Kurkistan

Worldbuilders Streamed Writing

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Brandon has been blogging/tweeting about this for a bit now, but for those who haven't noticed: Brandon offered a stretch goal for a Worldbuilders' charity drive, the reward being that he would live-stream himself writing a story while collaborating with/taking the suggestions of viewers.

 

This is happening this Friday (Jan. 17) from 2-7 PM Mountain time (-7 UTC).

 

I'm very bad at judging the appropriateness of these things, but would it be overreaching for us to ask Cosmere questions in the "extended Q&A"?

 

Either way, I thought people might appreciate a place to discuss this. Maybe us Sharders could pre-brainstorm some ideas/suggestions to give to Brandon?

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Personally, I'm going to refrain from asking any cosmere questions, because it seems like it's in poor taste to do so in a Q&A that's, from my understanding, supposed to be more about the writing craft. If I see some sign that I'm mistaken, or Brandon seems to be willing to answer any questions, I might change my mind.

 

Also, Quantum Harmonix, this may be a tad pessimistic, but considering the fact that the actual Heb would have none of Dalinar's skill with a blade, (or rather, fire poker) he most likely was killed in that attack, or if he survived he would not have been extended the invitation to come to Urithiru.

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@Windy

 

That was my initial inclination as well.

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Personally, I'm going to refrain from asking any cosmere questions, because it seems like it's in poor taste to do so in a Q&A that's, from my understanding, supposed to be more about the writing craft. If I see some sign that I'm mistaken, or Brandon seems to be willing to answer any questions, I might change my mind.

 

Also, Quantum Harmonix, this may be a tad pessimistic, but considering the fact that the actual Heb would have none of Dalinar's skill with a blade, (or rather, fire poker) he most likely was killed in that attack, or if he survived he would not have been extended the invitation to come to Urithiru.

I don't see how suggesting a cosmere related narrative would be against the intended goals. That is as long as the questions are all about the writing process and not about realmatics. I would agree that asking questions about the cosmere would be a tad off topic.

 

I also agree that Heb most likely died, but that would be the reason to use him. It would make the story definitely non-cannon but still an in-cosmere story. That way we could learn about how he writes a story and if we are lucky something extra about the cosmere. Additionally, since it is all non-cannon none of the information would have to be binding; although that might defeat the purpose of asking for an in-cosmere story in the first place. 

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I can't make it, due to having to work 6am to 7pm, but I think he wants you to help him build that structure: like who the main character is (age, sex, discerning features); who the villain might be; is there magic in this world (if so, how does it function); and what should the plot be. These are the things I think he will be looking for.

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On a more technical note, does anyone know if it's going to be recorded in any form for people who can't participate?

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Peter's said onTwitter that it will be recorded/available.

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Yeah, I was probably just being hopeful when I thought "well maybe...". Best for us to not be "that guy" who derails the conversation.

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I think it would be pretty easy to simply ask if cosmere questions are appropriate if/when he opens the channel to general q&a.

But obviously, don't go caps locking about Hoid and the dragon when he asks if the setting would be better outdoors or something...

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The problem is, the majority of the public Q&A of Brandon seem to concentrate on writing process or generic questions like "Who is your favorite character". While understandable to a degree, the probability that he'd say something about writing that was not covered in other interviews, Writing Excuses and his writing course (IIRC streamed on youtube), seems to me rather minuscule. At the same time, asking cosmere questions almost guarantees both new information *and* increase of cosemre awareness in general public. It may be bad taste, but so, strictly IMO, is not googling for answers before asking them if you are going to a rare meeting with time limits.

 

This is very much how I feel. There is so much knowledge to be picked from Brandon's brain, it feels like such a waste to ask him the same questions over and over again. I have (almost) no issues with new questions about writing, I understand people could use his advice - but it feels like I will start murdering people if I have to hear him tell aspiring writers that the best advice he can give them is to just write. Regardless of how bad it is.

