Brandon's Post-Rhythm of War Plans, With Lost Metal, and SA Novella Timeline


Today Brandon replied to some Reddit threads about his 2020 plans after he finishes Rhythm of War, and talked about the timeline for The Lost Metal! Hooray details, hooray Brandon being transparent with us. Please note that these aren't surefire things, and this is the "perfect world" sort of scenario. First up: looks like Rhythm of War is taking a week or so longer than planned, with its turn in date now being July 10th (it was originally July 1st). 

The Stormlight novella, which will part of The Way of Kings leatherbound kickstarter tiers, will be up next. Brandon plans to write it mid-July to mid-August, beta read it late August, and then do revisions in early October. Lastly, the copyedit done mid-October, to get to people a month before Rhythm of War. To me this is a pretty tight timeline, and Brandon does admit things can slide and he'll try to be up-front about it. The novella may not be called Wandersail, as that is the ship's name, but this novella doesn't have to do with Hoid's story in The Way of Kings.

Later in the year, he will work on Skyward 3, then with the goal to begin The Lost Metal, the fourth Mistborn Era 2 story, on January 1st, 2021. After that, it's the fourth and final Skyward book, with a target for starting on Stormlight 5 the following January. 

Also, Brandon wants to fit in a "quick draft" of Songs of the Dead (formerly Death by Pizza), and probably will push back a revision of The Apocalypse Guard a bit later.

So, you know, I'd say that after Rhythm of War finishes, fitting in a novella, Skyward 3, Lost Metal, Skyward 4, that's pretty productive for the time in-between Stormlights. That doesn't even include any of the other projects, like Apocalypse Guard, Songs of the Dead, Alcatraz 6, or whatever else that might pop up. Sounds good to me.

In case you missed it: Brandon posted a large blog post on The Way of Kings leatherbound Kickstarter, which has updated tiers from what we previously reported. The Kickstarter goes live July 7th!

Edited by Chaos

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KING

Posted

So awesome! Thanks for sharing. Can’t wait for the Lost Metal! 

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That was exciting news (and cool to see him answer those questions more or less live)! I do wonder if he could crunch The Lost Metal to come out in 2021 with Skyward 3. ...I don't think it would be healthy, but I do wonder if it's possible. 

 

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Jofwu

Posted

46 minutes ago, Use the Falchion said:

That was exciting news (and cool to see him answer those questions more or less live)! I do wonder if he could crunch The Lost Metal to come out in 2021 with Skyward 3. ...I don't think it would be healthy, but I do wonder if it's possible. 

 

They ARE rather short novels... Three months to write, three months to revise, three to six months to get it from there to boookshelves? Seems possible. Not sure how long previous Era 2 books have taken to write.

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Fingers crossed he’ll actually get through Lost Metal! I’ve been waiting for that for years.

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Pagerunner

Posted

Lost Metal has been a year away for five years now. I'll wait until a progress bar pops up before getting my hopes up.

Quote

Dec 2015: Lost Metal will be written between SA3 and SA4.
Dec 2016: Lost Metal will be the "next non-YA novel project," written Fall 2017.
Sep 2017: Lost Metal will be written "next year."
Dec 2017: Lost Metal will be out Fall 2019. Start writing on Sep 1st, 2018.
Sep 2018: Lost Metal will be written "in between chunks of" SA4.
Dec 2018: No more side projects until Lost Metal is completed. Release in 2020 or 2021.
Apr 2019. Lost Metal will be "one of the first things" after SA4.
Oct 2019. Lost Metal will be "right after SA4."
Mar 2020. Lost Metal or Skyward 3 in August.

Lost Metal has become the new Warbreaker and Elantris sequels; always just on the horizon, but never quite the right time to do it, apparently. Brandon has a good sense of how long it takes to write a book once he starts working on it, but his future project list changes about once a month. Since Stormlight is almost over, I expect he knows what's going to come next; Skyward 3 is my guess, since he has to keep both his publishers happy and Tor just got a big ol' book.

But after Skyward 3... who knows. Maybe he'll take longer than expected on it, and "need" to go straight to Skyward 4. Maybe one of his other side projects, like Dark One (with its big TV show just around the corner) or the Mistborn screenplay (which nobody will buy) or Apocalypse Guard (which he's figured out for sure this time) or new audiobook content for finished series (since everyone's been clamoring for more Legion and Reckoners) or Adamant or Silence Divine or who knows what other Secret Project jump up on the priority list and bump everything else out.

