Today, Brandon posted another update on Stormlight 4 on Reddit. He's finished Part One of the book (which is 111k words long), which, assuming the book is about 400k words long, is about 28% of the book. Brandon is modestly confident in a 2020 release date, but he did warn that if the book needs more time, he will take it.
He went into a detailed analysis of word count and evaluating how he's doing in order to be done with the rough draft by January 1st, which is essential if the book would release in 2020. You can check out the numbers yourself, but he worked hard to make up some lost time, but also lost some time when he toured in Germany. (We reported that in Germany he got to write some of the Sixth of the Dusk sequel, but Stormlight writing requires a lot more focus than he do when traveling. So though he's 33k words behind what his target would be to be done January 1st, he's optimistic.
Brandon's next step is to work on a revision of Part One. Though this puts him a bit more behind--just about a week's worth--it allows for his editor and the rest of the team to do an editorial pass. He did similar part-by-part revisions as he was writing Oathbringer, and the hope is that if he finishes writing the rough draft by January 1st, much of the book will have editorial feedback done, and he can hit the ground running with Draft 3 immediately.
He also reiterated how Book Four has more of a Way of Kings style to it, with its three different arcs hitting climaxes at different times, rather than an enormous ending. He is doing this for some variety. But, then he said that Book Five will have an ending more like Books Two and Three.
So that's where he is. As usual, we must say how amazing and fortunate we are as a fandom to follow an author who so up-front about his process. Even if Brandon doesn't hit 2020 as a release, I'm sure it'll be because he wants to make the book as good as possible.
Other Novellas to be Done Before
There's some other news that has fallen through the cracks before this Stormlight update came out. In the Reddit thread where Brandon confirmed the Sixth of the Dusk sequel, he also spoke how he wants to write more Stormlight novellas set in between the books. He said he's hopeful to do Rock or Rysn's novella also this year, but he'll have to see. Apparently, the Rock one "kind of needs to happen." Interesting! Brandon said the Rock novella would be post-Oathbringer, with him returning to his homeland.
Brandon also said a Lopen novella would be set between Books One and Two, done "someday soon." Brandon "the many projects" Sanderson at work, folks.
Fan Art Policy Update
Recently, Dragonsteel updated their fan art policy, and made it easier to find. Now you can find it on Brandonsanderson.com under About Brandon, but here's the direct link. Check it out and if you have any questions, email [email protected]