 

This being said, I won't be asking Cosmere questions. He might answer some (he has done so in the past, even if the interview/seminar/talk considers it offtopic), but I personally would feel bad for... exploiting the opportunity. But I will be no less delighted if someone else asks something interesting :)

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I'm not able to make it to the live stream, so knowing it is going to be recorded is a major bonus.

And since I won't get there, if someone gets the chance, would you mind asking him this question for me:

"One thing I hate about fantasy is the conformity of tone; like the farm boy rising to prominence, it makes for a kind of bland story. That's one of the reasons I like Warbreaker so much. The different POVs sound distinct from each other and have different tones, but there's an overall cohesiveness to them. Similarly, Mistborns concept of the dark lord winning works because the text is infused with such a sense of resignation rather than oppression, resistance or depression (at least at the start). Do you intend for your books to stand out in that way, and do you have any advice for creating an atmosphere beyond 'generic fantasy'?

If anyone gets a chance to ask, I'd be grateful. If not, well, I understand; I'm sure everyone has their own questions they want to ask him. Enjoy the live stream, and I hope someone remembers to pass the link on to me.

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Okay, that's that. Thank you for what you caught, Sats.

 

We had company so I couldn't really watch/participate. I do anticipate the recording/transcript, though.

 

One Q&A I noted was that Brandon said that Rosharan mythology is very influenced by Korean culture/mythology, due to his familiarity with Korea.

Edited by Kurkistan
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Hey, all. I was there the whole time. :) I got a few of my questions answered (not to mention naming the main character, woot!). 

 

So, sorry, but I only remember the ones I asked.

 

Are the Heralds Rosharan? got a RAFO, but good question.

 

Are there highstorms in Aimia? got a quick yes.

 

I wondered about the Heralds during the description of Shalash when it said she had Alethi(?) skin and Shin eyes and Baxil wonders if she's some sort of hybrid. I just think she must be from a different world.

 

And the highstorms one interests me because there are none in Shinovar, which means the highstorms go around Shinovar to reach Aimia or they come from the other direction. 

Any thoughts?

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Ok, the stream is live, but it reloads with ads every 3 mins for me :( And cuts off, giving "the number of streams for your country exceeded." Pretty interesting, though :)

One Cosmere question answered, that I've heard (paraphrase, question unclear in my memory):

"If Atium is not an ordinary metal, what about Aitum mistings?"

"Brandon: They were made specifically for the purpose. You must remember that Ruin and Preservation can rewrite sDNA."

...

...

Let's hope we get a proper audio for transcription.

Edit: I'll probably go to sleep now :(

Edit2:  My water at time bubble question got RAFO

Right now Harmony is the most powerful in cosmere

Mistborn/Stormlight cross is a possibility in future.

Shardblade shapeshifting: RAFO

Kelsier vs Kaladin :depends on point in their carrier. Right now (bookwise) Kelsier wins, without magic: Kaladin wins

Odium is much more warrior-minded than Harmony, but is scared of harmony.

 

Edit3: Stupid video breaking mid-answer :( Sleep is for the weak...

 

White sand into graphic novel :)

Odium is definitely aware of Harmony <_<

Dalinar is not actually travelling back in time

Origin of Shattered Plains: read WoR

Hoid the doctor: No, but that would be fun.

Most powerful non-shard: probably Hoid.

Quiver: I asked you question, but I think he skipped it.

Radiant lifespan: RAFO

Taln is alive in WoK, he is sequel.

Kaladin family (video broke) :RAFO

White Sand was inspired by dream.

Argent: Ahh! Here it is "Just write" advice. Still, 14 yo. OK

Edit:

The cat! All hail the Pinecone Neko Hello Kitty +!

ALso, I think this might have been the last Q&A... at least the last one I'd hear for now. Sleep awaits.

