Brandon's Wheel of Time Reread on Twitter - 4 January 2011Edit

Brandon - 4 January 2011 Back to reading EotW, all. Posts to follow. I'll try to keep it at a steady stream, not a flood.

Brandon WoT Easter Egg: there's an easily overlooked line in the EotW prologue which gives huge foreshadowing of things Rand can do in TofM.

Terez I always thought the fact that Lews Therin could sense that there were no people around for miles was interesting.

Brandon I should have guessed that you'd be the only one who would pick out the right line, Terez.

Brandon The Easter egg in the prologue has to do with Lews Therin sensing the lack of people around him for miles and miles.

Diana Brewster Do you use Ideal Seek for your WoT research? [1]

Brandon I have my own ecopy in word format of the entire series, to empower me to use searches. I've been to ideal seek before, though.

Brandon Yes, early WoT is very Tolkien influenced. But several original things really stood out to me when I was younger.

Brandon 1) The magic. 2) Strong female protagonists. 3) A woman 'wizard' figure who was far more human than others I'd seen. 4) Tam lives.

Brandon Though I like Gandalf, Dumbledore, Belgarath, & Allanon, I prefer Moiraine as a character. (Actually, Allanon always just annoyed me.)

Harrison Israel I always liked Allanon :(

Brandon It's okay. I'm fond of him. But he still annoyed me.

HamletIsDead Can you share what it is about Allanon that annoyed you? I can list a few, but the main reason was his decision making...

Brandon Mostly the air of mystery and withholding information. Often a problem with people in his role, but he seemed more-so.

Bryce Nielsen What about Polgara? :P

Brandon Polgara was awesome. Belgarath was pretty cool too, but Moiraine always feels slightly more real than either one to me.

Brandon But that's modern Brandon. Teenage Brandon might have thought differently.

Chris Wood But which of those early wizards was your favorite? I liked Belgarath, but Eddings was one of my first series.

Brandon As a youth, I often listed Eddings as my favorite author. It wasn't until I was older that WoT took over completely.

Chris Wood I agree, I still read Eddings and suggest him to people who are "new" into fantasy, but it has gone down my list too.

Brandon There is a perfect age to read Eddings, where he resonates best. As you age, something about his characters and plots...stiffens.

Jenn Hogan I am in agreement but I love Belgarath's humor and his devotion to family and his God and his brothers.

Brandon Belgarath was interesting also in being an amalgamation of a trickster figure and a wise mentor. By far one of Eddings' most round.

Brandon Both him and Polgara. They're both also more powerful than Moiraine. But there's just something about her. True wisdom.

John Stockton I was thrown by your "when I was younger" remark until I remembered this series started 20 years ago. Wow.

Brandon I started when I was 14 or 15...

Phil The WoT names always annoyed me because they're so close to real names. Any chance of dropping a Blixbop into AMOL?

Brandon Mr. Jordan did this intentionally, to hint that the WoT world was our world in the future (and the past.)

Brandon It's part of the 'feel' of the world. They are close to real names because they ARE real names, just many years removed.

tadbo The females in The Wheel of Time are among the most two dimensional in the history of fantasy.

Brandon I disagree. Case in point: Tolkien's female protagonists. (Which was the comparison I was making.)

Brandon But even beyond that, you have to remember, this is a society with some skewed gender relationships because of the way magic works.

Brandon But Moiraine is hardly 2-d. Neither is Nynaeve. They can be annoying, yes, but that's not the same as 2-d.

tadbo They scheme, they argue, they tug on their skirts and stamp their feet, or they fall at Rand's feet. Really?

Brandon Aviendha is very distinctive. Tuon is very distinctive. Min is very distinctive. Many of the Aes Sedai act as you say, but...

Brandon ...I see this as an intentional effect of the society they live in.

Zeerak Waseem Don't you get annoyed with the females in WoT? The female lead I prefer is Aviendha, the rest are full of themselves.

Brandon Oh, I didn't say they didn't annoy me at times. I said they were strong, and I'll add that they are interesting.

tadbo Final note. I would argue that Jordan's female protagonists are MAIN characters, whereas Tolkien's are mainly supporting.

Brandon The Tolkien point is valid. However, remember what started this conversation. I was saying things about the WoT that impressed me.

Brandon One was a large cast of female main characters, something a lot of fantasy by men I'd read was lacking.

Terez WoT females are caricaturish, sometimes stereotypical, but not 2-d. (This from a female.)

tadbo Yes, caricatures. A better description than 2-d.

Brandon Well, different people read things differently. If WoT's women didn't work for you, I understand why, though I don't feel the same.

