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Messages - Cheese Ninja

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Brandon Sanderson / Re: Timespan for Stormlight Archives? (Spoilers)
« on: August 22, 2011, 09:10:58 PM »
I used wikipedia too, but I just kept jumping between Mars and Mercury's pages, so I'm not too surprised I screwed something up.

Brandon Sanderson / Re: Timespan for Stormlight Archives? (Spoilers)
« on: August 21, 2011, 11:28:02 PM »
It doesn't matter if it's the same size, bigger, or smaller than Earth.  If it takes 20 hours to rotate, then it has a 20 hour day.

Let's use Mars and Mercury as examples:
Mars has a 24.6229 hour day and is only has 11% of Earth's mass.  Mercury has a 1407.5 hour day and has about the same mass as Mars.  Mercury has nearly the same density of Earth.  Mar's radius is 0.533 Earths, and Mercury's radius is 0.3829 Earths.

The mass only matters for gravity.

Brandon Sanderson / Re: Timespan for Stormlight Archives? (Spoilers)
« on: August 20, 2011, 01:32:48 AM »
Roshar rotates a bit faster than Earth.
20 hours per day, and their hour is like a minute or two shorter than our hour.
The earth's rotation isn't constant, its speed decreases very slowly over time, due to the moon's influence.
This geological record is consistent with these conditions 620 million years ago: the day was 21.9±0.4 hours, and there were 13.1±0.1 synodic months/year and 400±7 solar days/year.

Brandon Sanderson / Re: Alloy of Law (Chapter 5)
« on: August 11, 2011, 07:45:38 PM »
Ending the previews on such a huge cliffhanger would just be cruel.
I'm not sure how to take this comment, do editors delight in tormenting the readers as much as authors?  Is it going to end on an even bigger cliffhanger?

I'm really interested to see how Wax and Wayne are going to fight together, since Wax can't shoot out of the speedbubble, is he just going to line up some shots, shoot when Wayne drops it, then they both dash and he sets up another bubble and they repeat the process?  If that's the case it doesn't really seem like Wayne would get much of a chance to use his dueling canes, so I'm guessing there's a bit more to their attack pattern.  Plus, I don't know if Wax has enough bullets for that.

I thought both Marasi and Steris could be kidnapping targets, glad I got that one right.  I wouldn't mind too much if Marasi gets kidnapped, but I hope Steris doesn't.  We've got a bit of an introduction to the kind of character Marasi is, but only hints of Steris's attitudes.

Brandon Sanderson / Re: Alloy of Law (Chapter 4)
« on: July 30, 2011, 06:07:43 AM »
I know we're supposed to be partial to Marasi, but at this point I really like Steris.  Seems like one or both of them are possible kidnapping targets.

Brandon Sanderson / Re: WoK: Kaladin and Syl *Spoilers*
« on: July 26, 2011, 10:08:55 PM »
Taravangian says
"Was this your destiny? Do you wonder? Given that monstrosity of a Shardblade by your people, cast out and absolved of any sin your masters might require of you?"
In the prologue Szeth thinks:
He left the king’s Shardblade; he had no use for it. The Blade Szeth already carried was curse enough.
Either the Shin think all shardblades are trouble, or there's something special about his.

In the Glory of Ignorance intermission chapter, Szeth thinks:
What would these men say if they knew that the man who emptied their chamber pot was a Shardbearer and a Surgebinder? A Windrunner, like the Radiants of old? The moment he summoned his Blade, his eyes would turn from dark green to pale—almost glowing—sapphire, a unique effect of his particular weapon.

Also, Szeth's shardblade is edged on both sides.  I'm not sure that any of the others are, and I know for sure that some are single edged.

Brandon Sanderson / Re: WoK: Kaladin and Syl *Spoilers*
« on: July 19, 2011, 08:02:51 PM »
Also, Brandon has said that something different is happening with Szeth then with Kaladin, which implies that he gets his powers in a different way then Kaladin and we think he doesn't have a spren. But he did confirm that Kaladin and Szeth are using the same powerset, even if they get it in different ways.

