ccstat

Preview Chapters: Avoid or Embrace?

26 posts in this topic

Do you think the pre-release content (typically the first 6-8 chapters) should be experienced in advance of the rest of the work?

Like many of you, I am getting incredibly excited for the November release of Oathbringer. I am trying to decide how best to approach that experience, specifically with regard to the preview chapters Tor releases in the weeks leading up to The Day. I'm interested in hearing your experiences with past cosmere releases, and in particular if any of the current beta readers have an opinion on this for Oathbringer specifically.

For past releases I have devoured all available details and jumped into forum discussions about them. And I loved that part! One of my main regrets when reading books, especially cosmere books, is that I read through too quickly--I keep turning those pages for "one more chapter" to find out what happens, rather than taking breaks and letting the suspense and tension do their work. Having enforced pauses for those early portions is a fun experience that begets theorizing and anticipation. It's great!

But there's also a downside. My first experience with Words of Radiance, which I loved on re-reads, was that some of the biggest twists and reveals and payoffs were too predictable, probably a direct effect of all the discussions and theorizing I'd participated in here on 17S. (For me, the main one was Kal's third ideal and getting Syl back. It seemed painfully obvious where things were going, so I felt frustration instead of tension the whole time Syl was "dead.") On subsequent read-throughs, when novelty didn't matter, I was able to enjoy the character arcs more and I revised my opinion.

So I'm debating whether to follow the pre-release hype this time around, or take a leave-of-absence from 17S / Tor.com / Reddit. So far I have made the decision to avoid the two interlude readings Brandon has done ... but my self control broke down a week or two after each one was transcribed, and I read them anyway.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My memory is rubbish so I avoid the pre-release chapters. I remember enough that nothing big would surprise me, but can't remember small stuff that might be important later on.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I really don't know. This is the first time I've ever jumped into the pre release stuff and the interaction around it here on the Shard makes that really fun. 

For the book itself... I hope it doesn't ruin anything, but considering how often I've reread other cosmere works, I can't imagine it being worth giving up the time here. 

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For a massive book like Oathrbringer, I read them. 

For smaller books like the Wax and Wayne novels, I avoid. Purely because they are so short that don't want to read 1/5 of the book before it even comes out.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think you made a good point, that it's all about your experience. Why does Tor release the chapters? To get people talking, to raise awareness of the release, so they can move more product on release day. Practical considerations, but it works, and it's a business approach. Why do we read them? Do they actually increase our enjoyment of the books?

For me, I read the preview chapters. The chapters they release will not spoil the book (except if you're Amazon, and release the end as a preview, but I think Team Sanderson got that whole thing cleared up), and they let me get to the end a little quicker (since I'll be able to skim through main sequence chapters or just straight-up skip Interludes and such). I'll be rereading important passages later anyways for theorizing, so I don't mind seeing it again. And, let's be honest, knowing something is out there and not reading it is painful.

But that's me, and just for books. Maybe it's a structure thing - I don't like binge-watching TV shows, since I feel it takes away from the experience. For novels, I guess the books are more like episodes, and not the chapters in that book.

To truly know, you'll have to hold off and not experience anything until release. This is a "to each his own" situation, so you probably won't be able to know unless you actually try it. But for me, I'm here to theorize, and I've already developed some theories I'll watch for from the Prologue and the two Interludes. (And I dusted off an old idea about the WoK back cover!)

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Are any previews out yet, or expected soon, for Oathbringer?

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, Mason Wheeler said:

Are any previews out yet, or expected soon, for Oathbringer?

I know a couple of Dalinar's flashback chapters have been, but for the life of me I cannot remember where. Bonus content released in some other book for one of them I think? @maxal You've read them, so maybe you remember.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Unfettered II was an anthology (for a charity, I believe), which has rough drafts of Dalinar flashbacks in them.

