art by Jake Johnson

Theoryland Resources

WoT Interview Search

Search the most comprehensive database of interviews and book signings from Robert Jordan, Brandon Sanderson and the rest of Team Jordan.

Wheel of Time News

An Hour With Harriet

2012-04-30: I had the great pleasure of speaking with Harriet McDougal Rigney about her life. She's an amazing talent and person and it will take you less than an hour to agree.

The Bell Tolls

2012-04-24: Some thoughts I had during JordanCon4 and the upcoming conclusion of "The Wheel of Time."

Theoryland Community

Members: 7611

Logged In (1): Khoram,

Newest Members:johnroserking, petermorris, johnadanbvv, AndrewHB, jofwu, Salemcat1, Dhakatimesnews, amazingz, Sasooner, Hasib123,

Theoryland Tweets

WoT Interview Search

Home | Interview Database

Your search for the tag 'dark one' yielded 138 results

  • 1

    Interview: Apr 20th, 2004

    Week 3 Question (Matt Hatch)

    There are many theories that attempt to create a connection of time duration to the transmigration of the dead Forsaken. Are there time and/or power constraints on the Dark One's ability to transmigrate souls?

    Robert Jordan

    There are definitely time constraints on the Dark One's power to transmigrate a soul. The soul doesn't have to be secured immediately—that is, the Dark One doesn't have to be ready to snatch the soul at the instant of death—but the longer that passes after the death, the less chance that the Dark One will be able to secure the soul. Someone who has been killed with balefire in actuality died before the apparent time of his or her death, and thus the window of opportunity for the Dark One to secure that soul for transmigration is gone before the Dark One can know that the soul must be secured unless the amount of balefire used is very small. Remember that the more balefire is used, the further back the target's thread is burned out of the Pattern.

    After the soul is secured, then a suitable body must be acquired and stripped of the (former) owner's memory and soul to make way for the favored one. By the way, what constitutes a suitable body from the Dark One's perspective is not that of the recipient. Certainly Aginor would never have chosen to be reincarnated in his, shall we say, less than imposing body, nor would the womanizing Balthamel have chosen to be reincarnated as a beautiful woman. It was only chance that Moridin ended up in a body that is young, fairly good looking and physically imposing. Those things simply don't matter to the Dark One. But the body has to be basically healthy and sound, and neither too young nor too old. After all, the Dark One wants his servants to be effective, and a body that meets those basic requirements is more desirable than one that doesn't. Since there is no stockpile of such bodies, the only way for someone to die and immediately be reincarnated would be a matter of pure chance. That is, the death occurred when a suitable body was on hand for some other reason.

    There are a few other limits and constraints, but I won't go into them here, since I may want to use them in the books, and I would rather they come as a surprise if I do.

    Tags

  • 2

    Interview: Apr 20th, 2004

    Week 15 Question

    What does the Dark One view as the worst punishment he can inflict on his minions: Killing them as painfully as possible? Balefire? Mindtrap? Being continually resurrected to suffer at his hand for eternity? Something we haven't seen yet?

    Robert Jordan

    The Dark One doesn't care about his minions sufficiently to invest much time in their punishment except as it serves to correct their behavior or as object lesson to others, nor is there much in the way of gradation. Simple failure and outright betrayal might be punished equally, or one might result in death and the other in becoming an object lesson or in something else. (The mindtrap, by the way, could be called an object lesson only to the one so trapped; remember, none of the Forsaken know who is mindtrapped except Moridin and those who are trapped.) The decision, death or object lesson or something else, normally would be simply a matter of whether or not he believed there was any point to an object lesson and/or whether or not he felt there was really any further use in the individual. Or, for that matter, made for reasons unknowable to a human mind. Remember, the Dark One is NOT human and thinking of him in human terms just doesn't work.

    But he also operates under a constraint that did not exist in the Age of Legends. At that time, about 3% of the population could learn to channel to some extent, though not all chose to—the training program took time, and being able to channel carried with it certain obligations that not everyone wanted to undertake—but that still meant there were, at a minimum, hundreds of thousands of people in the world who could channel, and more likely millions. A large pool of possible recruits. Break a tool or decide it isn't working right and throw it out, because there is an endless supply of similar tools waiting on the shelf. That might be said to have been his attitude. In the here-and-now of the books, that figure is about 1%, and of that 1%, very, very few have any idea that they could learn to channel, much less have any training at all. Here-and-now, the pool of possible recruits is tiny.

    Also, while the Forsaken themselves have realized that these primitives have discovered how to do things with the Power that they themselves cannot, or perhaps can once they learn how but never dreamed of doing until they found that the weaves existed here-and-now, they still think of people in the here-and-now as primitives, and their attitudes filter through to the Dark One, who believes that his people from the age of Legends are in all practical ways better—for which read better trained, more capable, and thus better able to serve him efficiently and effectively—than the people of the present time. And he is right. In a way. They are certainly better trained, with a much wider knowledge, at least in some areas. Some of their skills are absolutely useless in the society they are forced to live in. Aginor was a genius in biology and genetics, but in this world, he had no way to make the tools to make the tools to make the tools.... Well, you get the idea. Pity the poor chip designer dropped into the seventeenth century.

    In any event, the Dark One tries to conserve his resources, using and reusing those he might have killed himself, or ordered killed, in a time where there were thousands to equal them.

    Tags

  • 3

    Interview: Nov 21st, 1998

    John Novak

    [Is balefire the eternal death of the soul?]

    Robert Jordan

    If someone is balefired, the Dark One can't reincarnate them. But they CAN be spun back out into the Wheel as normal. Balefire is NOT the eternal death of the soul. He also made a comment to the effect that even in the absence of balefire, there may be circumstances where the Dark One cannot bring someone back. There was a long line, so I didn't press.

    Footnote

    RJ expanded on these other 'circumstances' in the TOR Questions of the Week (see Q3).

    Tags

  • 4

    Interview: Oct 21st, 1994

    AOL Chat 1 (Verbatim)

    Jdieu

    I was wondering if the Dark One is ever going to be manifested into a single person, and was also wondering where you went to college?

    Robert Jordan

    I graduated from The Citadel and, for the rest, read and find out! That is neither to say yes nor no; just read and find out.

    Tags

  • 5

    Interview: Jan 25th, 2005

    Week 1 Question

    The Dark One has promised his followers immortality and power above all others on the Day of Return. In previous interviews you have said that this is within his power. My question is, will he? I mean, he doesn't seem very loyal or trustworthy to me. If (Light forbid) he breaks free, will he remember the "little people" or just destroy all the puny humans when he remakes the world in his own image?

    Robert Jordan

    That's the big question for the Forsaken, isn't it. Can they trust the Dark One? You're right; he isn't very trustworthy or loyal. Greed leads people to believe strange things, to excuse the most abhorrent behavior on their parts—just check out the nightly news for confirmation—and at the root, that is what motivates the Forsaken and, in truth, most Darkfriends. Greed for power, greed for immortality. That makes them believe, because they want to believe. So will he grant these things? Maybe. After all, he gains more willing followers, more eager followers, if he is seen to give rewards. But will he care whether he has any followers at all in a world where he is all-powerful? Flip a coin and check which way the wind is blowing. Maybe you can find the answer there.

    Tags

  • 6

    Interview: Jul 19th, 2005

    Week 2 Question

    Is the mark that Alviarin received from Shaidar Haran the same as that the Forsaken received from the Dark One? If so, is she now a Forsaken, or some sort of lesser Chosen?

    Robert Jordan

    The mark that Alviarin received from Shaidar Haran was not the same as that given to the Forsaken, though it shares one function: Shadowspawn will recognize her as belonging to the Dark One. They will not obey her as they will the Forsaken, however, but she doesn't have to worry about one trying to kill her, either. She is not any sort of lesser Chosen. You might think of it more like the tattoo some people get put inside the ear of their dog, an identification so others will know who the dog belongs to as soon as they see it.

    Tags

  • 7

    Interview: Jul 19th, 2005

    Week 5 Question

    Did the Dark One or Ishamael, either one, have a say in the placement of any or all of the other Chosen once they were released, or did they all just carve out power bases of their own choosing?

    Robert Jordan

    They carved out power bases of their own choosing based on various criteria, one of which I will reveal. (Others are definitely RAFO!) For the most part, Ishamael excepted, they set out to create worldly power for themselves using the methods they favored in the Age of Legends. That is, Moghedien worked from the shadows using subversion, Sammael, Be'lal and Rahvin attempted to seize control of national governments and so on. The theory behind this was that once the Dark One broke free, those with the largest worldly power bases would be rewarded most.

    Tags

  • 8

    Interview: Jul 19th, 2005

    Week 9 Question

    We've read in the Forsaken's POVs that channeling in the Pit of Doom would have some...unpleasant...effects. Is this related to the nature of the opposition of the One Power to the True Power or is it the Dark One consciously acting against the channeler? If so, why should the Dark One care?

    Robert Jordan

    It is a matter of the Dark One consciously acting, though interactions between the One Power and him, the source of the True Power, can be unpredictable. The Dark One is not pleasant. He is also highly distrustful. He...dislikes...things that happen outside his control or not at his order. Call him the ur-control freak. Combine these two facts, and anyone channeling in the Pit of Doom without permission can expect swift punishment on the assumption that failure to ask permission means you intend to do something he won't like. It isn't that he believes anyone can harm him, just that he is in charge, and your failure to ask permission, your presumed intention to do something he wouldn't like, means that your faithfulness quotient has just suffered a severe downturn. Myself, I'd sell you short in a skinny minute.

    Tags

  • 9

    Interview: Jul 19th, 2005

    Week 23 Question

    Was the Fade who visited Jaichim Carridin in the Prologue of The Dragon Reborn an early version of Shaidar Haran? Its response that it likes to keep an eye on 'all who serve me' and its apparent sense of humor are behavior atypical of a Fade.

    Robert Jordan

    I was wondering who would spot that. Shadar Haran Version 0.5! The Dark One doesn't get it spot on the first time every time.

    Tags

  • 10

    Interview: Oct 19th, 1994

    Compuserve Chat (Verbatim)

    Joe Rosenman

    Greetings! From Rand's Rhuidean vision: If the Sharom is the Dark One's prison, why would it be floating in on place above a city and not in some transcendent plain? Why didn't Rand see it there?

    Robert Jordan

    But it isn't. The Sharom and the Collam Daan are a university/research center. Or were.

    Joe Rosenman

    Also, did Mierin intend to create the Bore?

    Robert Jordan

    In part, yes. Not alone.

    Tags

  • 11

    Interview: Oct 19th, 1994

    Compuserve Chat (Verbatim)

    nick stuchbery

    Is Rand's world an atheistic world, based on only human "powers"?—there seems to be a "devil" but nothing on the flip side.

    Robert Jordan

    What would you say the Creator is? The Light?

    Tags

  • 12

    Interview: Oct 19th, 1994

    Compuserve Chat (Verbatim)

    Degan Outridge

    Will we be getting more glimpses into the Dark One's prison as we go?

    Robert Jordan

    The prison: maybe.

    Tags

  • 13

    Interview: 2010

    Jay (8 July 2010)

    Will we see the Dark One in WoT? Will he walk the earth and physically fight with Rand & Co?

    Brandon Sanderson (8 July 2010)

    I can't tell you for certain about the Dark One. There WILL be a confrontation, though.

    BRANDON SANDERSON

    The last seals will be broken.

    Tags

  • 14

    Interview: 2011

    Twitter 2011 (WoT) (Verbatim)

    Austin Moore (6 January 2011)

    Who was the Lord of Chaos that Demandred and Taim both mention? There has been tons of debate.

    Brandon Sanderson (6 January 2011)

    Really? I thought that one was obvious. What's the debate about?

    Terez

    It's Rand. Look in the BWB re: Feast of Fools.

    Austin Moore

    Why was Demandred and Taim saying, "Let the Lord of Chaos rule" if it was Rand? Sorry just read through series once so far :(

    Terez

    Here's a quote for you:

    The Feast of Fools
    Celebrated in Tammaz (in Arad Doman and the Borderlands) or Saven (everywhere else), the exact day varying according to locality. A day in which all order is deliberately inverted; the high perform lowly tasks (running errands, serving at table, etc.) while the low do no work and give orders to their usual superiors. In many villages and towns the most foolish person is given a title such as the Lord/Lady of Unreason/Misrule/Chaos or the King/Queen of Fools. Not an honor sought, but for that one day everyone has to obey whatever orders, however foolish, are given by the chosen one. (Called the Festival of Unreason in Saldaea; the Festival of Fools in Kandor; Foolday in Baerlon and the Two Rivers.)

    Matt Hatch

    I've always enjoyed this theory about the Lord of Chaos. It's fun.

    Brandon Sanderson

    That is a good theory for people to be reading.

    Terez

    YAY. OMG, that theory has been on the rocks for years because of contradicting tour reports.

    Terez

    Also, your tour quotes were vague enough to allow it but most people didn't see it that way.

    Brandon Sanderson

    I didn't say the theory was true, just that you should study it. :) But I would like to see those tour reports.

    Terez

    Yes, yes. :) Also, your vague(ish) wording. And the contradicting RJ reports.

    Footnote

    Adding to Brandon's implications here is Sorilea's comment in reference to the balefiring of Natrin's Barrow, in The Gathering Storm Chapter 27: "We felt the world warping from here, but did not know what had caused it. We assumed it to be the Dark One's work." (Similar to the ripples Perrin and Faile experienced in Knife of Dreams.) This opens up the possibility that people have no idea really what they're talking about when they assume that the warping of reality is due to the Dark One's touch, just as Alviarin had no idea what she was talking about when she assumed that the rotting food was the Dark One's touch (Knife of Dreams, Prologue).