For some reason I think Szeth's shardblade is extra magical, and that it is what gives him his windrunner abilities.  But there's not enough shardblades shown for me to be sure that Szeth's is actually different from normal.  Turning his eyes sapphire might not mean anything at all.

Brandon Sanderson / Re: I Hate Dragons
« on: June 26, 2011, 03:00:20 PM »
Double post, because occasionally my thoughts turn to this story. 
So, here's a guess.

Being delicious to dragons is not a magical knack.

Humans need various minerals and elements to survive.  Some vitamins can be produced by the body itself, like vitamin D, and supplemented by diet.  Humans can't produce vitamin C, so need to gather it from things like citrus fruit or raw meat.  They don't need to consume these things every day, you won't get scurvy immediately.  In this world, dragons need to eat humans.  I think humans are a source of vitamin [human magic].  Being high in [human magic] is why he smells delicious to dragons.  Whether it means he'd be good at manipulating the same types of magic as the sorceress, or that his other two knacks themselves are powerful, I've got no good guesses.  Unless the sorceress's magic is based on incantations, then it's an obvious parallel.

Brandon Sanderson / Re: Don't listen to the jerks
« on: June 09, 2011, 06:05:59 AM »
Ah, that would make sense.

People took it seriously because of certain infamous epic authors who (for whatever reasons, often valid ones) take decades to write a handful of (admittedly phone-book-sized) volumes, and maybe run out of time on the Big Clock before they finish. It's a real and very present concern for fantasy fans in these days of lengthy multi-volume novels.

Brandon has always struck me as being more in the mold of authors like Pratchett or Butcher, who put out good work at a steady pace. He likes to write more (I think) than he likes Being A Writer, and we're all damn lucky that's the case.

In related news, George R.R. Martin's new Song of Fire and Ice book comes out on July 12th.  5.75 years is pretty long between books though.  Not that you named any names, and you may not even have been thinking of him.

Pratchett's pace seems to have been effected by his disease.  I wonder if Butcher is a Pratchett fan too.  I sometimes wonder to myself which is the nerdier author, Brandon or Butcher.  Maybe I just need to read more authors, and then I'd realize that the competition for nerdiest author is far more than I could ever have imagined.

Brandon Sanderson / Re: Timespan for Stormlight Archives? (Spoilers)
« on: June 09, 2011, 05:38:55 AM »
I write the dates as Month#-Week#-Day#, XX-XX-X where the two pairs are from 1 to 10 and the last number is from 1 to 5.
Damn it, I'll have to edit the earlier post to show your way of doing it as well.  On a side note, while I mostly understand the abbreviated dates now, where Tanat is used kinda screws me up.  I imagine the system of abbreviating the dates would make even more sense if I studied over the Alethi script? (Which, sadly, I am too lazy to do.)

Date editing done, but I didn't double check them all, so I wouldn't be surprised if some are wrong.  Does anyone else think it's weird that the only epigraph out of chronological order is the only one detailing an event we clearly see happening during the book?

Brandon Sanderson / Re: Timespan for Stormlight Archives? (Spoilers)
« on: June 08, 2011, 01:22:23 AM »
I checked out the 17th shard forum, where they were trying to figure out to understand the dates in the epigraphs, and I put the dates in a form from 1-500.  I'll repost here:

1= Jes
2= Nan
3= Chach
4= Vev
5= Palah
6= Shash
7= Betab
8= Kak
9= Tanat
10= Ishi

I think the dates in the years would be more readable here if we converted them to just numbers 1-500 to correspond to the sequential day of the year. So it would be (month's #-1)*50 + (week #-1)*5 + (day #). I'll put the some examples in parentheses. Edit 2: I'll grudgingly add Peter's method of dates in, since he's an authority on the series. Also, since there's no math involved I'm less likely to mess it up.

