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Storm Leader Report: Dallas, TX

Guest Kathana


This is the fifteenth of our Storm Leader reports we'll be posting throughout the U.S. book tour for


This was the first Wheel of Time book signing ever to occur in Texas, and the fans were certainly excited! People began arriving before 10 AM to secure their places in line. Storm Leader Claire brought a Wheel of Time trivia quiz, crossword, and word search to keep folks entertained until the signing, scheduled for 2:00. During the next few hours, over 200 fans had their books signed. In his opening remarks, Brandon said that Texas was not originally on the tour schedule, but so many fans wrote to him asking for a stop that he asked Tor to add it saying, “Those folks have guns, and they will find me!†Harriet added that Robert Jordan once wrote an unpublished western that has the opening line: “I never meant to leave Texas.â€


Brandon mentioned that he started as a biochemistry major in college, but only lasted a year after running smack into honors chemistry and honors calculus. He quickly changed to English. It was a goal of his to publish with Tor books because they published the Wheel of Time. When his first published novel was picked up by Tor, his agent suggested trying to get other publishers to bid for it, but Brandon said he wanted to stick with the best!


Dallas TGS Signing


Harriet did a reading from The Gathering Storm prologue, Masema’s point of view. The Storm Leaders helped out during the signing by putting flyers in the books, taking pictures, policing the line, signing folks up for Brandon’s mailing list, and taking notes. Special thanks to the fans who were not official storm leaders, but helped out when we needed it! Thanks to Bao, Sharon, Shannon, Poonam, and Melissa (to name a few!).


Brandon and Harriet were both very thankful to the fans for showing up en masse and waiting so long in line. It was great to see the interaction with the fans, and how excited people were to meet the author and editor. Several fans had small gifts for both of them, including a starfish bookmark (because they regenerate, and the fan was hoping Rand’s hand would also) and a hand blown glass pen, a replica of Cadsuane’s box, and magic cards and mac & cheese for Brandon. Adrienne and Adam, whose names were chosen to be in Towers of Midnight through the WoT fundraiser benefitting Heifer International were in attendance and excited about how their names might be used.


Dallas TGS Signing


After the signing, Harriet retired to the hotel, and the Storm Leaders went with Brandon to Cantina Laredo (Thanks Tor!). We talked a lot about balefire philosophy, and Brandon said he always wanted to know what would happen if you ‘shot yourself in the foot’ with balefire. He also spoke about some of his ideas for other books. One that he plans to write after the Wheel of Time is finished is about a world where super powers are transferred by disease and terrorists use penicillin as a weapon. We also talked about a lot of topics that would be spoilers for TGS, so you can find them on Dragonmount’s spoiler forum under ‘signing questions & answers’. Below, I’ve included the Q&A that happened at the bookstore:


Q: What was the most difficult part of writing TGS?


A: (Brandon) Keeping track of everyone, due to the exhaustive detail of the books. Brandon used Encyclopaedia WoT often. It was also difficult to make the character ‘voices’ correct. Aviendha and Tuon were the most difficult of these, because they are from different cultures.


Q: What medieval Arthurian texts were in RJ’s library?


A: Harriet didn’t remember anything specifically Arthurian, but there were a lot of books on mythology, religion, Asimov’s guide to the bible, Norse, Greek, Cheyenne Indian. RJ wrote about the Cheyenne under the name Jackson O’Reilly. The Aiel are based on the Cheyenne.


Q: Is there any history to the term ‘blood and bloody ashes’?


A: (Harriet) No


Q: Does RJ work out things like conservation laws, since he was a physicist?


A: (Brandon) From what I’ve seen, he considered it, the power that is doing all these things is coming from somewhere. They discovered the dark one by finding the power (true power). (They are) not aware of the source of the one power. The law of conservation of energy works, it’s coming from somewhere, we’re not sure where. It’s not something the characters were considering, so it wasn’t appropriate to include in the books.


Q: Are all the different cultural prophecies from a common source, and is it evil?


A: (Brandon) It’s not that simple.


Q: Who killed Asmodean?


A: (Harriet) We could tell them, but I think they want to live.


Q: Why do you write?


A: (Brandon) “If I didn’t I would go crazy.†He wrote 13 novels before he sold one (Elantris). He would write a book every year even if he didn’t do this for a living.


Q: Is Cadsuane Ilyena reborn?


A: (Brandon) First, I’m not gonna answer that, but second…. Ew!


A fun time was had by all, and the Storm Leaders want to sincerely thank Tor and Dragonmount for giving them the opportunity to be there and help out!


Dallas TGS Signing


You can see the full album of pictures from the event here:




Also you can view videos from the event here:

Opening Remarks


Why and How was Brandon chosen to finish WoT? (part 1)

Why and How was Brandon chosen to finish WoT? (part 2)

Why and How was Brandon chosen to finish WoT? (part 3)


Harriet reads a scene from TGS.


Q&A (part 1)

Q&A (part 2)


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