    Tags

  • 15

    Interview: 2011

    Twitter 2011 (WoT) (Verbatim)

    Darth Andrea (10 January 2011)

    Odd question: In The Dragon Reborn Prologue, a Fade comes to Jaichim Carridin, it's said that the Fade smiles...

    DARTH ANDREA

    Was that Shaidar Haran? it's mentioned later he is the only Fade who smiles or laughs?

    Brandon Sanderson (10 January 2011)

    Many think it's an early incarnation of him. I've read theories to support it.

    HBFFERREIRA

    In the RJ Q&As, he confirms that the smiling Fade is an earlier prototype of Shaidar Haran. http://tinyurl.com/5vy5ghl

    Tags

  • 16

    Interview: Apr 5th, 1996

    Bill Garrett

    The Strike at Shayol Ghul

    Many people have asked about a short piece of writing called "The Strike at Shayol Ghul". Most people want to know: "Is it actually real, and if so, what does it say?"

    Robert Jordan

    First, it is real. Robert Jordan wrote it and it was included in the BaltiCon printed program. It's about four pages long in printed form, and is now available on the Web courtesy of Tor Books. Copies of the convention program, which includes the story, may still be available. See Colette Schleifer's announcement for information.

    The free availability of The Strike at Shayol Ghul on the eeb makes this summary rather superfluous (I wrote it when Strike was only available in printed form, in very limited quantity) but I'm keeping it here for completeness. Now on with my summary.

    In "The Strike at Shayol Ghul", Jordan describes the events leading up to the Sealing of the Bore from the perspective of a Third Age historian (at about the time of the story) who discovered some fragmented manuscripts that were written shortly after the Breaking. The single biggest fact revealed is that the during the War of the Shadow, the Aes Sedai were considering two alternate plans for defeating the Dark One.

    Lews Therin proposed that the Dark One be resealed in his prison by plugging the Bore. The plug would be inserted by thirteen linked male and female channelers and would be held in place by the seven seals, which were focus points of the weaving. 20,000 soldiers would accompany them to Shayol Ghul, where the Bore could most be sensed. Lews Therin's plan had supporters and opponents. Opponents argued that the Seals required precise positioning, and that any slight error would tear the Bore open wider.

    The alternate plan, which also had its share of supporters and detractors, was to build two large sa'angreal (one for saidin, one for saidar) and use them to build a new prison around the old one for the Dark One. The sa'angreal were so powerful that special "key" ter'angreal had to be constructed for channelers to use them safely. Opponents of this plan expressed concern that the sa'angreal could fall into the control of channelers following the Shadow or be misused accidentally by channelers serving the Light. Either way, the sa'angreal were expected to be powerful enough to destroy the world and beyond. Opponents also worried that while the sa'angreal might enable the building of a wall strong enough to contain the Dark One's strength right then, the Dark One was gradually chipping away at the Bore and gaining more power in the world. At some point, he might become powerful enough to tear down the new wall.

    Supporters of each plan began preparation, even though the Aes Sedai as a whole failed to reach a consensus.

    Latra Posae, an outspoken female Aes Sedai, considered Lews Therin's plan so dangerous that she organized support amongst the female Aes Sedai against it. In fact, she obtained the unanimous agreement of every female AS of significant power—in other words, every female Aes Sedai who could possibly be asked to assist in the force that would place the seven seals into the Bore to seal it shut. They believed this effectively halted Lews Therin's plan, as the men who supported him could not link without any cooperating women. (It was believed that correct placement of the seals required a linked group of the most powerful male and female channelers.)

    While the Aes Sedai were fighting over which plan should be used, the Shadow advanced rapidly. Lews Therin decided that something had to be done right away, so he covertly organized 113 male channelers who supported his plan (they were later called the Hundred Companions, a slight miscount) and over 10,000 soldiers who were also loyal to him. The force stormed Shayol Ghul, when all thirteen Forsaken were there, and put the Seals into place.

    At the moment of the resealing, the Dark One drove all of the surviving Hundred Companions (about 68, at that point) instantly insane. The Dark One also tainted saidin, although this wasn't discovered until after hundreds of other male channelers had been driven mad from it.

    Reads the introduction of the manuscript: "Whoever reads this, if any remain to read it, weep for us who have no more tears. Pray for us who are damned alive."

    Footnote

    A version of The Strike at Shayol Ghul appears in The World of Robert Jordan's The Wheel of Time (aka the BWB).

    Tags

  • 17

    Interview: 2011

    Twitter 2011 (WoT) (Verbatim)

    Terez (29 August 2011)

    A signing report implies that you said that RJ changed his mind on whether balefire = eternal death of soul. This true?

    TEREZ

    Here is a direct link to that particular report: http://bit.ly/nKpOSS @Blindillusion13 is unable to clarify.

    TEREZ

    I always assumed what you really said (or really meant) was that you had believed it was the eternal death of the soul...

    TEREZ

    ...but then when you joined Team Jordan you learned differently (you said elsewhere that @MariaLSimons had to convince you).

    Brandon Sanderson (29 August 2011)

    You have the right of it, Terez. I always believed that balefire = Eternal Death.

    BRANDON SANDERSON

    Team Jordan instructed me that this was not the case, and balefire meant the Dark One could not recover the soul.

    Tags

  • 18

    Interview: Jun 26th, 1996

    Compuserve Chat (Verbatim)

    Martin Reznick

    How was the Dark One created, i.e. is he a fallen angel, an inherent part of the universe, etc.?

    Robert Jordan

    I envision the Dark One as being the dark counterpart, the dark balance if you will, to the Creator...carrying on the theme, the ying yang, light dark, necessity of balance theme that has run through the books. It's somewhat Manichean I know, but I think it works.

    Tags

  • 19

    Interview: Jun 26th, 1996

    Compuserve Chat (Verbatim)

    Martin Reznick

    Are there limits to the Dark One's power besides: inability to reincarnate balefired people, and his imprisonment?

    Robert Jordan

    Read and find out! Obviously, there are some limits or he simply would have ripped the prison open and done as he wanted to do. With an absolutely powerful character, there is no story, or at least the story goes "it shall be as I will it to be," he said, and so it was. The end. That's the whole story.

    Tags

  • 20

    Interview: Jun 27th, 1996

    AOL Chat 1 (Verbatim)

    Shosh001

    Mr. Jordan, you've outdone yourself with A Crown of Swords. My question concerns the True Power. How is it distinguishable from the One Power?

    Robert Jordan

    It's fairly self-evident from the book. What can be done with the True Power is very similar to what can be done with the One Power. Except that where the One Power is drawn from the True Source and is the force that drives the Wheel of Time and powers the universe, the so-called True Power is drawn from the Dark One. There are limits in the same ways there are limits to the One Power. It would be very long if I went into it too much, but some of those limits and costs of drawing on the Dark One are shown in A Crown of Swords.

    Tags

  • 21

    Interview: Jun 27th, 1996

    AOL Chat 1 (Verbatim)

    Rog in CT

    Because the Wheel of Time contains the Dark One's prison, and the Ages repeat with each revolution, then isn't humanity itself also imprisoned....unable to truly evolve?

    Robert Jordan

    No. :)

    Tags

  • 22

    Interview: Jun 27th, 1996

    AOL Chat 1 (Verbatim)

    AaronB20

    Can you clarify who can tell when one is using the True Power?

    Robert Jordan

    No one can tell if you're using the True Power except the Dark One, of course.

    Tags

  • 23

    Interview: Jun 27th, 1996

    AOL Chat 2 (Verbatim)

    DayTripr1

    And also is the Dark One the only source of the True Power?

    Robert Jordan

    Yes, the Dark One is the only source of the True Power.

    Tags

  • 24

    Interview: Aug 25th, 1996

    Greebs

    [Thinking he better get to the questions fast.] Umm, we were wondering if you had to take someone down into the Pit of Doom to make them into a Gray Man, you know, 'cause it seems so similar to Mindtrapping someone.

    Robert Jordan

    Yes...at least that's the way I've always thought of it. It's not easy to remove someone's soul.

    Tags

  • 25

    Interview: Oct 9th, 1996

    Question

    Tell us about the Blight.

    Robert Jordan

    You can not enter it from Tel'aran'rhiod because it is apart from NORMAL UNIVERSE and can not be touched. The Blight is not part of the normal universe.

    QUESTION

    Ask about the Blight. If it is not reflected in Tel'aran'rhiod, why does the Great Lord of the Dark have so much power over Tel'aran'rhiod, the Wheel and reincarnation?

    ERICA SADUN

    See above.

    Footnote

    The Dark One doesn't have power over Tel'aran'rhiod as far as we know, but it's easy to see how one might have come to this conclusion after reading A Crown of Swords, since Moghedien noted that the properties of Tel'aran'rhiod and the area around Shayol Ghul were so similar that she could only differentiate by 'feel'. He also doesn't have any power over reincarnation beyond being able (with certain limitations) to 'catch' a soul while it is on its way to the afterlife (at which point the soul is out of his reach). RJ explained this further in the TOR Questions of the Week. There's no indication that he has any power at all over the Wheel, either, though he does seem to be able to corrupt the Pattern in a way with his touch.

    Tags

  • 26

    Interview: Oct 9th, 1996

    Question

    New Dreadlords? Via True Power? What are limits of True Power? When did we see it used before?

    Robert Jordan

    Access to the True Power is a matter of wanting it and the Dark One letting you. NOT black cords. In the Prologue to The Eye of the World we saw True Power used to heal insanity. The One Power cannot be used to heal insanity. True Power used at Shayol Ghul will fry you instantly.

    Tags

  • 27

    Interview: Oct 9th, 1996

    Question

    Ask how it was that Moghedien got to Shayol Ghul instantly...was it the Dark One using his twisty powers or was it a function of being all a dream?

    Robert Jordan

    It was a dream. Moghedien, by the way, used to be an investments councilor until the FTC got on her case.

    Tags

  • 28

    Interview: Oct 9th, 1996

    Erica Sadun

    What was going on in Aelfland when Mat went round and round and round the same location? Were they traveling in time?

    Robert Jordan

    Not traveling in time. The physical laws of nature differ. Mentioning the Dark One [in Randland] is bad luck. In Aelfland, it is *REALLY* bad. You cannot go to Aelfland in Tel'aran'rhiod (similar to stedding).

    Tags

  • 29

    Interview: Oct 9th, 1996

    Question

    Why doesn't somebody just balefire the Dark One?

    Robert Jordan

    The quantity necessary would destroy the world.

    Tags

  • 30

    Interview: Oct 9th, 1996

    Question

    What are those black threads on the male Forsaken?

    Robert Jordan

    RAFO.

    Tags

  • 31

    Interview: Oct 9th, 1996

    Question

    If the True Power were used on you, would there be negative effects with reference to the Dark One?

    Robert Jordan

    RAFO. Of course, if you die, the answer is obvious.

    Tags

  • 32

    Interview: Jun 28th, 1997

    Rahvin

    Was Ishamael ever REALLY sealed in Shayol Ghul with the Dark One and the rest of the Forsaken/Chosen?

    Robert Jordan

    Would I lie to you? For details, RAFO.

    Tags

  • 33

    Interview: Nov 11th, 1997

    Brandon from Mission Viejo

    Mr. Jordan, It's fairly common knowledge that the Dark One was bound by the Creator outside of the Pattern at the moment of creation. Would it then be safe to assume, after concepts brought to light in the new release, that the world before the opening of the prison never knew true evil? If so, then was each age before the opening of the Age of Legends different facets of some utopia? As well, without major conflict between good and evil, what caused ages to pass? Thanks.

    Robert Jordan

    Given that time is cyclic, you must assume that there is a time when the prison that holds the Dark One is whole and unbroken. There is a time when a hole is drilled into that prison and it is thus open to that degree. And there is a time when the opening has been patched in a make-shift manner. But following this line the cyclic nature of time means that we have at some time in the future inevitably a whole and unbroken prison again. Unless of course, the Dark One breaks free in which case all bets are off, kick over the table and run for the window.

    Tags

  • 34

    Interview: Oct 19th, 1998

    Phoenix from Chico, CA

    Mr. Jordan: First, congratulations on your new book. I'm absolutely dying to read it, and I'm sure it will be as awesome as the rest. My question regards The Eye of the World: Near the end of the book Rand hears a voice that vibrates his skull with its intensity. Was that the Creator talking to him? I believe the voice even said, "I will take no part..."

    Robert Jordan

    Read and find out. Ain't I a stinker?

    Tags

  • 35

    Interview: Oct 19th, 1998

    D. from New Mexico

    What do you think the chances are that perhaps by the end of the series, the Dark Lord will face Rand? Would there be an actual, awesome battle? I'd just like to say, Mr. Jordan, you rock.

    Robert Jordan

    Well, thank you very much, I try! And as far as the other, read and find out. If I tell you guys everything up front, you're going to say, "Jeez, there's no reason to read the book, we know it already!"

    Tags

  • 36

    Interview: Nov 1st, 1998

    SciFi.com Chat (Verbatim)

    Rothaar

    When Rand takes Verin and the others through a Portal Stone in The Great Hunt, at the end of each life he hears "I have won again Lews Therin". I thought that if the Dark One won even once the Wheel would be broken and therefore the Dragon would not be reborn again. How could the Dark One have won before to be able to say "again"?

    Robert Jordan

    There are degrees of victory. The Dark One can achieve victory by breaking free, but can also achieve lesser victories. Such as by stopping the Dragon Reborn from doing other things he was born to do. It isn't as simple as him being born to fight The Dark One. It's never simple.

