Jump to content

DRAGONMOUNT

A WHEEL OF TIME COMMUNITY
Sign in to follow this  

"Dear Robert Jordan", A response to A Memory of Light


Jason Denzel

Dear Robert Jordan,

Today I read your final book. The end of The Wheel of Time came to my hands nearly twenty years after I first picked up its beginning. It was a story well told, a story whose ending lived up to the promises made so very long ago. I’m writing in order to tell you a little about it.

What I’ve loved most about your grand story throughout the years is how true it is. Those who cherish the fantasy genre understand this. Within a story about fictitious people, in fictitious worlds, with conflicts that never actually happened, we have the opportunity to explore what makes us real. The Wheel of Time has, for me, and I suspect for thousands of others, done that better than any of its peers. One of its most fundamental lessons is that time is a wheel, and that endings are simply new beginnings if you have the courage to turn and look the other way.

When you died, I had the privilege to visit your home--your Charleston, your Two Rivers. I sat in your chair and looked at your beloved books. I breathed the air you breathed, and I understood a part of you. I met your friends and family, and saw how they defined yet another part. And so today, as I read the ending of your magnum opus, I yet again found a piece of you. In those final, beautiful moments, with tears in my eyes, I understood. I saw why you wanted to write the story. I see the point you were trying to make. And I laughed. It may not have been what people expected, but, to quote Stephen King, it was the right ending.

And a glorious one.

The Wheel of Time books have ended for me. I cannot deny the bittersweet emotions that brings. But a strong ending gives more meaning to the journey that came before it. Sure, I can pick apart small nuances of this final book that weren’t perfect. Some little parts may not have rung as true as they could have. But by and large, it delivered in a big way.

If only you could have seen the specific way in which it turned out. I loved each character’s ending, even if it made me cry. I celebrated victories and gasped at the raw, visceral failures. Rand and Egwene shined the brightest, as I could have only hoped and expected. And there’s that one chapter. Holy smokes, RJ. 50,000 words? Really? Wow.

You never met Brandon Sanderson; most likely never heard his name in your lifetime. But I can tell you, RJ, he did an amazing job. He was your steward, and carried your banner proudly into the maw of Shayol Ghul in order to ensure oblivion did not consume the series’ ending. You would’ve be so proud of him. I sure am. A lot of fans are. If you ever meet him, in an unknown place, time, or life, give him a hearty handshake of thanks, and buy him a beer some Magic cards.

You should also know that Maria and Alan, your assistants, remained faithful every step of the way. For five years they’ve painstakingly studied, analyzed, corrected, and loved this final book. As I read it, I could clearly see their influence, and I’m so thankful we had them. It wouldn’t have been this good without them. If it would have even been at all.

The fans, too, did their part. A small few helped with continuity, and a larger group honors your work every day through their service to the community and franchise. And yet another group, the largest, which spans the whole world, are fans who live and breathe your work. They share it with their friends. They strive to live up to the positive ideals you wrote about. They toast to your memory, and read your books to their children. They prove that a work of fantasy literature can inspire people of any nationality, religion, or political leaning to agree upon something they hold dear to their hearts.

Your various publishers have honored your memory by printing your books, and continually putting fresh paint (literally, in the case of the covers) on this series. They’ve sometimes faced criticism, but in the end did you proud. Tom Doherty and his team have led that charge. I spoke to Tom recently and he reminded me that he does it because he’s a fan and a friend of yours.

Finally, and most significantly of all, I want you to know that Harriet has been nothing short of amazing. You already know this in a way that I don’t need to describe, but her love for you is inspiring. She’s worked tirelessly since your passing to finish this book. She’s been your captain, and sailed the ship home. Next time I see her, I’ll give her a hug for you. I think a lot of other fans will, too.

The most extraordinary thing about all these people, from Harriet to the worldwide fans, is that collectively they underscore the very heart of this book. They prove that life truly imitates art, and vice versa. The Wheel of Time began with you. Its pages began with a single man walking down a ruined hallway. But in the end, the series proved bigger than you, and bigger than that man and his successor.

