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Your search for the tag 'white tower' yielded 65 results

  • 1

    Interview: Apr 20th, 2004

    Week 8 Question (Deadsy)

    Is the top of the White Tower steepled or flat? If it's flat, what is on the roof?

    Robert Jordan

    The top of the White Tower (that is, the top of the main tower, since the wings of the Tower along with their much smaller towers must be considered part of the White Tower also) is flat, and surrounded by a solid wall about waist-high on a woman. There is nothing there except a door flat in the surface for getting onto the top of the Tower. Aes Sedai of the present day occasionally use it for observation of events in the vicinity of Tar Valon, such as the progress of the Blood Snow, but it isn't used now on any regular basis. At various times in the past, there has been a garden there, but the sisters inevitably found ground-level gardens more convenient and much more easily maintained.

    Tags

  • 2

    Interview: Oct 25th, 1994

    Question

    How does the Black Ajah recruit new members?

    Robert Jordan

    Very carefully. You have to understand that EVERY Ajah recruits carefully and subtly. Generally, after all those years as novice and Accepted, your teachers know your character and personality VERY well, and you are guided to the Ajah where you fit. The Black Ajah watches too. And recruitment is a one-shot offer: they offer, and you can accept or die. There are a lot of ways to die that wouldn't lead to any suspicion; for instance, it's pretty easy to kill yourself experimenting with the One Power. Who would think that such a death wasn't accidental?

    One thing they do, for instance, is watch new Aes Sedai. Sometimes women get past the final tests and then discover that they don't have anywhere near as much power and freedom as they thought they would have.

    Tony Zbaraschuk

    [I mentioned Katerine Sedai, 17 years Aes Sedai, 12 years Black.]

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  • 3

    Interview: Oct 11th, 2005

    Ted Herman

    Got to ask two questions at signing part:

    Who killed Alric?

    Robert Jordan

    One of the Aes Sedai's Warders did, not a sister.

    Footnote

    Alric was Siuan Sanche's Warder who was killed when she was deposed in The Shadow Rising.

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  • 4

    Interview: 2011

    Twitter 2011 (WoT) (Verbatim)

    Luckers (2 March 2011)

    I was just wondering, was there a reason Egwene let Tiana go and chose a new Mistress of Novices?

    Brandon Sanderson (2 March 2011)

    There were several reasons. One, however, is that she wasn't doing a particularly good job.

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  • 5

    Interview: Jun 16th, 1995

    Robert Jordan

    The question about if any Amyrlin has been non-dramatically deposed he answered with "Read and Find Out". He though said that there was information deep inside the White Tower archives only accessible to the Amyrlin, the Keeper and the Sitters, apart from the librarians tending them. The mere notion of knowing...that such information existed would be considered a crime for other Aes Sedai.

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  • 6

    Interview: Jun 16th, 1995

    Robert Jordan

    On the choosing a deposing of the Keeper he said that the Amyrlin chooses the Keeper herself, as shown in Lord of Chaos, but that the deposition of the Keeper requires an unanimous decision from the Hall. The glossary entry on the Keeper in The Shadow Rising he said was incorrect in this regard.

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  • 7

    Interview: Jun 16th, 1995

    Robert Jordan

    On the amount of ter'angreal enabling entry into Tel'aran'rhiod in the White Tower and if entry into Tel'aran'rhiod could be learned he answered "Read and Find Out".

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  • 8

    Interview: Oct 9th, 1996

    Question

    Was Else always Lanfear?

    Robert Jordan

    No. Else did exist as a separate human but was played by Lanfear after Else was expelled.

    FOOTNOTE—TEREZ

    Since Lanfear as Else doesn't make much sense to me (Mesaana seeming more likely for a few reasons, not least that the 'trap' was supposedly all her plan, and personality), I asked Erica if maybe RJ didn't actually say exactly that. (Sometimes fan assumptions work their way into the wording, if no alternative is being considered.) Unfortunately, I asked her 17 years after she made the report, so she couldn't remember, but she did say it wasn't her phrasing (indicating that she apparently just wrote down what was said).

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  • 9

    Interview: Oct 9th, 1996

    Question

    How are the Ajahs funded?

    Robert Jordan

    Too complex to answer. Joint funding and contributions from Ajahs to full Tower.

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  • 10

    Interview: Nov 11th, 1997

    Rhonda Peters from Toronto, Ontario

    Hi Mr. Jordan, thanks for doing this. I've read the new book (and enjoyed it). I found it very surprising that the Red Ajah would have the largest membership, could you expand on why that's so? The numbers of male channelers have been dwindling prior to the events of the story, and Aes Sedai from other Ajahs seem to be willing to help capture and gentle men. Do the Reds have another role in the Tower, or is there some other reason for their numbers?

    Robert Jordan

    Some faces of being Aes Sedai are being carried out by all Aes Sedai. That is, a Blue sister might dig out an old manuscript and old knowledge. A Brown sister might take on a man who can channel. And a Red sister might engage in political manipulation. But the fact is to the world at large—one of the primary functions of Aes Sedai is to protect the world from men who can channel. That means that a fair number of young women who go to the White Tower, go thinking that this will be one of their major functions as Aes Sedai. So the Red Ajah and the Green Ajah are the two largest.

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  • 11

    Interview: Oct 24th, 1998

    Drew Gillmore

    My second question was whether or not we would get to see the Battle of Tar Valon or if it would happen "off-screen".

    Robert Jordan

    He opened his mouth, hesitated a second and shot me down with a "Read And Find Out". Bastard.