    Tags

  • 37

    Interview: Aug 27th, 1999

    Robert Jordan

    I asked him about Aginor getting younger at the end of The Eye of the World, and he said 'no, he doesn't get younger, he dies'. So I actually looked up the reference and read it to him. He said 'oh, that,' and then went on to explain that it is actually the True Power, not the saidin from the Eye, that rejuvenates him. He did describe the saidin in the Eye as a 'mother-lode', however, I didn't think to ask him what he meant by that until I was in the car going home. I instead asked him whether the True Power was the source of the Forsaken's immortality. He said: yes.

    (LATER)


    MARK ERIKSON

    Initially I asked 'In the end of Eye of the World, when Rand is fighting Aginor, why did Aginor get younger?'

    ROBERT JORDAN

    RJ replied 'He didn't, he died there. Do you mean the resurrection? He and Balthamel got resurrected in Lord of Chaos.'

    MARK ERIKSON

    I said 'I know that, but....' and couldn't think of anything else. I thought I must have read that part wrong, so while other people were having their books signed, I went through the book and found the line, and read it to him.

    ROBERT JORDAN

    RJ said 'Oh that. That's actually the power of the Dark One rejuvenating him,' and went on to basically explain what the True Power is, like I was an idiot.

    MARK ERIKSON

    So then I said 'So is the True Power the source of their immortality?'

    ROBERT JORDAN

    And he said 'Effectively, yes.'

    Footnote

    Some fans picked this line of questioning up in Budapest in 2003, and RJ said that the Forsaken are not actually immortal; they have merely been promised immortality after the Day of Return. RJ probably meant that the True Power is what kept them alive all the years they were sealed in the Bore.

    Tags

  • 38

    Interview: Aug 27th, 1999

    Mark Erikson

    I also bounced the theory that was floating around here a while back that the Dark One is a creation of Ishamael/Moridin, like the Wizard of Oz, just to see what he thought. He then said:

    Robert Jordan

    'If I was asked that, I wouldn't even bother saying RAFO, I'd just say no.'

    Tags

  • 39

    Interview: Mar, 2000

    Paul Ward

    Possible question: How did the Hundred Companions link to make the seals on the Dark One's prison?

    Robert Jordan

    They did not do it linked. They worked together individually, which made it more difficult, and that is part of the reason the seals have weakened so quickly. I never meant to imply linking. It is possible for large numbers to do a large project without linking, although it is more easily done in a circle.

    Tags

  • 40

    Interview: Mar, 2000

    Paul Ward

    Possible question: Is the Dark One pure True Power? Why does the Creator ignore Randland except to talk to Rand at the end of The Eye of the World?

    Robert Jordan

    No, the Dark One is not pure True Power. Who says the Creator takes little interest in the activities of mankind? And I will neither confirm nor deny that the Creator spoke to Rand.

    Paul Ward

    Neither confirm nor deny? What's up with that?

    Tags

  • 41

    Interview: Mar, 2000

    Paul Ward

    Possible question: ??

    Robert Jordan

    The taint and the True Power are both manifestations of the Dark One—they are the same substance, but those who access it are not destroyed in the same way.

    Paul Ward

    This would have been helpful—but then again, maybe not—during the taint theory debates.

    Tags

  • 42

    Interview: Nov 10th, 2000

    Brandon Downey

    After that, my friend got to ask his question, which was the one about Machin Shin and the Ways.

    QUESTION

    Is Machin Shin a result of the Dark One's taint on saidin being used in the creation of the Ways, or a result of some portion of the corruption of Shadar Logoth creeping into the Ways via the Waygate there? Or is it something completely orthogonal to both these powers, merely being a parasite that showed up once the place began to grow dim?

    Robert Jordan

    "Machin Shin is a function of the Dark One's taint on the male side of the force... er...source" [we all chuckled, and he mentioned how much he'd been traveling. :)] The corruption on Shadar Logoth is a result of an evil specifically designed to combat the Dark One's taint. This is why Rand experiences a resonance while channeling in Shadar Logoth—the Dark One's taint is reacting to the corruption of Shadar Logoth.

    Tags

  • 43

    Interview: Nov 11th, 2000

    Doug Carlson from Urbana, IL

    What would happen if the Dark One was victorious? And why can the Dark One act on the world but it seems the Creator cannot?

    Robert Jordan

    Read and find out. It's a good question, and an important theme—but read and find out.

    Tags

  • 44

    Interview: Nov 14th, 2000

    SciFi.com Chat (Verbatim)

    Star

    What religions have influenced your creation of the Creator and the Dark One?

    Robert Jordan

    Christianity. Islam. Judaism. And bits of heretical writing within those faiths. I hasten to add I'm not endorsing anything. I'm just a writer. I tell stories.

    Tags

  • 45

    Interview: Nov 27th, 2000

    Robert Jordan

    He explained the Far Madding channeling detector (I think that's already been discussed here), and gave a RAFO when asked whether the Dark One reincarnated people in the War of Power.

    Tags

  • 46

    Interview: Apr 4th, 2001

    Kurafire

    KuraFire asked about... I don't precisely remember what Kura asked. Oh, but I do. Doing Nogling a favor, he talked about Ishamael's belief that Rand had fought him for time without end, and asked if it was perhaps not Rand's goal to take on the Dark One, but to only take on the Dark One's Nae'blis.

    Robert Jordan

    Jordan gleefully answered "Read And Find Out."

    Tags

  • 47

    Interview: Apr 8th, 2001

    Dragon Theif [sic]

    Is it possible for two souls to inhabit one body at the same time without the aid of the Dark One's powers?

    Robert Jordan

    RAFO.

    GONZO THE GREAT

    Obvious :D .

    Footnote

    This question was asked because some people at Theoryland believed that Rand and Lews Therin were separate souls.

    Tags

  • 48

    Interview: Dec 9th, 2002

    Question

    Is there a reason the Dark One could not or would not re-taint saidin?

    Robert Jordan

    The conditions would have to be exactly right. Those conditions were set up while the seals were being placed on the Bore. The chances that exactly those conditions would occur again are fairly small. And that is saying that it was a volitional act rather than a side-effect of trying to stop the seals from being placed. After all, if the Dark One could taint saidin at will, why could he not taint saidar as well, and why would he not have done so?

    Tags

  • 49

    Interview: Apr 7th, 2001

    Kurafire

    What happens to the soul of someone when he becomes a Gray Man? Is his thread removed from the Pattern, or are threads and souls different things all together?

    Robert Jordan

    Err, they are...oh, uhm, no, it is gone. It is gone. And it ceases to exist in any form that you could of as real.

    Kurafire

    So threads and souls are the same thing?

    Robert Jordan

    Err, not the same thing, but they must coexist. The thread can be removed; you die in this world. You die and the soul remains to come again and begin another thread. The soul disappears from this Gray Man, it's gone. Think of the Dark One as having eaten it. It's a fiction, but a convenient fiction for the moment. The thread of the Gray Man remains until the Gray Man dies, physically.

    Kurafire

    And the rest of the Shadowspawn?

    Robert Jordan

    What? Do they have souls you mean?

    Kurafire

    Yeah, and how do their threads work?

    Robert Jordan

    The threads work in the way, in the same way that the thread of any living thing works. It is part of the Pattern. They are not outside of the Pattern. Neither are the Forsaken. But the Pattern in a thing that is open, that's change. It is not a matter of the lives being forced necessarily. It's wide, you have the Pattern, the Heroes that are bound to the Wheel, they're not always heroes in the way of someone who rides in galloping with a sword, or carries out daring rescues. The people, the Heroes who are bound to the Wheel, are the corrective mechanisms. Human behavior is throwing the Pattern out. It's throwing the balance off. And the Wheel spins out the proper correctives. Put everything back in the balance. So not even the Forsaken are apart from that, they're not outside. The only things that are outside are the Creator and the Dark One. Neither is affected by the Pattern.

    Tags

  • 50

    Interview: Jan 7th, 2003

    Ted Herman

    Could the Dark One have brought back Asmodean if he wanted?

    Robert Jordan

    No.

    Tags

  • 51

    Interview: Jan 18th, 2003

    Robert Jordan

    The second question asked was whether the Dark One could be balefired, to which he said, plainly, in one word, "NO".

    Tags

  • 52

    Interview: Feb 9th, 2003

    Bill Thompson

    In the wake of book nine, Winter's Heart (2000), Jordan confided that he might prefer that the 10th volume be the capstone of the story. But there will be two more books, at least.

    Robert Jordan

    "I tried, but I've had a problem with that from the beginning. I knew the last scene of the last book in 1984. When I started writing I knew where I was going. But some things had to be pushed forward. The story hasn't expanded; it's just taken me more time. In Crossroads of Twilight, things are reaching that stage where everything really is balanced on the point of a pin, or of a sword, if you prefer. There are a lot of things that could go in many directions. Good or evil can win in any number of different places and different levels."

    Bill Thompson

    If the book marks a departure from its predecessors, it rests with one particular device.

    Robert Jordan

    "One big departure is that each of the major segments of the book begins on exactly the same day, and it's a very significant day in terms of these books. The characters are reacting to the effects of that one significant day, as well as reacting to what is happening around them."

    Bill Thompson

    While Jordan hopes to bring matters to fruition in two more volumes, some of the more devoted fans would be only too happy if he took ten more books to complete the saga. When such ardent calls fall on the ears of the folks at Tor Books, Jordan is moved to cry, "Don't listen to them! Don't listen!"

    Robert Jordan

    "I have spent 18 years of my life on this, and I would like to finish it. I thought I was signing up for a 10K run. I knew it was not a stroll in the park. I knew I was doing something that was going to be longer than usual. But when I first started I thought that 'longer than usual' meant five or six books. I honestly thought I would finish it in five. But I discovered it wasn't a 10K run. It was a marathon, and I want to cross the finish line. Because these books are the way they are, I have to finish it for them to mean anything. After I complete the cycle I can take a breath. I can really go on a vacation."

    Footnote

    RJ is referencing here the header of Crossroads of Twilight: "And it shall come to pass, in the days when the Dark Hunt rides, when the right hand falters and the left hand strays, that mankind shall come to the Crossroads of Twilight and all that is, all that was, and all that will be shall balance on the point of a sword, while the winds of the Shadow grow.—From The Prophecies of the Dragon, translation believed done by Jain Charin, known as Jain Farstrider, shortly before his disappearance"

    Tags

  • 53

    Interview: Apr, 2003

    Budapest Q&A (Verbatim)

    Mort

    What about the thread of the life in case of the Forsaken? Are they part of the Pattern or they are outside? Is it broken in the case of the Forsaken?

    Robert Jordan

    No. They're part of the Wheel, except for the fellows who've been balefired, who are now gone: no rebirth [resurrection]; they’re out. The Dark One is outside of the Pattern, as the Creator is outside of the Pattern, but everything human is inside of the Pattern. One of the things that the Forsaken hope to gain is immortality. And immortality would put them outside of the Pattern.

    Footnote

    RJ has said elsewhere that balefire is not the eternal death of the soul, and Brandon has confirmed it (and so RJ was merely saying that the balefired Forsaken could not be transmigrated into new bodies).

    Rhynn

    You’ve wrote somewhere that Moridin used the True Power and he stepped out of the Pattern or something like that.

    Robert Jordan

    No, he's made a hole in the Pattern as a way of Traveling which uses the True Power, which is a different thing. If you notice as far back as the Prologue of The Eye of the World, when Ishamael Traveled in to meet Lews Therin, who was mad, the description does not match the Traveling that we see later. It’s because at that point, Ishamael is using the True Power, which produces a different sort of effect for Traveling. It is a different method of Traveling than either men or women use with saidin and saidar.

    Mort

    The descriptions are quite similar when he arrived by Travel with saidin. You also say 'bore a hole through the Pattern', and for the True Power, I think in one instance, 'ripping a hole in the Pattern'. And in one other instance you wrote that he stepped back inside the Pattern.

    Robert Jordan

    It's similar. Similar, but it's not the same thing. It's why it produces that fading in and fading out effect.

    Sequoia

    But if a woman used the True Power she would use it the same way?

    Robert Jordan

    Yes. It's not separate. The True Power is not like saidin or saidar. The reason there are differences for men and women using the One Power is that one is using saidin, for men, and women are using saidar, which are not identical. But using the True Power, which flows from the Dark One, men and women are using exactly the same force, exactly the same source of Power.

    Tags

  • 54

    Interview: Apr, 2003

    Budapest Q&A (Verbatim)

    Question

    Are the Forsaken defined by being allowed to tap the True True Power?

    Robert Jordan

    No, not necessarily. They are, but it takes more than that, and they may be denied it. You see there were many more than thirteen Chosen at the time of the Breaking of the World. At the time of the sealing, there were more, and they died. The reason these thirteen lived was that they were trapped and, except for Balthamel and Aginor, sealed away in large extent from the effects of time, as if they were put in suspended animation. The others who were not there at this conference died.

    Question

    May I ask you what makes a Forsaken Forsaken, or Chosen?

    Robert Jordan

    Well, many people had sworn their souls to the Dark One. To be one of the Chosen, is to be someone who is recognized by the Dark One as having enough potential to be brought to Shayol Ghul to swear this oath personally, as close to being in the presence of the Dark One as is possible, with the prison partially sealed up.

    Question

    Is it just a coincidence that all those thirteen who survived can channel?

    Robert Jordan

    Oh, no that’s no coincidence, because if you weren’t able to channel, you weren’t going to get into this game at all.

    Question

    Ah. [mumble] cannot channel?

    Robert Jordan

    Yes, but somebody has to be cannon fodder.

    Question

    Yeah...poor Mat and poor Perrin.

    Robert Jordan

    Hmm, well, if they wanted to be Forsaken, yes.

    Question

    Yeah...I hope they’re not gonna be Forsaken.

    Robert Jordan

    Read and find out.

    Tags

  • 55

    Interview: Apr 27th, 2004

    Wotmania Interview (Verbatim)

    Wotmania

    Did the Dark One order Asmodean's death? If not, how does he know about it in the prologue of Lord of Chaos?

