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Cambridge, MA CoT signing 18 January 2003 - report by Daniel G
report posted at Dragonmount.com
From the reporter: I had a tape recorder there, but for some reason, the moment RJ started talking, it stopped recording :(. It doesn't really matter anyway, because we left it at the store. This is not word for word what happened, but it's pretty close.
Coop Staff: Alright, Mr. Robert Jordan will be coming in a few moments, and he'll answer some questions for 20 minutes, and then...
Robert Jordan: Oh, I can introduce myself.
Coop Staff: Ok, well then, put your hands together for Robert Jordan!
RJ: Alright, I'm not going to be answering questions for any bloody 20 minutes. And of course, any question I don't answer here, I'm sure to answer at the signing. But first off, it's Nynaeve.
RJ: It's Egwene. Not Eegwene, not Egweenee, Egwene.
RJ: Cyndane, Semirhage, Aiel, (etc.)
Now, let me answer some of the most common questions. (I don't remember most of these, but...) How many more books will I have in the series? At least two. You see, at first I thought it would be a five, maybe six book series, and back then that was crazy, because you either had one book or a trilogy. Even (don't remember book name) was set up in two trilogies. Now, who killed Asmodean.
RJ: There is enough evidence in the books to put together to find out who killed Asmodean. Think! Think! Some of you are Harvard folk! Think! Someone has found out, actually, but I will not tell you. Now I'll answer some questions.
Audience: What exactly is the Bore?
RJ: Well, it is at... No, I shouldn't say that. It is a thinness in the pattern that you can feel the most at Shayol Ghul. (don't remember what else he said.)
Audience: Who do you base your female characters on?
RJ: I take some of the characteristics from my wife, and I distribute them through all of the female characters. I am, however, being very mean and I won't tell her which characteristics those are.
Audience: (Laughter) Who is Messana?
RJ: Who is Messana? Think! You have enough evidence to know that by now, I would suspect, and you certainly will have enough after reading Crossroads of Twilight.
Audience (me): How do you create the names for the characters?
RJ: (He said a really long answer, and I will summarize it. He basically takes names from legends and twists them, mainly King Arthur. The two characters that are based after King Arthur are Artur Hakwing, obviously, and Rand. For example, the "sword in the stone." He says that the Wheel of Time could kind of be known as the bases of where all of the legends and myths come from. He said he tried to bury King Arthur very deeply, because if people thought that the Eye of the World was just another King Arthur book, nobody would buy it.)
Me (when he signed my book): Who is you favorite character, if you have one?
RJ: Well, my favorite character is whoever I am writing about for the moment, but I will tell you which characters I relate to. When I was growing up, I tried to be like Lan. Physically, and partly behavior, I was like Perrin, and behavior wise, I was like Mat. If he had a Harley, I'm sure he would ride one too (chuckles). My wife thinks that I'm "Loial to the life", but I don't see were she gets that.
(I also heard him talk about speeding in Maine.)
NOTE: If you want to find out accurate character pronunciations, read the glossary of the Eye of the World.