    Footnote

    Drew was referring to the battle between the two factions of the White Tower, which never happened.

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  • 12

    Interview: Oct 25th, 1998

    Question

    A reader asked when the term "Ajah" came to have the meaning it has in Rand's time.

    Robert Jordan

    He said that until at least 500 years after the Tower was founded, it meant a temporary association for a specific purpose, and was a lower-case noun. Its proper-noun sense arose afterwards, supplanting the earlier usage after the Trolloc Wars.

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  • 13

    Interview: Dec, 2000

    Orbit Interview (Verbatim)

    Orbit

    How do you keep track of all the storylines and characters that you have woven into the series? Do you have a system of reference or is it all stored in your head?

    Robert Jordan

    The storylines are all in my head, except that when I begin a book I do sit down at the computer and ramble about a bit to figure out exactly how I intend to fit various things together. For the characters—and the cultures, nations, organizations and a great deal else—I have files on my computer. For example, there are two files on Aes Sedai. One has things like the history of the White Tower, its laws and rules, the customs and group attitudes of Aes Sedai as a whole and among the different Ajahs, details of organization for the various Ajahs, how the Hall of the Tower works and how Sitters are chosen in the different Ajahs, how women come to enter the Tower, how they are trained.... In fact, just about everything I can think of that might be useful to know about the White Tower. The other Aes Sedai file lists every sister, Accepted and novice who has been mentioned in the books, along with 'civilian' personnel of the Tower, and gives both every piece of information about those people that has been in the books and information that has not yet been used. And might not. In part, I put it all together to round out the individuals, give them flesh. I am very glad to have an LS120 drive on my computer, because each of those files is now too large for the smaller 1.44 floppy.

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  • 14

    Interview: Jan, 2001

    SFBC

    How do you keep all the characters and plot lines that you have come up with straight?

    Robert Jordan

    The plot lines are in my head. I have lots of notes on the characters on my computer. Notes on the various countries, the cultures, the organizations, that sort of thing, the history of the world. On flora and fauna. All of that.

    SFBC

    That must be exhaustive.

    Robert Jordan

    They're fairly large files. The largest are the Aes Sedai files, there are two of those. One lists every Aes Sedai that I have mentioned in the books and some that I haven't, with everything I know about her. These are normally the things that have been mentioned in the books, but other things that may never be mentioned that give me a picture of this character. And there's another file that covers the history of the White Tower, the laws, the customs, political organization, how the Hall of the Tower works, organization of the Ajahs, recruiting, training, all of those things. Tower grounds.

    SFBC

    Are there any plans for The Wheel of Time encyclopedia?

    Robert Jordan

    Perhaps after I finish, but I have to tell you, just the file on the Aes Sedai is about, oh, it's now just getting to be too big to put on a 1.44 floppy... And the same with the one on the Tower, so I'm very glad I have an LS120 drive. The other files are not that big. I might do something, a concordance or encyclopedia when the series is done, so it can be complete, but I don't know.

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  • 15

    Interview: May, 2001

    Robert Jordan

    I don't remember how we got on the subject, but at one point he made mention of the whole lesbian issue. Something to the effect of..."Well, you put fifteen-year old girls in a tower filled with almost entirely women, with their hormones raging on overdrive, keep them away from men, because you can't afford to lose any of them, and what do you think is going to happen?" I think this answers the questions about whether there are really lesbians in Randland, and if they are intentional.

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  • 16

    Interview: Jan 27th, 2003

    Réal Heppelle

    I asked him why Egwene would want to change an iron chain into cuendillar (making sure that I pronounced it correctly CWAINDEEYAR :) I thought he would send me packing if I made a pronounciation mistake). I understood that the chain prevented enemy boats from entering Tar Valon, but I wasn't sure why she would want to make it indestructible.

    Robert Jordan

    He responded that iron doesn't TURN into cuendillar, iron is the base of cuendillar. He said that the links of the chain fuse together and become a solid piece. Thus making the chain impossible to raise, lower, or remove. This prevents boats from entering AND leaving Tar Valon. It then became obvious that this was a way for Egwene to successfully siege the island without using the One Power on anyone (as Lord Gareth wanted). I don't know why I didn't realize this on my own, but thought others might want the additional insight.

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  • 17

    Interview: Apr 27th, 2004

    Wotmania Interview (Verbatim)

    Wotmania

    At the end of Crossroads of Twilight, did the Aes Sedai know immediately who Egwene was? Or did they find the Amyrlin's stole, and thus conclude that she was important?

    Robert Jordan

    They recognized her face. Remember, she did spend some time in the White Tower despite all of her jaunts outside.

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  • 18

    Interview: Jul 14th, 2005

    ComicCon Reports (Paraphrased)

    Question

    Why are there so many dominant and powerful women, almost matriarchies, in the Wheel of Time?

    Robert Jordan

    After the Breaking, men were viewed as destroyers. Also, almost all the male leadership of the world were Aes Sedai who were now dead. Add to that the dominant political force in the world for three thousand years being the all female White Tower. It's a natural consequence for women to be more dominant than not in the rest of the world.

    A side note—he brought up the story thread where he introduced a misogynist (Agni Neres, the boat captain on the trip from Samara to Salidar). Instead of being angered by his attitudes, Elayne and Nynaeve are puzzled and can't understand him at all.

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  • 19

    Interview: Sep 3rd, 2005

    Frenzy

    Elaida slipped through the cracks uncaught by the Red Ajah scheme twenty years ago that had a name called the Vileness. How did Elaida, and Galina for that matter, manage to slip through when three Sitters did not?