    Robert Jordan

    No, he didn't order Asmodean's death, but he knows a great deal about what goes on in the world, though it isn't complete knowledge.

    Tags

  • 56

    Interview: Apr, 2003

    Budapest Q&A (Verbatim)

    Wood Sun

    What about the saa? You wrote in a chapter, that there is a black hole before Moridin's eyes.

    Robert Jordan

    No, no, in the eyes. It is not before. In the eyes, inside the eyes.

    Wood Sun

    And can see through? (-?- unsure about this sentence. -?-)

    Robert Jordan

    It depends. When you are using the True Power. At first, when you begin using the True Power, there's nothing there. Nothing in the eyes. After you've used it for a while, you begin to have a black speck floating across your eyes, when you're using it.

    Wood Sun

    And then you see, other observers can see it.

    Robert Jordan

    No, you don't see it. You don't actually see it.

    Wood Sun

    I think it was the chapter when Moridin was observing with a cloak of fancloth. His vision was blurred by a rain of black spots.

    Harriet

    But it didn't affect his vision.

    Robert Jordan

    It didn't affect his vision. You're aware of it, but it's not like there is blackness between you, because it gets thicker and thicker and thicker and you get to a point where if you've used it long enough you get a steady stream even if you're not connected. And you are then on the road, at that point, inevitably, to becoming what Ishamael was. Because these are stigmata, if you will. These saa are stigmata caused by a linkage to the Dark One. And eventually the effect is to become all fire eyes. You no longer have eyes visible to other people. If they're looking into your eyes, they seem to be looking into caverns of flame that stretch to infinity. And when you open your mouth they see another cavern of flame that stretches to infinity. Because you've reached at that point the ultimate level of this usage and quite possibly, if you've at this point not been granted immortality, you're on your way to death. Not madness, but you're on your way to death. So it's sort of a race. The Dark One has given you this boon, but if you use it very much, then you'd better hope he is willing to give you another boon, because if he doesn't give you the second boon then you're dead. Some of the Forsaken have expressed discomfort with the fact that Ishamael and Moridin are so free with using the One Power.

    Wood Sun

    And is it addictive?

    Robert Jordan

    Yes.

    Wood Sun

    Entirely.

    Robert Jordan

    So is the One Power. That's one of the things that I intended from the beginning. The One Power has at least the potential for good, and it is something used by those on the side of good. And it is addictive, physically and psychologically addictive and also potentially very dangerous, even deadly to those who are using it.

    Wood Sun

    And so the other Forsaken seem to be afraid of using the True Power?

    Robert Jordan

    Well, they are, because they know this; they will use it when they have to, but they limit it, because they know that if you use it enough to let the saa begin to appear, then you are on a spiral and once they begin appearing, they begin appearing more often. And eventually, unless you are given immortality by the Dark One, you are dead. Now, the thing is, they don't wanna die. This is really great, it is a really great honor to be given the ability to tap into the True Power. Which is not inherently stronger than the One Power. It's not that it is stronger in any way. It is just something that does not have some of the limitations of the One Power. Other people can't feel you embracing it, or using it, like the One Power.

    Question

    -?-

    Robert Jordan

    Yeah, you could.

    Question

    -?-

    Robert Jordan

    Yeah, you could burn out with the True Power.

    Wood Sun

    Only True Power, or One Power too?

    Robert Jordan

    With the True Power as well as the One Power you can burn out.

    Tags

  • 57

    Interview: Apr, 2003

    Budapest Q&A (Verbatim)

    Question

    To go back to what you were saying a few minutes ago, were you implying that you could channel the True Power without being granted immortality?

    Robert Jordan

    Oh yes.

    Question

    Aren't the Forsaken already ...

    Robert Jordan

    No. They're not immortal.

    Question

    Do they know that?

    Robert Jordan

    Yes, they know that.

    Question

    But they believe they are immortal.

    Robert Jordan

    No, they do not believe they are immortal, but they believe they will be. All they need to do is get the Dark One free. And they have been promised this. This is their reward for getting him free. If they manage to get him out of that prison, he will grant them immortality. And they believe this because they have seen him in the past, as he has done now, bring the dead back to life. Give the dead new bodies. Transfer souls from a dying body into a young and healthy body. They've seen him do this. So they know that can be done. So it's not as though they are believing something, somebody just walked up to you and said "I can make you immortal if you go out and do this, kill and do awful deeds". They've seen him, they have seen these incredible things done. So they have reason to believe.

    Tags

  • 58

    Interview: Apr, 2003

    Budapest Q&A (Verbatim)

    Question

    -?- the Dark One, who has now this super Myrddraal, Shaidar Haran. Did he breed him, or did he just take an ordinary ...

    Robert Jordan

    Read and find out. (background giggle) Read and find out.

    Tags

  • 59

    Interview: Apr, 2003

    Budapest Q&A (Verbatim)

    Question

    Was there any time when there was no Blight?

    Robert Jordan

    Oh, yes. The Blight is an artifact of the War of the Shadow and the Breaking. There was no Blight before the Bore was created, and the drilling of the Bore did not immediately create the Blight, but the Blight came into being after that.

    Question

    Was the Blight [mumble] from the Dark One, or one of the Forsaken?

    Robert Jordan

    From the Dark One. It is land that has been corrupted by the Dark One.

    Tags

  • 60

    Interview: Sep 3rd, 2005

    Frenzy

    How can Slayer know that Rand is his nephew?

    Robert Jordan

    The Shadow knows a lot about Rand. They know a lot about Perrin and Mat, too. Once they began to identify possibilities, they went hyper trying to get information because anything might be part of the key to controlling him.

    Tags

  • 61

    Interview: Sep 3rd, 2005

    Matt Hatch

    I'm trying to verify Rand's impression he has at the end of book four, regarding the connection he cuts of Asmodean to the Dark One. He seemed to believe it was the connection directly from that individual to the Dark One. So what I am wondering is, is that connection key to transmigration?

    Robert Jordan

    No, because what you are thinking of wasn't a connection; Rand thought it was.

    Tags

  • 62

    Interview: Sep 2nd, 2005

    Question

    Someone had a question about Machin Shin in the Ways. Since it seems to absorb the creatures that pass through there, could you regard it as a servant of the Dark One or perhaps almost as a Forsaken?

    Robert Jordan

    It's not a servant of the Dark One. It will kill Trollocs or anything else. You can say it's a parasite that grew in the Ways because of the taint and the One Power that was used to initially create the Ways. The talisman of growing that was used to extend the Ways. So it's not a servant of the Dark One, but it's definitely on the evil side.

    Question

    Would it be cleaned with the Cleansing of saidin?

    Robert Jordan

    No. Its like a bacteria breed. Just by cleaning up the chemicals that caused the bacteria to come into existence, unless it's feeding on that, those chemicals, you are not going to destroy the bacteria. You simply cut off what helped to create it.

    Tags

  • 63

    Interview: Sep 3rd, 2005

    Ted Herman

    Is Shaidar Haran an avatar to the world beyond the Bore?

    Robert Jordan

    I am not certain you can really call him an avatar because I generally think of an avatar as having exactly the same powers as, and it is not, Shaidar Haran does not have nearly as much power as the Dark One. It's as though the Dark One is able to project a shadowy form of himself into this creature. It is the Dark One in shadowy form.

    Ted Herman

    Is it twenty-four seven, or just part time?

    Robert Jordan

    Twenty-four seven.

    Ted Herman

    Ohh.

    Harriet

    Shaidar Haran has another life in the suburbs.

    Ted Herman

    Yeah, he has two and half little fades running around.

    Harriet

    He has to go home for the weekend to cut the grass. I don't think so.

    Tags

  • 64

    Interview: Sep 3rd, 2005

    Matt Hatch

    You have been killing my theories left and right since I got here.

    Robert Jordan

    I have always thought that the small whimper of a theory as it dies is a beautiful sound.

    (General laughter all around.)

    Matt Hatch

    Ouch. Okay, now that you have killed my black cord theory, are the oaths and covenants Forsaken make with the Dark One necessary for the Dark One to transmigrate a soul?

    Robert Jordan

    They are not necessary, but he is not likely to do it for anyone who hasn't done, who hasn't sworn to him.

    Matt Hatch

    He doesn't have access to all souls to be able to grab any soul?

    Robert Jordan

    No, no, no. Because of the Bore and the fact that the bore is best perceived, the Bore doesn't really exist in Shayol Ghul, the Bore exists everywhere, it's simply in Shayol Ghul where it can be perceived most easily. By the same token he has greater access to people at Shayol Ghul than he does elsewhere, or did, and uh, that's, when you know, Rahvin died, Rahvin is balefired out of time, slain out of time, cannot be reached, gone. Be'lal, (names someone else).

    Matt Hatch

    Well, then is there something unique about the Forsaken other than the fact that they are his favorites that he would transmigrate them, or be able to?

    Robert Jordan

    Well, he would have been a lot less likely to in an earlier time when they were a lot of powerful knowledgeable channelers who were in his service. Essentially half the people in the world who could channel were on his side, during the War of the Shadow. Now he has very few, he's got the Black Ajah, and a few wilders, and some stuff I ain't going in to, but uh he doesn't have a lot, but he can't afford to waste assets.

    Matt Hatch

    Okay.

    Tags

  • 65

    Interview: Sep 4th, 2005

    Ted Herman

    Do the Forsaken get reports from rats and ravens?

    Robert Jordan

    Eventually. Not from every rat or every raven, but eventually.

    Ted Herman

    Is there any way to distinguish one that is the eyes and ears of the Dark One?

    Robert Jordan

    No.

    Tags

  • 66

    Interview: Oct 4th, 2005

    Robert Jordan

    For foxhead, I think you'll find this covered elsewhere, but here goes. The evil of Shadar Logoth and the evil of the Shadow might be considered positive and negative poles. They attract, as do the positive and negative poles of two magnets, but if they make contact, the result is more like making contact between the positive and negative poles of your car battery. Big sparks. Really big sparks.

    Tags

  • 67

    Interview: Oct 13th, 2005

    Basri

    During the signing, I got to ask whether there exists a type of balance or opposite to the True Power the way there is with saidar and saidin.

    Robert Jordan

    He said no, and described how they are different, mostly stuff that is already known. The two sides of the One Power being different and from the Creator and keeping the Wheel turning and all that. He did mention that when a channeler uses a weave (either saidar or saidin) and releases the weave, the Power flows back into the available pool of saidar or saidin. It is never used up, and so it is like an infinite reservoir of Power. The True Power is not like this at all. The True Power comes from the Dark One of course.

    Basri

    I thought this was interesting. Did this imply that the amount of True Power is finite? Does it drain the Dark One to use the True Power? I didn't get to ask. Maybe there's a way to destroy the Dark One here?

    Tags

  • 68

    Interview: Oct 29th, 2005

    Hermano de lobos

    But one person asked something to the effect of: How valid are the viewings and prophecies, given that the Pattern has been loosened? There was also a comment by the person about how the viewings and prophecies are readings of the Pattern.

    Robert Jordan

    Jordan responded, (not word for word) The viewings and prophecies that occurred before the loosening of the Pattern are very valid. But those that occurred at, or after, the loosening have a higher chance of not coming true.

    Hermano de lobos

    I thought this was pretty big news. I don't have the best memory in the world, so my wording may be a little off. Feel free to correct me if you were there.

    Tags

  • 69

    Interview: Nov 4th, 2005

    Robert Jordan

    The theory that Demandred is using balefire at the direction of the Dark One to loosen the weave of the Pattern is squashed by RJ. (confirmed)

    Footnote

    This person is not clear whether the theory was 'squashed' or 'confirmed', but in any case, we discussed it with Brandon here, and it seems as though RJ confirmed it.

    Tags

  • 70

    Interview: Oct 31st, 2005

    Question

    A man asked if the Dark One can resurrect anyone after death.

    Robert Jordan

    RJ answered that, yes, the Dark One can resurrect any soul, but probably doesn't want to bring back someone who hates him.

    Tags

  • 71

    Interview: Jun 12th, 2009

    Don

    I wanted to comment on the general impression that nothing BIG changes with each turning of the Wheel, i.e., history repeats itself. It's mentioned in the books and has been confirmed by RJ in interviews. I take issue with this, however. The Dark One can influence the world AND he is outside the Pattern and the turning of the Wheel. History doesn't repeat for the Dark One. In his quest to break the Wheel, why would he repeat the same steps over and over again, knowing they don't work? He remembers and learns with each turning of the Wheel. Because of this, I feel that the possibility exists that something "different" could happen, and that perhaps this something "different" might happen at the end of this series. No one really agrees with me, though. : (

    Brandon Sanderson

    I wanted to answer this one, since there has been a lot of talk about Warbreaker on the blog lately, and I wanted to do something for the Wheel of Time readers. Don, you're actually quite right. The Dark One CAN stop the Wheel from turning. Indeed, this is his goal. So far, history has repeated for the Dark One—but only because he has failed at his attempts to unravel the Pattern. Now, the theory websites can go into all of this in much more depth (and specificity) than I can. I'm no replacement for Robert Jordan when it comes to continuity and cannon within the Wheel of Time world. (Except where it comes to the last volume.) Many questions and thoughts like this are better sent toward Bob at the Encyclopedia WoT or on the forums at Theoryland or Dragonmount (or on any of the other excellent websites.) However, this particular topic was one I decided I needed to delve into during my research for the final books. If I didn't understand the Dark One's motivations and goals, I didn't think I could do the Last Battle justice. And so, I can state with reasonable authority that the Dark One is indeed capable of doing what you say. Though, it should be noted that in many cases, the Dark One's actions will repeat themselves—he will try the same ploys, though I can't speak for certain on how much he has varied those over the years. But I can promise that just because he has failed in the past doesn't mean he will fail again. This series could end with the Dark One breaking the Wheel and destroying the Pattern. That is what is at stake.

