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Interviews: Orem Signing Report - Zas

Summary:

Entries

52

Date

Sep 22nd, 2012

Type

Verbatim

Location

Orem, UT

Bookstore

Barnes & Noble

Reporter

Zas

Links

17th Shard

Theoryland

  • 1

    Zas

    I had the opportunity to be at a signing on Saturday with Brandon Sanderson, along with Rubix and another fan, and so we recorded the entire signing and all the questions that got asked in the line during the signing. Here they are!

    The WoT stuff is here, and was mostly done by Terez. Thanks again Terez!

    Thanks also to Windrunner, Sweetness, and Gess789 for helping transcribe this.

  • 2

    Question

    [So in the Alloy of Law, you mention it being an in between book. You said you're writing] another Trilogy set?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes. I had this whole series that was outlined. This [Alloy of Law] was not in the outline, it was from fun, and I really enjoyed writing it, but it's not part of the series. It's three sets of three. And I may do other things like Alloy of Law, but Alloy was just for fun.

    I don't know if you know this, but all my fantasy books are connected. There are repeating characters involved, but you have to search to find them. And the Mistborn Trilogy is kind of interconnected with that. Particularly with the third trilogy. The Science Fiction one.

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  • 3

    Question

    I have to admit, I've read everything except for your Wheel of Time books, because I'm having a hard time getting through book 11, I lose track of all the characters, and the plot.

    Brandon Sanderson

    I know how you feel. If you ever decide that you want to get back in them, there is the WoT Encyclopedia which has chapter summaries for all the books, so you can jump right into book 12. There's another one called WoT summary that's very good too.

    Question

    What's the release date? January 3rd?

    Brandon Sanderson

    January 8th. Or 9th.

    Zas

    8th.

    Brandon

    8th. These guys know better than I do.

  • 4

    Fan

    The Mistborn RPG is really cool.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Good. I like it. I wanted to make it balanced, so that people want to play Dockson, so that he's just as important as a Mistborn. I had some input in it, but not a ton.

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  • 5

    Question

    How do you come up with magic systems? Particularly Allomancy and Feruchemy.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Feruchemy and Allomancy were designed separately, and I put them together which was sort of an interesting thing. Allomancy basically came from my readings of Alchemy and my readings about Biology. And metabolizing things to get energy. It felt very natural to be burning metals. Weird, but natural. When I started writing it out, it worked so well. I wanted something that had a scientific component and a magical component. Does that make sense?

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  • 6

    Question

    [How many books have you written?]

    Brandon Sanderson

    I've written about 25 books. I'm not sure if that's correct or not. I'd have to go back and check. It's in the early 20s.

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  • 7

    Question

    Will there be an Alloy of Law 2?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes. I really enjoyed writing it, and people seem to have enjoyed reading it, so I plan to do more. It was a really fun thing to do. You won't have to wait too long. I have to write the sequel to Way of Kings, which I'm doing right now, and then we'll see where I go.

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  • 8

    Question

    How are you so awesome?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Well, I take an awesome pill every morning, it's prescribed, and it sometimes helps out.

    Tags

  • 9

    Fan

    I'm so excited for the Way of Kings sequel.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Well, you'll be glad to know that I finished with the first section of it last night; the second book is Shallan's book, so I was writing her flashback sequences.

    Question

    Any new name ideas yet?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Not yet. The name's still the Bad Name. [explains to others]. In my notes it's called The Book of Endless Pages, because that's the book Shallan gets at the end of Book 1, but the problem is that it's kind of a silly title for a book this long.

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  • 10

    Gee Shu Pei

    [introduces self]

    Brandon Sanderson

    Is that Chinese?

    Gee Shu Pei

    Yeah.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Taiwan?

    Gee Shu Pei

    Yeah.

    Brandon Sanderson

    I was just in Taiwan on tour.

    Gee Shu Pei

    Wow! Did they translate it there?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes. In fact I'm a bestseller there. I'm like John Grisham level in Taiwan of all the places. I sell really well here, but I sell crazy good in Taiwan and it's all teenage girls. [laughter erupts] They found Mistborn and fell in love with it. Like Hunger Games came out and Mistborn came out at the same time, and they all transferred to reading Mistborn as well, and so it's crazy. So I went over there and went on tour, and there's like 700 pictures of me with Taiwanese schoolgirls on Facebook. [laughter erupts again].

