The Week in Review

Welcome to the week in review! Every Friday, we comb through the links and images we found and shared this week, and pull the very best for this post. Consider it concentrated genre goodness from all around the web.

  • Need another Brandon Sanderson fix? Check out an excerpt of his upcoming young adult novel, The Rithmatist.
  • Sarah of Bookworm Blues was one the driving forces behind a newly-released anthology, Triumph Over Tragedy. It’s now available, the sales of the book will go to help victims of Hurricane Sandy.
  • Tor.com has released a free ebook with some of their best short stories of 2012. Check it out!

The Tor/Forge newsletter went out this week! Check out these fascinating articles from our authors:

And, just to make Friday that much sweeter, here’s a list of sweepstakes and sales we have going on!

Channelling Saidar

Written by Jennifer Liang

Every day at work, I channel saidar. Okay, not literally. But it feels like it. See, my real job is being a special education teacher. I work at a very small private school for kids with behavior disorders. The head of school says I probably have the eight toughest middle school boys in the city of Atlanta. My kids are awesome and smart and funny.

They also curse at me, tear up their work and kick me in the leg if they don’t like the answer they get. To control this class, I have to surrender. If I fight with them, we all lose. I can’t force them to do anything. Instead I guide. I keep my voice and my body language perfectly calm no matter what kind of chaos is brewing around me, or how many times they scream in my face that I’m the meanest lady in the world.

I don’t consciously think about saidar and the Wheel of Time when I’m at work. I’m too busy for that. But I think some part of me knows how to do this because I read the Wheel of Time and because it’s been such a profound influence on me. I’ve joked before that my husband and I have a Seafolk marriage and that he’s really a Seanchan. But it’s no joke that these books have had a profound influence on me. I met my husband on the forums at Dragon*Con. My best friends are JordanCon volunteers and vendors. I always manage to convince one or two students each year to pick up The Eye of the World. These books touch everything about me and who I am. I married a Seanchan blademaster. I convince kids who hate reading that a 400 page book isn’t so scary. I channel saidar for a living.

The Wheel of Time is more than books to me. Its friends, family and the way I look at the world. It’s a wild weekend in Atlanta and stalking Brandon on Twitter. The series is ending, 21 years after I first picked it up. But who I am because I read these books will not change. I will always be forever grateful to Robert Jordan for giving that to me.

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From the Tor/Forge January Wheel of Time newsletter. Sign up to receive our newsletter via email.

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More from the January Wheel of Time Tor/Forge newsletter:

The Turning of An Age, plus… Haiku

Written by Jason Denzel

People ask me all the time what life after A Memory of Light will be like for me and Dragonmount.com. My answer is always the same: very little will change. The books will still be published, and new visitors will join our community. Conventions will still happen, and we’ll get the chance eventually, one way or another, to experience the series in video game or movie form. And there will be tidbits like the forthcoming River of Souls short story, and the Wheel of Time Encyclopedia. So don’t expect Dragonmount or the other major Wheel of Time communities to close anytime soon.

But that said, there’s no denying that an ending has arrived. These weeks leading up to January 8th are like the Last Days of the Third Age. The Age of the Books will wane, and give way to the new Age of…something else.

Like many of you, I’ve lived with this series a long time. I’ve already had the privilege of reading the end, and I’ve discussed it a few times already. I’ve had several months to adjust to a life where I know how the stories end—sometimes tragically—for characters I’ve read for nearly twenty years.

I will not spoil anything. I will not deny you your long-due experience of reading the final chapters for yourself. But I will, if you’ll indulge me, share with you some of my reactions to reading the final book, written in Haiku. Because really, who doesn’t enjoy Haiku?

Breathless I fall now
Away from this bedroom mine
Into theirs; Last time

The screams, the fury
Bleeding bone upon granite
Where has he led them?

Shined in silence once
Stone of impossibility
Dry her eyes for now

Cold the gaze and step
Breaks backs and hearts with thunder
With a name unknown

All at last are gone
He has come to prove them wrong
Oh so very wrong

Across the last note
A fleeting glimpse between us
I smile. And cry.

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From the Tor/Forge January Wheel of Time newsletter. Sign up to receive our newsletter via email.

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More from the January Wheel of Time Tor/Forge newsletter:

The Week in Review

Welcome to the week in review! Every Friday, we comb through the links and images we found and shared this week, and pull the very best for this post. Consider it concentrated genre goodness from all around the web.

  • Want to know more about Robert Jordan and the Wheel of Time? Tor and Rock Soup Productions have put together a series of videos with Brandon Sanderson, Harriet McDougal, Tom Doherty, Jason Denzel, and more. You can see the first two on Tor.com now!.)
  • John Scalzi returns to the Old Man’s War universe on January 15th, with the debut of The Human Division!
  • This week was Hobbit Week on The Colbert Report. Did you watch?
  • Tor.com is collecting some of their favorite stories from the year, and the ebook is now available for pre-order.

The Week in Review

Welcome to the week in review! Every Friday, we comb through the links and images we found and shared this week, and pull the very best for this post. Consider it concentrated genre goodness from all around the web.

  • Finshed the prologue of A Memory of Light? Well, we’ve got you covered: now you can read Chapter One, “Eastward the Wind Blew,” on Tor.com!
  • The very first review of A Memory of Light is online now. Check out Jason Denzel’s heartfelt (and spoiler-free) letter to Robert Jordan upon finishing the final book of The Wheel of Time.
  • Alex Bledsoe is doing a sort of video diary about the life of a writer. Check out his third video, about the revision process.
  • Did you watch the Ig Nobel Prize ceremony? You absolutely should. There are some really fun, ridiculous scientific discoveries.

