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2012-04-30: I had the great pleasure of speaking with Harriet McDougal Rigney about her life. She's an amazing talent and person and it will take you less than an hour to agree.
2012-04-24: Some thoughts I had during JordanCon4 and the upcoming conclusion of "The Wheel of Time."
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Ok, last question. It was really difficult coming up with three questions that haven’t been asked already...
OK... you’re not going to ask me the “what would you ask me” question?
Oooooh, ok. Hm. That one is so hard! Every time people ask me something like this... What have I never been asked that people should be asking, is basically what the question is? Something that the fans have just missed... They pick up on so much, that it’s hard... I do wonder if, you know… all the magic systems [in my books] are connected and work on some basic fundamental principles, and a lot of people haven’t been asking questions about this. One thing I did get a question on today, and I’ll just talk about this one... they didn’t ask the right question, but I nudged them the right way, is understanding that tie between Aondor [the magic system from Elantris] and allomancy [Mistborn’s magic system].
People ask about getting the power from metals and things, but that’s not actually how it works. The power’s not coming from metal. I talked a little about this before, but you are drawing power from some source, and the metal is actually just a gateway. It’s actually the molecular structure of the metal… what’s going on there, the pattern, the resonance of that metal works in the same way as an Aon does in Elantris. It filters the power. So it is just a sign of “this is what power this energy is going to be shaped into and give you.” When you understand that, compounding [in Alloy of Law] makes much more sense.
Compounding is where you are able to kind of draw in more power than you should with feruchemy. What’s going on there is you’re actually charging a piece of metal, and then you are burning that metal as a feruchemical charge. What is happening is that the feruchemical charge overwrites the allomantic charge, and so you actually fuel feruchemy with allomancy, is what you are doing. Then if you just get out another piece of metal and store it in, since you’re not drawing the power from yourself, you’re cheating the system, you’re short-circuiting the system a little bit. So you can actually use the power that usually fuels allomancy, to fuel feruchemy, which you can then store in a metalmind, and basically build up these huge reservoirs of it. So what’s going on there is… imagine there’s like, an imprint, a wavelength, so to speak. A beat for an allomantic thing, that when you burn a metal, it says “ok, this is what power we give.” When it’s got that charge, it changes that beat and says, “now we get this power.” And you access a set of feruchemical power. That’s why compounding is so powerful.
I've done it all of these ways.
Most commonly, I develop the magic, plot, characters, and some setting ideas separately. I combine them in my head, looking for good synergy. (Allomancy and Feruchemy were designed separately, then put into the same book.) Sometimes, I design to fit a story. (Hemalurgy was designed to fit a hole in the three-fold magic system I wanted to tell.) Other times, the magic comes first, then I build everything out of that. (This happened for my YA book Scribbler—also known as The Rithmatist—which isn't out yet.)
The Inquisitor at the end is indeed Marsh. He stayed alive using the same trick that TLR used.
I said that I actually had a related question.
He said "Oh, do you want to ask why Marsh has a Feruchemical Atium spike?"
I blinked, and said that my question was actually "Why did Bloody Tan see Ten-Soon (as the Survivor) and Marsh (as Ironeyes)?"
He said that he was not answering any questions on what Bloody Tan saw, or thought he saw.
I then said, "But now that you mention it, why does Marsh have a Feruchemical Atium spike?"
He told me "You'll have to figure that out! Good job on getting two RAFOs in a row!"
Does Iron store mass or weight?
Excellent question. The thing is it really does involve mass, but I’m breaking some physics rules, basically. I have to break a number of physics rules in order to make Magic work in the first place. Those whole laws of Thermodynamics, I’m like “You are my bane!” (laughter) But I try to work within the framework, and I have reasonings built up for myself, and some of them have to be kind of arbitrary. But the thing is, it does store mass if you look at how it interacts, but when a Feruchemist punches someone, you’re not having a mass transference of a 1000 pounds transferring the mass into someone else.
So there are a few little tweaks. You can go talk to Peter, because Peter has the actual math. Oh Peter’s back there. Peter is dressed up as Allomancer Jak from the broadsheet. In fact we’re giving some out broadsheets, aren’t we Peter. So when you come through the line, we’re giving out Broadsheets. Please don’t take fifty—I think we might have enough for everybody. The broadsheets are the newspaper from the Alloy of Law time. It’s an inworld newspaper. It’s actually reproduced in the book in four different pages, and we put it together in one big broadsheet.