    Robert Jordan

    Elaida slipped through largely because she was minimally involved. Galina slipped through because there were enough Red sisters involved, at various levels, that taking them all down would have decimated the Red Ajah. The decision was made to punish the Ajah by exiling the Sitters, take off the top. And it was supposed to be a life exile, you are out of here forever. The only reason they were not stilled was that the Tower was trying to hide what happened, it was a major atrocity carried out in the name of the Tower, and it didn't matter whether the Tower as a whole really wanted it or not, it was still a major atrocity and the Tower was at the heart of it.

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  • 20

    Interview: Sep 3rd, 2005

    Question

    What is the title used for the members of the Brown Ajah council?

    Robert Jordan

    Technically, they have no titles. It is the council and the head of the council. Informally, and this is strange, and it gives you an idea of the disorganization or the disinterest in organization of the Brown Ajah. First Chair is the informal title for the head of the Ajah, but this is as far as the Ajah is concerned. It is simply the council and the head of the council. As far as they are concerned there are more importants things than this organization stuff.

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  • 21

    Interview: Sep 3rd, 2005

    Question

    Who was the third Blue Ajah Sitter who didn't make it to Salidar? What became of her?

    Robert Jordan

    Well, she died. She was one of the ones who was killed after Siuan was deposed and everything went to hell in a handbasket inside the Tower.

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  • 22

    Interview: Sep 3rd, 2005

    Question

    Why did turning the Tar Valon harbor chains to cuendillar help? You would think a chain made of cuendillar would be flexible because it is in separate pieces.

    Robert Jordan

    No, as I showed you in one of the scenes where they are learning to make cuendillar. They had two items touch each other when they were turning it into cuendillar and they fused to one another, so what you have is a series of chains where each link is fused to the next, so in essence what you have is one solid piece of cuendillar.

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  • 23

    Interview: Sep 2nd, 2005

    Robert Jordan

    Well, for Liandra (my fellow Amyrlin of the official Nynaeve fanclub): Tar Valon doesn't mean 'white tower'. It does mean something else, but that's RAFO.

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  • 24

    Interview: Oct 2nd, 2005

    Robert Jordan

    For DomA, I can't be sure that the logical patterns you see in the election of Amyrlins are the same that I used in making the list, but there are logical patterns to them. If Harriet adds to the Encyclopedia who was a strong Amyrlin, who middling and who weak, you might see more patterns.

    Footnote

    There is a list of all the Amyrlins since Hawkwing and the Ajah from which each was raised in the BWB.

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  • 25

    Interview: Oct 24th, 2005

    Question

    The first girl to ask a question asked, "Why is it that the most powerful women in the world perceive their power as stemming from a 'pale, white shaft'?"

    Robert Jordan

    RJ chuckled, and then said if you "missed the symbolism there, you just don't get it." He also said that if their power came from a "hole in the ground" it just wouldn't be as much fun, and they would only be feared if you thought you might "fall in", which would not be much fun, he assured us.

    Footnote

    This question was also asked by Fomu and Jarrod, and the latter report seems to make it clear that RJ was referencing the map of Tar Valon.

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  • 26

    Interview: Oct 24th, 2005

    Jarrod

    Eventually Mr. Jordan turned to his quest of finding females that wanted some questions answered and got a good one when a lady asked why the most powerful women in the world get their power in a pale, white shaft (the White Tower).

    Robert Jordan

    The answer was, "If you can't grasp the symbolism, my dear... Because I thought about having them have their center of power be a hole in the ground and I thought it wasn't really going to be as significant. It wasn't going to stand out and have people say 'Wow, Gee...look at that on the horizon'. You sorta have to walk to the edge and say, 'Welp, don't wanna fall off into that, now do you?'"

    Footnote

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  • 27

    Interview: Oct 24th, 2005

    Question

    A few feet behind me was a woman with a very different question, "Can you tell me why the place of most of the female power in the realm resides in a 'big, white tower'? (Paraphrased because I can't remember her exact quote, but obviously making a phallic reference.)

    Robert Jordan

    Laughter reigned for a time, but RJ, as always, was waiting for her. He proceeded to tell how he needed a literary device to show the strength of the women who would inhabit the tower; something that when seen from far off on the horizon would inspire awe. He thought about making the home of the Aes Sedai a large, black hole in the ground, but since that is something you would almost fall into as you walked up to it, it just did not have the same power as a tower.

    Then he rhetorically asked her if she had actually read any of his books and seen the women in them. She explained that yes, she had and she used the term she did, since she was quoting from the prologue of Knife of Dreams. He said he knew the quote, he did write it after all, but again, had she actually read the books to see what power the women in the books did wield? Much laughter ensued at the good-natured banter between him and the audience.

    Footnote

    This question was also asked by Kevin Dean and Jarrod, and the latter report seems to make it clear that RJ was referencing the map of Tar Valon.

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  • 28

    Interview: Nov 22nd, 2005

    Question

    How do you keep track of all the story lines and characters? Do you have a fantastically-detailed and organised character/plot filing system, post-it notes all over your office or a 400GB brain? Has your mental capacity been used up by the Wheel of Time to the extent that everyday life becomes somewhat of a muddle? It would for me!