1. “The love of men is a frigid thing, a mountain stream only three steps from the ice. We are his. Oh Stormfather…we are his. It is but a thousand days, and the Everstorm comes.”—Collected on the first day of the week Palah of the month Shash of the year 1171, thirty-one seconds before death. Subject was a darkeyed pregnant woman of middle years. The child did not survive. (271) [6-5-1]
2. “You’ve killed me. Bastards, you’ve killed me! While the sun is still hot, I die!”—Collected on the fifth day of the week Chach of the month Betab of the year 1171, ten seconds before death. Subject was a darkeyed soldier thirty-one years of age. Sample is considered questionable. (315) [7-3-5]
3.“Ten orders. We were loved, once. Why have you forsaken us, Almighty! Shard of my soul, where have you gone?”—Collected on the second day of Kakash, year 1171, five seconds before death. Subject was a lighteyed woman in her third decade. (377) [8-6-2]
4.“A man stood on a cliffside and watched his homeland fall into dust. The waters surged beneath, so far beneath. And he heard a child crying. They were his own tears.”—Collected on the 4th of Tanates, year 1171, thirty seconds before death. Subject was a cobbler of some renown. (404) [9-1-4]
5.“I’m dying, aren’t I? Healer, why do you take my blood? Who is that beside you, with his head of lines? I can see a distant sun, dark and cold, shining in a black sky.”—Collected on the 3rd of Jesnan, 1172, 11 seconds pre-death. Subject was a Reshi chull trainer. Sample is of particular note. (8) [1-2-3]
6.“I have seen the end, and have heard it named. The Night of Sorrows, the True Desolation. The Everstorm.”—Collected on the 1st of Nanes, 1172, 15 seconds pre-death. Subject was a darkeyed youth of unknown origin. (51) [2-1-1]
7.“I’m cold. Mother, I’m cold. Mother? Why can I still hear the rain? Will it stop?”—Collected on Vevishes, 1172, 32 seconds pre-death. Subject was a lighteyed female child, approximately six years old. (196) [4-10-1]
8.“They are aflame. They burn. They bring the darkness when they come, and so all you can see is that their skin is aflame. Burn, burn, burn….”—Collected on Palahishev, 1172, 21 seconds pre-death. Subject was a baker’s apprentice. (249) [5-10-4]
9.“Victory! We stand atop the mount! We scatter them before us! Their homes become our dens, their lands are now our farms! And they shall burn, as we once did, in a place that is hollow and forlorn.”—Collected on Ishashan, 1172, 18 seconds pre-death. Subject was a lighteyed spinster of the eighth dahn. (477) [10-6-2]
10.“Ten people, with Shardblades alight, standing before a wall of black and white and red.”—Collected: Jesachev, 1173, 12 seconds pre-death. Subject: one of our own ardents, overheard during his last moments. (14) [1-3-4]
11.“Three of sixteen ruled, but now the Broken One reigns.”—Collected: Chachanan, 1173, 84 seconds pre-death. Subject: a cutpurse with the wasting sickness, of partial Iriali descent. (107) [3-2-2]
13.“I’m standing over the body of a brother. I’m weeping. Is that his blood or mine? What have we done?”—Dated Vevanev, 1173, 107 seconds pre-death. Subject: an out-of-work Veden sailor. (159) [4-2-4]
14.“He must pick it up, the fallen title! The tower, the crown, and the spear!”—Dated Vevahach, 1173, 8 seconds pre-death. Subject: a prostitute. Back ground unknown. (173) [4-5-3]
15.“The burdens of nine become mine. Why must I carry the madness of them all? Oh, Almighty, release me.”—Dated Palaheses, 1173, unknown seconds pre-death. Subject: a wealthy lighteyes. Sample collected secondhand. (201) [5-1-1]
16.“A woman sits and scratches out her own eyes. Daughter of kings and winds, the vandal.”—Dated Palahevan, 1173, 73 seconds pre-death. Subject: a beggar of some renown, known for his elegant songs. (217) [5-4-2]