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  • 11

    Question

    So I know that there's going to be a second Mistborn trilogy. Is Alloy part of it?

    Brandon Sanderson

    No. This is foreshadowing the second trilogy. I may do some more books with these characters.

    Question

    So is the second trilogy in the same time period?

    Brandon Sanderson

    It will be a little future forward from this. More like mid–20th century.

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  • 12

    Question

    So how old were you when you wrote your first book?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Well, my first book came out in 2005, so I would've been.... 30? But I was writing from age 21. That's when I really started seriously writing. I dabbled a little bit on my mission on my P-days, with permission from my mission president, and then really started seriously when I got back sophomore year of college, and wrote my first book that year I got back. And that one didn't get published. But it wasn't any good, so it's good it didn't get published. And then I just wrote over the next 9 years, wrote and wrote and wrote till I finally sold one.

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  • 13

    Brandon Sanderson

    [to fan whose book he's signing] So who's this book for?

    Fan

    For my friend at BYU-I.

    Brandon Sanderson

    My sister goes to BYU-I. She's 24? She just graduated.

    Fan

    What's her major?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Secondary Education with a Science Focus. In fact, I think she's doing her student teaching this semester.

    Fan

    So you were originally a Chemistry major, right?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I was. And I really liked all the concepts, but the math killed me. The math was so hard, and I didn't enjoy the busywork of it, and that was a big deciding factor for me. I wanted to do something that I enjoyed the busy work. And you know, no one likes everything. There are times in writing where it's hard. And you get up in the morning and you'd rather just play video games instead of work, but it doesn't matter what you're going to do, that's going to happen, but all in all, even the little stuff in writing I love, so I switched to trying to be a writer. And it worked out for me eventually.

    Fan

    The class you teach at BYU, is that only for graduate students?

    Brandon Sanderson

    No, it's open to anyone, but grad students get to register first. And because of that, they tend to grab a lot of the seats. I do add a lot on the first day. What I usually do is I ask people how much they've written, and the people who have done the most writing will probably benefit the most from the class, so I let them have a place. So if you go to BYU, are you at BYU right now?

    Fan

    I'm at BYU-I, but I'm probably going to transfer. But he wants to take it. What's the title of the class? Brandon: How to write Science Fiction and Fantasy. English 318. If you want to get in the class, take a year, write a book or two, and then when I say, who's written the most books, most people have not written any. And so if you've written one or two, your chances of getting the slot in the class go drastically up.

    Fan

    Maybe children books.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah. They can be children's books. Not picture books. Picture books are too easy. [laughter] Well, not easy. But easy to write poorly.

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  • 14

    Question

    So is there a third law of magic?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes there is. I don't have a pithy way to say it yet.

    Question

    Do you want to try to describe it anyways?

    Brandon

    Yeah, the best magic systems are interconnected with the world, with society, with culture, and the development of the setting of a book. The next level you want to think about is how does your magic affect your gender roles, how does it affect your government, your religions, all these things.

    Question

    They all have to be interconnected.

    Brandon

    Yes. But I don't have a pithy way to say it, so once I come up with a good pithy way to say it, then I can actually write it.

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  • 15

    Question

    I was wondering if you meant to do the arms thing in the beginning of Mistborn with Sazed.

    Brandon Sanderson

    I did, I did.

    Question

    K, good. I just wanted to make sure.

    Brandon Sanderson

    I feel kind of silly because it actually is a pun. And the entire Mistborn trilogy is therefore based on a pun. The first paragraph of the first chapter. But you know, if you can't tell from me naming my character Wax and Wayne, that I have a slight problem with puns.

    Question

    I love that! I didn't even realize it until I started to explain it to my family, and I was saying that the main characters are Wax and Wayne. It was a good moment.

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  • 16

    Question

    So you said that you recently threw away a sequence from Way of Kings 2. How do you know when to throw it out?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Practice. Lots of practice. It was much harder to do that early on, but I've had lots of practice, and so I know that when it's not working, I know why it's not working. Sometimes when it's not working it's because I'm just having a bad day. I need to try it the next day. Sometimes when it's not working, Something fundamental is wrong with the book. Sometimes, it's just the scene is in the wrong place or isn't active enough. And this one wasn't active enough. I set it in a way that people were just sitting around too much, and I had to scrap all that rework it so that there would be conflict and motion.