    Robert Jordan

    My wife would say that everyday life is somewhat of a muddle for any writer, and since she has been an editor for most of her life, she might have some insight. For the rest, I have copious files on characters, nations, history, just about anything that I might need to know. Some of these are quite large. The file listing every Aes Sedai living or dead along with every novice and Accepted along with physical descriptions of each woman, the dates of her birth and her coming to the White Tower, how long she spent as novice and Accepted, character traits and a lot more runs to about 2.5 megabytes. The general file on White Tower, containing such things as the layout of the Tower and the Tower grounds, Tower law, Tower history, Aes Sedai customs, Ajah customs etc., also runs about the same size. I'm not saying that the files are exhaustive—I frequently need to invent something new—but they list not only all of the information given in the books but also information that hasn't been used as yet. The story line itself has always been exclusively in my head until it was time to begin a new book. Then I sit down and figure out how much of the story from my head I can get into the book. Until recently, I had been proven wrong on that every time. I could never get into a book as much of the story as I thought I could. So what began as an imagined six-book series has expanded. Now I've reached the last book, and the rest of the story is sketched out on paper for the first time. Well, paper digitally speaking.

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  • 29

    Interview: Dec 1st, 2005

    Tom Schaad

    What I also found fascinating was...it struck me as I was reading this. The Aes Sedai are undergoing tremendous change for the first time in centuries, and I wondered as I was reading it if one of the problems with their ability to change and to recognize the world changing around them isn't the fact that their longevity allows them to kind of view the world one way, and the older they are, the longer it is that one unchanging way...the harder it is for them to adjust to the change that's occurring in the world.

    Robert Jordan

    It's not only that, their own longevity, it is more the longevity of the Tower which has existed as the one stable hall of political power and influence in the world for more than 3000 years. This tends to make people believe that the way they see things is correct, that they must know simply because they've been observing for so long.

    Tom Schaad

    And one of the lovely things about this universe is you very, very carefully explore and explain a number of very different worldviews of different groups that we encounter along this adventure, and it leaves room for people to think about whether or not their worldview is the worldview or just a worldview. Do you ever examine your own, sometimes?

    Robert Jordan

    Sometimes, but I generally figure I'm right, because I have a belly-button.

    Tom Schaad

    [laughs]

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  • 30

    Interview: Jan 20th, 2006

    Robert Jordan

    For mmwhiterose, Siuan was raised to the Amrylin Seat so young for several reasons, most of which I have pointed out pretty clearly in the books, I think. The preceding years had seen a number of Amrylins die after only a short time in office. In New Spring: the Novel I showed one reason why the pool of potential Amrylins, Aes Sedai with experience, was reduced over part of that same period. And then there was the impasse over several candidates, none of whom could gain enough support, so that Siuan became a compromise candidate who was raised in part because various Sitters thought they could influence or control such a young Amrylin. Just as it is unusual for a sister to be raised to Sitter before she had worn the shawl for a hundred years, it is unusual for a sister to be raised to the Amrylin Seat short of having worn the shawl for a hundred and fifty to two hundred years, and above two hundred years is most common.

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  • 31

    Interview: Oct 21st, 1994

    AOL Chat 2 (Verbatim)

    Question

    How did the White Tower form after the Breaking?

    Robert Jordan

    Aes Sedai slowly got together.

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  • 32

    Interview: Jul, 2009

    iyer5

    Just one question, though I'm expecting a RAFO: Will the White Tower, the physical structure itself, be destroyed at the end of The Gathering Storm or any other point in A Memory of Light?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Sorry, but...well, RAFO. I'm under contract not to give things like this away.

    We do know that Egwene has foreseen a strike by the Seanchan on the White Tower. We don't know how this will happen, though, or even if she's interpreting things correctly.

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  • 33

    Interview: Oct 27th, 2009

    Question

    Since you are Brown Ajah, will we learn more about the 12 (13) Depositories in the White Tower?

    Brandon Sanderson

    They are mentioned in The Gathering Storm.

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  • 34

    Interview: Nov 10th, 2009

    Brandon Sanderson

    One fan seemed underwhelmed with the Seanchan raid against the White Tower and asked if it had originally been intended as a truly epic battle. Sanderson said that it was always intended to be a raid.

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  • 35

    Interview: Nov 9th, 2009

    Brandon Sanderson

    Stated that the Ajah Heads in the White Tower conspired to send Sitters to Salidar who would speed up reconciliation, but not draw suspicion due to being supporters of Elaida previously. They chose young Sitters in the Tower as placeholders. However some of the Sitters who left the Tower went of their own accord.

    The Ajah Heads for the reunited Ajahs will likely be the ones who led their Ajahs before the split. Will be determined quietly and is Ajah business only.

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  • 36

    Interview: Nov 11th, 2009

    Question

    Do the Seanchan consider the raid on the White Tower a success?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes, they consider it a success, but they're disappointed that they didn't get their hands on the Aes Sedai superweapon.

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  • 37

    Interview: Nov 11th, 2009

    Question

    Is Mesaana still in the Tower?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Egwene makes some deductions about this at the end of the book. Egwene is not incorrect.

    Question

    She could swear that she's not a Darkfriend on the Oath Rod, right?

    Brandon Sanderson

    As long as she believed it to be true. Every remaining Aes Sedai in the Tower has retaken the Three Oaths. You should be thinking about ways to defeat the Oath Rod. There is a way to do it.

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  • 38

    Interview: Nov 14th, 2009

    Matoyak

    Have the visions and other such prophecies about Egwene and the Seanchan (such as the running one and the one with the sword) have they been fulfilled yet?

    Brandon Sanderson

    No, none of those have been fulfilled other than the attack on the White Tower. She still has more to go.

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  • 39

    Interview: Nov 19th, 2009

    TheWindRose

    Will the Salidar Aes Sedai and Tower Aes Sedai delegations to the Black Tower be 13x13'd?