So anyway, you can talk with him, he’s got more of the math of it. I explained the concept to Peter and he’s better with the actual math, so he said “We’ll figure it out.”
How many Feruchemical powers have you revealed in the Alloy of Law?
In the Ars Arcanum in the back, I have revealed them all. I have not explained them all. (laughter), But I have revealed them all, they are in the back, so you are free to theorize what they mean.
Since the dawn of Scadrial, why was Feruchemy isolated in a single distinct population in the world, namely the Terrismen? Allomancy, while rare within the population of Scadrial, at least was not isolated to one population, it was spread evenly, it seems. What is special about the Terrismen that only they get the power of Feruchemy? Does it have something to do with the previous Ascensions before Rashek, with the guardian keeping the power for a time?
It's all in the spiritual DNA, which is passed on like normal DNA. However, they are a separate people. They've kept themselves isolated, similar to the jews in our world. When I asked he said there have been some Feruchemical-mistings in the past, but they are very rare.
This one is a personal favor... See, for metals that have Feruchemy, this verb is "charge". A metal is Feruchemically charged. But, you've been using the term "charge" for Hemalurgic metals, too, which I think is confusing. Before HoA I called Hemalurgic metals "Imbued" metals. I humbly petition to have that be the official term, because it's just confusing otherwise.
The Seventeenth Shard members use the term of Invest for all of those type of things. However, what they use in world is different on each world. For example WoK is infuse.
In the future when atium is rare again and we have a good Table of Allomantic Metals, which metal steals Allomantic Temporal powers?
It will be on the table when Brandon brings them out. Feruchemy is the next poster to come out. Until then RAFO.
Complex "magic" system in Mistborn, and the complex one in Elantris; what base ideas do you build from for this?
For Mistborn, Alchemy and biological metabolism. For Elantris, Chinese linguistics and geometry mixed.
it seems that The Lord Ruler still needed to store age "normally" but less. Did Miles ever have to store healing?
Yes. He did, but not in the normal way.
Hey Brandon! As much as I want to fan-gush, I'll keep it short so you can get back to your A Memory of Light drafting.
How was Sazed/Harmony able to communicate with Waxillium near the end of the book? During the original trilogy, Ruin could occasionally implant thoughts into people's minds, but he couldn't just listen in whenever he felt like it. Is Harmony just way more powerful?
There is interesting discussion about this one below, which I like to see. I thought this might spark some discussion. Remember that human beings were given more of preservation than Ruin during their creation, which led to Preservation eventually being overwhelmed by Ruin. That was the bargain; people would be of preservation at their core, but in turn Ruin got to claim the world once Preservation wound down.
Another factor to consider here is that Wax was given a special earring designed for communication with a being that he actually worships.
Why on earth does Marsh have a Feruchemical Atium Spike? You've said that Ironeyes is in fact Marsh. Did Ruin spike someone for him? Or did Sazed grant him the power?
Dead inquisitors Vin killed. Some were granted the spike for reasons I haven't spoken of yet.
I actually really liked Steris, and was hoping to see more characterization of her. I think of her a bit as a tsundere character, where we have not had many chances to see the dere, just the tsun.
Her businesslike demeanor to everything developed because she had high expectations placed upon her by her family's station. She was an interesting counterpoint to Wax who decided to turn his back on his family to live in the Roughs. Her particular response to marriage and relationships was influenced by her own father's infidelity to her mother. She didn't include a clause for mistresses in the marriage contract because she wants her husband to cheat on her; she just came to expect affairs because of her mother and father's relationship. Still, she and Marasi seem to care for each other, so I don't think she held that against her half-sister.
One question, two parts: If a double Nicrosil Twinborn started Compounding and storing Investiture in a Nicrosilmind, could they do something cool by tapping a whole huge bunch at once? And since Scadrialians have both Ruin and Preservation in them, could they store both those qualities in a one Nicrosilmind, or would it require two different ones?
Ha. All things regarding Investiture (particularly in regards to Feruchemy) are instant RAFOs at this point, I'm afraid. I've got to save SOME things for future books.
Are there 50 Allomantic Metals?
Nearly. Does Harmony have a metal?
Is that an alloy of Lerasium and Atium?
You're along the right lines.
Marsh is alive. I changed this from when I talked to [Peter]. I realized some things about his use of Allomancy that would allow him to survive. Actually, he is immortal. He can pull off the same Allomancy/Feruchemy trick that the Lord Ruler did. (And he knows it too, since he was there when Sazed explained how it was done in Book One.) He's actually the only living person who actually knows this trick for certain. (Though there's a chance that Spook, Ham and Breeze heard about it from Vin and the others.) So yes, if there were another series, Marsh would make an appearance.
