elantrians have another problem. Their power is very flexible, but tied to a location; they can't take it with themselves when they travel. Or, at least, they can't do it in a way explained well enough to extrapolate.

    Oudeis16

    Actually I wonder about this. There is one scene where Vivenna Awakens Tonk Fah's cloak to attack Denth, and it drags Tonk Fah across the room. How? I mean, in theory, sure, we can speculate that it might have moved in a series of sweeps and jerks like swimming to force his momentum, perhaps it grabbed his legs, maybe it pushed off against the wall, maybe it even made a big scoop and sailed there on wind resistance... but the paragraph makes it seem possible that the cloak was somehow able to simply will itself along, strongly enough to drag Tonk Fah behind.

    It does seem out of keeping with what Awakening is and can do, so I tend to think that at most it's just a typo (should I page u/PeterAhlstrom? I think they're working on a re-release and looking for continuity errors) but, if this is how it works, then once you're in space, Commanding a handkerchief to "go to Scadrial" might be enough to generate propulsion.

    Peter Ahlstrom

    There's no error in that scene, and it also doesn't directly contradict Steenan's statement.

    General Reddit 2018 ()
    #3063 Copy

    Marslim1

    Hey u/Mistborn could you put more SA posters [in the brandonsanderson.com store]?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I keep meaning to do so--but it's hard to find the time for my art team, who spends a LOT of effort on the leatherbounds. There's one I've been wanting to do for a while. Hopefully, we'll get to it before too long.

    General Reddit 2018 ()
    #3065 Copy

    Oversleep

    We know that if someone marries a Smedry, they get their spouse's Talent. But what if two Smedries marry? Do they get each own's Talents in addition to the ones they were born with?

    And what about polygamy? For example, if there would be two Smedries and a non-Smedry in the marriage, would the non-Smedry get both? One of them? Some combination of them?

    Brandon Sanderson

    As for the Smedries, I've thought WAY too much about this. I went into it knowing I wanted a magic completely different from cosmere magics, and so I've tried to take it that direction--which includes keeping it simple. In a lot of corner cases like you mention, the answer is "nobody knows, because it hasn't been tried yet. But it probably wouldn't work." I'd say that two Smedries who married might BOTH lose their talent, because the entire clan would consider that incest, and kick them out. That would be the answer with most corner-cases.

    General Reddit 2018 ()
    #3066 Copy

    Jamester86

    So something I've noticed in the fantasy genre that I love is that my 2 favorite authors (Sanderson and Rothfuss) don't use the traditional fantasy medieval setting (that I love) of castles, knights, feudalism etc. Now there are plenty of great authors that do (GRRMartin comes to mind as one that does it right), BUT the truth is, a good story eclipses all minor details like setting. An example I always give is that Patrick Rothfuss could write about brushing your teeth and it would make a fascinating read, and Sanderson would make an intriguing plot with amazing characterization throughout the dental hygiene experience. But I digress.

    My question (If Brandon would be so kind as to show up, and if not, if anyone has any insight) is why; why doesn't the cosmere have any traditional medieval fantasy settings? Mistborn has keeps, but the society is not the traditional technology and setting of the medieval time period, nor do any of the other worlds given us.

    Brandon Sanderson

    There are both in-world reasons and writing reasons.

    The writing reasons are obvious. I grew up on a steady diet of fantasy in a faux-medieval setting. I felt that some of these stories were really good, and enjoyed them--but at the same time, I felt the genre had been there and done that. In some ways, GRRM doing fantasy with the eye of a true medievalist provided a capstone to this era of fantasy.

    When I sat down to write, didn't want to write what I was tired of reading. Dragonsteel (which never got published) was bronze age, White Sand was industrial, and Elantris was (kind of) Renaissance. (As you noticed, Mistborn is somewhere around 1820's. I modeled a lot of the society around the fascinating culture/industry of canals as shipping lanes that happened in England right before railroads took over.)

    The other big reason, writing wise, is that I feel some of the magics that I enjoy dealing with in my settings need a certain near-industrial mindset to be interesting. The stories I want to tell are about people applying scientific principles to magic--and about the commodification and the economics of magic. Those are early-modern era stories.

    The in-world reasoning I have is that on some of these planets, those eras existed--but the books are taking place when the stories of the worlds start smashing into one another. In addition, however, the Shards have an influence on this, because of things they saw happen on their own home planet.

    General Reddit 2018 ()
    #3067 Copy

    shookron

    Bluefingers is left-handed

    Saw the "what inconveniences do left handed people have?"