17.“Light grows so distant. The storm never stops. I am broken, and all around me have died. I weep for the end of all things. He has won. Oh, he has beaten us.”—Dated Palahakev, 1173, 16 seconds pre-death. Subject: a Thaylen sailor. (239) [5-8-4]
18.“I hold the suckling child in my hands, a knife at his throat, and know that all who live wish me to let the blade slip. Spill its blood upon the ground, over my hands, and with it gain us further breath to draw.”—Dated Shashanan, 1173, 23 seconds pre-death. Subject: a darkeyed youth of sixteen years. Sample is of particular note. (257) [6-2-2]
(19)“And all the world was shattered!” Maps yelled, back arching, eyes wide, flecks of red spittle on his cheeks. “The rocks trembled with their steps, and the stones reached toward the heavens. We die! We die!” (No Date)
20.“ReShephir, the Midnight Mother, giving birth to abominations with her essence so dark, so terrible, so consuming. She is here! She watches me die!”—Dated Shashabev, 1173, 8 seconds pre-death. Subject: a darkeyed dock-worker in his forties, father of three. (284) [6-7-4]
21.“Above the final void I hang, friends behind, friends before. The feast I must drink clings to their faces, and the words I must speak spark in my mind. The old oaths will be spoken anew.”—Dated Betabanan, 1173, 45 seconds pre-death. Subject: a lighteyed child of five years. Diction improved remarkably when giving sample.(307) [7-2-2]
22.“The death is my life, the strength becomes my weakness, the journey has ended.”—Dated Betabanes, 1173, 95 seconds pre-death. Subject: a scholar of some minor renown. Sample collected secondhand. Considered questionable.(306) [7-2-1]
23.“In the storm I awaken, falling, spinning, grieving.”—Dated Kakanev, 1173, 13 seconds pre-death. Subject was a city guardsman. (359) [8-2-4]
24.“The darkness becomes a palace. Let it rule! Let it rule!”—Kakevah 1173, 22 seconds pre-death. A darkeyed Selay man of unknown profession. (370) [8-4-5]
25.“I wish to sleep. I know now why you do what you do, and I hate you for it. I will not speak of the truths I see.”—Kakashah 1173, 142 seconds pre-death. A Shin sailor, left behind by his crew, reportedly for bringing them ill luck. Sample largely useless. (380) [8-6-5]
26.“They come from the pit, two dead men, a heart in their hands, and I know that I have seen true glory.”—Kakashah 1173, 13 seconds pre-death. A rickshaw puller. (380) [8-6-5]
27.“I see them. They are the rocks. They are the vengeful spirits. Eyes of red.”—Kakakes 1173, 8 seconds pre-death. A darkeyed young woman of fifteen. Subject was reportedly mentally unstable since childhood. (386) [8-8-1]
28.“That chanting, that singing, those rasping voices.”—Kaktach 1173, 16 seconds pre-death. A middle-aged potter. Reported seeing strange dreams during highstorms during the last two years. (393) [8-9-3]
29.“Let me no longer hurt! Let me no longer weep! Daigonarthis! The Black Fisher holds my sorrow and consumes it!”—Tanatesach 1173, 28 seconds pre-death. A darkeyed female street juggler. Note similarity to sample 1172-89. (403) [9-1-3]
30.“They named it the Final Desolation, but they lied. Our gods lied. Oh, how they lied. The Everstorm comes. I hear its whispers, see its stormwall, know its heart.”—Tanatanes 1173, 8 seconds pre-death. An Azish itinerant worker. Sample of particular note. (406) [9-2-1]
31.“All is withdrawn for me. I stand against the one who saved my life. I protect the one who killed my promises. I raise my hand. The storm responds.”—Tanatanev 1173, 18 seconds pre-death. A darkeyed mother of four in her sixty-second year. (409) [9-2-4]

