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Interviews: Advertising Some of my Smaller Projects - Fantasy Faction Q&A

Summary:

Entries

11

Date

May 21st, 2012

Type

Verbatim

  • 1

    Hey, all.

    Brandon Sanderson here. I have been known to write some fantasy stories now and then. I have some self published and small press books coming out this year, and I thought people might not get a chance to hear about them.

    The first is self published. I'm taking two of my novellas and printing them together in a print volume, which I'll be taking to some cons this summer to sell. I should have some up on my website for sale eventually. The stories are Defending Elysium and Firstborn, both of which are free to read on-line. (Defending Elysium is on my website. Firstborn on Tor.com--though I have a link to it in the other link just below.)

    http://brandonsanderson.com/library/catalog/Recent-Short-Stories_Full-Short-Stories

    Also of interest, I have a book coming out from Subterranean Press in July or August:

    http://www.subterraneanpress.com/Merchant2/merchant.mv?Screen=PROD&Product_Code=sanderson01&Category_Code=B&Product_Count=114

    Called Legion, it is the story of a man with a very interesting brain. He is a genius, and can master any topic of study in a very short time--however, the knowledge he gains manifests as a person only he can see, who acts as an adviser on that topic. Someone invents a camera that can take pictures of the past, and our hero--along with his band of genius delusions--must recover it after it is stolen.

    Finally, as if that weren't enough, Tachyon is publishing another of my books sometime around November:

    http://www.tachyonpublications.com/book/Emperors_Soul.html?Session_ID=new

    This story, The Emperor's Soul, is a fantasy story about Shai, a master forger. The emperor barely survives assassination, and is left a vegetable. His servants can heal his brain, but he just stares in front of himself blankly, as if his soul is gone. Shai is hired (well, brought off of death row) and told she has three months to create a forgery of the emperor's soul and imprint it onto his body with her magic, so that everyone can continue to act like the emperor is alive.

    Both the Subterranean book and the Tachyon book are novellas.

    The obvious question is probably, "Why isn't your New York publisher doing these?" Well, to be honest, these books aren't right for Tor. They're just too short, in my opinion, for a traditional bookstore release. (Though I originally did do one of them with Tor.com.) I wanted to release nice collector's edition print versions and cheap ebooks at the same time. It's not something that is profitable for a large publisher, and so is better suited to doing myself. (EDIT--Note, with Legion and The Emperor's Soul, I'm working with very talented small presses for the print editions and am self publishing the ebooks. I don't want to take credit for what Subpress and Tachyon are doing, as they've been fantastic to work with. I love the Tachyon cover.)

    I'm not sure if this means I officially get to join the indy writers, or if I'm already too far entrenched in my place to ever be considered indy. However, considering the company, it seems like a great place to be. I'm a firm believer that both indy publishing and big-six publishing will have a place in the future of books, and that both serve very useful roles. Seems like this is one of the best times in the history of publishing to be a writer, with more opportunity for more people and more voices.

    Best,

    Brandon

    p.s. I don't know if anyone out there is paying any attention, and this thread might just vanish away. But in case it doesn't, I'll keep an eye on it for a while and answer any questions that come my way. Feel free to ask.

  • 2

    jackmurphy

    Brandon I'm not sure if you have ever visited. But please come to Ireland on a tour or even for holidays get a pint of Guinness with me and a game of Magic.

    I'm sure you've answered this a million times but i don't lurk the internet that much, second Stormlight Archive? I'm guessing 2013? First one blew my mind, Now listening to Elantris and reading the Final Empire.

    BRANDON SANDERSON

    I will do my best to get to Ireland on tour. I only just made it to England and Scotland on tour for the first time, so I will really try to expand next time. I get a lot of requests from Ireland.

    Second Stormlight book is scheduled (by me) for fall of 2013. That really depends on me getting it finished by December of this year, at least in first draft form. That's possible, but I can't tell you how possible or not until I get the WoT done right. That will take as much, or as little, time as needed.

