Recent entries

    General Reddit 2018 ()
    #3501 Copy

    flyingnomad

    I just finished a reread of WOR (actually my first audiobook listen of the series, which was great), and when I reached your last three, I definitely noticed you really had a skill with shaping chapters to speed things up or slow things down. Initially it felt like you introduced more frequent shifts in main character POV instead of some of the lengthy sections with one POV that we'd seen in RJ's last few books. This made it feel like the story was coming together and things were starting to really happen at the same time. Then later it felt almost like a kind of dilation effect where a massive amount was happening at the same time - but with the added complication of the actual timeline manipulations, which was extremely well done in this regard... I was so caught up in the story I wasn't able to keep my attention on it at the time but later, after finishing AMOL, I was pondering that it felt like a Christopher Nolan movie, where the structure itself was part of the narration.

    Brandon Sanderson

    I've always preferred a frequent POV jump style to the large chunk style Mr. Jordan used later in his books--but there are merits to both. In the Stormlight Archive, I've been pleased with a kind of hybrid of the long chunk from the later WoT books with a quick jump method. (I pick a group of characters and quickly alternate POVs.) But I have the WoT to thank for helping me, as a younger writer, study and learn the different ways POV jumps can influence the storytelling.

    General Reddit 2018 ()
    #3502 Copy

    operatar

    Are you going to make more Wax and Wayne books in the Mistborn universe?

    Brandon Sanderson

    There is one more Wax and Wayne book, called The Lost Metal, that I'm working on. After that, we're going to jump a generation and do a 1980's era tech Mistborn.

    brothertaddeus

    C-cyberpunk Mistborn??

    Brandon Sanderson

    This one won't reach true cyberpunk levels, but I'm hoping to have the time to squeeze in a more cyberpunk-influenced sequence later.

    General Reddit 2018 ()
    #3503 Copy

    FrostMarvel

    [Brandon] how are you going to finish all this?

    Brandon Sanderson

    The only reasonable answer is the one that others have pointed out, unfortunately: I won't.

    Most of the ideas I work on don't come to fruition. Others simmer for many years (like Skyward did.) My only real promise is that I'll make reasonable progress on the mainline cosmere books. Stormlight, Mistborn, Elantris, Dragonsteel. Even there, I can't say for certain if projects like the Threnody novel or the Mistborn cyberpunk will end up being written or not.

    FrostMarvel

    It must feel strange knowing that, right? Having your whole life’s work mapped out and feeling that you won’t finish all of it?

    Brandon Sanderson

    A little? But I realized long, long ago that I'd have more ideas than time to write them--and made peace with that.

    There's also a kind of "natural selection" philosophy going on here. If an idea (like Skyward) manages to persist long enough, fight out the other ideas for a slot at the writing table, and actually turn into a book--well, those are the ideas that deserve to get written.

    simon_thekillerewok

    For what it's worth, I think you'll finish it all (and more) without a problem. And I fixed version 2 of the chart so the projected timeline isn't so exaggerated and it's much less depressing. And as long as you enjoy writing and keep cranking books out, I promise to buy every one - I'm planning to have an entire wall of just Sanderson books.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Well, thank you very much! I've been thinking a lot about this lately, though. I've been aware lately that I'm going to have to let more and more side projects slide away, an I'm finding ways to do it, so that I can keep my attention on making certain I finish my goals.

    simon_thekillerewok

    Well I think you've made a great compromise with the graphic novels for example - it's great to be able have that as canon without having to wait 30 years for everything else to be cleared out - but we still have hope that if you finish everything early there's a possibility of a prose version someday. And with your non-cosmere ideas like Adamant and Alcatraz it's great that you are collaborating with others to get things done. I don't know how much creative control you'd want to cede of the Cosmere, but you could always consider letting other authors play around in 1940-ish or cyberpunk Scadrial for example. Also, you could consider fan-sourcing some projects. Maybe it's a stretch, but if you held some contests for the more artistically talented fans, you might be able to collect enough submissions that match your vision to be able to build the worldbook. Or you could publicly release the script for Birthright or some other idea, and fans could try to build an open source video game.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah, I've been pushing myself to let some non-cosmere ideas (like the Apocalypse Guard rewrite) to do as collaborations, to get them out of my system.