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  • 17

    Question

    Any spoilers for A Memory of Light?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Let's see here. Harriet killed a character in the book that I did not intend to kill. So I wrote the entire book with a character living and she killed this character.

    Question

    Did she tell you right before you finished, or what?

    Brandon Sanderson

    She sent back the draft and said "This person dies."

    Question

    So did you have to change a lot?

    Brandon Sanderson

    So they succumb to their wounds. I intended them to live, so there is a character who died unexpectedly. So that's a slight spoiler. There is like a chapter that's over a hundred pages. It's a Super Chapter.

    Question

    Did you have to invent any of it yourself, or did Jordan leave a lot of it for you?

    Brandon Sanderson

    He left some of it for me, and then I had to make the rest. As you're reading through the books, probably about half and half. Half will be stuff that he wrote notes on, half will be stuff that I wrote.

    Question

    Do you feel like it comes pretty easy?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Some of it does. I mean I've been reading since I was a kid. So some of the characters like Perrin is very natural for me. And Rand's super natural for me. Others are a little less natural for me.

    Question

    Like Mat.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes, like Mat. Mat's harder for me to write.

    Question

    Why is that?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Because Mat is very complex. Not to say that Perrin's not, but Perrin's straightforward. You know what I mean? Perrin says what he means, and does what he means. Mat says the opposite of what he means, and does the opposite of what he says. Making that tone correct for that is very hard. He's one part rapscallion, the other part Awesomeness. And balancing when he's playing the fool, and when he's just being awesome is very hard to get that balance down, because you don't want it to be silly, you know he can play the fool a bit but he shouldn't be silly. Otherwise it won't match from when he's being Awesome as well, if that makes sense.

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  • 18

    Question

    Can one person have more than one Shardblade?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes. A person can possess more than one Shardblade. [referring to us] They're like Oooh!

    Question

    That actually changes a whole lot of ideas that I had.

    Brandon

    So has there been debate on this topic?

    Zas

    No, not that I know of.

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  • 19

    Bradley

    [introduces self]

    Brandon Sanderson

    So, Bradley. Any questions for me?

    Bradley

    Um, none that I feel won't get RAFO'd. Really, every possible question that I can think of is probably big enough that you're just going to say, "Wait until January." Which kind of hurts me inside, but at the same time, that's the way it's always been.

    Fan

    Ask it anyway.

    Fan

    Or at least for the recorder...

    Brandon Sanderson

    That's right. I'm being recorded for this so I can't tell too many secrets.

    Bradley

    That's true. Exactly.

    Fan

    That's the point. [...]

    Brandon Sanderson

    Brandon: Well, the last book is actually...I gave into what I've been wanting to do all along, and I made it a crossover with Twilight. (laughter)

    Bradley

    Yes! See, I've always wanted that moment when it's got Nynaeve being awesome, and then Edward shows up and sparkles at her.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah, right, well it's a meeting between Bella and Bela, right?

    Fans

    Ohhhh! (laughter)

    Bradley

    They're also both Darkfriends.

    Fan

    Bella rides on Bela? I can see it now.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yep, yep...

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  • 20

    Loialson

    Question from Travyl, at the reread: Did Rand tell Darlin what Darlin responded to Egwene's letter, or was that all Darlin?

    Brandon Sanderson

    RAFO.

    Loialson

    Dangit.

    Brandon Sanderson

    I don't want to say anything about that because there's a potential confrontation coming up between all of these folks, and so there may be mention made of what various people knew and didn't know.

    Loialson

    Okay.

    Brandon Sanderson

    It's not a big RAFO—it's not like there's some big secret there—but I don't want to say anything that's going to spoil a potential read of scenes that are coming.

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  • 21

    Loialson

    Does Demandred even have an alter ego?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes, he does.

    Loialson

    Okay, cause we've been trying to figure out who the heck is it, and we can't figure it out. We're thinking Roedran, but it's like, too obvious.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Here's the thing: Robert Jordan said that Demandred did not appear until Knife of Dreams, and so I have been very hesitant about saying whether or not he'd appeared—I think I've said whether or not he'd appeared on screen in my books—but the reason is, if I give you a yes or no—if he's appeared, yes or no—then that narrows it down to like just a few characters, that are introduced in mine, so I've been very hesitant about answering that. Demandred does have an alter ego. He has been up to some very cool things. There are people online who have guessed correctly. And so, I will say that much.