Incidentally, this pattern also has me concerned about the Stormlight novella for the leatherbound Kickstarter. The other Cosmere Kickstarter projects haven't come close to keeping their timetables, because they offered products that had yet to be developed and the creators haven't been able to hold to those production timelines. The House War expansion will be three years late on what was supposed to a be a 1-year wait, but at least it's being manufactured right now. I've flat-out written off the $50 I spent on the Stormlight art book from the Kaladin soundtrack, since they're back to square 1 on that again. I was expecting an Kickstarter done by Dragonsteel would be more professional and not have those issues, but here we are, about to pay for a novella that hasn't been written yet by an author who has not demonstrated he can write a given book in a timely manner.

Yes, he's always publishing something, but often it's not what he had planned to publish a year before. When he finishes a book, next he writes whatever he's passionate about writing at that moment. When he's shared plans before on social media or in States of the Sanderson, it's always been informal, so there's nothing wrong about breaking that "promise." But once we give him our money, he will actually be making a real promise to write this novella; we'd better hope we get lucky and he gets passionate about the novella in the middle of other Stormlight work.

Before the replies come in, of course Brandon is allowed to write what he wants to write. When he says "here's what I'm gonna write," I have not said "he should write this instead." What I am saying is: "I doubt that. Fans, don't count your chickens until he's started writing them."

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Chaos

Posted

I think it's pretty unfair to compare the leatherbound Kickstarter to Kickstarters not managed by Dragonsteel directly. Brandon has always been very consistent in his Stormlight plans and books, and knows it would be his top priority. 

Quote

but here we are, about to pay for a novella that hasn't been written yet by an author who has not demonstrated he can write a given book in a timely manner.

Maybe the book you wanted, sure, but again, he's always executed Stormlight solidly. I think this is pretty unnecessarily harsh. Lost Metal will be one of the things right after Stormlight 4, and it's in the very near future. Seems good to me.

Sure, if the novella fails, then I'm right there with you complaining about it, but I think your comment is much harsher than I'd put it.

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Jofwu

Posted

@Pagerunner dishing out ice cold truth.

I won't be surprised if he's running behind on Lost Metal, but I'm also willing to bet he gets it done in 2021 no matter what. I get the sense that he's genuinely interested in wrapping up ongoing projects for one. And if it doesn't happen before Stormlight 5 it means he'll need to directly follow it up with all of Era 3. I just can't see him doing that to himself? I think WORST CASE would be that he swaps it with Skyward 4 and has to write it second half of 2021.

Won't at all disagree that this would be a deviation from several years of pushing it off, or that skepticism isn't reasonable. (at the least) Call me an optimist. Just what my gut says.

I've been skeptical about the novella as well, but we'll know more about that soon enough at least. I think you're right that States of the Sanderson and random social media comments are hard promises while this Kickstarter 100% is. And Brandon's not one to break promises. So I'm not really concerned that the novella won't happen (though I was prior to Kickstarter details), or that it will get delayed significantly. If anything, my concern there would be that it delays Skyward 3 (and then we're back to the Lost Metal conversation.)

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Chaos

Posted

We're going to see novella progress bars during the Kickstarter. It's literally going to be the next thing Brandon works on. I'm not too worried about that. 

And if we don't get novella progress bars during the Kickstarter, yeah, that'd be bad, for sure. 

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*cries for the Rithmatist sequel*

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If Brandon completes ROW on July 10th, why can't we read it on July 11th?  What if we pay up front for the hardback and the e-book and they just ship me the hardback when it's ready?

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Jofwu

Posted

2 hours ago, ConfusedCow said:

If Brandon completes ROW on July 10th, why can't we read it on July 11th?  What if we pay up front for the hardback and the e-book and they just ship me the hardback when it's ready?

That's just Brandon's involvement. There's the copyedit, the gamma read, and maybe another draft along those lines? I'm sure a lot of the artwork is still in progress. I imagine that the entire book, put together and looking good, is important to Brandon.

And that's to say nothing of the publisher's interests. I doubt they would be happy with that idea. :)

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The novella may not be called Wandersail, as it is the ship's name, but doesn't have to do with Hoid's story in The Way of Kings.