Yours is a story for the Ages. Some may criticize or belittle it, but its sheer scope and influence can’t be argued. The final pages may have been written, but it will live on in memory, community, and (let’s face it) franchise tie-ins. There are neither beginnings nor endings, right?

So, RJ, as I finish this letter that you’ll never read, I’m left only with final thanks. Thank you for sharing your vision with me. With all of us. For all the worldwide success and attention this book will bring, it still spoke to me on an intimate, personal level. Thank you for expressing the beauty of your life in these pages. Thank you for giving us what is quite simply the most epic ending to the grandest saga of our time.

Thank you for taking us upon a ride on the winds of time.

With sincerity, I remain,
Your Friend,
Jason Denzel

Jason@dragonmount.com


About A Memory of Light

Dragonmount features complete coverage of AMOL. Check back regularly for updates as well as exclusives such as our early review of the book. In the meantime, there's plenty for you to enjoy:


  • Purchase the prologue and support our website
  • Read the opening portion of the AMOL prologue for free.
  • Read the opening portion of Chapter 1 for free.
  • Read the opening portion of Chapter 11 for free.
  • Visit our complete AMOL info page.
  • Discuss A Memory of Light on our forums.

    Follow us on Twitter or "Like" us on Facebook.

    Please consider pre-ordering the full book through one of our international Amazon affiliates, and help support our website.

          
    Sign in to follow this  


    User Feedback

    Recommended Comments



    I could have cried with that one Jason. lol WTH?!! I couldn't have put it any better. This bloody series has been such a part of my life in the last 20 years. It's hard to imagine NOT having this to look forward to. The friendships and memories created just because of this series have been such an influence on my life that I cannot thank RJ enough. The world was a brighter place because of him and darker than ever without him. It is a tragedy beyond measure that he cannot be here to see the fruition of his work and experience with us the joy and sorrow the end will bring.

     

    RJ, say hi to the g-man for me. A million times thank you for helping me be who I am today.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    Jason, your letter brought tears to my eyes. Thanks for the letter, but thanks also for creating this amazing community. I don't post often, but I so enjoy reading the discussions. It has made the years of waiting for the next book so much more exciting. I can't believe I am actually saying this, but I am going to miss the waiting...

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    Thank You Jason. You have managed to put my personal feelings into words here.I can't express enough of the wishes and prayers that go out to Harriet and all who have helped with this incredible work come full circle.The wheel truely does turn.

     

    "Tai'shar Dragonmount" "Tai'shar Jason"

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    Dear Jason,

    Thank you for putting all of our feelings into words, that we cannot possibly express. I had tears in my eyes as I read your letter to Mr Jordan, it was definately an emotional read but a read that we all have to make. From the bottom of my heart and soul I would like to thank you for your continued contribution to the most epic story of all time, I am quite sure Mr Jordan would be very grateful for all the time over the years you have spent, being a caretaker if you will for a website dedicated to his great work. And to Harriet our deepest thanks for choosing Brandon to finish up our ending. And to Brandon what a job you have done, you have our eternal thanks for giving us an ending that many of us have been waiting years for.

    I whole heartly believe that the pattern will spin Mr Jordan out at some point and his great genius will be amogst us again but untill that time comes we will just have to settle with reading his books over and over again.

    Thank you for passing our words of encouragement and love to Mr Jordan's family Jason you have done us all a great service.

     

    Yours faithfully

    all of the WoT fans around the world.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    Thanks Jason,

     

    That was a great read, and I thought the letter to RJ an incredible idea. I have written to a friend that has passed before, and this felt right. I know my wife would never understand if I tried to explain how anxious I am to read this last book, or how sad it will make me to know it is all coming to an end. I've been reading this series longer than I have had most of my friends.

    I know more about Perrin, Rand and Mat, than I do most of them (sad to say, lol). Sharing my love for the WoT with as many of these friends as possible. 3 of us would read through the series together and go sit at our local diner and discuss all the "if this happens.." moments, and try to guess at what we though was going to happen.