    It seems left-handers get ink all over their hands when writing....or he could be a righty and they write right to left

    Not much of a revelation, but wanted to share it.

    Brandon Sanderson

    I feel the pain of lefties, though I am not one myself. Every time I see them writing, I think of how inconvenient that must be.

    I'd be happy to canonize this, but I'd be taking too much credit if I said this is what I'd thought of when writing. I had simply imagined that he wrote a lot, and was not always as careful about cleaning off his hands as he should have been.

    General Reddit 2018 ()
    #3068 Copy

    Snote

    Would you be willing to confirm if Skar is a proto-Radiant (on the same level as The Lopen?)

    It is implied by his statement of "We protect those who cannot protect themselves", which is obviously an affirmation of the oath, if not an outright swearing of it. I could see it being either/or. He's a good man that did what he thought the order, and he himself, wanted or he just became a Radiant on the same level as Kaladin during the Battle of the Tower.

    Thanks for your time. I understand if you can't/won't answer that at this time. It's simply a curiosity, so I get it if you're a bit too busy to answer. :p

    Brandon Sanderson

    By the end of Book Three, I'd put Skar very close to (though not quite at the level of) Lopen along the way toward full Radiant-hood.

    #tweettheauthor 2009 ()
    #3070 Copy

    kikastrophe

    So, is Kings in any way like your other books? Shall we expect an unexpected twist?

    Brandon Sanderson

    KINGS is like my books in some ways. But in order to be grand as a series, it had to start--oddly--more humbly. Yes, there are twists. I wrote it so that the epilogue redefines the entire book and series. Each of the 4 viewpoints has an epilogue. Much as RJ had huge prologues, this series will have huge epilogues. Those epilogues, like the Elantris first lines, are intended to be ‘BANG’ moments.

    Chris King interview ()
    #3071 Copy

    Chris King

    Is it possible to use a Soulstamp to give Shardplate life or at least achieve a robotic status?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Wow, it is really, really hard to Invest things that have already been Invested. Regular-- Let's just say that, it is really hard to do that. Part of the reason why it is difficult for instance to Push or Pull on something that is inside of somebody because the Investiture is interfering and you would have that similar problem doing anything to Shardplate with any of the magics.

    Chris King interview ()
    #3076 Copy

    Chris King

    Why can Rock see Syl?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Ooh, good question, why do you think Rock can see Syl?

    Chris King

    My personal theory here is because his people have such a strong belief and reverence in them it allows him to see them for that reason because his strong belief creates some sort of cognitive or spiritual pressure which allows them...

    Brandon Sanderson

    He would agree with that philosophy. I would say, usually when something like that happens there is also something physiological going on.

    Chris King interview ()
    #3077 Copy

    Chris King

    When do you plan on releasing the Way of Kings annotations?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I've only written about a quarter of them. I have a sneaking suspicion that it will take me a few years just because it's taken me three and a half years to get the second book out. So I feel a burden to get the books going before I do side things like this. My life got a whole lot more busy with The Wheel of Time than it used to be. Which has cut out some of my side-projects like this but I would like to do them eventually.

    Chris King interview ()
    #3078 Copy

    Chris King

    What are some characteristics of and how many other wordhoppers are there that we have seen excluding Hoid, Demoux, and Galladon.

    Brandon Sanderson

    You gave me really good wiggle room on that one. Obviously the other person with Galladon and Demoux.

    Chris King

    Right, the one from a future book.

    Brandon Sanderson

    His characteristics are-- What is he like? Some people have read his book so they know what he's like--

    Chris King

    Which book is he from?

    Brandon Sanderson

    He's from White Sand.

    Chris King

    Okay, that's one I have but have not gotten to.

    Brandon Sanderson

    It's only mediocre so don't worry about it. Let's see what other worldhoppers I want to give you clues about-- *long pause* There's a Terriswoman running around, if you keep your eyes open.

    Chris King

    I have to re-read it, everything.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Who else do I want to talk about-- Words of Radiance has a couple good ones, that will be pretty obvious.

    Chris King interview ()
    #3079 Copy

    Chris King

    Can you store Breath in metal without the [Ninth] Heightening? Just put it there without Awakening, just to hide the Breath.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Can you hide Breath in-- Yes you can hide Breath in things.

    Chris King

    Metal in particular, without the [Ninth] Heightening could you put it into metal. Without the purpose of Awakening it, just storing it there.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Oh without the [Ninth] Heightening-- I would say yes you could.

    Chris King interview ()
    #3083 Copy

    Chris King

    Did seons exist when the Aonic peoples discovered Elantris?

