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    #21 Copy

    Will Wight

    Oh! See this cat?  I do.  Always [inaudible] cat.  Adopt this cat?  Absolutely.  Alright, what am I naming the cat?  Naming the cat.  [inaudible suggestion off-screen.]  It's got to be a Cradle name.  Ruby. Shira?  No.  It's Shira.  [Will's sister approves] I need to just get like one pig or a cow or something, some really lazy animal and name it Ziel.  Make it be friends with the cat.  

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    #22 Copy

    Questioner

    Is there a character attribute of one of the main characters that you wish you had either changed or written differently?

    Will Wight

    Yes, there is, in fact, an extremely core attribute of the main character that I wish I had written differently. And the answer is: Lindon's whole thing about going after the most powerful thing all the time. It's one of his most obvious and recognizable character traits and I really like it but the reason I designed that with him in mind is because one of the things I had initially envisioned with Cradle is really more of a series of looser adventures where he's just going into an independent scenario.

    It's kind of like One Piece, actually, where he's just going into a preexisting conflict and sort of inserting himself where he's not wanted. And I wanted the kind of guy that was going to go in there and see that they've got a powerup or they've got a super soldier serum or whatever and they're all fighting over magic fruit that makes you a rubber man or whatever it is. And then he was going to try and find a way of walking out with that. And then that was how he was going to be powerful, right? He was going to be the kind of guy that would go in and get everybody's different powerup and that was how he was going to - instead of one path, he was going to follow a little bit of a lot of paths.

    So that's how I designed that and how I intended it to be used. And that, of course, didn't end up being at all where I took the series. So, because of that, while it's a core aspect of Lindon's character, I would probably change how it's expressed if I had known exactly where the series was going to go. And that's why it changes a little bit every time.

    Questioner

    Did this mean he was going to split his core again?

    Will Wight

    Not necessarily. I had always kind of intended this to be a dual path sort of thing. As I said, the original proto-Lindon from way back in the day when he was an Abidan trainee, not somebody in one of the lower realms, was going to be that he had a river spirit of order on his left hand and a chaos black dragon spirit on his right. So still a dual opposing paths thing. So that was always the intention. I had considered changing core splitting. I had considered that because it was kind of one of the obvious applications of the abilities he ended up having in the book. So I considered it and I rejected it.

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    #23 Copy

    Will Wight

    Have you ever considered trying to turn Cradle into a TTRPG, either by doing a world book or a source book? We would all love to play in your world.

    Will Wight

    You know, it's the kind of that I have considered.  I have thought of.  What I think would be fun would be a light weight source book; something that is maybe not applicable to all systems, but is not system specific.  That you could use to, like maybe some iron clad rules you could for making your own paths, which obviously...

    So.  Tabletop RPG.  Something like a system you could apply to a GURP system or a Fate Core; something like that, but I, the way I DM, I'm really loose about the rules.  If the rules are getting in the way of you having fun, then the rules are the ones that are wrong.  So I don't really care what the rules are, so long as they have some method of determining outcomes.  So I've never been a rules lawyer kind of guy; it's not me.  So it doesn't really matter to me what system is used.  But I like reading through source books.  And I like using them as inspiration.  And I like using them as tools of creating characters.  It's just fun to have.  So that's the kind of thing I would love to have for Cradle.  The problem is, one of the things people ask me a lot, is how would you play a Cradle character in 5th edition?  The answer is you'd have to really mod something, probably a monk.  It would be super homebrew.  That's the issue.  You could re-flavor a lot of things so it looks like Sacred arts, but it would be under very different rules, so it wouldn't be very much like Cradle at all.  But you could re-flavor a monk to look like Lindon.  That would be fine; the difference of course being monks are terrible, and Lindon is actually good in combat and can kill things.  So maybe re-flavor a paladin as Lindon.

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    #24 Copy

    Will Wight

    Well, it's funny because I was using some Akura naming conventions to make up Shira's name in Bloodline, and I forgot that there was an Akura Shiria in Uncrowned.  So that is probably a little too similar.  The reason it was, is that I have certain rules for making up Akura names, and they were both created through the same process.

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    #25 Copy

    Questioner

    Are there any odd metals in Cradle other than goldsteel, halfsilver, and wintersteel?

    Will Wight

    So are there any odd or strange metals other than goldsteel, halfsilver, and wintersteel?  Yes, there are.  There were a few that I came up with, but I didn't want this to turn into a metallurgy thing.  It's one of those things where if crafting with mundane materials had been more of a thing in Cradle, we would have got into this more.  So what were they?  What were the other metals?  It's hard for me to say.  Typically, they are metals that have taken on extra properties based on icons associated with types of aura and events and the latent authority in the world, and these things have caused them to develop powers that interfere with the energy system in some way.  There would be other things like that.  We probably won't get to see them.  I have notes for some of them, but it's just something that probably isn't going to come up.  But those are definitely the most common, I don't want to say common, the most widely used, because they have the most universally applicable effects.  So halfsilver being disruptive and goldsteel physically interacting with things that usually aren't physically interactable.  

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    #27 Copy

    Questioner

    If you were asked to finish ASOIAF, would you say yes?

    Will Wight

    I would never be asked to finish ASOIAF. That is not something that would ever ever happen.

    One of the reasons Robert Jordan’s estate requested Brandon Sanderson is because when he was alive he said “Brandon Sanderson is the kind of guy I would want to finish my books” and there is no way in heaven and on earth that George Martin would say that about me. I would not be, stylistically, the correct person to finish it. Me writing it would feel like a huge departure from the rest of the series. So no, I wouldn’t do it. Because I’d be betraying the expectations of a lot of readers.