    Footnote

    The reader mail was referring to this RJ quote, in which RJ states that there is "nothing different" about this turning of the Wheel (see context). It's a hot topic of debate on the forums as to exactly how far the implications of the quote can be taken. Brandon is (unknowingly) contradicting RJ here (RJ himself was always rather open about the fact that fiction generally requires a suspension of disbelief because you know the good guys are going to win). So theoretically the Dark One COULD win this turning, but we know he's not going to.

    Tags

  • 72

    Interview: Oct 27th, 2009

    Question

    Do the Finns care whether or not the Dark One wins?

    Brandon Sanderson

    RAFO.

    Tags

  • 73

    Interview: Nov 6th, 2009

    Paul Grow

    I asked him a direct question: Where is Demandred? On whom or on what did the Dark One order him to use balefire in book 6? I answered my own question: Surely he is with the Borderlander Army waiting to use balefire on Rand directly. Rand would be burned out of the Pattern and the Pattern would unravel because it it couldn't exist without him. The Dark One wins.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Brandon said someone killed by balefire could be reborn and woven back into the Pattern later, but the Dark One cannot resurrect that person.

    Tags

  • 74

    Interview: Nov 6th, 2009

    Brandon Sanderson

    Brandon explained that the True Power can only be used by someone that the Dark One has allowed to use it. The True Power is perhaps more powerful than the One Power in the way a drugged up person is more powerful than someone not drugged up. In the moment the drugged up person may be, but in the long run maybe not.

    Further explaining the True Power, he said the Guardian in Far Madding cannot stop it.

    Tags

  • 75

    Interview: Nov 21st, 2009

    Matt Hatch

    Ok, so, what is then the nature of the Dark One’s relationship with the True Power? In other words, is the Power...is he the Power or it is separate like the One Power?

    Brandon Sanderson

    When people bored into his prison they were searching for a new source of power, they found him. Alright? Now, that leaves a strong implication that the True Power is the essence of the Dark One. The True Power when it is used rips apart the Pattern to rebuild it as it desires. The True Power is very destructive to the Pattern. It leaves scars on the Pattern. Robert Jordan said in an interview or maybe it was actually in the books, when you make a gateway with the True Power you are actually ripping a whole in the Pattern and going somewhere else. When you are using the True Power that is what you are doing, it is contrary to the Pattern. That is not a direct answer to your question but I think there are enough implications in there that certain things can be discussed.

    MATT HATCH

    [I realize now, after listening to Brandon’s answer that I was making an assumption about the One Power too, that it is separate from the Creator because of what we have been given in the books and the BWB, but I should have asked if instead the One Power is the essence of the Creator...]

    Tags

  • 76

    Interview: Nov 21st, 2009

    Matt Hatch

    So, I’m assuming you’ll RAFO this...does the Dark One weave the True Power?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I will RAFO that.

    Tags

  • 77

    Interview: Nov 21st, 2009

    Matt Hatch

    Is the True Power used by any other creatures or beings within Parallel or Perpendicular worlds or other dimensions?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Ok, see answering that actually gets us begging the question because let’s step back, the question that people should be asking is does the Dark One exist in all of these Parallels...

    Matt Hatch

    ...ok, so yeah this is the question I’ll ask, you make a good point. Are there worlds and dimensions that exist outside of the Pattern?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Ok, see that’s the question you should be asking. I mean, you should be asking it, but it doesn’t mean I’m going to answer it. [laughter] But that’s at the core of the question. I’m going to discuss it without giving you the answer. I like to do this because I think it frames the question without giving you too much information that I have that I don’t think is appropriate to share right now. Extrapolations of this question get us to: is there one Dragon for all different Parallels or are they all different Dragons? Traveling through the Portal Stone seems to indicate that there are many different lives Rand could have led. The same thing happens with several of the ter’angreal that people go through. The question then is, are those all separate Universes? Do we have a multi-verse sort of concept? Or are they possibilities and do these worlds all exist or could exist, what is the difference. In some of those Rand failed. So, is Rand the Dragon in all of them or is Rand not the Dragon in some of them? What happens in the ones where Rand failed? Are they real worlds? Are those different worlds where there is a different Dark One who then takes over and destroys that world or maybe not, maybe he makes it has he wishes. Or are those just possibilities, reflections of this world that don’t really exist except when we touch them? Those are all very good questions. Robert Jordan said that Tel'aran'rhiod is a reflection of all different worlds, which implies other worlds continue to exist. The World of the Finns is something different...

    Matt Hatch

    ...he called it a Parallel World...

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes, the Parallel World, that one and also the one Rand and Lanfear visited are persistent regardless of someone from this world visiting. Yet, many of those seem almost shadowy and reflections of the real world, some of them seem as real just strange when visiting them. What happens in these different world, that sort of thing, those were never questions that Robert Jordan answered...

    Matt Hatch

    ...the answers exist?

    Brandon Sanderson

    The answers exist, but are there many parallel Patterns or is there one Pattern?

    Matt Hatch

    Yeah, that’s...are there many Wheels or just one Wheel?

    Brandon Sanderson

    That’s not a question, I’m afraid, that I can answer because I don’t think it’s within the scope of the books and I don’t think that the characters...that there are people that could know. You will find Browns arguing all of these different things among themselves, and it’s not my place to step in and end the discussion.

    Footnote

    Luckers got Maria to clarify on the Mirror World / Parallel World distinction here.

    Tags

  • 78

    Interview: Nov 21st, 2009

    Matt Hatch

    Can the Dark One use the One Power?

    Brandon Sanderson

    RAFO.

    Tags

  • 79

    Interview: Nov 21st, 2009

    Matt Hatch

    You saw where we were going…

    Brandon Sanderson

    ...yes, I see where you are going...

    Matt Hatch

    ...I had to do the build up to it because it all comes down to that one question for a couple of things.

    Brandon Sanderson

    This one question you are going to ask next?

    Matt Hatch

    I’m not going to ask it...

    Brandon Sanderson

    ...oh, the one you asked…

    Matt Hatch

    ...yeah, I guess I asked a piece of it last night...

    Brandon Sanderson

    ...when it comes to this certain character that you are talking about, there is a whole thing where Maria and I exchanged a bunch of emails about this. She had managed to pull some things out of the notes that I had not seen, which is interesting, because I was going off of something else. I did not think that Cyndane should be nearly as powerful as she was put in the books as being, so I had been under the belief that the Dark One was pulling shenanigans...

    Matt Hatch

    ...like a little, in essence, let’s say what the Forsaken Lanfear did to Asmodean, you thought maybe the Dark One was doing some similar...shielding...

    Brandon Sanderson

    ...or the other way around…here is a little extra power you can draw upon while I am pleased with you, I can take this away...

    Matt Hatch

    ...that is a question...let’s jump to that question, there have been some theories that talk about Lanfear...

    Brandon Sanderson

    ...let’s back up and say I was wrong. I was interpreting the notes a certain way. Maria was able to pull something out that I had not seen that made it clear that I had misinterpreted and that that is not the case, Cyndane is not under any shenanigans. What you see is what you get.

    Matt Hatch

    Cyndane and her alter ego have never been under any shenanigans?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I’m not going to say never been under any shenanigans, but when you see her creating a gateway she is legitimately powerful enough to do it, which I did not believe that she was. Does that make sense? This is all digging into my read of the notes versus and Maria’s read of the notes and Maria was right. She was able to provide information to me that I had not seen which is nice because it was stuff that was very pertinent for what I am working on right now. It would have come out eventually when I would have sent her the scenes I’m working on, but it came out earlier, which is nice. Once I found out what was going on it all made perfect sense.

    Matt Hatch

    So, we will understand then in the next book or so why there is a decrease in power but not a significant decrease?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes.

    Matt Hatch

    Ok, so that being said there are some theories out there that in the Age of Legends, at one point, Lanfear might have...

    Brandon Sanderson

    ...let’s just say I have not said that Lanfear and Cyndane are the same person...

    Matt Hatch

    ...Oh, absolutely, I’m jumping to this other Forsaken that we are talking about...

    Brandon Sanderson

    ...this other completely different person...Uh huh...

    Matt Hatch

    ...so Lanfear, the theory goes, that maybe she was accentuated from a beauty and/or power perspective by going to the Finnland previously...

    Brandon Sanderson

    ...ok...

    Matt Hatch

    ...would the Finns have the ability to accentuate someone’s beauty and/or quantity or access to the One Power through their own capabilities and talents?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes, but it might involve third party ter’angreal, angreal, this sort of thing...

    Matt Hatch

    ...so, they don’t have power to affect the soul’s capability of increasing its total channeling?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Certainly not permanently, as far I understand, that is outside the realm of their ability…

    Matt Hatch

    ...from a beauty perspective can they affect the outer body of some individual?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I would say that, yes they can, but they may have to be using some type of ter’angreal or...

    Matt Hatch

    ...some item of power?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Some item of power, something like that...of which they have great stores...[what???]

    Matt Hatch

    ...Really...heh, so the obvious question, where did the Finns get great stores of ter’angreal, angreal, and is that part of the Pact they made.?

    Brandon Sanderson

    RAFO...but if you just think about it, we don’t even have to go to the notes for this if you think about it logically, we know of them providing certain items of power to certain individuals that they were able to match very nicely with certain requests very easily. If you run the statistics on that its either a huge coincidence or they have very many to choose from.

    Tags

  • 80

    Interview: Nov 19th, 2009

    Nightbaron

    Was Moridin aware of Shaidar Haran's plans with Semirhage?

    Brandon Sanderson

    His answer was, word for word: The Dark One trusts Moridin more than any other Forsaken.

    Tags

  • 81

    Interview: Nov 21st, 2009

    Matt Hatch

    There was some confusion about Rand and the Dark One’s permission, so for clarification’s sake, did Rand have the Dark One’s permission to use the True Power?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I have not answered that. If anyone says that I have, I have not. What I have said specifically is, this is recording: generally one must have the Dark One’s permission to use the True Power. Semirhage believed that the Dark One had betrayed her by letting Rand use it. [...] It is good that you have asked this so I can make sure on the record that is the answer I have given.

    Tags

  • 82

    Interview: Nov 19th, 2009

    Question

    Moridin vs. Shaidar Haran, who is the boss?

    Brandon Sanderson

    He again stated that Moridin is the Forsaken the Dark One trusts the most and not enough information is known about Shaidar Haran.

    Tags

  • 83

    Interview: Nov 19th, 2009

    forkroot

    Brandon Sanderson

    Lastly I want to mention that in general conversation at the end, Brandon was very careful to state that we cannot assume that Rand drew the True Power through the link with Moridin; nor may we assume the opposite. (In other words, we're not supposed to have enough evidence yet to draw a conclusion.)

    Furthermore, it seemed that he wanted to make it clear that we cannot discount the idea that the Dark One did indeed "set up" Semirhage (pretty much per Isilel's scenario). I'm not saying he's telling us that that is what happened, but he was almost insistent that we did not close the door on that line of speculation. Take it for what you will.

    Footnote

    This question was explored further here and here.

    Tags

  • 84

    Interview: Nov 16th, 2009

    Question

    Did Rand directly have the Dark One's permission to channel the True Power?

    Brandon Sanderson

    It's very difficult (but not impossible) to channel the True Power without the Dark One's direct permission.

    This led to lots of discussion about the whole Semirhage death scene. Basically, she felt betrayed by the Dark One, and Brandon says she's a very astute person. Brandon also said that Moridin and the Dark One are on the same page with most things, and that Moridin is the most trustworthy Forsaken for the Dark One.

    kcf

    My interpretation is that Rand channeled the True Power through the link with Moridin, but this was not discussed. Also it was strongly implied that the idea that the Dark One served Semirhage up on a platter for Rand to balefire is true.

    Footnote

    This question was explored further here and here.

    Tags

  • 85

    Interview: Nov 16th, 2009

    Question

    You mentioned that Shaidar Haran has quite a few limitations on his power. Can you give us a few concrete examples of these limitations?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Shaidar Haran needs a minion to most of his work for him. Elza was essential to Shaidar Haran in getting things done.

    This led to lots of discussion about swearing to the Shadow—basically, it's a very bad idea and you forfeit some very basic protections when you do. Shaidar Haran has special power over those that swear to the Dark One, and the Forsaken in particular.

    I asked about Alvairin's special mark, and he said Shaidar Haran has similar power over her. The implication is that there are lots of ramifications for swearing to the Dark One. Brandon mentioned that this makes Verin all the more remarkable.

    Tags

  • 86

    Interview: Dec 5th, 2009

    Question

    Trollocs. Question was how many Trollocs did the Dark One have access to?

    Brandon Sanderson

    He stated definitively that there are lots and lots of Trollocs. The Dark One has access to either "orders of magnitudes more" or "an order of magnitude" more Trollocs that can be supported in the Blights (I can't remember whether there was an "s" there. Sorry). He wouldn't comment on how or where, but was very clear that there was going to be a big, big Trolloc army.

    Tags

  • 87

    Interview: Apr 23rd, 2010

    Seeker

    If Ishamael took the Horn to the Pit of Doom, and the Dark One destroyed it, what would happen?

    Maria Simons

    I have no idea.

    Tags

  • 88

    Interview: Apr 23rd, 2010

    Question

    Are there any servants of the Dark One among the 'Finns?

    Maria Simons

    RAFO.

    Tags

  • 89

    Interview: May 12th, 2010

    Richard Fife

    That is a very impressive feat. So, it has been twenty years since The Eye of the World. Looking back, has there been anything that surprised you that the fans clued in on, similar to Asmodean's murder? Or perhaps anything they missed that you thought they should have been all over?