    Loialson

    Is he in Randland?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I won't say whether or not he's in Randland.

    Fan

    He's not in Shara! He can't be in Shara!

    Footnote

    As to whether or not Demandred's alter ego has been seen on screen, Brandon himself extended RJ's comment through Knife of Dreams, and he later said that Demandred wasn't seen in Towers of Midnight at all. That, combined with this comment here where he lumps his books together makes it clear that Demandred's alter ego has never been seen on screen. (A list of characters introduced in The Gathering Storm, some of whom are disqualified by appearing in Towers of Midnight, helps to make that point.) Other comments by RJ make it clear that we should be able to figure out who it is by Winter's Heart at the latest, and Brandon has also said several times that it can be figured out from the books.

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  • 22

    Question

    Why is Dashiva never resurrected? He was killed with a ball of fire by Elza, not balefire....

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes, I know.

    Loialson

    Why is he dead?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Robert Jordan once said that res...transmigrating a soul had not just to do with the way that they were killed but the time and...not necessarily just a weave, but why and how. [Technically, where and how.] I am not going to delve too much into transmigration. Robert Jordan did speak on these sorts of things. And so, the Dark One also might not think that the person was an asset worth bringing back.

    Loialson

    Dashiva kinda sucks.

    Brandon Sanderson

    I'm not gonna say, but those are all factors in this.

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  • 23

    Loialson

    Was the original intention of the Eye of the World to be a second option to reseal the Bore?

    Brandon Sanderson

    As far as I know, no. Now, that's the sort of thing that could be buried in the notes, but you know, I've read a lot of them, and as far as I know, no, that's not the purpose.

    Loialson

    Did the makers originally have a specific intention? Because I don't think Rand used it in the way they intended.

    Brandon Sanderson

    I believe that they did have a specific intention.

    Loialson

    Did Rand use it alright, to their intentions?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Um, Rand...um...

    Loialson

    That felt like a big waste to me.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah. I was...I will RAFO that. But I will say that they did have a specific intention. How about, here's something I can give you...it's actually backing up a few questions. I've mentioned online that we're probably going to—for a certain anthology, the Unfettered anthology—we are going to be putting deleted scenes from A Memory of Light and some of these deleted scenes will answer some of your questions.

    Loialson

    That's exciting. Thank you.

    Brandon Sanderson

    I don't think there's an official announcement; I don't think Harriet has decided 100% to make the announcement, but I've mentioned online before in things that we were considering it, and so, some deleted scenes having to do with some of your questions are actually going to be in this Unfettered anthology, and they may be from the viewpoint of a certain Forsaken that everyone's very curious about.

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  • 24

    Loialson

    Mat's dice in his head. Are they real? Do they come from Sindhol? Are they from his ta'veren nature, or is it just a plot device? (laughter)

    Brandon Sanderson

    Everything that I've read in the notes indicates that they are from his ta'veren nature, and that they are a manifestation of being ta'veren [?] related to his [?]

    Loialson

    One of Perrin's manifestations, visions in the Wolf Dream...

    Brandon Sanderson

    Partially. Perrin's manifestation is also...he draws to him things that he needs; what he needs comes to Perrin. That's actually his primary manifestation of being ta'veren.

    Loialson

    So what's the difference between what Perrin does and what Egwene does?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Oh boy. Can I get into this? They are similar, but not the same. What Egwene does is partially a Talent of the Power, and it's related to the Power. And Perrin is not.

    Loialson

    Is it [?] him being a Wolfbrother?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes.

    Loialson

    [?] if he chose to.

    Brandon Sanderson

    It is related to him being a Wolfbrother.

    Loialson

    Why can the wolves not see it?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I honestly don't remember the answer to that.

    Loialson

    That's okay...

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  • 25

    Loialson

    In the prologue, Isam is hired by a female that is not known. Is that Lanfear/Cyndane?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Oh, I'm TOTALLY gonna RAFO that. Come ON! Come on. You KNEW I was gonna RAFO that. That's very important to the book.

    Loialson

    Okay, related: Moridin says 'the one who is punished the most'. Obviously that's gotta be Cyndane, right?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Okay, yes. That is Cyndane.