I thought that trick required atium and involved burning the atium. With all the atium gone and Sazed not making any more, it would therefore not be possible even for a full mistborn/feruchemist. Am I wrong, is Sazed providing atium specifically for Marsh to allow a friend and valuable servant to survive, or what?
Marsh has the bag of Atium that KanPaar sent to be sold, as well as several nuggets in his stomach. So, I guess 'immortal' is the wrong phrase. He's got the only remaining atium in the world and can keep himself around for a long, long while—but he WILL eventually run out. Unless Sazed does something.
Allomancy, Feruchemy, and Hemalurgy all work as they once did. However, now they are more directly affected by the presence or absence of the mists, which will slowly return to the world but not be of the extent they once were. (The mists are now an extent of Sazed's power, and where they roam, he is better able to influence things. There will also be two kinds of mists.) Note that in the future, Feruchemy powers will start to fracture and split, creating Feruchemical "Mistings."
Yes, this means that in the future series, it will be possible for a person to have one Allomantic power and one Feruchemical power. It will create for some very interesting mixing of powers.
Kwaan went into hiding, and he was eventually discovered and executed by Rashek. He wasn't among the First Generation, though he would have been if he hadn't turned against Rashek. Rashek kept the plate, however, just as he kept Alendi's logbook. Partially because even then, Rashek was going a little mad, but partially because of the reminders about his old life they contained.
I'm assuming you meant Alendi hunted him down because he turned against Alendi. Or did Kwaan also turn against Rashek?
No, I meant that he turned against Rashek. Remember, the members of the First Generation were offered immortality in exchange for their Hemalurgy. They had to make this choice for all of the world's Feruchemists. Because his uncle had been the one who gave Rashek the chance to become the Lord Ruler in the first place, Rashek blessed him and included him in the decision. (Speaking directly into his mind along with the others during Rashek's moment of ascension.)
Kwaan was the only one who turned down this offer, calling it a betrayal of who they were as a people. Rashek could have just made him one anyway, but in a moment of anger, he tried to destroy Kwaan—which he couldn't do, not with Preservation's power. As the other Feruchemists changed, Kwaan remained the same. Rashek eventually hunted him down and killed him.
The powers of Ruin and Preservation are Shards of Adonalsium, pieces of the power of creation itself. Allomancy, Hemalurgy, Feruchemy are manifestations of this power in mortal form, the ability to touch the powers of creation and use them. These metallic powers are how people's physical forms interpret the use of the Shard, though it's not the only possible way they could be interpreted or used. It's what the genetics and Realmatic interactions of Scadrial allow for, and has to do with the Spiritual, the Cognitive, and the Physical Realms.
Condensed 'essence' of these godly powers can act as super-fuel for Allomancy, Feruchemy, or really any of the powers. The form of that super fuel is important. In liquid form it's most potent, in gas form it's able to fuel Allomancy as if working as a metal. In physical form it is rigid and does one specific thing. In the case of atium, it allows sight into the future. In the case of concentrated Preservation, it gives one a permanent connection to the mists and the powers of creation. (I.e., it makes them an Allomancer.)
So when a person is burning metals, they aren't using Preservation's body as a fuel so to speak—though they are tapping into the powers of creation just slightly. When Vin burns the mists, however, she'd doing just that—using the essence of Preservation, the Shard of Adonalsium itself—to fuel Allomancy. Doing this, however, rips 'troughs' through her body. It's like forcing far too much pressure through a very small, fragile hose. That much power eventually vaporizes the corporeal host, which is acting as the block and forcing the power into a single type of conduit (Allomancy) and frees it to be more expansive.
Boy, this is a hard one to ask because it's been such a LONG process. There were bits of all of this popping around in my head almost twenty years ago, so it's going to be hard to define where what fit into place when.
Allomancy and Feruchemy were originally planned separately. I linked them together into this book when I realized that the 'focus' items that could store attributes could be metal, and therefore work wonderfully with the Mistborn book I was planning.