So this is saying that it doesn't have to be named Wandersail, but also isn't going to be the story that Hoid told, right? The wording just confused me at first: it says "may not", but also says "but" later. If it isn't going to be called Wandersail, there isn't really going to be any confusion with Hoid's story... I'm confused 

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5 hours ago, ConfusedCow said:

If Brandon completes ROW on July 10th, why can't we read it on July 11th?  What if we pay up front for the hardback and the e-book and they just ship me the hardback when it's ready?

Because that's not how the publishing industry works? This isn't a guy writing in his basement and self-publishing to his blog. There are contracts and artists and ad campaigns and lawyers and on and on.

2 hours ago, GoWibble said:

So this is saying that it doesn't have to be named Wandersail, but also isn't going to be the story that Hoid told, right? The wording just confused me at first: it says "may not", but also says "but" later. If it isn't going to be called Wandersail, there isn't really going to be any confusion with Hoid's story... I'm confused 

He said that the ship in this story is going to be called Wandersail. So that would make sense for the title of the story. However, this story has nothing to do with Hoid's story about a ship called Wandersail. So he's concerned that naming the novella that could cause confusion. As a result, he's not decide yet, for sure, what he's going to call the novella.

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Chaos

Posted (edited)

7 hours ago, ConfusedCow said:

If Brandon completes ROW on July 10th, why can't we read it on July 11th?  What if we pay up front for the hardback and the e-book and they just ship me the hardback when it's ready?

In addition to what others have said, they probably need more time for the art too.

EDIT: Having thought about it a lot more, there's cover art still to do, audiobook recording, not to mention translations and localizations (Gollancz will need time to format the books into their formatting). There's a ton of stuff to do. My impression is that this is actually a very accelerated timeline for getting the book out.

Edited by Chaos
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59 minutes ago, datalaughing said:

He said that the ship in this story is going to be called Wandersail. So that would make sense for the title of the story. However, this story has nothing to do with Hoid's story about a ship called Wandersail. So he's concerned that naming the novella that could cause confusion. As a result, he's not decide yet, for sure, what he's going to call the novella

That is what I was saying, just the grammar in the post didn't flow well (at least for me)

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Chaos

Posted

16 minutes ago, GoWibble said:

That is what I was saying, just the grammar in the post didn't flow well (at least for me)

I can see why this was confusing and I adjusted it slightly.

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I absolutely cannot wait and thanks so much Brandon for being an amazing superhuman!

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Karger

Posted

I feel like am watching the flash in one of his mid 90s comics.  Yeah he is the fastest man alive but he is still not going fast enough.

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Iarwainiel

Posted

Whenever these books come out, I will buy them (but not the leatherbound editions - I'll leave those for folks with richer pockets, LOL). Some things are worth waiting for, and that's the case with Brandon's books, IMO.

That said, I may stop buying/reading SA after book 5, especially if the first 5-book arc ends with a nice sense of closure. Reason is that I'm probably a bit older than Brandon's parents, and I may not live to see book 10. So a book-5-closure would leave me at a somewhat happy point in the story (I'm thinking, who needs any extra sadness or tension when one is in one's declining years?). Then if time goes on & I am around for book 10, I can always start up again with book 6 and go forward from there. I have told myself "No more getting invested in book series by young authors!" ... and have broken that directive numerous times already, LOL!

I'm very much looking forward to the preview chapters of RoW, whenever Tor starts posting them!:D

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On 7/2/2020 at 0:36 PM, Chaos said:

I can see why this was confusing and I adjusted it slightly.

And I just read the WoB that says almost exactly what you put in. It didn't make much sense either... :huh:

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Mikebrit52

Posted (edited)

I would like to start off first by saying I love reading his books and he is definitely a prolific author. That being said the time between some sequels has me concerned. Even for an author like him writing styles change a little bit over time. The more time between them the more of a chance that something will be lost when sequels like The Lost Metal, the one for Elantris or Warbreaker or even Rithmatist finally get released. I appreciate how much he has on his plate and that he is a great writer, but I do wish he would complete some series and finish some of their arcs before starting on new projects. For those of us who are older (50+) chances are good that we will not see the end of this saga and we will have to decide at some point to stop and live with what is written. It would be nice if we have stop due to medical conditions or other things that come with age that we have at least complete series from which to stop at.

Edited by Mikebrit52
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