    Loialson

    So, is it possible that what happened in the epilogue, she was really going through that torture?

    Brandon Sanderson

    You will have to see it. RAFO. Okay, like someone [?] related. I don't think, by the way...when you read the book, what Cyndane is up to should be of paramount importance to you, and DO NOT believe everything that you think happens in the book.

    Loialson

    From her point of view, or from our point of view?

    Brandon Sanderson

    From your point of view, regarding her.

    Loialson

    Oh, boy.

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  • 26

    Question

    Can spren die?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes, spren can die.

    Question

    Okay, so Syl, she's been around for at least a few thousand years, right?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes.

    Question

    How does she forget her memories? Is it in connection to humans that makes it so she remembers things?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes.

    Question

    And she's what, a Bonding Spren?

    Brandon Sanderson

    You will find out. She [says she's] an Honorspren, but you will find out.

    Zas

    Is that bond the Nahel bond?

    Brandon Sanderson

    [Nervous grin on Brandon's face] [laughter] There is a certain amount of... It is a symbiotic bond that is gained by Syl. And things gained by the person bonding. And the stronger presence in the physical realm, and the ability to think better in the physical realm is a part of that bond. She is mostly getting [something] of the physical realm. Without the bond, it is very hard for her to think in this world.

    Question

    Because she's windspren?

    Brandon Sanderson

    That's part of it. That's part of something else.

    Question

    Shallan. What the crap was up with the headless spren?

    Brandon Sanderson

    You will find out! Read and Find out! I did just finish her flashback sequence, the first thing I wrote for the second book.

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  • 27

    Fan

    I'm buying Legion! I looked everywhere and I couldn't find it.

    Brandon Sanderson

    You know, the hardcover is mostly a collector's item. It's mostly was intended as an ebook only release. There was just a few hardcovers made.

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  • 28

    Question

    How do you like being famous?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Well I am a just the right kind of famous, which is only a little bit famous. I have a completely normal life, I don't have to worry about any sort of weirdness...

    Fan

    Getting mobbed by Paparazzi...

    Brandon Sanderson

    I get recognized like once a week. It's enough to make me feel cool, so it's the right amount of famous.

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  • 29

    Question

    When is the next Stormlight Archive coming out?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Next fall. If I'm on the ball. That's not supposed to rhyme, but it did. Tor said they'd put it out next fall if I turn it in on time.

    Question

    When is turn in time?

    Brandon Sanderson

    April. They said if I get it to them in April, we'll be fine. The trick is, for Michael Whelan to do the cover, I need to give him a cover scene like next month. Because Michael takes his time, because he's the best artist in the business, so you need to turn stuff in early. So I need to decide "What's the cover going to be", and come up with a fantastic cover scene for it.

    Question

    So is it finished? Is the book finished?

    Brandon Sanderson

    You can follow on my website, I'm at 7% right now. I have to turn it in in April, so if I can get to 100% by April (or 110% knowing Brandon) we'll be all right. If we can't than it gets a little more sketchy.

    Question

    Is that turning in the first draft?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah, we should be able to do it if I turn in the first draft in April.

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  • 30

    Andre

    You're friends with Patrick Rothfuss, right?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes, I am.

    Andre

    Can you give him any tips to write faster?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Well, Pat is, he's very into beautiful prose, this is his thing. And it shows. And you can't do that fast. My prose is not as beautiful, my prose is translucent is what I try to do. I try to write prose so you don't see it, and you see the story. And that prose can go faster. And it's just a matter of writing style. I actually envy his prose sometimes, and he envies my speed.

    Andre

    I imagine.

    Brandon Sanderson

    But, I think the third one will be faster. After the first one came out he ended up with this huge performance anxiety problem because the first one took off so much; that he couldn't even write for a year because he was so stressed about how well the book had done. He got over that. And he doesn't have that anymore. So theoretically the next book should be faster. He did sign for three more books, right?

    Andre

    He signed for a new trilogy...

    Josh

    Which one would hope means he's getting close to done with the one he's in the middle of. We can all hope.

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  • 31

    Question

    I was wondering what your five favorite books are. Regardless of genre. I ask a lot of authors that.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Les Miserables. That's one. That's my favorite classic. The Shadow Rising by Robert Jordan. Favorite of the WoT. Dragonsbane by Barbara Hambly. The book that got me into fantasy. It's hard to find nowadays. A Fire Upon The Deep Vernor Vinge. That's probably my favorite science fiction book. And let's say my favorite Pratchett, which these days is Going Postal.