     

    I've read the books so many times that my covers are worn and some books even bear some tap holding them together. At some point I am sure they'll need replacing, but it will be a hard parting to let those old tomes go.

    I now have a 6yo daughter and 2yo son, and I look forward to a time that I can let them read TEotW for the first time. I'll be the dad with bedtime stories about Trollocs and Fades and Forsaken and the Two Rivers kids finding their way.

     

    I've gone on much longer than I intend, sorry. The idea of the final book being so near has me in a odd emotional/excited state.

     

    I'm new to Dragonmount, but I am glad I have a place where most, if not all, of you understand.

     

     

    Deacon

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    Wow! What a great letter. As my girlfriend said, parts of this made me whimper. Thank you so much Jason, for sharing your feelings on finishing the series with us. I am new to commenting on Dragonmount, I have registered just because of this post. I have been here many times and always found your articles eloquent and heartfelt.

     

    The only problem is now, that I can't wait to read it myself but am slightly dreading letting it all end.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    Hi Jason

    As has already been written by many others, your letter to RJ moved me greatly. The Wheel of Time is I think one of the greatest literary works out there; not because it is faultless, but because of its humanity.The characters live and breath, they are our friends.

    RJ died way too soon, but his passing allowed Brandon to take up his mantle, thus again allowing an ending to become a beginning.

    I am looking forward to AMOL, but with the bittersweet knowledge that RJ will never write the "outrigger" novels he promised, not the "Infinity of Heaven" series he planned.

    But...but the WOT has continued to turn, as he would have wanted. I am sure that he is out there somewhere, smiling, perhaps a bit wistfully, but happy.

    He did indeed continue to write well after they nailed his coffin shut!

    One reader commented that the last word will be "time".

    My guess is that as with the start of each book, the end will be with perhaps a wind stirring somewhere, flowing across the lands, perhaps ruffling the cloak of a lone man walking, making his way into an unknown future,

    "The wind was not the beginning. There are neither beginnings nor endings in the turning of the Wheel of Time. But it was A beginning"

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    I have been a fan from (almost) the beginning and it is both wonderful and extremely sad for me to see the series come to an end. I have enjoyed reading, rereading, and listening to these books over the years. I've shared them with my family, and I've met wonderful friends because of them. I don't know whether to speed through this final book to see how it all turns out or to read as slowly as possible to keep it from ending. Neither option seems quite right. All I know is that once it is over I will never again enjoy anticipation of waiting for the next installment in the Wheel of Time, and I will most definitely miss that wonderful feeling.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    The author might be dead, but clearly his vision is not. Thank you, Jason, for the intimate and heartfelt message. For all of us who as children or adults have ridden bareback upon the winds of time, may he rest in peace.

    Thought, of course, none of the rest of us will until we know what you know now...

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    In this WOT fantasy world, a letter for the ages (pun intended). Along with many others I found myself quite emotional during the reading of this letter. I do not quite know why as I consider myself to be a rather stern and curmudgeonly sort. Be that as it may, I was truly touched by Jason's thoughts. I, unlike so many others (probably a vast majority), have only read through LoC but fully intend to read the rest before many more seconds have expired (What is that old saying? The road to hell is paved with great intentions?).

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    Who the heck is Jason? Why does he get to read aMoL before the rest of us? Obviously the book is done, release it already, why wait another 4 months? digital copies dont need printing. Scan the pages, make a pdf file and send it on the internet.

    My thoughts exactly

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    Damer Flinn,

     

    Apparently, you have not read all the posts above. Otherwise, you would have discovered that the version Jason read still has to go through the final editing/proofreading process before it is polished enough for Tor to release it to the general public. And digital copies still have to go through the same process; realeasing it in digital form is not as easy as you presume.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    A touching letter, I hope it has helped give you closure to your feelings regarding the books, and the series.