Hemalurgy came from the image of Inquisitors first, then developed as a need to integrate it in with the other two in a way that evoked the power of "Ruin" rather than the power of Preservation. I figured that Ruin would steal, and it was a great way to add a third magic without having to overload people with a whole new set of powers. The process of writing this series, since I did all three books together, was an interesting one, and I made a lot of connections as I went. Some of the latest things on the timeline were figuring out how to fit atium and the Preservation nuggets into the already built framework. But I don't know if I can give you an exact list. Partially because there would just be too many spoilers in it.
It doesn't diminish. Or, well, it does—but only if you compound it. You get 1 for 1 back, but compounding the power requires an expenditure of the power itself. For instance, if you are weak for one hour, you can gain the lost strength for one hour. But that's not really that much strength. After all, you probably weren't as weak as zero people during that time. So if you want to be as strong as two men, you couldn't do it for a full hour. You'd have to spend some energy to compound, then spend the compounded energy itself.
In more mathematical terms, let's say you spend one hour at 50% strength. You could then spend one hour at 150% strength, or perhaps 25 min at 200% strength, or maybe 10min at 250% strength. Each increment is harder, and therefore 'strains' you more and burns your energy more quickly. And since most Feruchemists don't store at 50% strength, but instead at something like 80% strength (it feels like much more when they do it, but you can't really push the body to that much forced weakness without risking death) you can burn through a few day's strength in a very short time if you aren't careful.
Talk about your process of writing; and also about how you creatively approach it.
Every writer has a different process. There’s as many ways to do this as there are writers in the world. For me, my creative process is that I’m always searching for the ideas that I can connect into a larger story. I feel that a book is more than just one idea. A good book is a collection of ideas; usually a good idea for each character—something that forms the core of their conflict—several good ideas for the setting: something that’s going to drive the economy, something that’s going to drive (for me the magic) the setting—that sort of thing—and then several good plot ideas. These all bounce around in my head—I’ll grab them randomly.
An example of one of these was for Mistborn: For Mistborn, one of the original seeds was, I was watching the Harry Potter movies that had come out, and I was thinking about Lord of the Rings, which I had just reread, and I was thinking, you know, I like the hero’s journey: young, plucky protagonist goes, collects a band of unlikely followers, face the Dark Lord… and I thought “yeah, but those Dark Lords always get, just like, a terrible, raw end of the deal. They’re always beat by some dufusy kid or thing like that,” and I thought “I want to write a book where the Dark Lord wins.”
But that was kind of a downer of a book, as I considered it, a little bit, you know, “you read this book, and then at the end the hero loses,” that’s kind of a downer. So I stuck that in the back of my mind saying “I want to do something with that idea, but it’s going to take me a little while to figure out exactly what I want to do with that idea.” And then I was watching one of my favorite movies from a long time ago—both of these ideas come from movies, many of them don’t but these two did—Sneakers, if any of you have seen it, just a, like an amazingly awesome heist story, and I thought “ya’ know, I haven’t seen a heist story done in fantasy in forever,” little did I know that Scott Lynch was going to release one, like, one year later [The Lies of Locke Lamora].
But nobody had done one, and so I said “I want to do a fantasy heist story.” The two ideas combined together in my head. Alright: world where the Dark Lord won, a hero failed; thousands of years later, a gang of thieves decided to rip the Dark Lord off and kind of try to over thrown him their way, you know, making themselves-- by making themselves rich.
And those ideas combined together. And so a story grows in my mind like little atoms bouncing together and forming a molecule: they’ll stick to each other and make something different. Those two ideas combine to make a better idea, in my opinion, together. And then character ideas I’d been working on stuck to that, and then magic systems I’d actually been working on separately. Allomancy and Feruchemy, two of the magic systems in Mistborn, were actually designed for different worlds, and then I combined them together and they worked really well together, with the metals being a common theme.
I did all of that, and when it comes down to write a book I sit down and I put this all on a page, and then I start filling in holes by brainstorming. “What would go well here, what would go well here, I need more here” [accompanying gestures indicate different “here’s”]. And I fill out my outline that way, and I fill out my “World Guide,” as I call it. I actually just got—the wonderful folks of Camtasia (it’s a software that records screens) sent me a copy of their software so that I can record a short story, and I’ll go—I’ll do the outline, and then I’ll do the story, and then I’ll post it on my website and you can see exactly, you know, step-by-step what happens. Just don’t make too much fun of me when I spell things wrong.
It’s really weird when you’ve got, like, that screen capture going on, you know people are gonna’ be watching this, and you can’t spell a word, and it’s like “I don’t want to go look it up, I can get this right,” it’s like, the writerly version of the guy who refuses to go get directions. So I like try a word like seventeen different ways, and like “Gehhhh okay,” and then Google tells me in like ten seconds. Anyway, that’s your answer and I hope that works for you. Thanks for asking.