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  • 32

    Question

    We were at the RPG release party and I gave that to my friend for his wedding, because he's really into that. He actually sent me with a couple questions. He said ‘could you ask him about the Words of Founding? What does it contain besides the religions, technological advancements, and layout for Elendel? Is there anything special in there?

    Brandon Sanderson

    There's some other cool stuff in there that eventually I'll talk about.

    Question

    But nothing specific?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Nothing I'm going to be able to (can't tell what he's saying. Basically that he can't say anything specific, I think.

    Question

    I was going to say generalities. Does that cover the basics of it?

    Brandon Sanderson

    That definitely covers the basics of it, yeah. There was stuff from Sazed's metalminds. A lot of that stuff that was in there. Everything that was in there, he tried to get in the books. And then some other additions. Such as Elendel, which he created as a basin for life and things. And stuff like that. They are very interesting. These guys are here recording everything I have to say. So I have to watch myself.

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  • 33

    Question

    How does one make sense of Spook's High Imperial?

    Brandon Sanderson

    One thing about High Imperial, or Eastern Street Slang, is that it was devised by those who spoke it in order to be intentionally obtuse. So it was hard for people to understand. And so there are a lot of nonsense words thrown in the middle. But, it's also got reversed grammar. ‘Wasing the wanting of doing the thing' is ‘I wanted to do that.' But you can also throw random words in there. As long as those parts are in there, it'll make sense to those they're speaking to. ‘I wanted to do this. Wasing the wanting of doing the thing.' You're putting everything into a gerund. You're starting with the verb and the tense. And you're turning everything into ridiculously bad gerunds. That's it in brief.

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  • 34

    Question

    I heard you're doing another Mistborn Trilogy?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes.

    Question

    Any estimate when the first book might be?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I might do some more Alloy of Law era things in between, they are not the second trilogy, but I will do them. The second trilogy will come between the break between the first sequence in the Stormlight Archive, and the second sequence of the Stormlight Archive. it's two five book sequences, and during that break I will stop and do the second Mistborn trilogy. So it will depend on how quickly I can write those.

    Question

    So when exactly would the second Mistborn trilogy take place relative to Alloy of Law?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Late 20th century era. Modern technology.

    Zas

    I've heard that's like... 50? years after Alloy of Law.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah, right around there. Roughly. Not quite information age, is what I was looking at. So there's no direct equivalent, because the different technology aspects, but you would see it as something around the 80s. Maybe early 90s. Allomancer SWAT team is what it's about.

    Question

    Okay, that's exciting.

    Brandon Sanderson

    First book is a Mistborn serial killer versus an Allomancer SWAT team. With deeper ramifications to everything.

    Question

    Is Dan helping you with the psychology on that one?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Uh, I actually haven't yet gotten his help on a [profile?] yet.

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  • 35

    Question

    When are you going to write the last Alcatraz?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I bought the rights back from the publisher, I didn't like how they were being handled. That was February I think, and they have a six month sell off period till the rights officially reverted. So what's six months after February? We basically just got them officially back. And so I'm looking for trying to squeeze that in sometime next year.

    Question

    That's the one I want you to finish the most.

    Brandon Sanderson

    And once I get it done, I will probably just post it on my website for a digital download or something like that, just for the people who want it. Then we'll worry about how to get a print edition.

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  • 36

    Zas

    The second Alloy of Law is called Shadows of Self, right?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Shadows of Self, yep.

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  • 37

    Question

    How do you come up with your magic systems? Do you just open the dictionary and point to a word? "Oh, I'll make something with that."

    Brandon Sanderson

    No, I'm always looking for something that strikes me. And I'm looking for things that haven't been done before. Things that will make nice conflict, that walk the line between science and superstition.

    Question

    That's what I love, that it's all super scientific but it also has magic.

    Brandon Sanderson

    If you will Google Sanderson's First Law, and Sanderson's Second Law, I have two essays that I wrote about how I do magic. They're both on my website, but Google will find them easier than trying to find them on my website.

    Question

    Did you ever read Master of 5 magics?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I did. That's old school.