I probably screwed at least 1 or 2 up, but I don't feel like double checking all 30. 21 is the only one we can be sure we see happening in the book, and oddly it's the only one out of chronological order compared to the rest of the death quotes. Edit 2: Fixed some wrong dates. 4-5, I think.

It's notable that the "1000 days" from the first epigraph has actually already passed before we get to death quote #20.  (#12 was another in-story death quote like #19, so I left it out.)

Brandon Sanderson / Re: Nature of Shardblades? (Spoilers)
« on: June 01, 2011, 04:15:13 AM »
There's been no mention of anything called a "dawnblade"  You're getting Honorblades and Dawnshards mixed up...

I'm a bit partial to the idea of further oaths binding individual Shardblades and Shardplate to the Knight Radiant.  You'd still need a Blade beforehand, but the oath would set its size and shape to whatever the Knight was most comfortable with.  Which could mean a Shardspear, but let's be honest here, this is all rampant speculation.  There's got to be some manner in which a full Knight Radiant can use Stormlight while in Plate, and this idea and a description of Glyphs on Plate are all we have to work with so far.

I think the Shardblades we see in the present day are the same thing as the Shardblades in Dalinar's vision.  It's just that they've been focal points of conflict, greed, and death since that time, which is why Syl finds them disturbing.  Maybe even all the souls they've cut through have an effect on the blades themselves.  I'm looking forward to finding out where all the other Blades and Plate from back then have ended up/been hidden.  That'll probably be one of the books major climatic Reveals.

Brandon Sanderson / Re: I Hate Dragons
« on: May 20, 2011, 01:01:55 AM »
A few comments:

Will Brandon be writing more of this then as a short story or a full length novel?  Would be nice if it was short story that we could read off the internet, and then the next time some SF/Fantasy editor or author puts together a dragon anthology (few months to a year, SF/Fantasy authors love short stories, anthologies, and dragons all), Brandon or Peter could say, "Oh, you're putting together a dragon anthology?  We've got this gem we've been sitting on, we could put some polish on it and it would be golden." (mix metaphors to frustrate and amuse people)

Anyone else amused that Brandon's exercise in writing an all dialogue has a main character who is forced to treat spoken language the same as written language and is frustrated by it?  I can't decide if that's really clever or just an odd middle ground.

Thanks Brandon, and I'm sure I and the rest of your fans would love to read more.

Logically airtight evidence?   Of course not.  You just have to find counter-evidence just as good when what evidence we do have all flows in the other direction.  That's how logic in the messy place known as the real world (and most kinds of fiction) works.

The truthspren might accept 'a truth only known to her and her brothers' to be as good as 'a truth known only to her' for the simple purpose of entering Shadesmar.  You say there isn't any evidence that they know that she killed their father, but if you look at the scenes, they're not blaming anyone else for the death either.  They might be avoiding thinking about her role in the death nearly as much as she avoids it.  Just because Balat thinks of as Shallan as "Shy, quiet, delicate" doesn't mean he doesn't know.  After all, she "took charge" (her own words) and came up with the plan to rob Jasnah and he still thinks of her that way. 

The soulcaster quotes are to point out that she and brothers didn't even know about the soulcaster until they looked in his coat and found it broken.  And that it was "they" and not just "she" that found it, her brothers were there as well when it was discovered.

I'm not sure, but I think Shallan thinks about the possibility of selling her Shardblade in one of her viewpoint scenes.  As I recall, her reasoning says that Shardblades are so rare and valuable that exactly who has each one is generally public knowledge among those who care about such things, and explaining how she has one that's not accounted for would be rather difficult.  In addition to that, there's the difficulty of arranging a sale at all, and that letting anyone know that you're trying to sell a Shardblade is equivalent to telling them that you're desperate and weak - exactly what Shallan and her brothers want to hide - and some people might take that as indication that they could just take the Blade by force because you can't stop them.
I don't think we ever see her considering selling it.  I think the things you said are the reasons we've come up with that she might not be able to sell it, which I agree with, and are true whether her brothers know about the shardblade or not. 