Somewhere in the italicized pre-chapter blurb of the prologue here is the clue one needs to figure out the over-arching mystery of the entire series. If you figure it out, good for you! If you don't, you'll have to wait until the last chapter of the final book to get it explained. . . .
The reference to northern mystics, in this chapter, is a foreshadowing of the powers of Keepers, such as Sazed. One of their abilities is to make themselves heavier and lighter. You won't see much of that until book two, however.
We mention the Lord Ruler's flawless memory here. This is actually the only time in the entire series that it's mentioned. However, this is an important clue for later. However, as I'm writing this, without being able to hide this text, I don't want to explain too much and inadvertently ruin something. However, if you've finished the book, you might be able to figure out why the Lord Ruler might have a reputation for being able to remember things.
I'd just like to point out that Sazed heard Kelsier approaching before Vin did. That should mean something to you. This is also the first time we get Vin wanting to ignore Reen's voice in her head. That is, in my way, an acknowledgement to the progress she's achieved during the last few months.
The mists and Allomancy feeling right to Vin have something to do with the ending, where she draws upon the mists for an extra burst of power. I'm afraid I can't say more until we get to future books.
We've now seen Sazed preach a couple of religions to members of the crew. You may be interested in my process of coming up with his character.
It actually began when I was watching the movie THE MUMMY. Yes, I know. Sometimes it's embarrassing where we come up with ideas. However, my inspiration for Sazed was the moment when the oily little thief character gets confronted by the mummy, and pulls out a whole pile of holy symbols. He goes through each one, praying to each god, looking for one that would help him.
I began to wonder what it would be like to have a kind of missionary who preached a hundred different religions. A man who, instead of advancing his own beliefs, tried to match a set of beliefs to the person—kind of like a tailor looking to fit a man with the prefect and most comfortable hat.
That's where the inspiration for the entire sect of Keepers began. Soon, I had the idea that the Lord Ruler would have squished all the religions in the Final Empire, and I thought of a sect of mystics who tried to collect and preserve all of these religions. I put the two ideas together, and suddenly I had Sazed's power. (I then stole a magic system from FINAL EMPIRE PRIME, which I'll talk about later, and made it work in this world. Feruchemy was born.)
I also referenced the recent Q&A and this post, and speculated that the reason why the original poster thought Wax's sister was a duralumin ferring was because of Wax's comment that he did not feel any strong emotions as a result of her death. I told Brandon that the poster must have thought that she was deliberately suppressing her Connection with Wax by using Feruchemy.
I said that I didn't need a yes or no answer from him, and he replied that he would neither confirm nor deny my statement and would only agree that it was very interesting.
Long time lurker, first time poster.
While at Dragon*Con, during Magic:tG with Brandon, I was able to get an answer to one of the question on the big list of questions.
Here is the question:
Why are invested objects like metalminds and Hemalurgic spikes able to be Pushed and Pulled on, but Shardblades and Shardplate, which are also invested, are not susceptible to Pushing and Pulling?
His answer was complex, I took notes, but didn't get recorded audio. I am going to try to explain as best as my notes and memory support.
There were a few concepts that he outlined in answering this question.
1.) The ability to push/pull an invested object is predicated to the amount/power of the investiture
2.) Further, invested objects also gain resistance to pulling/pushing based on proximity to soul possibly via the soul. An example given is that A hemalurgic spike touches the blood of the person, and from there is now part of both the Spiritual Realm and the Physical Realm. This provides what Brandon termed a kind of "soul interference," based on its proximity to the soul.
This further explains why Vin required more than normal power to push/pull the metalminds from the Lord Ruler, because of their proximity to his soul, via the Spiritual Realm.
3.) The amount of investiture is relatively low on Scadrial, whereas worlds like Sel and Roshar are pushing around "high power" according to Brandon. I interpreted this to mean that hemalurgic spikes and metalminds have low amounts of investiture compared to Shardplate and Shardblades.
A coinshot able to store weight can, as you showed us with Wax push in a ridiculously powerful manner, as the weight/mass is the largest factor wich controls the push strength.
I'm wondering if the same can be done with soothing(or rioting). If you where to increase your identity, that may/should increase your emotional imprint(or whatever you might call it), would your soothings/riotings become wastly more powerful in a simular way as weight makes steelpushing more powerful?