    You make some interesting suggestions with fans. We're reaching an era where that sort of thing is increasingly plausible.

    General Reddit 2018 ()
    #3504 Copy

    Credar

    /u/mistborn is this [the Unfettered III sequence] the secret project?!

    Brandon Sanderson

    It is not, actually. I plan to sit down after Skyward Two is done and do a draft of this, but I haven't gotten to it yet.

    yahasgaruna

    Is the "this" in your sentence the secret project or the deleted scene in Unfettered III?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Deleted scene for Unfettered.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #3505 Copy

    SomeLameName7173

    [Skyward] looks like it will be a very fun book. How much of the book will actually be released before publishing? and how long is the book

    Brandon Sanderson

    Book is 110k words long. And...right now I can't remember how much I talked them into releasing. Somewhere between a third and half, I believe.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #3506 Copy

    vanahian

    And for a friend of mine and her sanity... The Shalladin thing will be something or is all in her head? Stop her pain please :D.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Shallan has made her choice. I wouldn't expect that to change.

    vanahian

    And thanks for the answer in 11. My friend is crying but now she can go ahead with her life :)

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah...I do feel bad about that. If it's any comfort, tell her I think she'll eventually be very pleased it went this way. It might take a few more books, though.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #3507 Copy

    vanahian

    Silverlight and Wandersail novellas...When?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Silverlight and Wandersail novellas. Silverlight...not soon. Wandersail, potentially while I'm working on Stormlight 4.

    NotOJebus

    A Wandersail novella! I guess that means there may be more truth to that story than first thought!

    Brandon Sanderson

    Well...it would be about current characters, not the story that may or may not have happened in the past.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #3508 Copy

    vanahian

    After finishing Skyward trilogy, do you have in mind to write more about this universe?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I have no current plans for more Skyward, but you know me. I always know where a story would go in the future--and sometimes I find places to put them. (This story, for example, is a continuation of something from years ago.)

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #3509 Copy

    LoneWarmonger

    If you take Bondsmith Honorblade, will you be able repeat Dalinar's Perpendicularity trick, or it is something special only Dalinar can do for a different reason?

    When Dalinar repairs temple does he use Bondsmith power or...something else? If first, which Surge does he use?

    Brandon Sanderson

    RAFO!

    LoneWarmonger

    I expected to get RAFO...But is Oathbringer a Bondsmith book or Skybreaker book? I know it was supposed to be Szeth/Skybreaker, but changed to Dalinar/Bondsmith. And still we learnt more about Skybreakers than Dalinar and his strange abilities. Will book 5 have more of Dalinar?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Books 5 will have a lot of Dalinar. Once it is out, you'll be able to see why it could have been a Bondsmith book--but I think it's better this way, with Book 3 being the Bondsmith book.

    LoneWarmonger

    Thank you, Mr Sanderson, I'm pleased with the choice, but I guess, I just wanted to learn more about Dalinar's powers in his book, he's my favorite character. Even after HIS book, his abilities are a mystery. But I'm exited to hear I'll get more in the future. Please, don't keep Dalinar on the background, he's the best.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Note that book four may see less of him, as he steps back a little (like each of the characters will for a book or two here and there) but book five has him as a focus again.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #3510 Copy

    Will_Try_N_Sell_Junk

    What's the biggest change you've made between drafts that would surprise readers?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Hm. Well, the biggest ones would probably all be Stormlight, since the first proper draft of that (in 2002) was far from the second version I did in 2009. Seven years of thinking about where the story went wrong led to some huge changes. (For example, in the 2002 version, Dalinar kills Elhokar.)

    NightWillReign

    in the 2002 version, Dalinar kills Elhokar

    WTF WAT

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah. Adolin dies as well... And there are no spren. And Kaladin gets Shardplate/Blade in the prologue and trains to be a knight, though not a Knight Radiant, as that term is one I developed later...

