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Messages - Miriel

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Brandon Sanderson / Re: Operation: Mistborn Costume
« on: October 11, 2006, 12:02:28 PM »
From someone who does know how to flintknap obsidian and make's a little hard to tell from the lighting in the pictures, but it looks like those were made from a grinding/cutting process, and not from actual flintknapping.  So, they're probably relatively fragile, won't hold an edge well, and won't take to resharpening well, and shouldn't cost as much as a real flintknapped knife.  Seeing as they're for show, probably not a problem, but I thought I'd pitch in my two cents on the knives.  (Also, if the one that looks like it's made out of chert really is chert, it should be more resiliant to fracturing than the obsidian).

Brandon Sanderson / Re: Warbreaker Sample Chapters
« on: October 03, 2006, 09:40:45 PM »
I've been guilty of reading and not commenting for a while, so some of these comments are from less recent chapters.

Just a small thing: can lichen grow on marble?  This stoped me in the chapter where Vasher sneaks into the palace: he can sense the lichen growing on the marble wall.  I always thought lichen could only grow on more gritty rocks like sandstone and granite.  I tried to research it, but couldn't find anything.

And, more relevantly, I have to agree with dreamking47 about the pacing.  At the begining, there are plot hooks sinking in every chapter, pulling the plot (and the reader) along, but lately, there's been little suspense.  Siri's husband isn't a monster.  The war hasn't started yet.  Vivena doesn't look anywhere near to being caught (or, for that matter, Siri).  Nothing really horrible is happening in T'telir or in Idris.  I'm not chewing my lip at the end of every chapter, hoping everyone's all right like I did in the begining.  I'm still very much enjoying the novel (the conversations between Siri and Susebron, and the latest with Vivena and Jewels was great), but I'm just not in suspense between chapter anymore.  There's no visible, immediate threat to make me worry.  

There are lots of mysteries, but I think they're made less mysterious by the fact we know so little about them.  The mysteries in Elantris and Mistborn are great because the clues come out little by little: the reader is able to tease the information they've been given, trying to figure out the puzzle.  Here, I feel more like there aren't enough clues to begin playing with and sorting through -- and no immediete need to solve the puzzle: The priests might start hurting Siri in a few months, but there haven't been any threats or indications of what might happen.  They might start a war in a couple months, but the Idrians in town aren't being chased out/burned/executed yet.  There's no immedieate threat to anyone.

Also, and perhaps I'm the only one, when Denth and Tonk Fah were first introduced, they sounded like twins.  I didn't think it was going to be important to be able to tell them apart, but now it's apparent that they're very different people, and not just each other's springboards for clever sarcasm.  I can't remember which one is which, because they were so similar for so many chapters, and now it's frustrating me.

That all said, I'm enjoying the novel very much.  I think its strongest point is its excellent dialogue between characters.  Thanks for letting everyone read this as you write it.

Brandon Sanderson / Re: Warbreaker Sample Chapters
« on: August 12, 2006, 12:31:42 PM »
I just read chapters 19 and 20.  I had a little bit of trouble following Siri's thoughts at the begining of 19: this part of the prose seemed more jumbled.  The scene following it...hilarious.  I really like the way the God-King character is turning out.  The possibility that he's frightened and not as in control as everyone thinks makes him very interesting -- even likable.

I was happy to see more mentioning of Awakening in chapter 20.  I was fascinated by Vasher's use of magic in the first chapter, and I've been hoping to see more of it ever since.

Brandon Sanderson / Re: Just finished Elantris
« on: August 02, 2006, 11:47:12 PM »
Stacer -- the editor's comments were all complimentary on the writing, so I think I'll try it again, now that I've revised the begining.  Thank you so much for your insight into the publishing world.

Brandon Sanderson / Re: Just finished Elantris
« on: August 01, 2006, 08:44:15 PM »
I'm afraid I don't know who wrote them: the comments were written on the empty half-page of the rejection letter, and they weren't signed.

Brandon Sanderson / Re: Just finished Elantris
« on: August 01, 2006, 06:58:12 PM »
I also have a publishing question, if you don't mind, Brandon.  I submitted one of my novels to Tor recently, and got a note with feedback about what they did really like, and what they didn't (a problem with believability, caused because I waited too long to explain part of the world).  I made the revisions, and I'd like to re-submit it, but Tor never specifically asked for the novel back.  Would it be rude to send it in again? I don't want to offend an editor.

Brandon Sanderson / Re: Warbreaker Sample Chapters
« on: July 30, 2006, 12:05:52 AM »
I feel like I need to disagree with you, demented_yam.  Starting with the old war, and the exile of the's backstory.  If I read it in chapter one, I wouldn't care.  It's only as the history affects the life of the main characters (that I do care about) that I want to hear the history.  A disguised info-dump at the begining...too many fantasy novels have that fault.  I like the way in Warbreaker that the history and politics is dribbled out, chapter by chapter, as it becomes relevant.  This was one of the things that I loved about Elantris: the prologue was short, exciting to read, and the first chapter wasn't a lecture.  That alone made me excited to read it: I knew I was in for something good.  That's my 2 cents on the matter, anyway.

