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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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I'd first like to say that this series was fantastic. I was exceptionally pleased with how you tied everything together in this final book of the trilogy.
(1) This series has the best world-building, magic system, and over-arching plot of any epic fantasy I have ever read. I think George R.R. Martin is still the master of creating memorable characters, developing them, and having them interact with each other. Other authors, like Hobb and Rothfuss, are better at evincing emotion. You are an amazing writer yourself.
That being said, I have a couple suggestions for you.
(2) The first contradicts itself, so take it for what it is. I would suggest that you write how you feel the story should be written. Getting inspiration from someone is one thing, but changing your work because some people want a happy ending or dark ending takes away from the purity of writing. The part you added in at the end where Sazed let Spook know Vin and Elend were happy in the afterlife really stuck me like a thorn. I think it was apparent how happy they were together in life and how necessary their sacrifices were. That would have been enough for me.
(3) My other suggestion is more of a plea really. Please don't extend this series just to capitalize on it. If you really feel there is more story to be told, then tell it. I, for one, thought the ending would have been perfect if allomancy, hemalurgy, and feruchemy would have faded from existence as their corresponding gods did. It would have been rather romantic to have people start over with a new "normal" world.
Congratulations again on completing a masterful work!
1. You humble me. I don't think I've NEARLY the skill for characters that Mr. Martin does, and that's not just an attempt at modesty. I hope to be there some day, however.
2. This is a tricky one. I didn't change the worldbuilding or the cosmology of the story in order to fit what people wanted, but I feel strongly about using writing groups and test readers to see if my intention in a book has been achieved. I show things to alpha readers to see what is confusing or bothersome to them, then decide if that's really something I want to be confusing or bothersome.
In my mind, the presence of a powerful being such as Sazed, mixed with some direct reaching from beyond the grave by a certain crew leader, indicated that there WAS an afterlife. However, test readers didn't get it, so I tweaked the story to make it more obvious. Perhaps I should have left it as is, but I liked both ways, and decided upon the one I liked the most in the context of reader responses.
I do plan to always tell the stories from my heart, and not change them because of how I think the reactions will be. But I do think it's important to know what those reactions are ahead of time and decide if they are what I want or not.
3. We are on the same page on this one. You can read other posts on the thread to see what kind of thoughts I might have for more Mistborn books, but I don't know if/when I will write them. It depends on the story and how excited I am to tell it.
Ok. The gemhearts/stormgems/whatever that are grown inside the beasts in Way of Kings ... is that the same as the way Atium is grown inside geodes in the Pits of Hathsin?
It's similar. The pits are an area where there's like a leak from the spiritual realm into the physical. That's what happens there.
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.
Each spren is based on the Ideal of Fire.
And is that sitting in the Spiritual Realm?
Yes, we're using sort of a Platonic Ideal, and that concept is in force, so < sounds hesitant > "yes", but [spren] are manifestations of it.
So these Ideals in the Spiritual Realm: Divine Breath, does that heal by accessing some Ideal of Human Health: so a guy who had never had a tongue and doesn't know how to speak all the sudden has a tongue and can speak? [Note: Talking of Susebron here]
You are... < LONG pause > You are, um, on the right track.
Because the Breath is... eh. How can I explain this? You are, yeah... So... So each Breath is a shade of deity, right?
And each Breath incorporates into it this sort of idea of being endowed by the deity Endowment, correct?
And so each Breath you hold brings you one step closer to becoming like that, and so what you're saying is... is "yes", kind of true, yes.
But it's like within the Breath, not sitting off by itself—
Yes, yes yes exactly.
Umm... All of them have some little dabbling in it, it is the most related to the Spiritual Realm-- Of the ones I have shown, certainly it is the most related.
Yes...there are actual factions but they're not what you're thinking of.
Are there lifeforms that are native to the Spiritual Realm like the spren are native to the Cognitive Realm?
Yes, but they're not what you're thinking.