Most people agree with this logic, but then argue that she may have gotten the Shardblade from something besides her father on that night.  Possibly true, but extraordinarily unlikely.  My logic with this is:
(1) Her brothers apparently know nothing about what happened, either the murder (if that's what we would really call it; it might not fit our legal and moral definitions) or the shardblade.  This strongly suggests they were all indisposed or absent during what must have been a crazy night (that, no matter what actually happened).  Thus what her brothers think is irrelevant except as negative witnesses.  The most important things we know are things they didn't see, which constrains what happened, but only very slightly.  My key point here is:  Something crazy and deeply unlikely happened.  The brothers seem to know nothing about the oddest parts of it, and don't suspect Shallan of being involved.  Thus it apparently happened in a way that seemed mundane to them.  Thus is probably happened fairly quickly, or at a time when nothing was expected to happen.
(2) We know that Shardblades are perfectly hidden from normal people until they are summoned or their owner dies.  Taking a shardblade is as simple as grabbing it, given the chance.
(3) Thus father dies with Shardblade -> Shallan gets Shardblade by grabbing it out of sheer curiosity/complete shock-> it disappears, she claims it, and she wonders the on Earth she's going to do with herself -> it happened so quickly her brothers never notice -> she promptly runs away the best way she can, making reasonable excuses (perhaps destroying the Soulcaster herself?  It's a good reason to leave, after all),--- sounds like an extremely plausible sequence of events.

There are a lot of details not covered by the above theory, but since whatever happened must have been strange, this is the least strange version I can see.  Most importantly, said details can be shoe-horned in without much effort and without bending the basic outline.  Most efforts to deviate from this simple outline almost instantly run into difficulties or unneeded complications.  For insrance,

Anyway, that's how I see it.
The Soulcaster looked identical to the one she and her brothers had found in the inside pocket of her father’s coat.
It had been sheared in two places: across one of the chains and through the setting that held one of the stones.
From those two quotes I think it's unreasonable for Shallan to have intentionally destroyed the soulcaster. 

You need to tell me something true, it replied. The more true, the stronger our bond.
Jasnah is using a fake Soulcaster, Shallan thought. I’m sure that’s a truth.
That’s not enough, the voice whispered. I must know something true about you. Tell me. The stronger the truth, the more hidden it is, the more powerful the bond. Tell me. Tell me. What are you?
“What am I?” Shallan whispered. “Truthfully?” It was a day for confrontation. She felt strangely strong, steady. Time to speak it. “I’m a murderer. I killed my father.”
Ah, the voice whispered. A powerful truth indeed….

There's nothing to indicate that her brothers don't know that she was the one who killed their father.  Just because the truthspren accepted it as "A powerful truth" doesn't necessarily mean it was known only to her.  Nan Balat in particular was involved in the events on the night of her father's death, but his 4 pages of the book don't tell us a whole lot.  They might even know she has the shardblade, and thought it would be safest if it was left with her. (If it's unsellable, it shouldn't really matter who's carrying it.)
If only Helaran had survived. Their eldest brother—then known as Nan Helaran, as he’d been the first son—had stood up to their father repeatedly. Well, he was dead now, and so was their father. They’d left behind a family of cripples.
Now I'm thinking maybe Helaran wasn't a jerk like their father was.  Maybe he made a deal with his father and the Ghostbloods to fight/assassinate their enemies on the frontlines, in order to help out his family.  That would make his death a bit tragic.

Oh, and I didn't realize until now, but Nan indicates the next in line after the current head of House, at least in Vedenar.  Tet = 2nd. Asha = 3rd.  Would the head be referred to with "Jes"?

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