    Brandon Sanderson

    And so we had our sixth RAFO.

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  • 40

    Interview: Nov 16th, 2009

    Question

    Whatever happened to the kidnapped King of Illian—Mattin Stepaneos?

    Brandon Sanderson

    He's still in the White Tower. Brandon thought about mentioning him a few times, but it just didn't work out. It was implied that we'll see further mention of this in Towers of Midnight.

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  • 41

    Interview: Nov 15th, 2009

    Question

    Some commenters (AMW) have noted a seeming discrepancy regarding Egwene's accounting for captured, missing, dead, and present sisters. Is this true, and can it be explained?

    Brandon Sanderson

    RAFO.

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  • 42

    Interview: Nov 7th, 2010

    RDDK

    I asked Brandon how, now that Mesaana is braindead and all, she got around the Oath Rod.

    Brandon Sanderson

    He told me that one of the three ways the Aes Sedai had surmised was correct. Considering it probably would have been mentioned if they found an Oath Rod among her things, that it probably was the weave the investigators had rediscovered.

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  • 43

    Interview: Jan 10th, 2011

    tamyrlink ()

    Who is the First Selector of the Blue Ajah? (and if that gets RAFO'd) Have we seen her on screen or her name mentioned?


    Brandon Sanderson ()

    The glossary in the back of Towers of Midnight says, "The First Selector is currently unknown, although it is suspected that Lelaine Akashi fills this position." That suspicion is correct.

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  • 44

    Interview: Jan 10th, 2011

    FSS ()

    I have an older question that I've been meaning to ask for a while. 

When the books say that the Blue Ajah throw themselves into Causes, does this mean the Ajah as a whole picks a Cause, or the individual members pick their own causes?

    Brandon Sanderson ()

    Individual members pick their own causes.

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  • 45

    Interview: Mar 11th, 2011

    Question

    Merana said that every sister knew when each sister of the Tower arrived and how long she trained (Lord of Chaos, The Crown of Roses). The Tower keeps records on this. She thought Verin had been Aes Sedai about 40 years longer than she and Merana appears to have been Aes Sedai 70 years (their training time was the same and the novice acceptance age range is only three years). Is Merana mistaken in when Verin became Aes Sedai? Or in Verin's age when she came to the Tower?

    Maria Simons

    Okay, this one has me all confused. Can you expand this and explain? I should note that we have asked for a correction to one section in this chapter (I'll include it a bit later). Somehow I'm also missing where Merana says that every sister knows when each one arrived (I do see the bit about knowing how long each was novice and Accepted). Here's the change we asked for (it hasn't been made in the mmp I'm holding; I don't know if it was elsewhere):

    At present reads: Alanna had been six years a novice, Merana only five, but more importantly, Merana had been Aes Sedai ten years the day the midwife laid Alanna at her mother's breast. Should read: Alanna had been six years a novice, Merana only five, but more importantly, Merana had been Aes Sedai above thirty years the day the midwife laid Alanna at her mother's breast.

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  • 46

    Interview: Mar 11th, 2011

    Question

    Verin herself hints that she lied about her age when she joined up. How old was Verin when she joined the Tower?

    Maria Simons

    15. Where does she hint that she lied?

    Question

    Did Verin come to the Tower at a far greater age than is usual? If so, why?

    Maria Simons

    No.

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  • 47

    Interview: Mar 11th, 2011

    Question

    Even though she lived in Far Madding, did Verin channel prior to going to the Tower to become Aes Sedai? If so, had she begun to slow before going to the Tower?

    Maria Simons

    No.

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  • 48

    Interview: Mar 11th, 2011

    Question

    It is clear that Lanfear is aware of the search for the Black Ajah, as she shows up in the guise of Else and points the girls towards a previously unknown cache of items supposedly belonging to the Black sisters that went missing. Were those items placed there by Lanfear? If not, who placed those Black Ajah possessions there for the girls to discover?

    Maria Simons

    RAFO.

    Question

    Did Lanfear become aware of the girls' search for the Black Ajah through information provided to her by the Black Ajah (excluding Verin)?

    Maria Simons

    RAFO.

    Question

    Did Verin report every request made of her by the Amyrlin concerning the girls’ search to the Black Ajah?

    Maria Simons

    RAFO.

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  • 49

    Interview: May 30th, 2011

    Ted Herman

    How did Fain know the dagger was in the White Tower?

    Brandon Sanderson

    That's because of course he senses it.

    Isabel

    It really felt like a duh question and looking backwards I should have asked more on range and stuff like that. The same with the range of him sensing Rand. Sorry, I failed a little bit as a Theorylander.

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  • 50

    Interview: May 30th, 2011

    Isabel

    Brandon Sanderson

    During the train ride I asked about the Black Ajah hunters. Because I felt like there was so much built up and not everything was dealt with. So I asked if for example there weren't that many notes on it. But it was, most of those Egewene parts were RJ's. So I guess it didn't go like I expected.

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  • 51

    Interview: Oct 15th, 2011

    Ted Herman

    How did Fain know that the ruby dagger was in the White Tower, since last he knew it was in Falme, and now it is thousands of miles away (when he was in Emond's Field)?

    Brandon Sanderson

    He has a super detection ability for the dagger, like the Warder Bond, so he can know direction and distance.

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  • 52

    Interview: Oct 15th, 2011

    Ted Herman

    Why did Fain say he had to go to Caemlyn first before the White Tower, though he actually went to the White Tower then Caemlyn (as least as far as we see in the books)?

    Brandon Sanderson

    MAFO.

