Search the most comprehensive database of interviews and book signings from Robert Jordan, Brandon Sanderson and the rest of Team Jordan.
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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Do Szeth and Kaladin both belong to the same order of knights radiant?
Szeth isn't actually in an order of Knights Radiant. Something different is happening with Szeth that people have already begun to guess. And Kaladin isn't yet a Knight Radiant, but the powers he uses are those of the Windrunners, one of the orders of the Knights Radiant. Szeth is using the same power set. So your phrasing is accurate to that extent.
Concerning the Radiants' shardplates, and the glyphs on them that Dalinar had never seen before, is there any relation to these and the AonDor? Could they perhaps act as an added focus?
From what I recall, he didn't really give a definitive answer on this one, but he seemed as if we were in the right direction.
You have said previously that the Stormlight Archive will include Lightweaving. Is that still the plan?
Have we seen a Roshar native in The Way of Kings who can use Lightweaving?
Yes, we have seen someone who has potential.
He seemed to be trying to say that they didn't know that they can use it.
In the Ars Arcanum of the Way of Kings, next to the Essences are listed ten Body Focuses. Are these Body Focuses the focus (in Cosmere terms) of Surgebinding?
I finally got to ask a question about the Stormlight Archive that Windrunner17 and Chaos helped me with which was: "Why Can Kaladin Surgebind with any gem type but Jasnah and Shallan need specific types?"
A lot of that will be explained as the series comes along. It is really the difference between Soulcasting and the other forms of Surgebinding. It's more a quirk of Soulcasting than it is something that is different about about Kaladin. So you've kind of got it reversed a little bit though; Soulcasting has this additional restriction that the other ones don't.
And so like the Windrunners, they’re just one Order of the Knights Radiant, aren’t they?
Yes they are, in fact they are- every order is a grouping of one of these [points to the large symbols on the Radiant tables] and two of these [points at the smaller symbols], these are the Surges. So these are the ten, sort of forces. And so Windrunning is pressure and gravitation, which are those two. But the Skybreakers are right there [points to gold symbol in the upper middle], with a different combination and each of these different groupings would make one order of the Knights Radiant. And that is the symbol of the Windrunners, right there on the cover. [Points at the swordgylph under the dust jacket]. So, fun little easter-egg type things there.
Are there any magic systems in the cosmere that aren't shard based?
This depends on definitions. The effects of Adonalsium permeate everything, and Adonalsium is also the source of the Shards. It is possible to find a magic that isn't DIRECTLY powered by a specific shard, however, though most of these would have been set up before the shattering and would be much smaller in scope than things like Allomancy and Surgebinding.
Way of Kings: Is set on a strangely awesome world. Apparently, a super large storm (like hurricane size) passes across the Earth every few days. This happens in a very predictable cycle. Because of this, there is no soil anywhere, everything is stone. The plants and animals have adapted to this environment, so they are also pretty strange. The plants, for instance will be much like a coral reef. They have shells, or can withdraw into the ground, and do so when the storm comes. They also will do the same thing if you try to step on them and such. So like, as you're walking, the grass around you shrinks into the ground, and pokes back out again when you pass.
I also found out that the Way of Kings is largely about the birth of magic, since Brandon was tired of fantasy books talking about the death of it. As such, most of the magic systems are largely unknown, and will be explored. There was at one previous time, several hundred years past, magic on the earth. However, it's been gone for a while, and is being rediscovered. There are a total of 30 planned magic systems, and the books will jump around chronologically between the present and character's pasts. The technology level is a typical fantasy, Renaissance minus gunpowder. At least I think that's what he said.
If a Windrunner picked up that blade, would their abilities be enhanced?
There would be some compounding but strength is not as much an issue with surgebinding as is the strength of the spren bond and how much Stormlight you are using.
Um, weak/strong forces, yes, that's the one that sent me there partially. Like, I'm not actually... the idea of the fundamental forces is a cool thing to me so it's not like I'm actually trying to use the weak and strong forces, the idea of there being fundamental forces. I wanted to go off on it in a fancy way. Like this one right here I told them was surface tension. But it's not really surface tension. It's more like um, the people with this could take a piece of cloth and snap it out and it would become hard as if the cloth became steel. I'm trying to explain this scientifically, but it doesn't work scientifically. Imagine as if they could restructure the atoms so that they became a latticework like a crystal rather than being soft like...cloth. I'm calling it surface tension, but it's not really surface tension.