    Brandon Sanderson

    When the Aonic peoples discovered Elantris, did seons exist-- Okay let me go back to my timeline... It kind of means you have to define what you mean by Aonic. The problem is if you dig back too far in history it's kind of like asking "What's a German?" You know what I mean?

    Chris King

    Because the Aons are based upon Elantris itself and so they don't become Aonic until they are writing the Aons.

    Brandon Sanderson

    And Aonic is also-- You are talking about the people and so it's like are the Normans Brits? Or are they Vikings? Or are they Frenchman?

    Chris King

    Why don't we phrase it as the people of Sel when they discovered Elantris.

    Brandon Sanderson

    No, no, that's getting, okay-- Let's go ahead and RAFO that one, just because the history of Elantris is very interesting to the cosmere. When people are starting to get an inkling of that.

    Chris King

    Odium was there once upon a time.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yah... And the question of who built Elantris and how they built Elantris. What's going on with the Elantrians back then and things like this. So let's just RAFO that.

    Miscellaneous 2018 ()
    #3085 Copy

    Argent

    Hey Karen, I have a question I hope you can confirm for the Stormlight fans. 

    What are the exact gemstone types Rosharans use in their currency? In The Way of Kings Shallan suggests that only nine out of the ten Polestones are actually used in spheres (or is this wrong?), and while eight of those are accounted for in the books, we don't know whether the last one is a smokestone or a heliodor. Is this something you can and are willing to confirm for us?

    Karen Ahlstrom

    Here's what I have on my wiki page. I'm pretty sure it was written by Brandon before I started to work on things.

    Gemstones

    Sapphire: blue (deep)

    Zircon: blue (light)

    Ruby: red (deep)

    Amethyst & Garnet: red (light)

    Topaz: yellow (deep)

    Heliodor: yellow (light)

    Emerald: green (deep)

    Smokestone: grayscale (deep)

    Diamond: grayscale (light)

    Karen Ahlstrom

    Elsewhere I found this list that shows the spheres from highest to lowest value. It says that smokestone coins are very rare.

    Values: Highest - 50 (250, 1000)

    Stone: Emerald

    Color: Deep green

    Essence: Pulp

     

    Values: Prime Pair - 25 (125, 500)

    Stone: Amethyst

    Color: Pale violet

    Essence: Mineral (Metals/claws)

     

    Stone: Sapphire (skymark)

    Color: Deep Blue

    Essence: Vapor

     

    Values: Middle Weight - 10 (50, 200)

    Stone: Zircon

    Color: Pale blue

    Essence: Blood (Water-based liquids)

     

    Stone: Ruby (firemark)

    Color: Deep red

    Essence: Spark (Fire/Soul)

     

    Stone: Smokestone (Uncommon as a coin)

    Color: Translucent

    Essence: Smoke

     

    Values: Less Weight - 5 (25, 100)

    Stone: Topaz

    Color: Pale orange

    Essence: Talus (Stone/Bone)

     

    Stone: Garnet

    Color: Deep violet (Bloodmarks)

    Essence: Flesh

     

    Stone: Heliodor

    Color: Light yellow

    Essence: (Sinew)

     

    Cheapest 1 (5, 20)

    Stone: Diamond (Clear chip/mark/broam)

    Color: Transparent

    Essence: Glass (Crystal/Eyes)

    Argent

    One thing I am noticing is that the essences don't entirely match what's in the Ars Arcanum of the books.

    Karen Ahlstrom

    Yeah, AA is correct and what we base things on. Like I said, these are probably written by Brandon a long time ago when he was just world building.

    Footnote: These are from an email exchange between Argent and Karen Ahlstrom. Parts of the emails were slightly reformatted or erased in the interest of clarity, brevity, and privacy.
    Miscellaneous 2016 ()
    #3086 Copy

    Questioner

    How do you make up names and words for your fantasy settings?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Mostly, I choose an earth culture (or two) to base my linguistic influences on. For instance, in the Mistborn books, I used French. It's obvious in words like Fellise, Renoux, Blanches, Delouse and Demoux. Less obvious is Kelsier, whose name would be pronounced in-world without the last R sound.

    Questioner

    Do you think you'll ever develop a language like Tolkien did?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Maybe. I did a lot of that in White Sand, which didn’t get published. I’ll do more for other books.

    Questioner

    Do you use Hebrew words?

