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Brandon Sanderson / I Hate Dragons
« on: May 06, 2011, 10:40:34 PM »
I Hate Dragons
Chapter One

   “Master Johnston?”
   “Yes, Skip?”
   “I was wondering if maybe we might review my employment situation.”
   “What? Now? Lad, this isn’t the time.”
   “Er, I’m sorry, sir. But I believe this is exactly the time. And, I apologize, but I don’t intend to move until I’ve had my say.”
   “Fine. Fine. Be on with it then.”
   “Well, Master Johnston, you know how we’re here to kill this dragon, sir?”
   “Yes. That’s our job. Dragon hunters. It says so on your bloomin’ jacket, lad!”
   “Well, sir, technically you and the other boys are the hunters.”
   “You’re an important part, Skip. Without you, the dragon won’t never come!”
   “I believe you mean ‘will never come,’ sir. And, well, this is about my part. I realize it’s important for you to have someone to draw the dragon.”
   “You can’t catch nothing without bait.”
   “‘Can’t catch anything,’ sir. And that is as you’ve said. However, I can’t help noticing one factor about my role in the hunt. I am, as you said, bait.”
   “And it seems to me that eventually, if you put bait out often enough . . .”
   “Well, sir, eventually that bait is going to end up getting eaten. Sir.”
   “You see my trouble.”
   “You’ve been doing this for a year now, and you ain’t ever gotten ate.”
   “That sentence was deplorable, sir.”
   “What’s math have to do wi’ this?”
   “You’re thinking ‘divisible,’ sir. Anyway, yes, I’ve survived a year. Only, I’ve started thinking.”
   “A dangerous habit, that.”
   “It’s chronic, I’m afraid. I’ve started thinking about the number of near misses we’ve had. I’ve started thinking that, eventually, you and the boys aren’t going to get to the dragon quickly enough. I’m thinking about how many reptilian bicuspids I’ve seen in recent months.”
   “I’ve cussed more than twice myself.”
   “So . . .”
   “All right, lad. I can see where you’re going. Two percent, and nothing more.”
   “A raise?”
   “Sure. Two percent’s good money, son. Why, when I was your age, I’d have died to get a two percent raise.”
   “I’d rather not die because of it, sir.”
   “Three percent, then.”
   “You pay me in food, sir. I don’t get paid any money.”
   “Ah. I forgot you was a smart one. All right. Four percent.”
   “Sir, you could double it, and it would be meaningless.”
   “Don’t get so uppity! Double? What, you think I’m maid of coins?”
   “The word is ‘made,’ sir.”
   “Huh? That’s what I said. How—”
   “Never mind. Sir, this isn’t about money, you see.”
   “You want more food?”
   “No. You see, er . . .”
   “Be on with it! That dragon ain’t going to kill himself!”
   “Technically, dragons—being sentient beings—likely have a suicide rate similar to other intelligent creatures. So perhaps this one will kill himself. It’s statistically possible, anyway. That’s beside the point. You see, sir, I think I’d rather change my participation in the hunts.”
   “In what way?”
   “I’d like to be a hunter, sir. You know. Hold a harpoon? Fire a crossbow? I wouldn’t mind just reloading for the other hunters until I get the hang of it.”
   “Don’t be silly. You couldn’t do that while out in the center of the field, being bait!”
   “I wasn’t talking about doing that while being bait. I’d rather do it instead of being bait. Sir.”
   The two of them continued to crouch behind a formation of rocks that looked uncomfortably toothlike to Skip. The dragon winged about in the air. He was, as Master Johnston would have said, a “large fellow.” That put him close to thirty feet long, with an enormous wingspan.
   During his months with Johnston’s Spears, Dragon Hunters, Skip had learned to identify many varieties of dragons. This was a Grummager, distinguished by the black shading of the scales that glowed radiant colors when struck by light, as well as the more webbed pattern on the skin of the wings.
   The dragon had a stout, thick neck, and looked like he could swallow Skip in a single gulp.
   Master Johnston was a large-waisted fellow with a bushy red mustache and a cap on his head from the military he’d served in years ago. He held his thick-bolted crossbow on his shoulder, and he studied Skip with a thoughtful expression. For him, that meant a lot of crossed eyes, scrunched up eyebrows, and one twitching eyelid. Forcing Master Johnston to think was like trying to start up a pump that hadn’t been worked in two decades. You could probably make it work, but it would spurt out a lot of slop first.
   “I see that yer a smart one, son,” Master Johnston said.
   “Thank you.”
   “Five percent.”
   Skip sighed. His clothing—coat, shirt, trousers, all sturdy but well-used—dripped with rose water. It had been dumped on him earlier to obscure his scent.
   “Lad,” Johnston said, leaning closer. “We’ll talk about this later. I promise. But right now, there be a lizard in the sky and a cocked crossbow on my shoulder. I can’t bother with distractions. Yer tired of bein’ bait? Well, we’ll see if we can find someone else later.
   “But lad, in all my years, I’ve never found anyone like you. Yer a superstar, and you have real talent. It’s what the Great Rock did give ye.”
   Master Johnston, like most Wingosians, worshipped Lusia, the moon goddess. Scientists had recently explained that, through use of magic and telescopes alike, they’d determined that the moon was really just a big rock held in the sky by gravity. Being pragmatic folk, the Wingosians had adapted their belief system to accommodate this.
   Master Johnston reached out, laying a meaty finger on Skip’s shoulder. “You’re special. It’d be a shame to waste that, son. Do what you were created to do. Reach for the stars.”
   “Stars are giant balls of gas, burning far away.”
   “They are?”
   “Yes. Reaching for them, even if it were possible, would likely burn your hand. Sir.”
   “Ain’t that something.”
   “Isn’t that something.”
   “That’s what I said. Either way, son, you need to explore your talents.”
   “My talent is getting eaten by dragons, sir. It seems that’s less something to explore, and more something to experience. Once. In a grisly, painful, and abruptly ending sort of way.”
   “That’s the spirit! On we go! The sorceress is waiting for us to gut this one, and it ain’t wise to keep a sorceress waiting.”
   Skip sighed as Master Johnston waved for the others to continue their preparations. Nearby, Rimbor—a wiry dragon hunter with long hair braided into a ponytail—crouched with a large bucket of water. Skip would take off his rose water-soaked jacket, get doused with water, and wander into the open ground before the rocks. That would draw the dragon.
   The mere scent of him would be enough. Most everyone on the Sixthface had special talents, as a function of living in such a magical land. Magic is like bad grammar; hang around it long enough, and it rubs off on you. The people called them knacks, and a person usually had a few. They were mostly simple things. Skip had three, but people only ever seemed to care about the first.
   Skip smelled great to dragons.
   He was irresistible, actually. He was like catnip to enormous, murderous reptiles. One whiff of him drove them into a frenzy, drawing their attention completely. People tended to be quite impressed by this knack. Or, at least, impressed that Skip had survived as long as he had while possessing it.
   “Right, then,” Rimbor said, raising his bucket. “Ready?”
   Skip sighed, taking off his coat. “Sure.”
   Rimbor doused him with water, washing off the lingering scent of roses. Then Skip dashed out onto the open stone ground, bounded by the rocks.