    Alan Romanczuk

    One thing that strikes me is people's perception of the Wheel of Time. The Wheel of Time is just a structural device: it has seven spokes which represent the seven Ages. The Wheel turns; people forget about the previous Age and a new Age is entered. It goes around seven times and it starts again from square one. Very similar patterns of events occur in each Age, but they are changed, just as two people can have very similar personalities but still be very different people in many other respects. The same way with the different Ages.

    So the Wheel does not have a specific purpose. It does not have a motivation. It is not a conscious being. The Wheel is just there, operating as an organizing principle of the world. Jim played down the religious aspects of all this. There is a creator, but there is not even a notion that the creator is God. The creator, of course, is God, but it is the creator. And the creator is not given much of a personality in these books. The creator is a stand-back kind of entity, less so than the Dark One, which opposes the creator and everything the creator has created, which is mankind.

    And so, that's all I'm saying: don't read too much into the Wheel of Time. I think the Wheel of Time is also drawn in part from the Buddhist concept of the Wheel of Life. The Wheel of Life is something that we are on. In creation, we are created in who knows what form, evolve through many, many lifetimes, until we no longer have to be on the wheel. We have reached our goal, which in Eastern Thought is being one with God, part of the infinite ocean. In Jim's world, it is not so cut and dried. As far as we know, individuals stay on the Wheel of Time forever.

    Tags

  • 90

    Interview: Sep 21st, 2010

    Matt Hatch

    (General summarization of the attack on Rand) Moridin is speaking to the Chosen. He’s kind of pissed. He’s saying look somebody, it was either Sammael or someone pretending to be Sammael, but it was definitely one of the Chosen. Is Moridin’s assumption/belief correct, that the only way for that to have occurred was for one of the Chosen to be involved?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Someone very high up would have to have been involved.

    Matt Hatch

    (Laughter) I should have phrased the question differently…

    Brandon Sanderson

    Someone very high up would have to have been involved. It didn’t just happen.

    Matt Hatch

    When you say high up, do you mean marked or someone with great power?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Someone with great influence and power among the, the um…the, among those who follow the Shadow would have to have been involved.

    Matt Hatch

    (Laughter) So, are you suggesting that it may not have been just one person?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I said what I said (smiles).

    Matt Hatch

    (Sorry Terez—made up these questions on the fly, so they weren’t very good, but it’s something to chew on. Next.)

    Tags

  • 91

    Interview: Oct 26th, 2010

    Luckers

    Will Verin face punishment from the Dark One for what she did? (Also, wow for that scene. Just plain flat out wow!)

    Brandon Sanderson

    Well, I can’t claim very much credit for that scene.

    Will Verin face punishment from the Dark One? It will all depend on whether he can get his mitts on her or not.

    Tags

  • 92

    Interview: Nov 2nd, 2010

    Matt Hatch

    We are told the male Aiel channelers go to the Blight to "to kill the Dark One." And it is said "None survived long enough to face madness." Is this point of view or truth?

    Brandon Sanderson

    RAFO. It's not that I don't know, it's that I think in reading the text you can answer that question yourself.

    Tags

  • 93

    Interview: Nov 8th, 2010

    Joe Heron

    What happens to the souls of Darkfriends who did good for the Light sides?

    Brandon Sanderson

    RAFO.

    JOE HERON

    Not satisfied, I press harder, saying this will be revealed in further reading [skeptical].

    BRANDON SANDERSON

    He said there were a lot of things Jim (RJ) wanted fans to keep guessing and wouldn't answer, and this was one of those things about the cosmology that he wanted.

    JOE HERON

    Then I asked Maria (yes I was sneaky), and her answer made her sound kind of unsure how to answer it, but then she finally said:

    MARIA SIMONS

    Well he is called the Lord of the Grave, so...

    JOE HERON

    So seems like Ingtar and Verin really paid a huge price to help the Light-siders. Again, not sure if this was asked but I thought it interesting....and who knows, they may change it since its not finished yet.

    Tags

  • 94

    Interview: Dec, 2010

    Stublore

    As regards the True Power, how come Rand was able to use it, when earlier we are told only those the Dark One allows can use it?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Semirhage believed that the Dark One had specifically granted Rand the ability. I won't say whether that's true or not. There are other theories out there that I don't want to squelch. But one possibility—and she certainly believed it—was that Dark One, in his desire to corrupt Rand, gave him that ability.

    Footnote

    Brandon said later that one typically has to go to Shayol Ghul to get permission to use the True Power, and many suspect that Rand's sensing of it is a product of the link between him and Moridin.

    Tags

  • 95

    Interview: Dec, 2010

    Stublore

    On a slightly related note, the Chosen had protection from the taint, was this something unique to the Chosen (it occurs to me actually, that said protection could only have been given AFTER they were freed from the Bore, as such a precaution would have not been needed before Lewis Therin sealed the Bore), or would all Darkfriends have such protection?

    To answer my own question, I'd guess it was unique, else male Darkfriend channelers would have been at a huge advantage after the Breaking.

    Brandon Sanderson

    All Darkfriends do not have such protection.

    Stublore

    Which makes me wonder, if such protection could not be conferred after the Breaking was it because the Dark One was imprisoned and so could have less effect on the world, or was it something that needed to be done at Shayol Ghul?

    Brandon Sanderson

    RAFO.

    Tags

  • 96

    Interview: Jan 10th, 2011

    Andrew B ()

    In Towers of Midnight's glossary, it is noted that Mesaana is destroyed (as opposed to Asmodean and Aran'gar who are noted to have been killed). If the Aes Sedai were to execute Mesaana, would the Dark One be able to put Mesaana's soul in another body? Or since her mind was destroyed, is Mesaana's soul permanently damaged?

    Brandon Sanderson ()

    
Nobody's soul gets permanently damaged in that way in the Wheel of Time. Whether the Dark One can recover her and transmigrate her soul or not is a RAFO.

    Tags

  • 97

    Interview: Dec 25th, 2010

    Question

    Everyone's favorite Wheel of Time question has been answered—after Towers of Midnight, we now know who killed Asmodean. It doesn't seem right to leave you without a WoT question, so in honor of Asmodean: What do you think would happen if Rand managed to hurl Padan Fain through the Bore into the Dark One's prison?

    Brandon Sanderson

    The Dark One would spit him back out because he tastes bad.

    In honor of Asmodean, I'll say that there is a mysterious death in The Way of Kings that could use some resources devoted to it. I did not put it in there simply because of Asmodean, but as I thought about it after writing it, I said, "Oh wow, I wonder if people will pick up on that." So there you go.

    Tags

  • 98

    Interview: May 30th, 2011

    Isabel

    Oh yeah, I first asked him some questions about the influence of the Dark One at Shayol Ghul. I first tried to ask about the influence of the Dark One around Shayol Ghul in the Age of Legends, but that really went nowhere. So I just asked about the current influence at Shayol Ghul.

    Brandon Sanderson

    The ceiling in the tunnel to the Bore is actually being lowered by the Dark One and he can actually close it. So it's not imaginary.

    Footnote

    The question is referring to the tunnel with the stalactites at Shayol Ghul.

    Tags

  • 99

    Interview: Apr 17th, 2011

    Terez

    Does one typically (emphasized in the list he was reading) have to visit Shayol Ghul to be granted permission to use the True Power?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Um...(pause) Yes. I see what you're fishing for there.

    Terez

    Well, I mean...obviously. I didn't think I would slip that one past you.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yeah.

    Footnote—Terez

    I was mainly following up on Freelancer's question. Despite the confusion, most fans believe that Rand accessed the True Power through his link with Moridin (and most also believe the Dark One is okay with this, despite not having granted explicit permission). Brandon's answer to Freelancer seemed to confirm that, but then Brandon denied he had actually said that.

    Tags

  • 100

    Interview: Aug 31st, 2011

    Reddit AMA 2011 (Verbatim)

    Ted Herman ()

    Did the Dark One try to resist when Rand cleansed saidin?

    Brandon Sanderson

    His resistance was primarily through the people he sent.

    Tags

  • 101

    Interview: Oct 15th, 2011

    Ted Herman

    What makes a body suitable for a transmigrated Forsaken besides channeling ability?

    Brandon Sanderson

    The Dark One looks for certain things that are not available in just any body, and we will see an illustrated example of this in A Memory of Light.

    Tags

  • 102

    Interview: Jul 11th, 2010

    Stefan

    So we know in The Eye of the World, there was somebody who talked in capital letters like how the Dark One did. Obviously you can't tell us who it was, but will we know by the end of A Memory of Light?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I know what that was about. Will it be in the next book? Er...RAFO. Sorry.

    STEFAN

    Will we know by the end of the series though?

    BRANDON SANDERSON

    I really can't say yes or no. This is one of the things Harriet has asked me to be very quiet about.

    Tags

  • 103

    Interview: Nov 11th, 2011

    Wetlandernw

    Is there a distinction between the "bubbles of evil" and the "Pattern unraveling" events?

    Brandon Sanderson

    There is a distinction, in that they are different manifestations of the same root cause: the bubbles come from the Dark One's prison and slide along the threads of the Pattern until they pop, while the Pattern unraveling is a result of balefire as well as the Dark One's direct influence. The "torn lace" icon is used for both.

    Tags

  • 104

    Interview: 2011

    Twitter 2011 (WoT) (Verbatim)

    Ted Herman (14 November 2011)

    Would a keeping weave protect the seals on the Dark One's prison?

    Brandon Sanderson (14 November 2011)

    No, it would not.

    Tags

  • 105

    Interview: Dec 17th, 2011

    Loialson

    Did Nynaeve inform Egwene that according to Rand, the Dark One can resurrect the soul of a Forsaken killed by any means other than balefire?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I honestly don't know if she's told her yet.

    Tags

  • 106

    Interview: Dec 17th, 2011

    Loialson

    Can the True Power can be used against the Dark One?

    Brandon Sanderson

    That is a big RAFO.

    Tags

  • 107

    Interview: Dec 17th, 2011

    Loialson

    Is the Dark One's touch still on Fain?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Umm...yes, you don't abandon it that easily, but, the other touch on Fain is far more dominant.

    LOIALSON

    That would be Mordeth?

    BRANDON SANDERSON

    Yes.

    LOIALSON

    Is Fain still a Darkfriend?

    BRANDON SANDERSON

    I don't know if Fain counts as a Darkfriend anymore. I think Fain is his own faction.

    LOIALSON

    How is Fain getting Trollocs and Myrddraal to follow him if he is not a Darkfriend?

    BRANDON SANDERSON

    He is using...other means...they aren't following him because he is a Darkfriend. Certainly not [he smiles a bit here].

    LOIALSON

    Is Mat still attached in any way to Fain's dagger?

    BRANDON SANDERSON

    Read and Find out.

    Tags

  • 108

    Interview: Nov 4th, 2005

    Saladdodger

    First I want to applaud the OP for a well thought out theory supported by evidence. I have enjoyed the debate on this topic.

    Now the bad news: I attended the Robert Jordan book signing here in Charlotte, NC tonight (11/4/05). While he was signing my books, I asked him if he could credit or discredit the theory that the Dark One charged Demandred with the task of wielding Balefire in an attempt to weaken the Pattern, so that the Dark One may be have a better chance of victory at Tarmon Gai'don.

    Robert Jordan

    He didn't quite understand my point and asked me to explain it again. When I did, alluding to the consequences of Balefire, and quoting the Dark One's asking Demandred about his willingness to use balefire for the Dark One, he quickly shook his head and gave an unequivocal no.

    SALADDODGER

    I'm afraid this theory is disproved by the word of Robert Jordan himself.

    Footnote

    It's clear enough from other reports and also from comments by Brandon that the theory was not precisely disproven. RJ probably meant that Demandred was not the one doing the balefiring, which fits with Brandon's comments.

    Tags

  • 109

    Interview: Oct 29th, 2005

    Congo Red Jr.

    Well I asked Mr. Jordan about this theory, in brief, at a booksigning in Santa Cruz. I did this while getting my books autographed.

    Robert Jordan

    He said the Forsaken are using balefire to help unravel the Pattern. That was all he'd say on it, told me the books provide enough evidence for it.

    CONGO RED JR.

    At any rate I'm not sure whether or not this helps anyone's arguments as I haven't read all of them; y'all write too much.

    Tags

  • 110

    Interview: Oct 29th, 2005

    sporkster (comment 70)

    So—one Jordan booksigning against the theory, and one for. Sounds like we can't put this theory in the "Debunked" pile yet...

    CONGO RED JR. (COMMENT 71)

    I suppose it's possible that Mr. Jordan may not have fully understood my question and therefore his answer isn't exactly for or against this theory. LOL The question I asked was this: Have the Forsaken, Demandred specifically, used balefire to destabilize the Pattern at all?

    Robert Jordan

    He said that they've used balefire and the consequences were destabilizing the Pattern and that in the books you could see evidence of that.

    CONGO RED JR.

    I should've been more specific in my question to him and my post here; that was first time I've ever commented on a message board, etc. I'm usually just a reader/browser to forums and such. I personally think the other fella's question was more specific therefore the answer probably more accurate as pertaining to the topic at hand. The answer he gave me upon further reflection could mean any number of things. It's hard to say. Guess we'll all find out when A Memory of Light is published.

    Footnote

    Actually, it appears that both answers might have been accurate in their original form, and that the Forsaken have indeed been using balefire, but that Demandred is not one of them. In any case, Brandon's comments on this theory make it almost certain that balefire is the main cause of the disintegration of the Pattern.

    Tags

  • 111

    Interview: Nov 14th, 2009

    Brandon Sanderson

    The True Power is usually not able to be used without the Dark One's consent. Semirhage certainly thought that the Dark One intentionally betrayed her.