Brandon Sanderson / Re: Mistborn Out!
« on: July 28, 2006, 01:31:53 AM »
Good news for Mistborn: BYU bookstore finally got the book out today, and the big display at the front entrance (the one they make look all pretty, behind the glass), is currently full of nicely arranged copies of Mistborn and Elantris.  I'm really happy to see BYU giving the book good publicity.

Brandon Sanderson / Re: Warbreaker Sample Chapters
« on: July 27, 2006, 10:41:47 PM »
Ookla, in response to your question...I guess so.  There's a lot going on, and a lot of unanswered questions.  Who knows what would have been better? (For example, dieties like Blushweaver would be a lot less paranoid without Siri there -- maybe the war would have come slower if they got what they expected?)  To have it stated as fact instead of "Vivena thought that..." was just jarring to me, like a sudden declaration from heaven (because who but the author can really know at this point what would have worked out best?).  And since it distracted me, I mentioned it.  

Brandon Sanderson / Re: Warbreaker Sample Chapters
« on: July 27, 2006, 11:55:13 AM »
I just finished chapter eighteen, and I have a small comment.  My favorite part of chapter sixteen was where Siri thinks about how Hallandren isn't as bad as she'd thought it would be, there's a scene break, and Vivena thinks about how much more horrid Halladren is than she imagined.  It made me think and compare Siri and Vivena and wonder about who really would do a better job, and what things would have looked like with Vivena as queen.  

Then chapter eighteen has the line, "The frightening truth was, should she have been sent to become the God King’s bride, she would have turned out as ineffective and confused as poor Siri undoubtedly was."

This felt final to me: question answered.  Vivena would have done much the same, no better, no worse.  With a conclusion reached, the need to compare them and think about how things would be different dies.  And that was a feature of this draft that I was really enjoying up to chapter eighteen.

Brandon Sanderson / Re: Mistborn Signing
« on: July 24, 2006, 02:37:20 AM »
Slightly off-topic...but are you still teaching classes?  I'm a BYU student, and so I've looked, but been unable to find any.

Brandon Sanderson / Re: Warbreaker Sample Chapters
« on: June 29, 2006, 12:58:11 PM »
I've really enjoyed the Vivena chapters.  The humor with the mercenaries, Peprin, and Vivena herself.  I think the balance you talked about between "competent" and "out of her legue" are also dead-on.  I really like her -- I think she may be my favorite.  

As for the Siri scene, I didn't find it distracting to be in the middle of the chapter.  It was short, simple, and gave a glimpse at what Vivena is trying to save.

Brandon Sanderson / Re: Warbreaker Sample Chapters
« on: June 27, 2006, 06:13:32 PM »
I think it really depends if you think this is generating you more fans than it could be loosing.  How have hits on this site increased since you started posting Warbreaker chapters?  I know for me, a newcomer, these chapters mean that I'm often on this site.  It's how I found out about the Mistborn pre-release, and now I'm bringing a friend.  I wouldn't discount your agent out of hand (no one likes that), but weigh costs and benefits.

I think it's also unlikely that this will be the first work of yours that someone reads.  I only found this forum through your website, and the first thing I did there was read Mistborn sample chapters.  Then I began exploring, wanting more.

Personally, I really like being able to read the Warbreaker chapters.  It's something I've never seen an author do before.  It's exciting to read a book as it's written, before it's published  (the really good story doesn't hurt, either), and exciting for me as a would-be-author to see a book developing from an author I respect.

I don't know if that was helpful, but as one of the new people here, I thought I'd offer a perspective from one of the masses who found out about this forum the way another potential reader might.

Brandon Sanderson / Re: Warbreaker Sample Chapters
« on: June 23, 2006, 12:49:06 PM »
I enjoyed Chapter Ten and the information it gave us about the religion and the petitioners.  The way miracles work (one and it kills you) makes me very interested in Lightsong's role in this story.  It looks like, despite his protests, that he's going to end up doing something heroic by the end -- and I'm very interested to see how he gets to that point, lazy as he is.

I also liked the second half of chapter nine -- especially the last few paragraphs where Siri sumarizes what her life is going to be like: lonely even while surrounded by people.

The first half of it didn't work so well for me.  A lot of momentum had been building up to that point, and then all of the anxiety was just gone.  Siri herself doesn't seem very concerned about the events.  The first thing she does is stand up and yawn.  She faces her irreverence of the night before with resigned calmness, and thinks everything's fine.  She assumes that she isn't being executed, but for all she knows, servants assigned to drag her to the block just aren't allowed inside the God King's room, and are waiting for her outside.  I'd be more concerned about her and the odd happenings of the previous night if Siri was a little more concerned for her own wellbeing at the start -- and then perhaps relaxes a little when she realizes she isn't going to die today.

Brandon Sanderson / Re: Warbreaker Sample Chapters
« on: June 19, 2006, 11:27:26 PM »
The immediteness of the marriage made the God King ominous enough for me.  I had expected there to be a long engagement with some wiggle room for Siri to escape the whole situation -- as fantasy often does.  The fact she's just being shoved into his chamber like this makes me nervous about what's going to be inside (because I don't know what to expect) and very anxious for Siri.  I'm hooked.

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