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #3511 Copy

    WeiryWriter

    One of the projects I'm most excited for from you Brandon is Adamant (the Silence of the Lambs in Space story--It's in second-place 'cause The Aztlanian). You once mentioned that you were considering trying to slide it in the cosmere, but were unsure because it would require removing a Shakespeare reference of which you were fond. Have you considered adding it to this fledgling Skywardverse? (Thereby cementing your claim to fame as the "crossover universes" guy)

    Brandon Sanderson

    I doubt I'll put Adamant into the Skyward universe if only because I'm so enamored with how it turned out when I did...what I did to it. (You'll see eventually.) It really is a lot of fun set up the way it is now.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #3512 Copy

    WeiryWriter

    At one point in time you were planning for Skyward to be in the cosmere, which is no longer the case. If you were to pick a Shard, or Shards, that would fit Skyward what would they be? (Not necessarily the Shard that would have been featured in-cosmere, but a hypothetical Shard that fits the book/world in its current state.)

    Brandon Sanderson

    Skyward was more "The travels of Spensa, space pilot" than a true story back when it was in the cosmere. But as the story is right now, I'd say Autonomy would find it very interesting.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #3513 Copy

    TinyOxKing

    So when I was reading Warbreaker, the more I listened to Vasher the more he reminded me of Mormon (loves kids, warrior who hated war, a scholar, & etc) was this a coincidence or done on purpose?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Coincidence. I find that an interesting connection, though.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #3514 Copy

    Oversleep

    Okay, maybe also Alcatraz one since I just finished Dark Talent few hours ago (it's excellent, by the way): Why did they need Dif in the first place? I mean, Alcatraz still knows more about Hushlands than any person from Free Kingdoms would, even a person who went deep undercover for a long time. What did they need a specialist in Hushlands for? That part didn't make sense for me.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Alcatraz knows what it is like to live in a small town in the US. Would you pick him as a guide to show you around DC or NYC, a place he'd never been? He's a thirteen year old kid. But I'll say, at the same time, Dif was working hard behind the scenes to get himself involved.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #3516 Copy

    Oversleep

    Any grander plans for this setting beside this trilogy of Skyward?

    Any plans for that other work the Skyward is connected to?

    Is there any connecting stuff we should be on look out for?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Let me get this trilogy (which will actually probably be four books) done, and then I'll worry about that.

    No other plans for the work this is based on right now.

    As for connecting stuff, it will become very obvious once I start using some technical terminology. I said elsewhere in the thread that chapter 17 will make it very clear for those watching. Other small connections exist through the series, but more in the second book.

    Govir

    As a follow-up, will the fourth just be adding onto the end (i.e. it's a quartet), or will it be tangential, similar to Mistborn: Secret History (i.e. a trilogy + another book)?

    Brandon Sanderson

    It will be a quartet. I did my normal thing, writing the first book as proof of concept to myself, then sitting down and really hammering out the series. When I was done, the story beats worked far better as four books than three, so I will probably write it that way instead.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #3517 Copy

    Oversleep

    At first [Skyward] was supposed to be in the cosmere. Were there any reasons you pulled it out of it besides not wanting to deal with spacefaring era of Cosmere yet?

    Where was the planet supposed to be in the cosmere? Would it have had a Shard or would it have been a minor Shardworld?

    Brandon Sanderson

    When Spensa started life in my brain, she was late cosmere pilot character, from around Era Four. When I started to work on this as my next YA project, I decided I wanted to use a certain technological aspect from a story I'd previously worked on--something I touched on in a novella, but which was still very interesting to me all these years later. But it was something that did not work with cosmere technology, so it was a natural fit to port Spensa over to this new story.

    It wouldn't have been planetary-based if it had been in the cosmere. Mostly, it was Spensa as a character. Once the story started transforming into a girl and her spaceship, the cosmere ties got severed quickly.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #3518 Copy

    Jofwu

    Can you say what "small projects" you're thinking about working on for the rest of the year before picking up Stormlight in January?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I've just done a quick draft on some chapters on Alcatraz 6, which isn't ready yet, but is coming along. And I'll be looking over Secret Project again, as well as doing a draft of the Wheel of Time deleted scenes for the Unfettered 3 charity anthology.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #3520 Copy

    Jofwu

    I'm really hooked by the "girl and her dragon" idea. Were there any fun or interesting things you were able to explore by virtue of replacing the dragon with a spaceship? That is, it's easy to imagine the fun similarities, but I'm curious if there were any notable differences introduced by that swap.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Hm... Well, normally in the dragon egg story, a trope is that the dragon needs to learn how to fly/fight and the trainer needs to learn with them.

