|Worldcon Panel: Rolling up the Wheel of Time
||[Aug. 20th, 2008|12:41 am]
For what are (perhaps) obvious reasons, I felt a moral obligation to attend this panel, and I was far from disappointed. Well, OK, so attending this panel meant I couldn't get in to hear the reading from the upcoming Vorkosigan novel, but I still attended an excellent panel.
Rolling Up the Wheel of Time
Moshe Feder (m) - Sanderson's non-WoT editor (Tor)
Tom Doherty - Publisher (Tor, duh)
Brandon Sanderson - Author
Elise Matheson - Friend of the Rigney family (piped up mid-panel and got impromptu added)
Peter Ahlstrom - Fan? Sanderson buddy?
Tom begins with a description of how he came to know Harriet
Sanderson begins with his 8th grade year, 1989, when he was not a reader, until his teacher handed him a Fantasy novel.
He would do a reread cycle before each WoT novel
Sanderson talks FAST
Sanderson is a Mormon! Did not know that.
He gets a blind phone call (voicemail, actually) from Harriet, then can't get in touch with her, and basically faints when she tells him he's being considered for the job
When he got confirmation from Harriet, he told his agent to accept whatever terms Tor offered, MF comments that he loves that, and if you ever are in negotiations with Tor...
The first two things BS asked for were the ending and who killed Asmodean
Jordan had left 200 man. pages, mostly prologue and ending
He's writing each "viewpoint cluster" up to the point where they all meet, approx. 75-80% through the book.
Jordan's notes contained extensive "who's where with who" lists, with character details (ETA: Something that stuck with me but I didn't type at the time was that Jordan had two assistants who helped him keep track of his characters and plot. It explains a lot, because it really does seem like an inhuman burden for one man to tackle alone)
He's at 200,000 words, and he feels he's only a third done
Doherty is doing a lot of head-shaking over the length of it
I came away from this feeling a great deal of hope for the series, as someone who was once deeply attached to it and will always hold a fond place for it. Sanderson is very deeply enthused by the project, and seems ultra-aware of the need to make it as genuine as possible without reaching for a Jordan-esque caricature. Frankly, he impressed me.
In an amusing tidbit, I raised my hand and mentioned that "so far as I know" I was the only rec.arts.sf.written.robert-jordan old guard in attendance that day, upon which the guy sitting next to me raised his hand. It was Tony Z! But, anyway, I asked if he'd had any use from the WoTFAQ, and he said that when he asked the current (web-based, of course) Jordan fandom what references he should use, that was at the top of the list. Still!