    Question

    Yeah, not great stories, but wonderful magic.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yep. Great magic. That's what I felt about them too.

    Question

    When will the next Mistborn (Alloy of Law era) come out?

    Brandon Sanderson

    It will probably come out after the next Way of Kings. Next Way of Kings is next Christmas, the next Alloy of Law era book is probably the following Spring or something like that.

    Question

    Are you planning two more or three more?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I will do as many of those as strikes me. The Alloy of Law books are a deviation from the main world plotline.

    So it's just for fun. I'm not going to commit to how many I'll do or not do. Just whatever's working.

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  • 38

    q

    I love the cross interviews between you and Patrick Rothfuss. They're some of my favorites.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Oh yeah, yeah. I'm doing another thing with him, like next month, in just a couple weeks. He does this thing on Google Hangouts, and he invited me on for the next one.

    Question

    What's that called?

    Brandon Sanderson

    It's like something he does...

    Zas

    Story Board?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah. So I'll be doing that with Terry Brooks, it'll be me and him and Terry Brooks. It's going to be pretty cool.

  • 39

    Question

    If you were a misting, what would you be?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I would be a Coinshot. Because I would love to be able to have that flight thing going on, jumping around.

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  • 40

    Question

    [Will you be coming to this con that we invited you to?] (garbled audio)

    Brandon Sanderson

    Because I have a baby due in January, the WoT tour is going to be moved back to February. So I'll do the first week after the book releases, then go home, then come back for February.

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  • 41

    Zas

    Elantris. Where does it fit in the timeline in reference to Hero of Ages? Since that's what most other things are referenced to.

    Right. Elantris is far earlier.

    Zas

    Like thousands of years earlier? Or more like hundreds?

    Brandon

    It's quite... It's not thousands.

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  • 42

    Zas

    So Power of Creation. Is the Power of Creation this thing of power that powers Allomancy and powers the Aons, or is the Power of Creation just what each shard has?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I would say [the power] each shard has. Is more the definition.

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  • 43

    Zas

    So what's up with the regeneration issue?

    Brandon Sanderson

    [looks confused]

    Zas

    With Shards? Because they only have so much power they can access at a certain time, but yet they still have more energy. So how does that work? Is it just they have so much power they can use at any given time?

    Brandon Sanderson

    [still slightly confused] What are you talking about? Like which shards?

    Zas

    Ruin and Preservation. Since we know the most about them.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Ruin and Preservation were a specific instance, because almost all their energy was thrown into resisting each other. Keep that in mind. Even after Preservation was only a shadow, basically all of it was "Let's keep Ruin from destroying the world". So they were polar opposites. Set in balance. But slightly unbalanced in a couple of ways, that eventually, that slight imbalance [led to the Mistborn Trilogy]. They are a special case, because of that.

    Zas

    So then why are they hesitant to directly fuel Allomancy?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Why are they hesitant to? What do you mean by directly fuel Allomancy?

    Zas

    You mention in the Hero of Ages Q&A that they can directly fuel Allomancy, like Vin does with Elend, but it requires expending their energy in a way they are hesitant to do.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Because it imbalances them more. Does that make sense? So if you are putting your energy here, rather than fighting the other force, that gives them an edge somewhere else, while trying to gain an edge here. And you have to make sure that's really worth it. Like a chess game. Is it worth sacrificing my pawn here to expose myself over here.

    Zas

    That makes sense.

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  • 44

    Josh and Eric

    So are Shards the most powerful thing in the Cosmere?

    Adam

    Or is Adonalsium?

    Josh and Eric

    No, no, let him RAFO the first one first, or he'll lump them together.

    Brandon Sanderson

    It depends on what you believe. The Shards are the most powerful things currently overtly manifest. There are those who would say there are other subtle forces being manifest. Most people in the know would say that Shards are the most powerful thing.

    Adam

    Does Hoid believe that Shards are the most powerful thing?

    Brandon Sanderson

    You'll have to ask him sometime. [gives troll grin]. Or see him get asked something like that sometime. There's argument to be made that right now Harmony is the most powerful thing in the Cosmere.

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  • 45

    Zas

    So where does the power of Allomancy come from? Does it come directly from Preservation? Does that imbalance him?

    Brandon Sanderson

    [Brandon being cautious about wording] Certain things built into a world are not the same. Not used in the same way. Meaning the energy of Preservation and Ruin inside of something living and growing—yes that's "of" them, but that's not direct force that they're using at that time.