    Here, the ship knows how to fly--but is busted up. So there's a lot of fun in the story relating to how exactly to get parts for the ship--which leads to a completely different style of storytelling.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #3521 Copy

    thegatorgirl00

    Do you have a name for the Skyward universe that we can use on the Coppermind and in discussion beyond just calling it the Skyward universe?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I kind of think Skyward Universe is probably the best, for now. I'll ponder this.

    thegatorgirl00

    If you haven't considered it already, I'd like to bring the term Skyworld or Skyworlds to your attention.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Ha! That's not bad, though it could get a little confusing if I ever write one of the books I've been planning that literally take place in a world with no ground...

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #3522 Copy

    NotOJebus

    What do you feel is the main difference between writing sci fi and fantasy is? Did you learn things in writing Skyward that you feel will help you write Mistborn Era 4?

    Brandon Sanderson

    For me, it's a fine line, because I'm not writing Hard SF--but instead, a kind of hard fantasy. So my books tend to ride the line between SF/Fantasy anyway. And Skyward is straight up space opera, I'd say--most of the technology that we use in the books is fantastical anyway.

    In SF, I feel I can lean on shared vocabulary a little more. This has been particularly handy in the novellas I've done, where we can use Earth as a reference point. Modern (and beyond modern) communication, and expectations of character education, also play a big part in changing how I approach the stories.

    In some ways, it comes down to different storytelling traditions, and what they each afford you. Again, though, it would be different if I were writing hard SF.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #3523 Copy

    CoverYourSafeHand

    My other question is about Wheel of Time. At the end, Rand just kinda walks away in Moridin's body. Does he stop being a ta'veren? I can't imagine the pattern would just let him live a quiet normal life if he still was.

    Brandon Sanderson

    The ending portion of WoT that you reference was written by [Robert Jordan] himself, and he didn't leave a lot of explanations. Subtext and things Mr. Jordan said lead me to believe that the character you indicate is free, now. But we don't have a 100% for sure answer.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #3525 Copy

    6th_account_so_far

    How much of an impact did interviewing professional fighter pilots have on the story? Did anything learned from them actually change parts of the book in significant ways? Did you learn anything weird or unusual that you found fascinating?

    Brandon Sanderson

    The pilots were a HUGE help. The biggest issue I had, which was really hard to get through my skull, was the different ways that G-forces interacted with the human body.

    I knew the basics, and had flight suits operating correctly and was watching for people pulling too many Gs. But the fighter pilots kept explaining things like "eyes out" and how it wasn't just number of Gs, it was the direction they were pulling. It wasn't until I called one of them and had a lengthy conversation that it started to click with me.

    From there, some of the direct feelings of pulling Gs--feeling like your skin is sliding off your body, or that you've aged a hundred years--I got from them.

    As always with a sf/f book, one of my goals is to walk the line between realism and fiction. I tried to make the battles feel real enough to not kick an actual pilot out of the story, but at the same time, I specifically gave the fighters technology that we don't have, in order to spice up how the combat would work.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #3526 Copy

    R'Shara

    Hey, is Brandon willing to tell us which universe Skyward is in yet? He said a while aback that it was in a universe (not cosmere) that he'd written before.

    Brandon Sanderson

    So, here's the thing--it's a pretty big spoiler. Meaning if you know the novella this is tied to (and it's one of the ones mentioned in this thread) you'll know a moderately large plot point in the book.

    It's not the type of spoiler that will ruin a story--I do think some readers would enjoy watching how I lace them together. But do be warned that if you haven't read my science fiction novellas, and you hate spoilers, you might want to wait until Skyward is out to read them.