Brandon You're not the only one to feel that way.

Terez The fact that I see them as caricatures helps me to enjoy them as characters more. It's RJ's own type of dry humor.

Brandon I view them more of products of a society where social norms are different, and women have something 'machismo'-like.

Brandon It makes them act similar in places, even though when you see into their souls, there is something deeper.

Terez IMO this is also true, but the caricature part is an important aspect of accepting ALL WoT characters as they are.

Terez They, like the story itself, are ubertropes. There is more to them than that, just as there is more to the story.

Felix It's as if RJ's sense of humor was written for a theater company on stage. Bombastic, perhaps?

Terez I think the word you are looking for is 'exaggerated'. But yes, stage-acting a very good comparison.

tadbo I don't know if I ever saw it as 'dry humor'. The Aes Sedai scared the crap out of me in high school.

Terez Well, maybe now that you're a big boy... ;) RJ said he'd rather hunt leopards...

tadbo True enough. XD

Terez I mean, have you SEEN the map of Tar Valon? It's supposed to be funny, people. And serious at the same time, of course.

James Furlong Haha! Just clicked on, never noticed THAT before. Hoho!

HBFFerreira LOL Never noticed it before either.

Karen Baskins LOL! In nearly 20 years of reading WoT, I never took notice of the Tar Valon map. Thank you for the laugh. I needed that. :-)

Brandon I've wondered about the map for Tar Valon. That..well, that can't be an accident. I've never asked Team Jordan, though.

Brandon Needless to say, it wasn't something I noticed when I was a teen.

Terez Someone asked RJ about it. Sort of.6 His answer was hilarious.

Richard Fife Ya know, for some odd reason, I never really /saw/ the map of Tar Valon. Now I'll never unsee it...

Terez Indeed, it cannot be unseen. :)

Matt Hatch, this really changes how I view the siege, harbor, and the iron chain becoming cuendillar.

Terez You are such a perv, boss.

Matt Hatch Showed my wife the map. Her immediate reaction: "Oh, Jim Rigney." Big smile.

Brandon You'd never seen that before?

Terez He had. Was just inspired by the moment to show it to his wife. And he'd never seen the quote. :)

Matt Hatch I'd seen was a while back; I remember thinking "really???" This reminded me and the quote made it hilarious.

Terez Could give a whole new meaning to 'Rand had daydreamed over Master al'Vere's old map...'

Terez '...half the boys in Emond's Field had daydreamed over it.'

Nicholas Brown To the blind... what am I seeing? I see a fish or a submarine. Is there something else?

Brandon Hm. How to do this without going places I don't care to go... Maybe a link will suffice.

Brandon Ha! Want a 20-year-old typo? My ecopy (RJ's original) reads: "Everything depended on whether or not the Trollops were still there."

Brandon What to say about Narg? In my mind, he's always been a hyena. I can't shake that image, though there are no hyena Trollocs.

Brandon I love that RJ gave Rand such a personal, powerful internal problem at the start with questioning his relationship to Tam.

Brandon Though it's easy for us to say "Of course Tam's your father, silly" this issue was deep and meaningful for Rand and served as...

Brandon ...a wonderful way to make the book about more than the action. It also foreshadows Rand's later identity crisis with Lews Therin.

Brandon "I don't know that you are worth it, sheepherder, no matter what she says." --Lan, to Rand, walking with Moiraine to help Tam.

James Powell Does having written for the Wheel of Time change the way you engage with it as a reader now?

Brandon Yes, a great deal. Though I don't know if I can explain it in 140 character bursts. :)

Kara-Noel I want to do the #wotrr with you! What book are you on??

Brandon I'm still on Book One. Basically, I'll do 10% of a book a day minimum.

Non Sequituri

Austin Moore on Twitter - 4 January 2011 Anymore "unnoticed" things we should look for that could help for the last book like there was for ToM?

Brandon I'll let you know as I'm building my notes.

Omar Subedar on Twitter - 4 January 2011 Who is your favorite member of the Chosen?

Brandon Moridin. Followed by Demandred. Followed by Lanfear.

Omar As for Moridin, I never liked the fact that he thought that Dark One winning would be THE end. I mean, according to...

Omar Robert Jordan, there are no beginnings or endings to the turning of the Wheel right? Only relative beginnings and endings.

Brandon Moridin believes that if the Dark One wins, there will BE no Wheel. It will be broken. So in that way, there are still...

Brandon beginnings or endings. There is nothing. Some, including Cadsuane, believe this is a very real possibility.

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