    Tags

  • 112

    Interview: Nov 14th, 2009

    Brandon Sanderson

    The ghosts are definitely a result of the Dark One's touch on the unraveling Pattern (Brandon's phrasing).

    Tags

  • 113

    Interview: Apr, 2012

    Zombie Sammael

    We know access to the True Power is a matter of wanting it and the Dark One letting you. Are there any other conditions?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Well... (This is not quite verbatim.) You have to be human of course, and all the other things as with the One Power. I don't believe so, but I am not sure. (Don't take this last sentence as gospel as I may not recall it correctly.)

    ELEANOR

    I think we need to clarify what sort of conditions so he can say yes or no to them. Maybe MAFO?

    Tags

  • 114

    Interview: May, 2012

    Irene Gallo

    We are very excited to reveal the cover to A Memory of Light, the final volume of Robert Jordan’s epic fantasy series The Wheel of Time. The artwork for this final edition is by, arguably, one of today’s most beloved illustrators, Michael Whelan.

    The task of jumping into a 14 volume series on its last installment must have been a daunting one but Michael rose to the occasion. Harriet McDougal, Jordan’s editor and widow remarked, "that is the Rand I have waited to see for twenty years” when she saw the image. And while the artwork clearly has all the earmarks of a Whelan painting, its theme and coloration make it a fitting heir to Darrell K. Sweet’s series of Wheel of Time covers.

    In keeping with the series’ covers, the scene gathers elements from a key scene in the book. Here, Rand stands with Callandor on the rocks of Shayol Ghul, heading down into its depths to confront the Dark One even as the sun itself vanishes from the world. Two Aes Sedai follow the Dragon Reborn into the mouth of darkness, two women who have been with Rand since the very beginning.

    MICHAEL WHELAN

    Tags

  • 115

    Interview: May, 2012

    MRJackson@218 (7 May 2012)

    Not sure why there's still confusion. It's Nynaeve and Moiraine on the back cover. The yellow and blue dresses should make that apparent. Nynaeve's hair is obviously shorter than it used to be.

    I spoke to Michael about the cover as he was finishing it. Since he didn't have the opportunity to read all fourteen books for the assignment, I was one of the people he leaned on to fact check his work.

    Michael mentioned there are details the readers (like me) wouldn't be privy to yet. For example, Nynaeve takes the bulk of her jewelry off before this scene.

    Callandor is a sword that isn't a sword, right? He's not holding it for defense. It's a source of power as well as his source of light (there's a clue about that in the lighting on his face). He's shielding his eyes as he stares in to the pit. Apparently, the deeper he goes into Shayol Ghul, the brighter it shines.

    A little background that some might not know... Michael has studied martial arts, including Filipino Kali and Arnis. The forearm slash position actually has some utility in fights with bladed weapons.

    Compositionally, the line of the sword is another element that draws you into the intensity of Rand's stare. Further, the opening of the cave is the shape of an eye; the eclipse suggests an iris. It's as if the gaze of the Dark One is falling on Rand. We see his strength and determination in response. How many illustrators can convey that kind of depth in a scene?

    Say what you will, but I think Michael brought a lot to the plate on what was a very difficult cover assignment. He put his stamp on Rand while producing a cover that fits well with the first thirteen that DKS painted.

    analiese@222 (8 May 2012)

    Thanks for confirming that. However, Nynaeve's hair is still the wrong color and, while it's shorter after the Aes Sedai testing in Towers of Midnight, it should still be in a shoulder-length braid. She never gave up her signature braid. That's why many people don't think it looks like Nynaeve—the braid is the main thing that would identify her as Nynaeve to the readers.

    The loose light hair makes the woman on the cover look more like Alivia, who many fans believe is the woman in yellow. So I'm still of the opinion that Whelan did not do a good job with Nynaeve if longtime fans don't even recognize her. I think it's a beautiful cover, but as a reader, the main thing I care about is seeing the characters—who we have been reading about for twenty years—done right, not so much whether the cave looks realistic or happens to symbolize the Dark One spying on Rand. So it's disappointing that Nynaeve ended up virtually unrecognizable. She doesn't even wear yellow dresses in the books, despite being Yellow Ajah (she makes a point of wearing green or blue since that's what Lan likes), so that's not something that makes the woman's identity apparent either.

    If you don't mind me asking (not trying to be rude here, it just strikes me as a bit strange), why did Whelan rely on fans to check his work instead of Team Jordan? I'm assuming you work for Tor, but you refer to yourself as a reader who hasn't read the book. To what extent were Brandon Sanderson and Team Jordan involved with the creative process behind this cover?

    MRJackson@223

    I was just one of the people helping with the details. Obviously Michael had Irene Gallo's art direction and was in contact with editors including Harriet.

    Michael's wife Audrey usually serves as his sounding board, but she hadn't read the books. (For the record, I'm not affiliated with TOR. I've worked with Michael since the mid 90s, primarily on his website.) I'm a WoT fan and that's the kind of feedback Michael was looking for... someone he knew who had read the previous thirteen books.

    Michael and I did discuss Nynaeve's dress color. I mentioned that she catered to Lan's color preference of green and blue. The yellow of her Ajah usually came in slashes of color, accents if I recall correctly.

    Like I said, I haven't read the manuscript for A Memory of Light and Michael couldn't talk about it. But I distinctly recall Nynaeve taking pride in being a true Aes Sedai finally. Going into the Last Battle, I don't think it's a stretch that she would choose yellow. I suppose we'll have to RAFO on that.

    In the background information I provided, I described Nynaeve's hair color as darker brown and referenced previous covers (among them the Melanie Delon's cover for A Crown of Swords that drew criticism for being too red).

    I'd have to ask him why he chose lighter highlights. Just my speculation here, but Callandor is a light source. There's also illumination from the eclipse filtering in from the mouth of the cave to consider.

    Michael got the length of Nynaeve's hair right, and this isn't simply opinion. Hopefully Brandon or Harriet will confirm at some point that her shoulder length hair was too short to braid.

    Interestingly, Michael and I spoke about the challenge of pulling character descriptions from the text. If you're familiar with his illustration, he's known as a stickler for details. But it isn't always easy to translate text literally, especially when Jordan and Sanderson contradict in their description.

    In correspondence, Michael wrote,

    Michael Whelan

    "Major characters are described as diminutive in size, yet 'commanding' in presence. Faces are youthful, yet ageless. Or young but having eyes full of wisdom of the ages. Rand is tall and manly, yet has an almost "feminine" beauty in his eyes or mouth. It's a bit confusing how one is supposed to render such conflicting elements."

    MRJackson

    Honestly, I don't mind the nitpicking. Criticism comes with the territory. My point in responding is to state that Michael was mindful of details here. There's evidence of it in the painting. I can tell you that he had Moiraine's kesiera and Nynaeve's ki'sain accounted for before I even spoke to him.

    On a personal note, I had the privilege of meeting Robert Jordan before a signing on the Knife of Dreams tour. One of the things we talked about was the cover art for the series. I think Mr. Jordan would be pleased with this one. Obviously Harriet was when she said, "that is the Rand I have waited to see for twenty years."

    analiese@224

    Firstly, thank you very much for the thorough answer. It answered many of my questions, and it was also interesting to hear more about the creative process behind the cover.

    [Nynaeve's hair] got singed off "a handspan below her shoulders" (Towers of Midnight ch 20), and she wore a shoulder-length braid in every scene she was in after the Aes Sedai testing. That's why it seemed odd for her signature braid to be missing on the cover. I don't really care about the dress or even much about the hair color, but Nynaeve isn't Nynaeve without her braid—it's part of who she is. It's like Mat showing up without his hat and ashandarei. And the ki'sain is too small to be visible, so it doesn't do anything to make the woman on the cover look more like Nynaeve.

    I also wish Nynaeve and Moiraine hadn't been delegated to the background/back cover—since they're going to be linked with him, they deserve to stand at his side. But that's not an error, just something I wish were different.

    However, while the cover isn't what I hoped for, I understand and deeply appreciate that you and Whelan both worked incredibly hard on it, and Whelan remains one of my favorite illustrators. I think he did a wonderful job with Rand.

    MRJackson@228

    I appreciate the sentiment but Michael did the actual work. He pushed his calendar aside this spring to make the cover happen. I was just support. But I will admit it took a lot of restraint on my part not to inundate him with questions that I knew he couldn't answer, so there is that.

    As readers, we all have so much invested in this series that I completely understand what you're saying. I love Brandon's work, but I felt Towers of Midnight was a bit of a letdown, especially the resolution with Moiraine.

    Moiraine has always been a favorite of mine. I would have liked to see her on the front cover as well. Thankfully Dan Dos Santos gave us that in his brilliant cover for The Fires of Heaven.

    Wetlandernw@227

    I think MRJackson & Mr. Whelan made a very good point, in that we have not yet read this book. By the time this scene happens, we may see several other events that make sense of the seeming discrepancies. Specifically, there are only two scenes after Nynaeve's testing which mention her braid, and in both cases it is specifically noted that it is too short and she finds it quite annoying. Quite possibly she'll meet up with Lan and find out that he likes it loose, or she'll simply decide that it's too irritating to fuss with a too-short braid, and we'll see her with loose hair in several scenes before this.

    Someone was bothered earlier by the missing jewelry—but now we know that she specifically and deliberately removed the jewelry before this scene, probably so that someone else could use them. (That's what happened during the Cleansing; why not here as well?) Seems to me that we should make the assumption that the same kind of thing might happen with The Braid, instead of insisting that she should look like she did in the previous book, and claiming any discrepancies as mistakes. Such claims are not only rude, they are unfounded. Once the book is out and we've read the whole thing, we might have grounds for nitpicking; until then, not so much.

    MRJackson—Thank you for your contributions, both to this thread and to Mr. Whelan.

    MRJackson@230 (9 May 2012)

    Glad to be of help. Maybe someday we'll find closure in the great braid debate...

    Seriously though, Michael painted Nynaeve's hair at that length (without a braid) for a reason. I wasn't trying to sidestep debate. I was expressing certainty. Michael was aware that the braid was an identifying feature of her character. The painting turned out the way it did through a long process that involved editorial input. I'll leave it at that.

    I look at it this way (and this is my opinion)... Nynaeve has grown enormously through the books. She was always uniquely powerful, but it took time for her to grow into that power. More so, it took a dozen books to accept herself and decide who she wanted to be.

    Nynaeve worked through enormous difficulty to channel reliably. Remember how she used to tug on that braid? It really was a symbol of who she used to be. Kind of fitting that the symbol is gone.

    Old habits die hard, of course, but she isn't that girl tugging on her braid any more. She's a woman who fought to gain acceptance as an Aes Sedai, and she's going to stand at Rand side to face the Dark One. It's impressive how far she's come as a character.

    analiese@

    The Fires of Heaven ebook cover was definitely one of the best, though there were a few things the artist got wrong (Moiraine does not have blue eyes). The New Spring cover was great too, especially Lan. It's mostly Nynaeve who has suffered bad luck with the ebook covers. There's A Crown of Swords where she got red hair and Lan looked like an underwater zombie, Winter's Heart where she didn't appear at all despite being linked with Rand for the Cleansing, The Path of Daggers where she got a Saldaean nose and Elayne looked suspiciously like Jean Grey...

    I think much of my disappointment with the A Memory of Light cover stems from the fact that there's already an earlier cover (Winter's Heart) where Rand claimed the stage and his female linking partner was left out. "Hero poses manfully brandishing some kind of phallic object" is a pretty tired concept, especially on WoT covers. Rand does the same on Sweet's The Dragon Reborn and The Path of Daggers, the ebook covers for The Dragon Reborn, Winter's Heart, Knife of Dreams... Winter's Heart is probably the worst offender, if you look at the placement of the Choedan Kal. ;)

    Sweet's A Memory of Light cover was a welcome break from that—I'm not usually a fan of Sweet's covers, but I liked that he gave Elayne, Min, and Aviendha a prominent role and added some emotion to the cover. So I really would have liked to see something different on the final cover, like Rand having the two women from the Callandor circle at his side. Here, Nynaeve and Moiraine are present, but only in the background, and not at all on the ebook cover.

    MRJackson@236

    The only female lead who held the cover spotlight on par with the men was Moiraine, and that is a shame.

    There was definitely opportunity to feature Nynaeve linked with Rand on Winter's Heart. Despite the hair, I liked Nynaeve on the cover of A Crown of Swords. Lan not so much. The Path of Daggers was another miss, mostly because the colors were a distraction. I thought I was looking at an X-Men cover. Even if that was intentional, it didn't work for me.

    I can only assume Rand was intended to stand at center stage alone on the last cover, but I think what you suggest would have been great too. Moiraine and Nynaeve definitely earned their place at Rand's side on the front.

    ViciousCircle@264

    That was a beautiful description of why Nynaeve is one of the most compelling characters in the series. She and Moiraine kept me invested during some dark years of almost giving up on WOT. I always hoped they would be the other Callandor channelers, as I could not imagine Rand putting himself in such a vulnerable position with anyone else. Aviendha, Min and Elayne included, though I do love Aviendha! So thank you for shedding light on why some things are portrayed as they are on this excellent new cover. Just don't think that it will put a dent in the debate. ;)

    MRJackson@266

    Thanks. I feel much the same way about those characters, and I'm sure the debate will keep going on well after the publication of A Memory of Light.

    Tags

  • 116

    Interview: Sep 22nd, 2012

    Question

    Why is Dashiva never resurrected? He was killed with a ball of fire by Elza, not balefire....

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes, I know.

    Loialson

    Why is he dead?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Robert Jordan once said that res...transmigrating a soul had not just to do with the way that they were killed but the time and...not necessarily just a weave, but why and how. [Technically, where and how.] I am not going to delve too much into transmigration. Robert Jordan did speak on these sorts of things. And so, the Dark One also might not think that the person was an asset worth bringing back.