And if it does, is this how the lord ruler improved his Soothing in such a spectacular fasion?
Who was the first Feruchemist? I don't have their name written down. [Laughter] It's fairly ancient of date.
Were they born or were they created?
The first Feruchemist, were they born or created? Both. [Laughter] I don't see those two as mutually exclusive. See how good I am at dodging questions, now? I've been dealing with the Wheel of Time fans long enough. They've really whipped me into shape for dodging questions. Anything else? I promise not to dodge all of them
Okay, and second, Mistborn, the broadsheet hints that there's a continent or whatever on the other side of the Mistborn planet.
Would that also be connected to Allomancy and Feruchemy and all that?
Yes, it will be.
So, I gave you a lot of answers. [laughter] To expand upon that, the magic systems for Elantris- the pitch to myself designing the world and magic system was this kind of procedural-based, almost programing-based magic. Where in Elantris, you use these characters to programout a sequence of events that tells the power flowing through what to do.
What Shai is doing in this book is she carves a little seal. And the seal is very much like a little program, and she stamps it on something and uses that stamp to rewrite the history of the object. As long as the seal is there, the object thinks it has this other history. The example you see in the book is you know- an old dirty table that's not been cared for, she can write a seal for its history, she has to figure out what its history was first. And she can write out a seal that basically reprograms that past, so when she stamps it, it thinks it's been cared for all along and suddenly it gains this lacquer, it's beautiful, it's been well-cared for, because in that fake Forgery of the history, that's what happened to it. And that's what her magic does, which is why she's been hired to Forge a copy of the emperor's soul.
[Ooooh] Yeah, I know I'm evil.
Yeah, I know I'm evil.
Was the Lord Ruler using feruchemy + alchemy to soothe all of the people around him? Or was he, as I like to think, flaring for so long that he became a Soother Savant?
He lived long enough and used his metals enough (particularly Soothing) to become nearly a savant in every area, if not a full savant.
If someone broke a coppermind, could the feruchemist still access a fragment of the information in it from a chunk of the coppermind, or would he require that the whole thing be reformed to access any of its storage?
The information would be fragmented.
We asked if it was possible to use bronze to Seek Feruchemy. He said it could be possible. If it were to happen, it was very hard, because the Inquisitors would desperately like to be able to find Feruchemists that way, and it was implied they had not discovered this power. So, it is a freaking hard technique to learn, if possible at all.
Feruchemy is about multipliers. The more the Lord Ruler aged, the less "multiplier" he could store in his metalmind. And the more he aged the more he would need to Compound to stay alive. There could exist an upper bound to the amount of time the Lord Ruler could survive off this trick.
As it turns out, there is an error in the Feruchemical table when Brandon put it in Mistborn 2. If you look closely, Determination (insert metal) doesn't belong in its group. The group that it is in is obviously more physical powers. Determination was supposed to be a mental metal, and Warmth was supposed to be in that Physical group. He just made a mistake originally. But it turns out that Feruchemy obeys different rules than Allomancy, so Brandon isn't retconning it, but saying that Feruchemy works differently now. Apparently there was going to be a table of Feruchemy at the end of Alloy of Law, but it wasn't ready because Isaac kept thinking like an Allomancer. Feruchemy has its own rules (for example, Brandon confirmed that pewter does steal Feruchemical health, probably because that second group of physical Feruchemical powers are also "physical", so pewter can steal them.) Hemalurgy also obeys different rules.
What would happen if a person were to burn a metal that was Feruchemically charged using Allomancy?
The metal used in Allomancy is like a key or a doorway to the power that Allomancy actually uses. The metal acts as a filter, much as the Aons in Elantris do, to determine what the power actually does. However, if the metal is Feruchemically charged, then it will basically become a super-burst of Feruchemical power with no Allomantic effect. The Feruchemical charge acts as a filter as well as the metal, and changes what the power does. in this case, say you were burning steel, you would just be massively speedy for a second, and wouldn't actually have the ability to push on anything Allomantically. Hope that answered the question. I get the concept, so if you need me to explain it differently, let me know and i'll try. Oh, the other thing I forgot is that this concept only works if it's a metal that you charged yourself. If it's a metal someone else charged, it would just work like regular Allomancy, and the Feruchemical charge would just cease to exist.
If someone aluminum or duralumin burned the Feruchemically charged metals, what would happen?
Basically the same thing as above, except with aluminum. Aluminum, they would just go away.