    Maria Simons

    The next time we see him he is in Tar Valon, it is true, but that doesn't mean he didn't stop by Caemlyn on the way. He could have gone to Caemlyn before Tar Valon, although the timing would be rather tight, I think. There are other possibilities: he intended to go to Caemlyn, somehow learned Rahvin was there, and decided to skip that for the time being. Or he intended to go to Caemlyn, but his baser instincts prevailed and he decided to get his dagger first. I can't find a solid answer.

    Footnote

    He might have gone to Caemlyn to use the Waygate there, which gives more leeway on the timing. His intention might have been to bring word of the "rebellion" in the Two Rivers: ["We ride for Tar Valon," he snapped. Hard riding, to beat Bornhald to the ferry. Manetheren's banner, raised again in the Two Rivers after all these centuries. How the Red Eagle had harried him, so long ago. "But Caemlyn first!" Scourge them and flay them! Let the Two Rivers pay first, and then Rand al'Thor...] (The Shadow Rising, Chapter 56)

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  • 53

    Interview: Aug 31st, 2011

    Reddit AMA 2011 (Verbatim)

    lamguin ()

    Back in books 4-6, I forget exactly where, Elayne and Nynaeve did a dreamworld need walk to find something to tie the rebel Aes Sedai to Rand. They eventually found the Bowl of the Winds, but before they did, they were taken to the 'angreal storeroom in the White Tower. I ask with every intention of getting a RAFO; is this going to be brought up?

    Brandon Sanderson

    RAFO! :)

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  • 54

    Interview: 2006

    Cadsuane Melaidhrin

    Robert Jordan

    Cadsuane Melaidhrin was born in 705 NE in the city-state of Far Madding. At the age of fifteen, she went to the White Tower. There she spent six years as a novice and five years as Accepted. She might have moved faster as novice and Accepted—in fact almost certainly should have—but she was noted for both her stubbornness and her pride (read arrogance). At age 26, she was raised Aes Sedai and chose the Green Ajah.

    Cadsuane was very strong in the One Power; for many years she served as the gauge by which every incoming novice was judged. In the last thousand years, no one had matched her and few had come close. Certainly no one in that time had exceeded her. Not even with her full strength yet, she was, on the very day she attained the shawl, at the pinnacle of the Aes Sedai social hierarchy.

    She stood about 5'5" tall and was neither slender nor stout. She was not pretty, but she was strikingly handsome with a fair complexion. She had dark eyes, which some people occasionally mistook for black, especially when she was focused on them in an unpleasant fashion. Her hair became iron-gray, and she wore it in a bun on top of her head; the bun was decorated with small dangling golden ornaments, stars and moons and birds and fish. These hair ornaments were considered something of a trademark because she had worn them for as long as anyone could remember. For many sisters, the fact that she had was just one more indication of how set in her ways she was; they thought Cadsuane would never change, could never change. Of course, that was far from true; Cadsuane was remarkably adaptable, as befits someone who survived as long as she.

    Cadsuane was considered by many to be a second Caraighan, although unlike Caraighin, she always refused offices. She preferred the field, so to speak; adventures were her bag. It was said that Cadsuane went through more Warders than most sisters have shoes; she didn't have all that many, since she was as vulnerable to the effects of a Warder's death as anyone else. Later in life, she refused to take another Warder because she felt that at her age, bonding a Warder would not be fair to the man.

    Cadsuane first refused to be raised a Sitter in 846 NE; she reportedly did so a second time as well, though even one refusal was unheard of. She refused to be raised head of the Green Ajah in 862 NE, another thing that was unheard of. She was said to have vanished from the Tower for ten years (from roughly 890 NE to 900 NE) when she learned that the Hall intended to raise her Amyrlin after Sereille Bagand. She retired to northern Ghealdan about twenty-five years before the Aiel War, but came out of retirement, with her two surviving Warders, for that conflict. Soon after the Aiel War ended, she returned to her rustication. She claimed to have been raising roses when Logain appeared. His appearance drew her out of retirement again, but she was not interested in escorting him to Tar Valon and decided to wander a bit. Then Mazrim Taim rose up, and she headed for Saldaea as fast as she could ride.

    When Siuan Sanche and Moiraine Damodred had reason to research Cadsuane because of their encounter with her shortly after reaching the shawl, they found many stories regarding Cadsuane. All of the ones that they were able to trace down turned out to be true, and in some cases the truth was more than the story. They were not able to follow or confirm all of the stories, of course.

    One of the most prevalent Cadsuane stories was that she had once physically assaulted an Amyrlin Seat. Since physically assaulting any sister is a serious offense—and an Amyrlin even more so—the fact that Cadsuane apparently escaped any punishment at all, and that the tale is vague about which Amyrlin it was supposed to be, made most everyone think this story was false. It wasn't; it was the method Cadsuane used to turn Myriam Copan from a weak Amyrlin to a strong one in 758 NE. Myriam was thought to have gone on a two-month retreat by herself, but she had, in fact, been all but kidnaped by Cadsuane. Turning Myriam around involved, among other things, turning her upside down at least once. Although Myriam certainly had reason to keep the events of those two months secret (and was able to make a statement which seemed to deny that Cadsuane had assaulted her), it is the basis of the tale that Cadsuane once physically assaulted an Amyrlin.