    That said, if you know the terminology of the novellas in question, you'll find your answer in chapter seventeen.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #3528 Copy

    Use_the_Falchion

    Have you ever thought of doing a magical school series a la Harry Potter, The Name of the Wind, or The Magisterium series? Or did Skyward kinda fill that spot for you?

    Brandon Sanderson

    We'll see. I've never had a really good idea for one. I need to feel like I'm bringing something new to a sub genre like that.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #3530 Copy

    Use_the_Falchion

    I've been checking Dan Well's twitter pretty often, but there seems to be no update on Apocalypse Guard. Do you have any updates?

    Brandon Sanderson

    We got together before the cruise and did a big brainstorming session where we figured out once and for all how to fix the book--which is very exciting. However, it will take huge revisions (again) and this time, it's my turn to do that. So the ball is back in my court after he did a great job fixing characters. (The next fix involves plot and worldbuilding, which are my duties.)

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #3533 Copy

    Use_the_Falchion

    I'd also just like to say I that while I know you mentioned it basically once and haven't had any time to work on it since, I'm too excited for Soulburner (even if I shouldn't expect it for the next decade, if at all ever).

    Brandon Sanderson

    Soulburner...well, I'll just say not to hold your breath. :)

    Legion Release Party ()
    #3535 Copy

    Stormlightning

    Okay so, also in Oathbringer, did Wit really speak into Shallan's mind when she was confronting the Heart of the Revel--is that what happened??

    Brandon Sanderson

    Eh, RAFO.

    Stormlightning

    Can't you tell me if that's what he did? If that was him?

    Brandon Sanderson

    *teasing sound* Come on. I won't even tell you. You would have gotten similar RAFOs - that does not indicate any yes or no - about stuff in Mistborn that I eventually came around to.

    Legion Release Party ()
    #3538 Copy

    Questioner

    Is there a question that's asked most often?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah, "When's the sequel to X" is number one. Followed by what you would think are the standards. "Who's your favorite character," "What's your favorite book." Those style questions take up easily the top 20. Not at a signing like this at BYU full of Sharders, but at Comic Con, every second question is probably "When is this coming out, are you working on a sequel to this."

    Legion Release Party ()
    #3539 Copy

    Questioner

    Would it be possible to make Hemalurgic dental fillings? If there were a mad-scientist dentist?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I've thought about this. I think that would be possible, but for Hemalurgy to really work I need it to...it doesn't actually have to be touching the blood, despite what they think. But I think your average dental filling is not going deep enough...

    Questioner

    Root canal!

    Brandon Sanderson

    *Continues* But yeah, you could make it work.

    Legion Release Party ()
    #3541 Copy

    Steeldancer

    Given a situation where they have perfect knowledge of Hemalurgy--everything is known. Is it possible they could use a Shard-scalpel and spike to carefully...

    Brandon Sanderson

    To excise without killing somebody? The real damage is to the soul...

    Steeldancer

    I'm imagining taking out toxic sort of things.

    Brandon Sanderson

    You've seen Vasher do something similar, so it's not off books that that's possible.

    Legion Release Party ()
    #3542 Copy

    Steeldancer

    In Oathbringer, my one big issue with Oathbringer was Amaram's turn. I'm curious why you chose to not hint more at his turn. It felt a little bit out of nowhere. What were your thoughts on Amaram?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Which turn are you talking about?

    Steeldancer

    When he turns to Odium's side and he's like, "Okay, now I'm going to consume an Unmade."

    Brandon Sanderson

    I feel like Amaram was a slow and steady descent. But you didn't get to see viewpoints from him as he was doing it. And what he did to Kaladin was worse than anything he did in Oathbringer, in my mind.

    Steeldancer

    Why did you choose not to give him viewpoints.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Too many characters. To many people to give viewpoints to. It was kicked around. I kicked it around for a while. There just wasn't enough.

    Legion Release Party ()
    #3547 Copy

    R'Shara

    Would Stormlight healing, Progression, or Feruchemical gold healing count as some of the ways that a transgender person could change their body to match their identity?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes. Those would work. In fact, that's kind of the main way that you would make that happen. Injections of Investiture making the body match the Spiritual and Cognitive.