Search the most comprehensive database of interviews and book signings from Robert Jordan, Brandon Sanderson and the rest of Team Jordan.
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.
2012-04-24: Some thoughts I had during JordanCon4 and the upcoming conclusion of "The Wheel of Time."
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Is the True Power used by any other creatures or beings within Parallel or Perpendicular worlds or other dimensions?
Ok, see answering that actually gets us begging the question because letís step back, the question that people should be asking is does the Dark One exist in all of these Parallels...
...ok, so yeah this is the question Iíll ask, you make a good point. Are there worlds and dimensions that exist outside of the Pattern?
Ok, see thatís the question you should be asking. I mean, you should be asking it, but it doesnít mean Iím going to answer it. [laughter] But thatís at the core of the question. Iím 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 donít 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 teríangreal 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 donít 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...
...he called it a Parallel World...
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...
...the answers exist?
The answers exist, but are there many parallel Patterns or is there one Pattern?
Yeah, thatís...are there many Wheels or just one Wheel?
Thatís not a question, Iím afraid, that I can answer because I donít think itís within the scope of the books and I donít think that the characters...that there are people that could know. You will find Browns arguing all of these different things among themselves, and itís not my place to step in and end the discussion.
This is also from one of Brandon's hash outs with Matt from Theoryland. In it Brandon speaks of the nature of Parallel Worlds.
Brandon: 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: ...he called it a Parallel World...
Brandon: 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...
Ok, my request for clarification is mainly concerned with that last paragraphóspecifically it left me confused about whether Brandon is speaking about Parallel Worlds or Mirror Worlds. Brandon seems to lump both in together, describing some as shadowy, some as solid. Brandon describes the Finn world as THE Parallel World (we also know the Ogier world is a Parallel World), but in the same paragraph Brandon seems to define it as a persistent Mirror World of some form, and grants that same allocation to the world Rand and Lanfear visited in The Great Hunt.
Q53: Are Parallel Worlds and Mirror Worlds the same thing?
RJ: No, they are different.
Q54: Do Parallel Worlds have their own reflections?
Q55: Do Portal Stones lead to Parallel Worlds, Mirror Worlds, or both?
RJ: They lead to Mirror Worlds, the Portal Stones can take you to Mirror Worlds, not to Parallels, which are separate.
My thought was always that Mirror Worlds are reflections no matter how solid, whilst Parallel Worlds were completely distinct universes. As real and vital as our own. That was how Rand could lose in the Mirror Worlds and it not result in the Dark One winning. But that's all my thoughts, I was mainly just wondering at the distinctions between the two, and whether the world Rand visited was special, or if that's just my own stupidity in play.
A couple of other curious events involving Verin occur in The Great Hunt, such as her discussion of Portal Stones with Rand.
Was Verin lying to Rand when she said his use of a Portal Stone was more recent than hers as she had never traveled by one?
How many Shardworlds are there? Only seven? (Sel, Nalthis, Scadrial, Roshar, Yolen, Taldain, and whatever planet The Silence Divine is on?)
He said he has a set number in his head but that he didnít want to say it because he might change his mind. Essentially he doesnít want to make the number of worldís canon yet.
You have said before that all the planets had their names before the arrival of the Shards. Is Roshar the planet's name before the Shards arrived?
How do the Roshar natives know the name of the Cosmere?
Can you tell me something about the Cosmere that you haven't told anyone before?
There are inhabited planets in the cosmere that don't have any Shards there. There may be inhabited planets that only have a Splinter of a Shard. There are 10 core cosmere planets, which tell the overarching story of the cosmere.
Are all the Cosmere books so far set on these 10 core worlds?
Are there any of the 10 core worlds without a Shard?
All 10 core worlds have significant Shardic influence.
Send me an email.
I can PM you on Reddit.
Alright, PM me on Reddit.... That's like, something I think that's more appropriate for the Encyclopedia, personally; but I'll see if I can make that work.
No. Nice try! That's eliminating one theory, I'll give you that one.
Was Aviendha in Tel'aran'rhiod or in a mirror/portal world when she met Nakomi?
Is Nakomi Jenn Aiel?
[laughs and grins] I should RAFO that shouldn't I?
I'd appreciate it if you didn't.
[laughs] I want Nakomi....We're gonna RAFO that for now. Nakomi needs...there's gotta be a few things I don't answer. I'm so bad, I answer everything Robert Jordan put an answer [for, to?] [bunch of people laugh]. Track me down another time, after A Memory of Light is out.
History and Use
All Aons exist independent of humankind, their symbols inherently tied to their meaning, but few have distinct origin stories explaining how the Aon was first discovered. Some modern scholars scoff at such tales, but Aon Ehe's origin myth is well known among the common people and believed by most.
The story tells of the first princess of Arelon. This was some years after the founding of Arelon following the migration of the Aonic people from other lands. Elantris, of course, had already existed as a city when that migration occurred, and had been discovered empty. While some people assumed it haunted, Proud King Rhashm (later renamed Raoshem) determined to conquer the fears of his people and set up a kingdom centered on Elantris.
The transformation of the first Elantrians happened beginning several decades later. Princess Elasheóthe first of Raoshem's line to be chosen as an Elantrianóclaimed to have seen the pattern of this Aon inscribed on a coal in her hearth the day after she underwent the transformation. Whether or not this story is true, a coal or rock written with Aon Ehe on it is considered good luck and a ward against winter spirits. (Though this kind of superstition is frowned upon by the Korathi priests.)
Other uses of Ehe are plentiful. It is one of the primal elements, and is often used in scientific writings. It is a ward and warning against danger. It is used on signs in conjunction with other Aons to mean warm food or warm beds available. Some artists and poets choose it as their symbol, both to hint at the dangerous nature of artistry and to speak of the passion of artistry.
Naming and Usage in ELANTRIS
(Warning, spoilers below! Don't read this section if you haven't read ELANTRIS!)
As use of the name is out of favor recently, the only character in Elantris who appears with Aon Ene in their name is Sarene. Eventeo, Sarene's father, is not only a traditionalist, but a scholar himself. He is well aware of the ancient meaning of the Aon, and has remarked on occasion that he finds the choice particularly accurate when applied to his daughter.
Ene is one of the primary constellations in the Arelene sky, and the star pattern is the most easy to pick out. It contains the pole star of the world, a concept which has fascinated philosophers throughout history.
Eventeo's use of the simple word "Ene" as a nickname for Sarene is another traditional association with names attached to the Aon. Much as some cultures shorten words or names into common nicknames, Eneópronounced Eeeneeóis a commonly applied term of endearment for someone who has this Aon in their name.
Did the Ogier come from the same world as the grolm and other Seanchan creatures?
I do not believe that they did.
But did they come from a different world?
[laughs] Hey, hey, That I will RAFO!
Over-arching thing with the Shards of Andonalsium: Brandon told me tonight that he actually has a chart/list thing with all of the books that he's planned in the shards universe. His exact words were something about having an arch over thirty-six books involving the shards of Andonalsium. Which makes me wonder if we're going to get some of the story about Andonalsium. He also said that there were only a few lines in each book to give us clues. Apparently there's something in the HoA, but I didn't notice anything when I read through it. Of course, I wasn't looking for it. He mentioned that there were 36, or possibly 38 (he couldn't remember which) books that would be in this universe. They included all of the Mistborn books (all 3 trilogies), all of the Stormlight Chronicle, all of Dragonsteel, Elantris, Warbreaker, White Sands, the other book that I mentioned but can't remember the title of, and others. I'm excited.