If you look in the Oathbringer spoiler board, there is a pinned topic that has all the excerpts that have been read at signings. We have the prologue, two interludes, a Kaladin scene, and a couple of the Dalinar flashbacks (but not all that was in Unfettered). Don't fret about spoilers - topic titles need to be spoiler-free anyways (since they appear on the forum main page when they're posted), so as long as you don't click into any other threads, you'll avoid any unwanted information.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, Mason Wheeler said:

Are any previews out yet, or expected soon, for Oathbringer?

Here's the very handy thread that @ZenBossanova started. 

This is my first time pre- reading a book as I avoided this site until I'd read every Sanderson book and that was post-BoM. I was active when AU came out but that was different. I hope I don't spoil anything for myself but even if I do there's no way I would have it in me to avoid it. Discussions on this site make me enjoy the books so much more, and this is my first chance to theorize :)

1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I read the excerpts, when they interest me. I haven't read all of the interludes excerpts because I honestly do not care much for them, but I have bought and read The Thrill which I found absolutely amazing. I love having read it, my one complain would be not enough people read it, so I have nobody to talk to about it. It also makes some conversations difficult as several element truly are gamer changer when it comes to Dalinar's character.

In the end, I do not think it will impact my reading of Oathbringer, if I can make to the end without spoiling myself. I am a slow reader, so by the time I will reach the final page most will have been done for a while. For me, this is the true danger as I did spoil myself reading WoR. I loved the book so much, but I couldn't keep up reading it as I was reading it, so I did spoil myself in order to stop the craving and be able to read more slowly, at a pace which befitted my personal life. I hope not to do the same for Oathbringer.

7 hours ago, ccstat said:

(For me, the main one was Kal's third ideal and getting Syl back. It seemed painfully obvious where things were going, so I felt frustration instead of tension the whole time Syl was "dead.") 

I did not read any WoB nor any conversation when I first read WoR and it has always been obvious, to me, Syl would be back. Even within the support of online discussion, I felt this one was highly predictable. Well, it was for me. It may be why these never were my favorite parts of the book.

6 hours ago, The One Who Connects said:

I know a couple of Dalinar's flashback chapters have been, but for the life of me I cannot remember where. Bonus content released in some other book for one of them I think? @maxal You've read them, so maybe you remember.

I read them, loved them. It is a real killer knowing most people didn't read them as those extra chapters truly contain amazing elements of Dalinar's youth. Well, amazing to me, I really loved them. They truly changed my views of the character, but not in a positive way.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
33 minutes ago, maxal said:

(For me, the main one was Kal's third ideal and getting Syl back. It seemed painfully obvious where things were going, so I felt frustration instead of tension the whole time Syl was "dead.") 

I never skip ahead, but when I got to that point, I flipped ahead until I saw Syl was back - I didn't even stop to see what she was doing. Once I knew she was back, it was ok. 

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm a little odd. I'll read the leadup stuff, but not anything else. So like, the Dalinar sections in (I think) unfettered 2 I haven't touched. But as the samples are released I'll read them. And I'll listen at signings obviously. But, I like to read the book in order. And frankly it both whets the appetite and sates the cravings at the same time. At least as far as Stormlight and The Dresden Files are concerned.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, Mason Wheeler said:

Are any previews out yet, or expected soon, for Oathbringer?

There's an entire storming board dedicated to it my chap. There's a pinned thread in there with all the released material.

As for me? I read the released material simply out of angst. The SA books are so massive that an appetizer dosnt spoil the entree for me.

1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I read some of the previews. I think the Kaladin preview chapter is safe to read, for example, it spoils absolutely nothing.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I devour  them all with relish and no shame.

2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I mostly try to avoid, but I caved in and read the Kaladin chapter. I figured that if it was right at the beginning of the book, then by definition it couldn't be a spoiler.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 7/2/2017 at 6:56 AM, AerionBFII said:

I devour  them all with relish and no shame.

Relish, ketchup, and mustard.  No shame and no onions please.

1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 6/30/2017 at 8:22 PM, maxal said:

I read them, loved them. It is a real killer knowing most people didn't read them as those extra chapters truly contain amazing elements of Dalinar's youth. Well, amazing to me, I really loved them. They truly changed my views of the character, but not in a positive way.