    Another story said that long ago she had removed a sitting king from his palace and taken him to Tar Valon to be gentled. In truth, Cadsuane had "a nose" for men who can channel. She faced more of them than any other sister living; she herself said more than any two Reds, maybe more than any ten. That seems to indicate at least twenty of them by that time, maybe more. She brought more of them to Tar Valon than any other sister. Of these, she never had to kill one, either because she could not capture him or because he was trying to escape. These men have ranged over the years from farmboys to nobles to the king of Tarabon, but one and all, they made much better adjustments to their fate than is considered normal. They eventually died short of a normal span, but they lived considerably longer than usual. And that King of Tarabon: he had to be winkled out of his palace, avoiding his army, which sought to rescue him. She carried him all the way to Tar Valon for gentling by herself, though pursued by his army that refused to believe that he was what he was.

    It was also said that she kidnaped a King of Arad Doman and a Queen of Saldaea. After she released them, a war that had seemed inevitable simply faded away. She did actually spank or switch three reigning kings and four queens, though the facts of these are hidden in rumor.

    Cadsuane is alleged to have once single-handedly stopped a coup in the White Tower. This did happen, though no one seems to know or agree on when. The true story: Cadsuane and Sereille Bagand did not get on with each other. In fact, they could not stand one another. Each was the sort of woman who dominated a room—or for that matter, a city!—by simply entering, and they struck sparks at every meeting. Despite her dislike for Sereille, though, Cadsuane uncovered a plot to overthrow Sereille and crushed it. The plotters thought she would be eager to join them, but she dragged the weeping ringleaders to Sereille and made them throw themselves on Sereille's rather small mercies. Sereille was not particularly pleased to have been saved—the plot was well laid out and ready to leap off—by one she so disliked.

    She had a reputation for standing White Tower custom on its head, twisting it as she chose, and even violating it outright, as in her frank speech about age, her direct questions and refusals to accept oblique answers, and her interference in the actions of other sisters. The same could be said of her regarding Tower law, for that matter. She had a reputation for taking direct action, even to the point of violence, slapping faces, boxing ears, and more (especially when faced with what she considered stupidity), with high as often as low, or rather, more often. She also had a reputation for not caring whether she dented somebody's pride, if she thought it necessary.

    There are the usual tales expected of a Green, only more of them. Riots suppressed and wars stopped single-handedly; rulers steadied on their thrones, or pulled from them, sometimes toppled openly and sometimes more subtly (toppling rulers was something Aes Sedai had not really done much of in the last thousand years, but Cadsuane seemed in many ways a throwback). Rescuing people carried into the Blight or kidnaped by dangerous bands of Darkfriends, breaking up murderous rings of Darkfriends plaguing villages and towns, and exposing powerful Darkfriends who tried to kill her to protect themselves. There are dozens, even hundreds, of improbable and sometimes seemingly impossible tales.

    Some of these are not so much tales about her as an impression, a belief: Cadsuane will do what she intends to do, and no one can stop her: not a king or a queen, not an Amyrlin—not even the Dark One himself, some claimed. And when Rand al'Thor arose to power as the Dragon Reborn, Cadsuane once again chose to take part in directing the events of the world.

    Footnote

    This passage was decoded by a dedicated group of fans well before Brandon expected. Because of that, Brandon and Harriet were nice enough to give us a few more tidbits.

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  • 55

    Interview: 2006

    FORCED-LINKING-STUDIES

    Robert Jordan

    When Careanne (Sareitha) is explaining about the impossibility of one woman forcing a link on another, this study should have survived from the Breaking, I think. Or, at least, it was begun during the Breaking. After this second study was begun and had gone on for a number of years, more of the original was discovered. With the destruction of the intervening years, relatively little is known, some of it only to the Black Ajah.

    Footnote

    This topic is explored a little more thoroughly here.

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  • 56

    Interview: Dec 17th, 2011

    Loialson

    Hey Brandon, I got a bunch of questions from the Wheel of Time Re-read.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Okay! Alright! So Wetlander and people.

    LOIALSON

    Yes...Are the impressive displays of power that Rand makes in Towers of Midnight (i.e., stopping the Trolloc army and having no concern over being able to leave the White Tower) a result of his integrated knowledge or his ta'veren nature?

    BRANDON SANDERSON

    Umm...Both, though, one thing you have to keep in mind, is...Rand, as a result of power level...Robert Jordan was specifically not using him very often because his power had grown so powerful even by the end of Knife of Dreams. I mean, you look at Knife of Dreams—if you go reread the fight in Knife of Dreams he is laying waste to nearly as many Trollocs as he has when he does the battle at the temple—which is not actually called that in the books—that's the one with the Trollocs and things [referencing Rand's big single-handed fight in Towers of Midnight]. And so...yes, some of these things have changed, but he's really powerful now.

    Now, the thing about in the White Tower is something different. [Brandon smiles]

    Footnote

    Someone needs to ask Brandon about that 'temple' thing.

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  • 57

    Interview: Dec 17th, 2011

    Loialson

    In Lord of Chaos, Nynaeve and Elayne searched for something that would tie the Salidar Aes Sedai to Rand via Need in Tel'aran'rhiod.

    Need led them to three things. First it led them to the White Tower, (where Elayne glimpsed Egwene briefly), then Need shifted Nynaeve and Elayne to a locked storeroom within the White Tower (they thought that was useless). After that, Need led them to the Bowl of the Winds. My questions are regarding the first two things Need brought them to.

    On the first thing, was Need bringing them to Egwene?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I believe it was Egwene.

    LOIALSON

    On the second thing, what was the item Need brought them to in that storeroom?

    BRANDON SANDERSON

    RAFO.

    LOIALSON

    Was that something besides the Horn of Valere?

    BRANDON SANDERSON

    It could be.