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  • 3

    Hoosay

    So while writing two massive books in Memory of Light and Stormlight 2 you found time to write (at least) four novellas? I'm not going to ask how you manage it, I just want to know how you stop your fingers falling off?

    BRANDON SANDERSON

    Well, two of these are older. (The ones that are free on my website.) The other two I wrote while traveling, when it's difficult to manage something as in-depth as the WoT/SA.

    But the real answer is that if I spend too long editing, and not enough time actually writing, I find myself burrowing down for a week and wanting to write something new. This is where a lot of these side projects come from.

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  • 4

    jean_santos45

    I'm definitely excited for your upcoming books. Are you going to sell signed and numbered copies of Legion and Emperor's Soul? Just got used to having my Sanderson books numbered and signed. a bit spoiled, i know.

    Are Legion and Emperor's Soul contained in their own worlds or are they part of the universe of The Stormlight Archive, etc (anywhere with Hoid in it. lol)

    BRANDON SANDERSON

    The Emperor's Soul is set on Sel, the world of Elantris. It's far off, though, so you have to have your eyes open to catch the clues. Hoid shows up in a deleted scene, and is referenced in the story.

    Footnote

    In case it was not clear, Legion is not part of the cosmere.

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  • 5

    capoeric

    I saw the question asked, but I did not see an answer. I noticed you listed one reason of doing these project yourself is to create nice, collectible print versions. Where/when can we pre-order our copies?

    BRANDON SANDERSON

    Legion is up for pre-order on the website. I think they have a certain number of signed, numbered editions and then a general edition for cheaper. The Emperor's Soul isn't up for pre-order quite yet. I suspect they'll do it soon. The last one is something I'll be taking to cons this summer. (I'm a guest of SD Comicon, Gencon, and Dragoncon all this year.) I don't know if I'll have it done in time for San Diego, but it should be ready for the others. I will have plenty left over to sell on my website for those who want one. There's no real 'order' for this yet. I'll try to do another post when these are all ready for sale. Right now, the focus is on Legion, which is up for order and coming out soonest.

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  • 6

    metalcake166

    I'm really intrigued by both of those premises. Where do you keep getting all these ideas from? I really admire your ingenuity.

    Also, and I'm not sure if you can/will answer this, but will we see another book with Waxillium Ladrian? His story doesn't appear to end with The Alloy of Law. And will his story be directly related to the next Mistborn trilogy? This has been eating away at me since finishing that book.

    BRANDON SANDERSON

    Wax's story was indeed directly related to the second trilogy, but I was intrigued enough with his time period that I find myself wanting to do more with him. I probably will.

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  • 7

    THElewisdix

    When I saw that Brandon Sanderson posted here, I squeed.

    Love your work, B!

    I do have a question though, why $20 for a novella? (Legion)

    I wasn't originally going to do a print edition. When I priced it out to do myself, I wasn't certain I could both make it worthwhile time-wise but still be cheap enough to be reasonable.

    My agent suggested to me that we go to sub-press. The print editions they do are considered collector's editions. There will be an ebook release (probably at the same time) for $2.99--the idea is that anyone who just wants to read the book can buy the inexpensive ebook. Those who want a nice copy to put on the shelf can buy the limited edition print.

    I don't know how sub-press arrives at their prices. Their print runs aren't huge, though, and so I suspect a lot of it is the due to the requirement of maintaining staff, office space, and the like.

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  • 8

    Khale

    Well, I don't want to wait until 2013 for the next Stormlight book! However, I will be content reading your side novellas. Is there a way to download them for my kindle?

    BRANDON SANDERSON

    Yes. The two new ones will have ebook launches at the same time (or soon after) the print editions come out. They'll be on the kindle store.

    The older two are on my website for free, though one is on the kindle store already. (Firstborn.) $.99

    http://www.amazon.com/Firstborn-A-Tor-Com-Original-ebook/dp/B003V4B4GQ/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1337659781&sr=8-4

    I'll see what I can do about getting the other one on Kindle soon.