     

    I can't wait to experience the final book myself, close to twenty years of following the series...It will be something indeed.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    Thank you Jason for sharing some of your thoughts and passions about RJ and AMOL! In a sense TWOT series is kind of like my bible for me personally! I know I am not alone when I say that I have reread the series numerous times and I still do not get tired of this series. I recently talked to two relatives of mine who also enjoy the series, yet they both said they do not read the glossaries in the books! I am sure that there are a number of people who read TWOT books purely for the story and do not bother with the glossaries. Myself I love the glossaries and find that sometimes they give some information and insight about certain things not always mentioned in the books. And sometimes it is the other way around. Occasionally you find tidbits of information mentioned in the books yet not in the glossaries. Nevertheless I still enjoy the glossaries and the story as well!

    One thing I was curious about is whether there will be an actual book review of AMOL by Jason and dragonmount? I am sure there will be one eventually and I know these things take time. Or mabye I am wrong and the recent news article on dragonmount "Dear Robert Jordan" is the book review itself! Any information at all would be appreciated!

    Thanks and wishing happy holidays to everyone!

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    Damer Flinn,

     

    Apparently, you have not read all the posts above. Otherwise, you would have discovered that the version Jason read still has to go through the final editing/proofreading process before it is polished enough for Tor to release it to the general public. And digital copies still have to go through the same process; realeasing it in digital form is not as easy as you presume.

    The only thing I wrote was "My thoughts exactly". I was commenting on someone else's post. I didn't say "Who the heck is Jason". It was someone else named Entretamis. I was just aggreeing with his point of view.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    And you know what. I still don't care who Jason is. I mean I appreciate all that he does for the WoT. But, by them letting him read the book 4 months before I can read it, that tells me that Tor or Harriet, or whoever is in charge of it, thinks that Jason is a bigger fan than me. Thats MY OPINION. Due to all that he has done for the WoT. Well, if I didn't have to slave away my life, 9 to 5, just to have a place to live and food to eat, maybe I might have time to devote my life to the WoT. I love the books with all my heart also. I have been waiting just as long as anyone. I'm just bitter knowing he has gotten to read it already. For example. You and another person are trying for the same promotion at work. You work just as hard as the other person, and maybe been there longer, but they get the manager's position over you because they are GOOD FRIENDS with the boss. Thats the way I feel about it. Stuff like that happens everyday in real life, and it sucks. I guess it just hits home to me so much when that kinda junk comes into the realm of something I care about and love so much. Yes, it does effect me. You can bash me, tell me I'm wrong, praise others, etc, still won't change the fact that this decision really changed my AMOL experience, and not for the better.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    I just edited the personal insults out of your posts, AFEPRIWLHK and Damer Flinn. Points can be made without picking on each other.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    Damer,

    Th way I see it Jason has in fact done RJ, and us, an important service. He has, in effect, been a beta-tester. Thanks to him, and others, OUR experience of AMOL may well be better than it otherwise would have been.

    I have been looking forward to AMOL as much as anyone and do not begrudge him the fact that he has already read it. Perhaps HIS experience will turn out to be less good, because he has had to point out things that just weren't quite right.

    For myself, I would put up with another 6 months wait, just as long as this final chapter does Robert Jordan proud and the whole Wheel of Time series justice.

    Thank you Jason

    Marekj

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    Thanks, Jason. This has been a long journey, and I'm not sure how I'm going to feel when I finally read the last page. But I'm definitely glad you've been here to help guide and lead and everything else you've done since I found this site, what, 15 years ago?

     

    Thanks for speaking for all of us who have been in support of WoT for so long!

     

    Richard/Khaavren

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    A lesser author's story would've died with them. Jordan's lives on and will be read by the countless generations who come after us. The Dragon rides again on the winds of time, so to speak. I feel privileged having been of the original class. 

     

    My grandkids will be reading Eye of the World one day and I'll tell them, "You know, I read that when it came out", to which they'll respond, "Really? Geez Grandpa, you're old". 

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites



    Join the conversation

    You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
    Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

    Guest
    Add a comment...

    ×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

      Only 75 emoji are allowed.

    ×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

    ×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

    ×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


    ×
    ×
    • Create New...