Brandon Sanderson / MOVED: Fantasy girls, where are you?
« on: January 29, 2010, 12:27:46 AM »


Use this thread to discuss The Hero of Ages with as many spoilers as you care to mention.  Don't read on unless you have read the book!

Feel free to post questions for me here, and I'll do my best to find time to answer them.


Brandon Sanderson / Warbreaker Acknowledgements Page (Do you Belong on it?)
« on: September 30, 2008, 11:21:55 PM »

I'm doing the copyedit of Warbreaker--and many of you know what that means.  Time for Acknowledgements.

If you did a read through of one of the versions and gave me substantial comments (more than just a "Hey, I liked this character" or a "you missed this typo") then post in this thread, reminding me of why you belong on it.  Please also give me the name you'd like me to use.  I'll be checking this against the emails I've gotten or the posts in the original Warbreaker commentary thread. 

Most of all, I'm looking for those of you who were involved during the drafting of Warbreaker.  It's been a while, and I just don't have the time to read through that entire thread and see who I need to put in the acknowledgements.


Brandon Sanderson / New Mod! (Please Read.)
« on: September 15, 2008, 08:04:54 AM »

As my section of the boards grows more interesting, and as I have very little time these days (because of AMoL) to do moderating myself, we've officially added Brenna as a moderator for my forum.  She'll also have mod powers for the entire TWG boards, but her specific duty is watching over my forums here.

Brenna is a long time friend of mine who has been reading my books since the days before I was published.  She's cool-headed and kind, but also stern when she needs to be.  I think she'll be an excellent moderator.

In other news, I'm going to start up a "Questions for Brandon" thread here in a few weeks to do a kind of virtual booksigning/Q&A here on my boards.  Don't post your questions to this thread here; wait for then.  But I wanted to make certain that you knew about the upcoming thread.  We'll also do a spoiler thread for questions about The Hero of Ages once it's out.