The story is shaping up nicely :)

Well, thanks for asking anyway (up vote). This sounds like it was pretty interesting, and I am looking forward to seeing what you guys managed to produce with him.

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Just something to add on the general Q&A discussion:

 

While I agree that it gets old listening to the same questions or advice over and over, it wasn't too long ago that I was the one asking those irksome dumb questions. I went to a local WoK release party when Brandon happened to be passing through my city. I had a genuinely interesting question to ask, but when I got the chance I worried that maybe I should ask something of more generic interest so the rest of the crowd could get something out of it...so I piped up with "Who's your favorite character?"

 

Inane, I know. I'm pretty sure there were a few groans from the other people there.  But after that someone sitting near me directed me to the old TWG site, where I was introduced to the cosmere, etc.

 

I guess what I'm saying is don't be too hard on the drabs who haven't caught the vision yet. I would say that if a given Q&A is a wide audience, go right ahead and stack it full of cosmere questions, but try to make them ones that could trigger someone to go look up what you were asking about--i.e. more character motivations, big ideas, and important background, less nitpicky details. Just my 2 cents.

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Just something to add on the general Q&A discussion:

While I agree that it gets old listening to the same questions or advice over and over, it wasn't too long ago that I was the one asking those irksome dumb questions. I went to a local WoK release party when Brandon happened to be passing through my city. I had a genuinely interesting question to ask, but when I got the chance I worried that maybe I should ask something of more generic interest so the rest of the crowd could get something out of it...so I piped up with "Who's your favorite character?"

Inane, I know. I'm pretty sure there were a few groans from the other people there. But after that someone sitting near me directed me to the old TWG site, where I was introduced to the cosmere, etc.

I guess what I'm saying is don't be too hard on the drabs who haven't caught the vision yet. I would say that if a given Q&A is a wide audience, go right ahead and stack it full of cosmere questions, but try to make them ones that could trigger someone to go look up what you were asking about--i.e. more character motivations, big ideas, and important background, less nitpicky details. Just my 2 cents.

Ask and get answers from Brandon in sign language while he answers less technical questions aloud. All he'll need to learn are four letters; I think you can guess them ;)
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SHIP CAPTAIN!

(That wasn't me. Was just funny at first then horribly annoying by the end)

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It's supposed to be posted eventually, somewhere, according to Peter, but I haven't found it yet.

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As far as I'm aware, I don't think there would be any problems with doing so. I'd love to hear it personally, I was out Friday night and missed it.

 

EDIT:

 

Scratch that, it can be found here. Enjoy everyone :)

Edited by Windrunner
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Okay, I'm starting to transcribe the questions/interesting comments from the video here.

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Argent: Ahh! Here it is "Just write" advice. Still, 14 yo. OK

 

*chuckles*

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Okay, the transcription is done.
 
Something I'm excited about is that Isaac did a new endpage as well.

 

Full transcription below the cut

B: Oh, you want an intersex. That’s something very tough for me to write because I’ve only interviewed a few intersex people and transgender. I think they would make a wonderful character but I think that’s kind of a minefield doing on screen, since it’s not something I’ve done my research on for right now.

B: For the same reason I didn’t want to do a transgendered on air streaming when I haven’t done the research. I don’t want to write a gay character without having the resources to send the book to my gay friends to read it and say “Hey am I accidentally being offensive” and things like that.

Q: Where’s the Words of Radiance Release happening?
B: That is at the BYU Bookstore. Midnight.

Q: If atium isn’t a regular metal then why are there atium mistings?
B: They were designed and created specifically to do what they did. Remember this is-- Preservation and Ruin were able to influence the world and rewrite people’s spiritual DNA.

Q: What is my favorite character I’ve created?
B: It’s so hard to say. Often I use Dalinar as the big example on this one, just because I started writing a story about Dalinar when I was fourteen. He’s like one of my very first characters. Probably Dalinar.