    Loialson

    Dashiva kinda sucks.

    Brandon Sanderson

    I'm not gonna say, but those are all factors in this.

    Tags

  • 117

    Interview: Apr, 1997

    SFX

    It's a world where the conflicts between different factions of supposed heroes often take precedence over their preparations for battle against The Dark Lord—indeed, at first glance it seems as if the main story hasn't even started yet.

    Robert Jordan

    The battle between good and evil is a big part of the story, but it's not easy to see how many of the struggles for advantage are actually motivated by the Dark One, by evil. People who've read the books a few times are beginning to spot what's happening, and that while our heroes don't realize it, the war against evil has been going on from the beginning.

    Tags

  • 118

    Interview: Nov 3rd, 2012

    herid

    I asked him if there is a time limit on how long the Dark One can hold the souls he grabs.

    Brandon Sanderson

    He said that he is not sure and might have to consult the notes but he thinks that there is a time limit.

    herid

    I think that should put an end to the theories that the Dark One has been holding any souls for hundreds or even thousands of years.

    Tags

  • 119

    Interview: 2012

    Memories of Light (Verbatim)

    Day 37

    I AM THE ONLY HONESTY YOUR WORLD HAS EVER KNOWN. (p. 679)

    Tags

  • 120

    Interview: 2013

    Twitter 2013 (WoT) (Verbatim)

    The Sandwich Man (13 January 2013)

    Just read A Memory of Light, one of my all-time favorites. But for clarification, what, exactly, did Rand do to seal the Bore?

    Brandon Sanderson (13 January 2013)

    I want to avoid spoilers on my feed, if possible. But it involved access to something Lews Therin did not have.

    Tags

  • 121

    Interview: 2013

    Twitter 2013 (WoT) (Verbatim)

    Kim Mainord (23 January 2013)

    If the Dark One is from a place outside the Pattern, where is he from?

    Brandon Sanderson (23 January 2013)

    Good question.

    Tags

  • 122

    Interview: 2013

    Twitter 2013 (WoT) (Verbatim)

    Mike Scinto (23 January 2013)

    So, is it implied that once the Wheel turns again, this whole Dark One vs The World will go down again as well?

    Brandon Sanderson (23 January 2013)

    Everything in the WoT world repeats. Not always exactly the same, though.

    Tags

  • 123

    Interview: Feb 6th, 2013

    Question

    Did the Dark One make the True Power available to Rand, or did he find it himself?

    Freelancer

    After staring at me for several seconds (long story) and taking a sip of water, he pulled out a RAFO card.

    Brandon Sanderson

    First RAFO of the night, and it's yours! It might be in the encyclopedia. Yes, I can still RAFO.

    Tags

  • 124

    Interview: Feb 8th, 2013

    Question

    The Dark One seems to be conscious and aware of the events in the world. Is the Creator also conscious of world events?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Brandon said that's left up to the reader. He then said that many people think the voice in all caps in The Eye of the World is the Creator, which might indicate the Creator was, but stated it really wasn't known even in-world.

    Tags

  • 125

    Interview: Feb 20th, 2013

    Question

    Was it up to you to decide what the Dark One actually was? The revelation that the Dark One was a concept or idea rather than a person reminded me very much of Ruin from the The Hero of Ages. How did you make that decision?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I was left a lot of freedom on how to do that specific thing, and earlier in the first draft he wasn't so much like that. We felt the conflict wasn't working—it felt more like the Last Conversation than the Last Battle. Harriet sent back direction for something stronger. The revision included the dueling of possibilities. That is where the Dark One became more involved and so it evolved into that, but we weren't following anything specific Jim had said.

    Tags

  • 126

    Interview: Feb 20th, 2013

    Question

    Did the Creator ever manifest in the books? And I don't mean the VOICES IN CAPS.

    Brandon Sanderson

    RAFO!

    Question

    Did the Creator speak in ALL CAPS at least once or twice?

    Brandon Sanderson

    The same voice spoke in all caps in the series.

    Tags

  • 127

    Interview: Apr 20th, 2013

    Terez

    Why wasn't Osan'gar given another chance, since he wasn't killed by balefire?

    Maria Simons

    I think he had just been so....kind of useless. Why bother? You know...you don't get "three times, you're out"; it's "two times, you're out", you know?

    Tags

  • 128

    Interview: May 24th, 2013

    Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

    Jordan made the decision of the True Nature of the Dark One. He said that straight out. He and Harriet rewrote and developed the battle the way it turned out, with the possible futures, etc. But the true key of the Dark ONe being needed for the world and Rand having to discover that and just restore the prison were Jordan's directive.

    Tags

  • 129

    Interview: Feb 13th, 2013

    Question

    So, at the end of The Eye of the World, the all caps voice? Will we ever find out who it was, or what they were looking for?

    Brandon Sanderson

    The all caps voice at the end of Eye of the World makes an appearance in A Memory of Light.

    Question

    What about what wasn't there?

    Brandon Sanderson

    What's that?

    Question

    What about what wasn't there?

    Brandon Sanderson

    What do you mean, what wasn't there?

    Harriet McDougal

    [laughter]

    Brandon Sanderson

    Maybe it'll be in the encyclopedia. I can still RAFO things, Harriet is working on an encyclopedia of The Wheel of Time, which is coming out maybe in two years or so.

    Harriet McDougal

    Yeah.

    Tags

  • 130

    Interview: 2013

    poesian (March 2013)

    I'll bite:

    We had some discussion about whether or not the scene in AMOL in which Rand thinks Roedran is Demandred was intended as a bit of a dig at all the fan theories assuming that to be true. Or was Rand really just supposed to be convinced of that same theory? (And how did Shara never occur to anyone in the books?)

    Balefire question: If balefire isn't tearing someone's soul out of the pattern, why is it so destructive? Why, in AMOL is it literally tearing the world apart when Darkfriends are using it?

    Thanks! I will try and remember to ask more questions on 15 April!

    Brandon Sanderson

    1. The item you discuss was not intended as a dig against fans. You could read it, potentially, as an acknowledgement of fans—though really, all it comes from is the fact that you have a fan writing these books. I'm aware of many of the theories, and even spent years thinking about them and talking of them. In constructing this scene, it was my impression that if we'd spent all of this time working on these theories, how much more effort would those in world have expended?

    And so, my impression was that this would be genuinely what the character thought. I thought it would be very strange if he HADN'T considered it. Therefore, I put a note of it in the text—to indicate that the characters had been working through these same issues, and come to some of the same conclusions. It wasn't meant to break the fourth wall, though I can see how it stands out to some readers.

    2. I was under the impression that to be killed by balefire meant dying forever. However, Maria and the notes showed me I was wrong about this fact. Balefire does weaken the Pattern, but it can't destroy souls, which are (you might say) the substance of the Pattern. Just like you can take a hammer to a cup and shatter it, but the pieces of glass will still be there. The Pattern can (theoretically) be unraveled, the world end, but the souls still exist.

    It should be note that Moridin believed strongly that the soul CAN be ended by other means, and the implication of wolves (at least) being killed with no rebirth means it can happen.

    So, in final answer to your question, it is so destructive because it leaves the Pattern in a mess, strained, and more easily subjected to the Dark One's will. His goal is to shatter the cup, so to speak, and then rebuilt it into a cup more to his liking.

    poesian

    Oh man, I am so happy (a) that you answered my questions and (b) that you answered them well. Thank you for all you've done with the series, Brandon!

    (I pointed out the Demandred scene because it is fun on all of those levels. I've thought about the "fourth wall" comment and it doesn't make sense; there's no moment where Rand looks at us. Just at Roedran, in a way that actually is entirely sensical.)

    TheBB

    And so, my impression was that this would be genuinely what the character thought.

    This was a bit jarring for me, because most of the reasons for the Demandred=Roedran theory came from hints given by Robert Jordan, that Rand wouldn't have access to.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Ah, but Rand would have a whole LOT of information in-world that we don't have. Spy reports, rumors, his knowledge of how the Forsaken like to work. If you remove the places where one of the Forsaken had already set up shop, remove the monarchs that Rand has already met and interacted with, and look for a place that has been suspiciously quiet, you end up with very few options.

    poesian

    One of which just happens to be as we now know Shara.

    NruJaC

    It's funny, it was an RJ quote that pushed people away from that particular theory. It turned out to be an extremely Aes Sedai answer.

    poesian

    I would love to read that quote.

    And of course RJ would give Aes Sedai answers. That makes a lot of sense.

    NruJaC

    I'll try to find it, but he basically said that we'd never see Shara "on-screen".

    poesian

    Oh right! Yeah. That's a very Aes Sedai answer. Heh. 'You'll never see their country, but they'll see ours!'

    Tags

  • 131

    Interview: 2013

    DaBoffinIsMyUsername (June 2013)

    Just finished the chapter "Older, More Weathered". Funniest chapter so far IMO, what are your most humorous scenes?

    woodchuck_vomit

    New Spring—Moiraine gets thrown into a pond.

    Eye of the World—Min takes Rand aside when he re-enters the inn to tell him about Nynaeve, Thom immediately assumes they're gonna make out, Min says "Go juggle something."

    The Great Hunt—Egwene smuggling Rand into the women's quarters to hide from the Amyrlin.

    The Dragon Reborn—Moiraine catches some fish.

    The Shadow Rising—Elayne gets drunk; Aviendha describes Elayne to Rand in detail.

    The Fires of Heaven—The Aes Sedai in Salidar make Siuan and Leane go over every prank they played in the White Tower as novices and Accepted to prove they're really them; "It happened on the other side of the world and the Maidens still knew!"

    Lord of Chaos—Aiel humor; Mat before he realizes Egwene really is the Amyrlin.

    A Crown of Swords—Mat and Birgitte get drunk, Elayne gets bond-drunk; Min likes it rough.

    The Path of Daggers—Aviendha describes some of her night with Rand to Elayne; Elayne and that mysterious red rod ter'angreal; the Maidens collect some toh from Rand.

    Winter's Heart—Aviendha, Min, and Birgitte all feeling it in their heads.

    Crossroads of Twilight—"She would bond him as her Warder one day, somehow, and she would marry him, and make love to him until he cried for mercy!" Whoa there Egwene.

    Knife of Dreams—Tuon allows Mat to kiss her. "Do I remind you of your sister? Or perhaps your mother?"

    The Gathering Storm—"Women are like goats..."

    Towers of Midnight—"Your royal bloody pain in my back..."

    A Memory of Light—Aviendha suggests that the most honorable way to win would be to take the Dark One gai'shain.

    Brandon Sanderson ()

    A note for those curious, but a spoiler for the ending. Regarding the AMOL one, have you noticed yet that Rand, to an extent, did this very thing?

    Mithre

    Is it just how he imprisoned the Dark One without killing him? Or did I miss something?

    Brandon Sanderson

    The usual way to take a person gai'shain is to touch them while they are holding a weapon. Rand seized and held the Dark One in his hand, then chose not to kill him, instead taking him prisoner.

    Tags

  • 132

    Interview: Apr 15th, 2013

    Reddit AMA 2013 (Verbatim)

    ethnicallyambiguous ()

    Knowing what you know about Shai'tan, would it have been possible or at all interesting to have had a part from his POV?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Anything is possible, but I don't think it would be right for the book. Even in 'What if' land. Putting in a recreation of him was even a stretch—anything you read in the books is how mankind's minds choose to visualize him. He doesn't really have a personality. He, like the Pattern, simply IS.

    Tags

  • 133

    Interview: 1984

    Robert Jordan

    One of the boys says his father says Warders are just stories for children, and the Blights and the Dark One are just tales to frighten fools. Some of the other boys begin to taunt this one. Rand feels a mounting anxiety, and some of the other boys seem to as well, but the first lad is finally taunted into actually saying Sha'tan's name. All of them, even the boy who said he didn't believe, feel a chill, as if things have gone further than they thought they would. Nyneve overhears the last part of this and is furious, reminding them that the Dark One can hear his name, that calling to him could bring him into the world again. Do they want to bring back the Time of Madness? The boys are all abashed.

    Tags

  • 134

    Interview: Aug 13th, 2014

    Question

    In the Wheel of Time books, did the Creator have a power, similar to the True Power that the Dark One had?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I'm afraid I don't have the answer for this, not for certain. I think that readers of the text could argue both ways. For example, a certain event in the epilogue of AMOL could be interpreted this way—though everyone in Team Jordan seems to have a different opinion on what is going on, and RJ didn't leave an explanation.

    Tags

  • 135

    Interview: Jan 19th, 2015

    Jason

    What can we expect from Dark One, specifically what kind of magic system?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Jason, the magic systems in Dark One, focus on, right now, on a person who can steal people’s souls and use them to make magic objects, mixed with an electricity type world, where the ground is electrified, and animals, plants and animals, have an, a symbiosis with electricity, like you’ll see a tree that has a Jacob’s ladder going up it, or you’ll see ah, a beast that uses spittle like a taser, that should be the next book that I work on for Random House after the Steelheart trilogy, so we will see. [Note: Jacob’s ladder: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spark_gap#Visual_entertainment]

    Tags

  • 136

    Interview: Oct 12th, 2015

    Question

    I forget where it was, but I read something where you talked about Dark One, a world where the planet generates an electric field? [Goes on about how he wrote an RPG with the same idea in college]

    Brandon Sanderson

    I have so much more research to do on that one before I write it. I have to read 3 or 4 books on bonehead electric fields and things like that, and so...

    Tags

  • 137

    Interview: Apr 23rd, 2016

    Question

    Will Dark One take place on Vax?

    Brandon Sanderson

    [Laughing] RAFO! Good question!

    Tags