Why not?  It's very interesting knowing where Dalinar came from and seeing how he's changed.  And it's not as if we didn't know that he started out as a bloody-handed warlord who helped his brother conquer Alethkar.  That's been clear since the beginning.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
34 minutes ago, Mason Wheeler said:

Why not?  It's very interesting knowing where Dalinar came from and seeing how he's changed.  And it's not as if we didn't know that he started out as a bloody-handed warlord who helped his brother conquer Alethkar.  That's been clear since the beginning.

We knew this, but we all assumed all he did was being a bloody warlord. Dalinar did very dishonorable things during those battles, very reprehensible things, almost unforgivable things and those things I am referring too, I bet nobody ever thought it was this bad.

1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have read the Kaladin returning home chapter and the Dalinar battle in the town chapter that were released a while ago. I read the first 8-9 chapters of WOR that were released early because i couldn't contain myself. I pretend like I will not read until the whole book is available but I know that resolve will crack once more chapters start coming out early. I thought i would hold off on reading Edgedancer until it came out in its standalone form but 2 weeks ago i bough Arcanum Unbounded just to read it :D. It is all fun to me because i can read a few chapters early and skim/skip those chapters once the whole book comes out. The first time i read the books it is for the story, then i reread again trying to find more details. Though after being on the forums again for a while and seeing what all the awesome people on the forums find I realize how many details i miss even on a reread. 

Is the "Thrill" different from the Dalinar chapter that shows the battle in the town that was released earlier? I ask because i remember a point in that battle chapter where Dalinar experiences "The Thrill." and it seemed pretty emphasized so i was wondering if they were the same chapter. If not then more to look forward to! 

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 minutes ago, gbazz4 said:

Is the "Thrill" different from the Dalinar chapter that shows the battle in the town that was released earlier? I ask because i remember a point in that battle chapter where Dalinar experiences "The Thrill." and it seemed pretty emphasized so i was wondering if they were the same chapter. If not then more to look forward to! 

A collection was published called "Unfettered II" and Brandon contributed a four "chapter" chuck of Dalinar's flashbacks from Oathbringer, collectively named "The Thrill". That sample was one of the four. 

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Dang! there are 3 more chapters i need to read. Now i need to decide if i go buy Unfettered II or wait until Oathbringer comes out. Decisions decisions!

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
47 minutes ago, gbazz4 said:

Dang! there are 3 more chapters i need to read. Now i need to decide if i go buy Unfettered II or wait until Oathbringer comes out. Decisions decisions!

You can read them, but I have read Alice, from Tor.com, advising people not to read it as she feels it spoils a "moment" in Oathbringer. I do know what the "moment" is, but I can't say which reader will feel spoil by it. It isn't such a big thing, but it makes one future scene less powerful nor meaningful.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
40 minutes ago, maxal said:

You can read them, but I have read Alice, from Tor.com, advising people not to read it as she feels it spoils a "moment" in Oathbringer. I do know what the "moment" is, but I can't say which reader will feel spoil by it. It isn't such a big thing, but it makes one future scene less powerful nor meaningful.

Hmmm...given it could make an important scene less powerful i might hold off on reading them.

By future scene do you mean a scene that will happen in Oathbringer? Or one that already happened in WOK or WOR and the flashback will shed light on it and make it more meaningful in hindsight (since technically a scene in WOK or WOR could be considered in the future compared to a flashback scene)?

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 minutes ago, gbazz4 said:

Hmmm...given it could make an important scene less powerful i might hold off on reading them.

By future scene do you mean a scene that will happen in Oathbringer? Or one that already happened in WOK or WOR and the flashback will shed light on it and make it more meaningful in hindsight (since technically a scene in WOK or WOR could be considered in the future compared to a flashback scene)?

If they're advising against reading it now, when it is included in Oathbringer, I'd assume it impacts something else in the book. 

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.