As always, thank you for reading and for having fun with your discussions here.  But remember to be civil; I want my boards to be a friendly place.  Brenna has full authority to edit posts and/or ban people, and she'll use it.  (Though she'll always give a warning first.)


Brandon Sanderson / Lightsong (Blog Post Reference)
« on: June 13, 2008, 09:45:47 AM »
A place to post about my blog entry on Friday, June 13th.

Brandon Sanderson / I'm not ignoring you...
« on: March 04, 2008, 02:42:59 AM »
Just wanted to give a thankful post to all of you who are discussing the various interplays of the magic and setting in the Mistborn books.  I work quite hard on the magic and related cosmology in my books, and it's gratifying to find these issues drawing attention and interest from readers.

I did want to make a note that I intentionally restrain myself from posting on those threads.  I'm not ignoring you, and I'm interested in what you have to say, but at this point I feel that author intervention would be inappropriate to the discussion.  Because of this, I may occasionally miss questions or comments on threads that really do require my attention.  (Like the Interested in Publication thread that was posted a while back.)

If you've got questions or posts that you think need my direct attention, feel free to make note of that in the subject of the thread. 

Brandon Sanderson / New Mistborn One Cover Art
« on: February 18, 2008, 09:42:19 PM »

Tor is releasing a special 4.99 paperback of MISTBORN: THE FINAL EMPIRE this summer (in June) and they commissioned new cover art for it.  New art is above.  Thoughts?

Brandon Sanderson / Bookplates Question
« on: February 12, 2008, 08:32:03 PM »
A thread for discussions of the issue I brought up in today's blog post:

Brandon Sanderson / Mistborn One For Sale!
« on: January 03, 2008, 04:56:59 AM »
We've just updated the store to finally begin selling signed, personalized copies of MISTBORN.  They're going for $20 right now as a sale, and we'll up them to $25 next month.  They'll stay there until the stock starts to dwindle, and then I'll probably raise it up to the cover price.

Anyway, I know a lot of readers have asked me if I'd ever be doing this.  I thought I'd make a forum thread to let those who visit here, but don't often check my site, know that the sales are up and running.

Also, I have a request.  We needed to put a section on that allows someone to give me signing instructions, so I can know what name to write in the book.  (If any.)  We THINK we got it on right.  If anyone here is thinking of buying copies of the book, would you post here if you were able to find the signing instructions box?  Thanks!

Brandon Sanderson / In D.C.
« on: December 11, 2007, 07:27:43 AM »
This is mostly for SE and Mpease (or however you spell that.)  I'm in DC this weekend.  Lunch?

Brandon Sanderson / Brandon To Write Wheel of Time Book 12
« on: December 10, 2007, 06:40:55 PM »

It would be really nice if we could get this article--or even my blog--on Slashdot or Fark or the like.  Anyone think they could manage?

Brandon Sanderson / New Website...LIVE!
« on: December 07, 2007, 11:41:21 AM »
It's up, replacing the old site.  Retiring the old beta thread and starting this one up for anyone who wants to leave bug reports, comments, or point out typos. 

Brandon Sanderson / More Art for You to Digest
« on: November 09, 2007, 08:27:06 PM »
All right, well, we just got a Warbreaker concept sketch.  This is fairly early in the process, so we can (hopefully) actually have some influence on this one before it comes out.  However, I thought I'd show it to you all.  I'm interested in knowing what the people who have read the book will think of the cover, but I'm equally interested in hearing from those of you who haven't.  Would this make you pick up the novel?

Brandon Sanderson / Write a Review of a Book Never Published!
« on: November 07, 2007, 07:36:20 AM »
On my website, I blogged about this:

That's an Amazon link to The Way of Kings, a book I wrote a few years back but NEVER PUBLISHED.  For some reason, Amazon threw up a sales page for it, even though it was only briefly mentioned as a possible follow-up to Elantris.  (I went with Mistborn instead.)  They even claimed to have a copy for sale a few days back!

Obviously, what happened was a copy from the future fell through a time warp and ended up for sale.  That one copy has sold, but I figure that if a mythical, non-existent book can sell through Amazon, we can do mythical, non-existent reviews for it.  (Kind of like the reviews for milk you can find on this link:)

So, if you feel like it, let your imagination run wild and throw up a creative review of The Way of Kings.  It would be fun to have some glowing, 5-star reviews for a book I never published and nobody has ever read!  ;)

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