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  • 9

    Windrunner

    Hey Brandon

    I just want to start out by thanking you for writing such wonderful books, one read-through TWoK made you my favorite author. I cannot wait for Emperor's Soul so I can get some new cosmere information! As a 17th Sharder I have to ask at least two timeline questions.

    When is Emperor's Soul set chronologically in relation to Elantris? Because if its around the same time Teod and Arelon might not have to stand alone against the Fjordell Empire.

    My other question is also a timeline one. (There are a lot of those tonight haha) I heard you had to move TWoK a little bit due to some plot constraints. So does Warbreaker still fall around the same time as AoL or has that shifted as well?

    I understand if you don't have time to answer these, I know authors are busy. Its great to see one such as yourself interacting with your fans. Thanks again for providing me with books that I've speculated for hours about!

    Thanks for the kind words! Emperor's Soul is after Elantris, but not too long after. It is before Mistborn.

    Second question is that I've moved things so that TWoK is around the same time as AoL, forced by some behind-the-scenes events. Warbreaker now happens before AoL.

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  • 10

    Overlord

    Some great projects there Brandon and I'm really excited to hear you've decided to publish some of your own books.

    Firstly, thank you so much for stopping by! It was great meeting you in England last year (despite my nerves!) and that interview we did still picks up tons of hits on youtube! It was truly a great day. Remembering how many question I hit you with; it probably won't surprise you I have more

    1. So, now that you are self publishing - has it given you a new found respect for those who have been self publishing from the beginning? I mean, now you are do doubt speaking with printers, typesetters, cover artists, reviewers, convention organisers. I guess you are having to market your own titles as well (although you've always been a great author for self promotion). Also, has the amount of work surprised you?

    2. I remember you saying originally that a lot of your work you wrote from your heart and based upon your own interests. I believe you struggled to get much attention from this early work and I believe your said Mistborn you wrote for the market as opposed to for yourself. Now that you are self-publishing certain titles, do you think we will be seeing more 'unique' and 'out-there' projects? I.e. Fantasy that is quite unlike things we have seen before?

    Thanks for your time, Brandon!

    BRANDON SANDERSON

    1. Well, I get to cheat. I've done well enough that I ave a full-time assistant with a lot of experience in desktop publishing. So, I can hand him the book, and he can take it to design town. That said, we on the more traditional track have had to do some eating of our words in recent years. Once upon a time there was a large stigma to self-publishing, and we all kind of got infected by it. So when it became viable as a real, serious alternative for authors, we had trouble getting rid of our biases.

    I wouldn't say the amount of work has surprised me, as I've paid attention to those self-publishing. I teach a writing and publishing class, and I've found that as publishing changes, I've had to keep my eyes on what it takes to publish reasonably on your own. I also know how much work goes into publishing a book on the publisher's end, and had no illusions about how much work it would take us.

    2. You've got the story mostly right, though it was the original draft of Mistborn (that did not get published) which was a 'For the market' book. It was awful. The Way of Kings was the book I wrote after that, giving no care to the world, writing only from my heart--and so you can say I've already started doing that. I would like to point out, though, that the second version of Mistborn (the one that got published, in which I tossed aside everything but the magic system and some original character concept) as in my mind a 'return to form' of the books like Elantris that I'd been writing and feeling were not getting attention.

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  • 11

    Tym

    Hi, I could be wrong, but I think I read somewhere thay your writing an Urban Fantasy? Just double checking that:P

    BRANDON SANDERSON

    I wrote one as a 'for fun' deviation during a break about a year and a half ago. I do this often, experimenting. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. This time, it was fun, but it wasn't high enough quality to release. Perhaps I will re-visit it, but more likely, I will leave it alone. Any artist creates 'b-sides' so to speak as they practice different styles and experiment. This was one of mine, and I don't like the idea of releasing something that didn't turn out well enough.