Q: Do you like Deus ex Machinas?
B: No, not at the end of books. I’m fine with them at the beginning when you’re using the to introduce interesting elements.

Q: Are the Dawnsingers an order of Knights Radiant?
B: No, they are not.

Q: Would you consider The Stormlight Archive to be your magnum opus?
B: Yes, I would. Hopefully. It’s either that or the Mistborn series, the full nine-book Mistborn arc.

Q: What happens when you direct a stream of water at the edge of a time bubble in Alloy of Law Mistborn?
B: Let’s do a RAFO on that.

Q: What time do your stories take place in relation to each other? Stormlight Archive to Mistborn for example.
B: I’ve actually told Isaac and Peter we need to sit down and have a meeting where we hammer out this timeline. There are certain parts of it that are vague still, and I’d like to hammer it out before I release it. But eventually we are going to.

Q: Which of your magic system’s peak users would when in a fight?
B: Peak users, so mistborn holding the power of the Well of Ascension, spoilers. I think anyone invested to that extent is going to win in a fight. Right now the most powerful being in the cosmere is Harmony.

Q: Will there be a point in the cosmere books when there will be crossover worlds as a focal point? I really want to see Mistborn/Stomlight Archive.
B: You are going to be a very happy person in future years.

Q: Are you writing the story for the Mistborn game? What can we expect from that?
B: I’ve written and turned a story for them to use, though not the dialogue yet. They keep saying Christmastime 2015 is what they are shooting for now. I’m not sure, it keeps getting pushed back. I like the guys who are working on it but it seems they’re having serious troubles getting the thing actually made.

Q: Can a shardblades physical shape change?
B: Read And Find Out.

Q: Are the Heralds Rosharan?
B: Well, you will have to Read And Find Out on that one. Good question.

Q: Is Harmony stronger than Odium?
B: Harmony has two shards. So by raw power he is stronger than Odium. Odium is much more warrior-minded and killing-minded, so I don’t know if Harmony could actually beat him. But Odium is scared of Harmony.

Q: Is Odium planning to move against Harmony?
B: He is making plans.

Q: Have you ever thought about making a graphic novel?
B: Yes, we are trying to work on one right now actually. Were trying to get White Sand, which is one of my cosmere novels that I did not ever publish and see if we can adapt it for a graphic novel. So people can read that one.

Q: Is Odium aware of Harmony right now?
B: He definitely is.

Q: Are Dalinar’s visions time-travel?
B: No, he’s not actually going back in time.

Q: What can you tell us about the origin of the Shattered Plains?
B: Not very much. Read Words of Radiance.

Q: Is Hoid the Doctor?
B: No, but that would be fun. I can see the crossover fic stirring.

Q: Who is the most powerful non-Shard?
B: It’s probably Hoid.

Q: Do you support Fan Films?
B: I certainly don’t have any problems with fan films.

Q: Fanfic?
B: No problem with it. I don’t read a lot of it but I don’t have a problem with it.

Q: Is Kaladin ever going to see his family again?
B: RAFO

Q: What’s Prof’s weakness?
B: Spoilers, you will see more of that if you read future books.

Q: Is 36 main cosmere books a hard limit?
B: No, it’s a soft limit, not a hard limit.

Q: Do you ever have a dream inspire you?
B: White Sand was actually inspired by a dream.

Q: Elend (at the top of his game) vs. Kelsier (at the top of his game)
B: Kelsier.

[Discussing the Shallan endpage by Michael Whelan]
B: Isaac did another endpage too.

B: The artwork for this book turned out really well. Dan Dos Santos [?] did some for us, which is great interior art.

Q: Was Roshar mythos inspired by Shinto or Japanese mythology?
B: Yes, it was. There is definitely a large part of Asian mythology, specifically Korean. So less Shinto and more Korean but there’s a deep relationship there, and I lived in Korea as an LDS missionary for two years.

Q: What order of Knights Radiant would you be?
B: Windrunners probably.

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