And, just to make Friday that much sweeter, here’s a list of sweepstakes and sales we have going on!

The Week in Review

Welcome to the week in review! Every Friday, we comb through the links and images we found and shared this week, and pull the very best for this post. Consider it concentrated genre goodness from all around the web.

  • The Huffington Post picked their favorite apocalyptic titles, including Brian Evenson’s Immobility!
  • Neil Armstrong, the first man to walk on the moon, died this weekend. RIP, Mr. Armstrong. You will be missed.
  • The blog For Books’ Sake has a great two part list of the best women writers of fantasy fiction. The list includes authors like Ursula K. LeGuin, Elizabeth Bear, Robin Hobb, and many more. Who do you think is missing?
  • Speaking of Doctor Who, have you been watching the Pond Life, the mini-series introducing season seven? Delightful!

And, just to make Friday that much sweeter, here’s a list of sweepstakes and sales we have going on!

There are no beginning or endings…

By Jason Denzel, Dragonmount.com

This is an exciting moment to be a Wheel of Time fan.

In my recent review of Towers of Midnight, I said that the experience of reading this penultimate novel was bittersweet in that we can at last see the looming Last Battle, and in turn, the Ending to the series itself. And while it’s true that the book series is at last nearing its conclusion, I’m excited by the prospect of what lies in the future for the Wheel of Time.

I occasionally get asked, “What are you going to do with Dragonmount.com when the series is over?” My response is immediate and always the same: I’m going to keep going, and hold on for dear life because The Wheel of Time is only going to get bigger. Unlike so many other franchises, the WoT series has an incredible past with a huge established fanbase, and at the same time is poised to explode into what could be one of the most exciting expanded worlds we’ve seen in a long time.

As the books draw to a close, there’s the rising possibility of a major movie adaptation from Universal. There are also separate efforts to craft a whole slew of video games set in the world of the Wheel. When either of these projects moves forward, it will introduce the series to an all new audience, swelling our community with new faces and new readers. Time will reveal whether those adaptations are worthy additions to the canon, but my hunch is that with the right people involved, and a vocal enough community, we can look forward to many more years of exciting WoT content that respects its source.  And the best part is that you can be involved.

This is the beginning of a transition period for the series. If you’re a fan who loves the series but hasn’t had a chance to read it recently, this could be a great time to dust off that old paperback, or download one of the new eBooks to read on your electronic reader of choice. Maybe now would be a good time to read New Spring in case you missed it when it came out? When was the last time you read The Strike at Shayol Ghul? And of course there’s always Leigh Butler’s re-read on Tor.com, or one of Dragonmount’s online forums if you want to re-light your enthusiasm for the story.

I’m looking forward to the new Age for this series. Like the wind, this moment in our franchise is neither the beginning nor end, but it is a beginning.

Jason Denzel runs the Wheel of Time fansite ‘Dragonmount.com,’ the longest running WoT fan community site online, and is an independent consultant on several WoT projects.  He is also an independent filmmaker and produced the official book trailer for Towers of Midnight (ISBN: 0-7653-2594-2; November 2nd, 2010).

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From the Tor/Forge Wheel of Time edition newsletter. Sign up to receive our newsletter via email.

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More from the Wheel of Time edition newsletter:

Towers of Midnight Trailer

Tor Books is proud to present the book trailer for TOWERS OF MIDNIGHT, the penultimate thirteenth novel in The Wheel of Time series, written by Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson.

Produced by the creative forces of Dragonmount.com and Mythmakers Entertainment, this video is the first-ever official video representation of Robert Jordan’s masterpiece series. The majority of the crew for this project were fans themselves, and were led by Dragonmount founder Jason Denzel, who directed the short.

Go behind the scenes and watch the making of the trailer at Outta This World.

For more information on the making of this video, as well as the latest news related to TOWERS OF MIDNIGHT, please visit http://Dragonmount.com and http://tor-forge.com/towersofmidnight

The Midnight Storm!! (Wheel of Time)

October 27th, 2009. Midnight Release Party. The Gathering Storm by Robert Jordan & Brandon Sanderson, Book 12 of the Wheel of Time.

Break it down, Provo, UT!! Big props to the BYU Bookstore and the Midnight Storm Leaders headed up by tech wizard Matt Hatch (Theoryland)

500+ people. Impending snow. And the Wheel of Time.

Watch as the camera snakes through the line and runs into a few people (see if you can spot Brandon Sanderson!) and Storm Leader shout-outs (dont take my shirt!)

WoT fans and Storm Leaders hang out in the stores labyrinthine line and entertain themselves with I Killed Amodean bumper stickers! Trivia games! (no spoilers)

Footage taken by: Lironah (roving filmmaker extraordinaire)
Storm Leaders from: Dragonmount

Wheel of Time Fan Site wotmania to Begin Close-down

I am sorry to have to be posting this one this morning. Mike Mackert, the founder of the Wheel of Time fan site wotmania announced yesterday that he will begin the process of closing the site down. He will be working with Jason at Dragonmount to transition much of the site’s content over to DM.

Here is Mike’s announcement. And here is Jason’s response on DM.

I’d like to thank Mike for all your effort over the years and the ways you’ve enriched the WoT community. Good luck in all your future plans.

-Jen Hill
Internet Marketing Manager
Tor Books