Does lerasium have Feruchemical and Hemalurgical powers.
Yes. Brandon will probably be getting into these, and the other metals Hemalurgical and Feruchemical powers, in greater detail in the future Mistborn Trilogies. He also will probably release full charts for these as he did with Allomancy.
Feruchemy ended up being a balance system, because of how polar Ruin and Preservation were. Any world with at least two Shards will result in a similar phenomenon.
Like Roshar. There is something like that going on there.
No, being a Savant is when you burn so much it alters your spirit, Compounding is similar but different.
He might have heard the question wrong here, I don't know. I should have asked it differently. But, there goes my theory :P
[impish grin] Ah ha ha ha. The Lord Ruler, heh heh heh, That is an excellent question.
Not going to answer?
Not going to answer that one.
Would you answer if Hoid used it for Feruchemy?
His bead? Hoid’s bead was—He originally got it because he wanted to be an Allomancer. [Note that he doesn’t actually answer the question.]
So, like metal inside a person’s body?
It depends on how strong the investiture in them is.
Is that going to be the answer for all of these?
How about a spike charged with Hemalurgy? Not in a person.
Not in a person? It depends on how strong—yeah. A spike is moderately—in the realm of these sorts of things—moderately easy to push on, because a spike does not rip off very much investiture. Only enough to short circuit the soul, and it loses that over time. So I would put that at the bottom—with the top being very hard—to be one of the easier things.
How about a metalmind? A feruchemy metalmind that is "full."
That is going to be middle of the realm. Generally easier than, for instance, a shardblade, which is going to be very hard.
But a shardblade isn’t actual metal. Ish?
Ish. Is Lerasium a metal? Yeah.
So would that be the same for Shardplate, too?
Shardplate and blade are very hard. Blade is probably going to be harder. [...]
Halfshard? Like a halfshard shield?
Halfshard shield is going to be in moderate.
Nightblood? I imagine is going to be very difficult.
Very hard. Of all the things you’ve listed, he’s the hardest. Far beyond even a shardblade.
Far beyond metal inside a person?
Yes, depending on how invested the person is.
If someone was invested as much as Nightblood I’m pretty sure it’s going to be very difficult.
Yes, for instance, the Godking, at the end, with all of those Breaths. Pushing on something inside of him? Getting through all that? Gonna be REAL hard. Average person on Scadrial? You’ve seen how hard that is. A drab? Much easier.
That was actually going to be my next one- No, sorry, not a drab, a Lifeless.
A Lifeless. Lifeless are kinda weird, because they’ve had their soul leave, but then they’ve had a replacement stuck in, in the form of Breath, which puts them in a really weird position compared to a Drab, which has had part of their investiture ripped away, but the majority of it remains. So anyway, I’m going to give you one more. Pick your favorite.
Okay, a soul-stamped piece of metal.
A soul-stamped piece of metal is going to be on the lower, easier side. Not a lot of investiture going on in a soulstamp.
As Feruchemistry is the magic system combined from Ruin and Preservation's powers, and they created humankind on Scadrial, how is it that it only occurs in persons with Terrispeople in their ancestry?
What is the term for a full Feruchemist who is also a Mistborn?
Can "modern"(as in: Adolin's) Shardplate be summoned similar to how "dead" Shardblades (as in: Oathbringer) can be?
They use Full Feruchemist right now. We'll see if it develops into something else.
Could Miles heal back his Allomancy if it was spiked out of him?
No, he could not. He would no longer be an Allomancer. Also, he'd probably be dead. :)
I'd thought maybe he could just do some super-tapping from his existing Health in his goldminds (since he'd still have his Feruchemy)...
Oh, I see what you're asking. Using Feruchemy to heal the removed portion of soul. That's actually plausible, not so different from healing other kinds of soul-wounds. If he survived, then yes, this actually might work. (That's why I get for reading the questions so quickly.)
Feruchemy. Some like the word, others aren't as happy with it. It used to be called Hemalurgy, but I decided that would be a better word for the third magic system in the series. (You'll see it eventually.)
Feruchemy (not called that, however) was a magic system I lifted from FINAL EMPIRE PRIME, a book I wrote some years before I wrote this book. I had a person who could store up attributes, such as strength, then use them when he needed them. The thing is, the magic wasn't really that well formed, and this character never got any viewpoints, so I didn't get to use the magic as often as I wanted.