    Brandon Sanderson

    The name Adonalsium is derived from a Hebrew name for God, Adonai and Aharietiam was derived from the Hebrew/Jewish term for the end of days acharit hayamim or אחרית הימים

    General Reddit 2018 ()
    #3087 Copy

    MS-07B-3

    So what you're telling me is that not only my first edition Words of Radiance, but also my first edition Way of Kings are Dragonsteel guaranteed to be worth at least a sapphire broam in ten years time.

    Peter Ahlstrom

    I wouldn't go so far as that! Looks like 2-carat cut sapphires are going for about $2000. They printed tens of thousands of copies of Way of Kings. They're not that rare.

    MS-07B-3

    Ah, so is that the canon size of the gem in a broam?

    Peter Ahlstrom

    Yes. 2 carats.

    R'Shara

    Oh, I've been curious about this for a long time. One of my hobbies is working with gemstones, so knowing the sizes (and cuts, because of how light is affected by the cut) of the gemstones in spheres and Soulcasters would be wonderful!

    PeterAhlstrom

    I'm not sure about the cuts, but broams are 2 carats and the other sizes are proportional to their value.

    R'Shara

    Thank you, that helps a lot!

    would be happy to offer input on cuts, should that ever be wanted

    Peter Ahlstrom

    The canonization of the cuts is being worked on, just not by me.

    Argent

    This is great to know, thanks! One last clarification though: is this proportionality linear? In other words:

    * Since there are 4 marks per broam, does that make marks 0.5 carats each?

    * Since there are 5 chips per mark, does that make chips 0.1 carats each?

    Or is there some wonky formula with diminishing returns?

    Peter Ahlstrom

    Yeah, that's it.

    Phantine

    Just to clarify, as a jeweler I think those numbers might be a bit on the small side.

    A 2 carat sapphire (assuming a standard well proportioned round cut) is going to be about 8 millimeters in diameter.

    A 1 ct sapphire is going to be around 5 mm ish.

    A 0.1 carat sapphire would be really tiny. Like, about 1 mm in diameter ish? Depends heavily on how shallow the cut is.

    It just seems way too tiny (and imagine the poor high-precision lapidarists working on making pennies - diamonds require specialized cutting equipment because they're WAY harder than anything else)

    Peter Ahlstrom

    Those sizes are pretty much right.

    General Reddit 2018 ()
    #3091 Copy

    wiresegal

    In OB, you explained that the Singers have four sexes. I was wondering... Can the Singers have genders other than those four, like humans? Even as simple as just not going with male, female, or malen/femalen. Could a transgender Singer use their ability to shift forms to change their biological reality? And, finally, could a Spren be non-binary, if it wasn't personified in a typical male/female way?

    Brandon Sanderson

    In the cosmere as a whole, a person's perception of themselves has a lot of power over both their Spiritual and Physical forms. It is possible, with Investiture, to change their biology to match Cognitive perceptions--and while this could be easier for some races (like the Singers) it's not outside plausibility for any race.

    There are non-binary spren, actually--and you should be meeting one important one quite soon in the books.

    Steelheart Seattle signing ()
    #3096 Copy

    Questioner (paraphrased)

    As far as I can tell, in The Stormlight Archive, we have seen three different lights: the stormlight, the amberlight in the flashbacks, and the dark light in the stone. Do those correspond to the three Shards?

    Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

    No, the amberlight is more a function of...it's no different than the stormlight.

    Questioner (paraphrased)

    So, you see that in a storm? Like when gems gather that in the storm?

    Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

    That amberlight is more related to... so, no... you are not seeing something other than stormlight. That is like saying that stormlight in a topaz is a different color than stormlight in a sapphire. It's not different colors; you're just seeing it filtered through something. The dark light of the, um, the gemstone that Szeth was given is indeed something different and distinct.

    Questioner (paraphrased)

    Voooiidlight?

    Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

    Yes, it is related to a different shard. How about that?

    General Signed Books 2014 ()
    #3097 Copy

    Argent

    We know that the Cognitive Realm is called Shadesmar, because in the language of the people who "coined" the term, "shadesmar" translates loosely to "cognitive realm." Is there a similar name/phrase for the Spiritual Realm we could use?

    Brandon Sanderson

    There are cultures with a name for the Spiritual realm, but most of them translate to "Heaven" which isn't entirely accurate by our understanding. Some day perhaps I will say more.

    BookCon 2018 ()
    #3098 Copy

    Questioner

    Who is your favorite character in Mistborn?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Hmmm, probably Sazed. The truth is, my favorite character changes depending on who I'm writing, and things like that.

    Questioner

    Okay, I feel better about it now.

    Questioner 2

    Breeze is my favorite character

    Brandon Sanderson

    Breeze is a lot of fun.