    LOIALSON

    [I felt that this question was grasping at straws here a bit from the impression I got from him, i.e. it's not that important regarding what the item is, but that it will come into play. And it's not the Horn of Valere in this case. I could be wrong, that's just the vibe I got.]

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  • 58

    Interview: Nov 9th, 2009

    Question

    The next question was about the criteria that the Ajah Heads used to determine which sitters they sent to the rebels in Salidar.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Basically the Ajah heads had a small selection pool to start with. Their primary criteria were: a) loyalty to the Ajah Heads, would they do as they were told? b) would they be acceptable to the Aes Sedai in Salidar? c) finally did the Ajah Heads think they could be persuasive?

    A comment was made about age, Brandon’s answer was to reiterate the limited nature of the Ajah Heads selection pool, the fact that most of the Aes Sedai Sitters that were sent were young was coincidental. He did go on to mention that the “too young Sitters” was a completely different matter.

    He then went on to say which Sitters remain in power after reunification will be dealt with quietly. The most likely default will be who was Sitter/Head before the split.

    Footnote

    None of the Ajah plants in Salidar were notably young; this seems to have been a matter of confusion on the part of the questioner.

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  • 59

    Interview: Jan 9th, 2013

    Marie Curie

    We know that when the Tower split, about one third of Aes Sedai sided with Elaida, one third sided with the rebels, and one third stood apart. Aside from those who were Black among the ones that stood apart, when the Tower was reunited, did those sisters return to the Tower?

    Maria Simons

    I don't know. I imagine that some returned, but I'm not aware of the disposition of all of them.

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  • 60

    Interview: Jan 9th, 2013

    Question

    We know the Aes Sedai don't use a lot of the ter'angreal they have in their possession in the manner in which they are meant to be used. Specifically, what are the correct uses for the ter'angreal used to raise a novice to Accepted and an Accepted to Aes Sedai?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I have no idea.

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  • 61

    Interview: Jan 9th, 2013

    Question

    With the Oath Rod, the Aes Sedai obviously were not using it for its intended purpose. Let's talk about those two ter'angreal that they had in the White Tower, the one that they raise the Aes Sedai with, and the one that the Accepted use. And I'm curious, what was the intended purpose back in the Age of Legends for those?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Okay, excellent question; I'll repeat it just for those who might not have been able to hear it. We know that the Aes Sedai are using certain ter'angreal for things other than their original intended purpose, such as the Oath Rod and the ones they use in the raising ceremonies. (to Maria) What were their intended purposes? [laughter]

    Maria Simons

    I don't know. [laughter, applause]

    Brandon Sanderson

    Sorry. Robert Jordan could answer that. Sometimes we can't.

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  • 62

    Interview: Jan 7th, 2013

    Stefan

    Hey! [laughter]

    Harriet McDougal

    Hey!

    Stefan

    I'm Stefan from American Fork, locally, and I had a really good question, but I looked it up on the internet before I came, and it was answered both on Dragonmount and Theoryland. [laughter] And so I had to come up with something else.

    So, we have seen the hierarchies explained in a lot of the different orders in Randland, like—you know, the Wise Ones, it's kind of force of will, right? Like, Aes Sedai, they kinda defer based on the strength of Power, that kind of thing. Have we seen that in the Black Tower, and is that what's going on with how the men treat Androl?

    Brandon Sanderson

    The Black Tower is still unformed. They've begun...you've gotta remember—like you mentioned the Wise Ones; you mentioned the White Tower—these are institutions that have been going for a long, long time, and they've had plenty of time to build their hierarchies organically. The Black Tower has not had that chance yet, and I think that if you were to watch the Black Tower for the next thousand years, assuming it survives—assuming it survives even this book [laughter]—you would see them come up with their own method of stratification, and it might be similar to one of the others; it might be different, and you'll just have to read and figure out on your own what you think would happen.

    Stefan

    Read And Figure Out.

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes, Read And Figure Out. [laughter] Because you're trying to compare, in a lot of ways, apples and oranges, because something that's had a thousand years to grow is going to be—you know, it's going to have some of that rigidity that something brand-new doesn't have.

    Stefan

    Okay, thank you.

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  • 63

    Interview: 2013

    Twitter 2013 (WoT) (Verbatim)

    Kamarile Sedai (23 January 2013)

    Brandon, does the Oath Rod continue to be used in the Fourth Age? If so, for what purpose?

    Brandon Sanderson (23 January 2013)

    So far as I know, yes. And for the same purpose.

    Raj Iyer

    Do other groups start using the Rod too?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Do you think the Aes Sedai are likely to let others manhandle one of their ter'angreal?

    Kamarile Sedai

    Did men start to use the Oath Rod too, or did it continue to be only women?

    Brandon Sanderson

    No men. Neither group would like that. The Asha'man are NOT male Aes Sedai. RJ was clear about this in the notes.

    Keith Martin

    Will the White and Black Towers reunite to form one Aes Sedai again?

    Brandon Sanderson

    RJ was clear to me that the Asha'man were not Aes Sedai, and were not going to become them.

    Brandon Sanderson

    That said, a united male/female Aes Sedai will come again someday.

    Footnote

    Brandon is probably not referring to the 4th Age in his last tweet; more likely he's talking about the next turning of the Wheel.

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  • 64

    Interview: Apr 20th, 2013

    Terez

    So it's not clear whether Tuon accepted Egwene's condition to release damane who wished it. Did she, or was the agreement just Tremalking in exchange for allowing Seanchan ambassadors?

    Maria Simons

    The latter I believe. I would really have to look at is closely.

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