    Adam

    Would a good example of that be Allomancy versus the blessings the Kandra have?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah, yeah sure.

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  • 46

    Zas

    So you talk about the residue a Shard leaves on a sliver. So what does that residue have? Like what does it do? If anything?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Well, one thing it can do is that people capable of noticing Investiture, would know there is a trace of investiture from that event.

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  • 47

    Zas

    What effect does the world have on the magic system?

    Brandon Sanderson

    It always has an effect.

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  • 48

    Zas

    Marsh, as an Inquisitor, can see Ruin, and Vin sees Ruin, but they're not seeing the same thing. So how does that work?

    Brandon Sanderson

    In what way? How about this. I'll give you this. I know what you're getting at. And a lot of these things I know what you're getting at, I'm just trying to force you to—I'll just give you one on this. In some cases, Ruin would manifest directly, and you would see what he wanted you to see. In other cases, that might not be the case.

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  • 49

    Zas

    So the number of Shards that have been on Roshar is three, correct?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Correct.

    Zas

    People have been thrown by you saying that Odium is not native to Roshar.

    Brandon

    Odium is not native, that's the thing. Are any of them native? So if you dig the deeper question, are any of them native, ehhh, none of them are native to the planets you've seen so far. What I probably should've said to be more precise is that Honor and Cultivation were there long before Odium showed up.

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  • 50

    Josh

    If Odium went to Scadrial, would he be blind to metal there?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Um. [nervous laugh] Um...

    Josh

    Because I think you mentioned more than once that focuses are actually determined by planet.

    Brandon Sanderson

    I'm going to RAFO that. But that's one of those excellent questions. I'm amused that people have figured out enough to be asking questions like that.

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  • 51

    Zas

    That's it. Oh wait, we can do this ridiculous one. There's this crazy off the wall theory that Parshendi are dead people brought back to life.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Interesting. There will be Parshendi viewpoints in the second book, and you will be able to see a lot more of that.

    Question

    Are Parshendi like a hive mind sort of culture?

    Brandon Sanderson

    They are not a hive mind. I thought people might assume that.

    Question

    But because of the singing, it seems like...

    Brandon Sanderson

    There is a connection. It's more Union than Hivemind. You know about Jung?

    Question

    Not particularly.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Jung's philosophy was that all people are connected.

    Question

    Oh, like the dream psychologist?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I believe that collective unconscious was one of his terms. So it's not hive mind, but there is—there's something the Parshendi can tap into.

    Question

    With the singing?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah, like with the singing, where one sings over here, and one sings over there, they are actually in beat with one another even if they start at different times. So there is something there, a connection.

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  • 52

    Zas

    What about Aon Rii? Talk about Aon Rii. What are the random dots? Are they valuable metals?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Honestly, I don't remember. [laughter] I'll be straight up honest with you, I designed the Aons—When I designed the Aons, they all had things like that. Like "Oh, that's what this will be," but I was not as good about taking notes of things then. I didn't have the wiki that I now have.

    Josh

    What I would give for one hour with that wiki.

    Brandon Sanderson

    I didn't have all of that stuff, so I can say "Yeah, that's going to be valuable metals", and canonize it that way, but I don't remember what I was actually thinking when I designed it. It was my first time doing anything like that, like [?] sort of thing. I hadn't ever done anything like that before, so I was just flying by the seat of my pants.

    In fact, there's a fun story about that, a story I don't think I told during the annotations, I might have. Originally, I wrote it, and used all the Aons as like little things about characters' personalities.

    Zas

    Really?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Like Rao is spirit, and Ene (eenee) is wit. Well, all the other ones were things like that, to the point that the traitor character, his Aon's the one that meant Betrayal. Like this, all the characters have little things like that. And then my editor saw it and said "Ah. Do you really want to give away everyone's personality? And who's going to name their kid Betrayal? And I was like "That was really stupid Brandon, why did you do that?" But at the time, I didn't know if I was going to have a dictionary in the back or anything, and so I had to go back and rename almost all of them. I left Rao and Ene, but I renamed almost all the—renamed the wrong word. I shifted all the meanings and things like this so that everyone would have a name that would make sense that you would name a person. And none of them meant anything more than what they actually mean.

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