When I was developing this world, I knew I wanted the Keepers to have the fantastic memories. I realized that Feruchemy would make the perfect magic system for Sazed and his people. When I decided that I could use metals as a focus for this magic system (something that made it much more interesting, because it put a definable limit on what could be stored and how much of it could be stored) I knew I had something really good.
I like to use multiple magic systems in books, but I like it when they all have common elements. Feruchemy and Allomancy are like different aspects of the same concept. They both do some similar—yet different—things. There will be a lot more about this in the text.
The discussion of Feruchemy and Allomancy working together is one of the most complicated magical explanations I've ever done, and I hope it works. One of the fun things about my books are the magic, and it's really tough to walk the line between making magic that has technically interesting aspects without making it either a) too complicated or b) feel like I'm just making it up as I go along.
I was trying to get across here an unexpected consequence of mixing the two magics. Like how certain chemicals react oddly when mixed, or even like two computer programs running on the same computer can cause odd reactions, letting someone use Feruchemy and Allomancy together makes for some very strange mixtures of the powers. (I intend to get into this later.)
Of course, what this also does is un-deify the Lord Ruler somewhat, which is intentional. I don't want it to undermine the accomplishment the characters have made—what they did was difficult and they have achieved a great victory. However, what I'm trying to give in this book—however—is a sense of foreboding.
Remember the Lord Ruler's final words. They're important. The lack of atium will impact the second book greatly, as well the fact that Kelsier is dead. Overthrowing the Lord Ruler was tough, but it was still the easy part of this trilogy. Things get hard from here on out...
This chapter is meant to be our 'pay off' chapter for the time we've invested into Sazed over the last few chapters. I, personally, think it's the coolest chapter in this section of the book.
Feruchemy really turned out well as a magic system, and I'm glad I found a place for it in this book. It connects with Allomancy perfectly; I'm actually surprised at how well they go together. (As you may recall, I originally tried out Feruchemy in a book I now call Final Empire Prime.)
Here, you finally get to see some REAL Feruchemical tricks. Sazed can do so much more than just make himself strong (like he did in book one) or memorize things. If you think about it, there are an awful lot of things that can be done to intertwine Allomancy—with its Pushes and Pulls—and Feruchemy, where a person can increase or decrease their weight.
Hi Brandon! Thanks for doing this. I may have made some embarrassing sounds when I heard you were answering questions. I have a few questions:
1. You've said previously that the molecular structure of metals serve to act sort of like the Aons in AonDor. Why, then, can mists power Allomancy? Shouldn't the metals themselves be the things causing the powers? And if metals don't cause the effect, how can a non-Feruchemist burn a metalmind that has been 'unlocked' through identity tricks and get a boost of an attribute without Feruchemist sDNA?
2. If a Surgebinder went to another world with infused gems, would they still automatically be able to Surgebind, or is that an effect limited to Roshar? (I ask because you've said someone with a Seon bond who went to Roshar would gain some powers because it would be treated like a Nahel bond.)
3. Hoid uses Allomancy in one of Shallan's flashbacks. How can Hoid draw on Preservation's power on Roshar? Does it teleport? Shouldn't he only be able to burn metals on Scadrial?
4. Breath seems like it doesn’t run out like Stormlight. You Awaken something, and it lasts basically forever. But if you Lash something, the Lashing ends a short time later. Why does Stormlight run out and Breath not?
Thanks for answering!
I was trying to figure out how to answer this, and then I realized while driving to get a hair cut that you were regarding this wrong in a fundamental way. Remember, the source of power for Allomancy is EXTERNAL while the source for Feruchemy is INTERNAL. This is a fundamental difference discussed in the series.
When you burn metals, you're drawing power from another place. When you tap a metalmind, you are drawing power that the person has created--a battery developed by themselves, so to speak.
So I think that's going to answer the source of your confusion.
Well, see, the stored identity would definitely mess with it, but it wouldn't ultimately be the same identity. It would definitely have an affect.
*to questioner* I wonder if the Command would have a greater affect, or if it's simply because the metalmind is charged with investiture-
I haven't revealed what charging investiture does either.
Is Chromium involved in that?
Yes. Well, he's not necessarily using Chromium, but the underlying mechanic, yes.
[Surprised, because this dashed a favorite theory of mine] Oh okay!
Yeah, the compounding trick. Really what’s happening is you’re fueling feruchemy with the power of allomancy, but you’re filtering it through you, and then you’re storing it.
So it’s not that you’re a more powerful mistborn when you’ve tapped [investiture]
No, good question.