(hedging) It's kind of like tensile strength. I have to go through Peter and say "Alright Peter, come up with what we should really call this." He does the hard science a lot better than I do. I do the armchair theories and then he goes, "Ok, now this is the math if someone were to actually fall off of this and 0.7 gravity and the weight of the bridge...". (looking back at the chart) So what can I give you that I didn't give her? Um, one of the orders is called Bondsmiths.
Progression and Adhesion, perhaps?
No, but they could be considered as such.
Why are do the Windrunners, Elsecallers, Stonewards, and Dustbringers have an extra connection on the Surgebinding diagram? Why do the Edgedancer, Skybreaker, Lightweaver, Willshaper's have a broken connection on the diagram? What are the dragon type things in the back of the diagram?
The dragon type things are a certain animal you've seen several places in the story so far.
These connections will be explained eventually, but remember it's not the orders being connected, but instead their elemental representations. This diagram is very metaphysical, and some of the elements of it are cultural.
If a non-Windrunner Surgebinder (who had spoken all the Ideals of their Radiant Order) summoned Jezrien's Honorblade, what color eyes would they get? A blend? Different colors for each eye?
:) I'm going to RAFO eye color questions for the moment. We'll actually be dealing with some of these in the books. Maybe not the specific ones you ask, but the concepts in general.
For a Windrunner, if he had enough heating fabrials and enough Stormlight, how high up could he get?
You could exit orbit. Windrunners, remember they're gravitation and pressure. So if he knew what he was doing, we have actually factored how long it would take to get to the various moons.
Can Breath be used to power Surgebinding?
They are very similar Investitures, and most of the magics can be powered with the other magics if you are capable of making that happen.
What would happen to the Breath?
The Breath would be consumed in the same way that Stormlight is. A renewing resource, much like Atium is.
Yes, she is.
Why does she take so long to come back?
Because Elsecalling is not precise even if you know what you are doing, which she doesn't.
So each Order does a different eye color?
Each Order does indeed get a different eye color.
There is something supernatural about those. Each Order... Well, how about this. If you look at scholars' interpretations, there are some scholars who think that these things are not supernatural, and some who think that they are. But, if you look, many Lightweavers had powerful mnemonic abilities.
So it's definitely tied to the Orders?
It's tied to the Orders. Now, I am not going to say that you've got them all 100% correct, but each Order, there are things that come with Order, things that do not add up from simple the "you get this power plus this power," there is something else going on. And I would say that for Windrunners, watch the number of squires and the power of the squires... these are abnormal for the Windrunners.
And each Order's squires are somehow different from the other Orders'?
Yeeeaaaa... some Orders do not have them.
But some have more?
Not specifically as phrased there, but each order has quirks that are unique to it. They are magical quirks, but it's not necessarily a blend of the powers.
So Shallan's Memories is kind of a...
Is associated with her Order, yes.
It's not just because she had that wonderful ability, and Pattern came along and went, "Oh, I like this one!"
No that is not necessarily what attracted Pattern.
It depends on your definition. Is Windrunning its own magic system, or is it a division of a larger magic system? Are the ten different Surges each their own magic system, or are they all the same one?
If you assume the surges are all one.
Well then you would have Surgebinding, and the Old Magic, those are two at least, and there are things that are not explained in those at all, and how do you count creating fabrials? Is that a science and not a magic? Is that its own magic system?
It's a science, because anyone can do it.
So Awakening is not a magic, then? Awakening's a science? Because anyone can Awaken if they get the breath.
That's something that stood out to me, because in all your other magic systems that we've seen so far there has to be some sort of snapping to occur, and that's unique, because- [...] Is there an active magic system on Threnody?
Threnody has a non Shard-based...it depends on what you call a magic system. Do spirits coming back from the dead count as magic? It's science to them, but, it's goofy science.