    However, one of the things I’d always wanted is that I wish other authors would cover other’s books like musicians cover each other’s songs. If I had the time and/or ability to cover ASOIAF, I think it would be very funny, because I’d start from book 1 and it’d be 100% completely different reading experience. So, yeah, I’d do that, if that was something anybody could do or ever did.  That sounds hilarious to me, because Will Wight’s ASOIAF would be virtually unrecognizable.

    Questioner

    Would Ned become a Monarch?

    Will Wight

    Yeah, 100%.

    Somebody asked me “book deaths that really affected me” and the first one that I thought of was Ned Stark because I read Game of Thrones in High School and I *knew* Ned wasn’t going to die. It didn’t even occur to me that he was going to die. So it’s a very tense setting. Would he be sent to the wall? Probably not, because Jon was already at the wall. Is he gonna escape? Is someone going to free him? Then he gets executed. But what really happened end? Did they fake it? No no… he’s dead-dead.

    I was like “you can’t do that do your protagonist”. And I remember it dawning on me, “oh wait, you can”. Because set it up so his whole family and the other factions to follow. So the story doesn’t end. It had a big affect on me.

    Footnote: ASOIAF - A Song of Ice and Fire
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    #28 Copy

    Questioner

    Since Heralds can regenerate their body like a sacred liver, can they cut off pieces of themselves to use as dead matter in soul smithing?

    Will Wight

    I mean, they could. That’d be painful and highly inefficient, but that is something they could do.

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    #29 Copy

    Questioner

    If Mu Enkai and Akura Shira fought to the death who would win?

    Will's sister (offscreen)

    I love that their just trolling you now.

    Will Wight

    I’m just sipping some more tea.

    Will's brother (offscreen)

    Who would win? All the readers.

    Will Wight

    Who would win? I know who would lose: me.

    The real answer, of course, is that Akura Shira would juggle Mu Enkai. I mean it wouldn’t even be close. But, the meme answer is that they’re both transcendent beings who can never come into contact with one another for fear of shattering reality.

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    #30 Copy

    Questioner

    Portals - Some are tinged blue because of the Way and others with the user's madra. Why?

    Will Wight

    So, the question is, some portals are blue because they go through the way, and other portals look like the users madra.  There's a more nuanced answer to this question.  I don't know how much I can go into without getting super weirdly technical.  But it's almost a, it's sort of a style, a method of transportation.  So there are people like Charity, who exercise their authority by going through the medium of their techniques.  They use their madra to move through the Way.  There is also a difference between short range teleportation and long range teleportation.  And others tear open the Way directly and walk through.  So someone like Northstrider could do whichever of those he felt was most appropriate.  And then there are pros and cons to each approach.  There are also others that mask what they are doing in their madra.  So it looks like they are teleporting you through a technique, but in reality they are just opening the Way and taking you through.  So one of the constants of that, is unless you are deliberately masked somehow, you are always going to notice the Way if you are going a longer distance.  Even when its used through a technique.  If you are not being teleported that far, relatively speaking, you might not be able to perceive the blue fabric of the Way.

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    #31 Copy

    Questioner

    Which sibling is your favorite?

    Will's brother (offscreen)

    Rebecca.

    Will Wight

    Sam just said Rebecca.

    Will's brother (offscreen)

    There's no hesitation there.  I mean, to be real.

    Will Wight

    What are you talking about?  You said there was no hesitation there.  That's not true.  I don't have a favorite sibling.

    Will's brother (offscreen)

    No, for me.  

    Will Wight

    I have a favorite brother and I have a favorite sister.  Oh, for you.  No, your opinion makes sense.  Yeah, that definitely should be Rebecca.  That's the correct answer.  That's his answer.  Mine too.  He was correct to pick Rebecca.  I don't have a clear answer.  I don't.

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    #32 Copy

    Questioner

    How do spirits reach herald? 

    Will Wight

    Ah, good question.  How do spirits reach herald?  Because the only way we've seen someone reach herald is to separate from your remnant, so how does someone who starts off as a spirit, basically just a remnant, how do they advance to herald?  I'm trying to remember what I've established in the books already, dang it.  Why haven't you guys read Reaper?  I don't remember how many things I've established, and how many I haven't established yet.  Well.  So...  What can I say?  Spirits, remnants, anything that is going to advance to herald, they develop a physical body first.  So they are spirit, and they develop a body around themselves.  Then they still have to separate the two entities out and advance to herald normally.  It's just that they get to that point, they get to the peak of archlord, with a developed enough spirit to separate, well it's more like they developed enough of a body that their spirit can then separate.  So it's almost the reverse of how a sacred artist would do it, where they have got to get to where their spirit has a clear and firm enough existence to separate, this is the spirit's body has to be real enough for their spirit to separate out.  So their you go.  

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    #33 Copy

    Questioner

    Do objects forged with authority become more powerful if the person who made them gains more authority afterwards?

    Will Wight

    Yes, they do.  So, the question there is, if someone with authority makes a powerful, monarch level weapon, or a device like the Abidan would use, and they gain more power afterward, does the item also gain in power?  And the answer is yes, it would.  So honestly, the same thing is true of bloodlines.  So if someone inherits a bloodline power from a herald, and that herald then advances to monarch, that bloodline power will then get stronger.  It is more that, conceptually you are a descendent of this person, then it is you inherited it genetically.  Because of course they are not genetic powers, they are spiritual programs.  So yeah, that's the answer.

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    #34 Copy

    Questioner

    Would you consider doing a collection of short stories after book 12 while you figure out what you want to write next?

    Will Wight

    I actually intended... I really don't want to spoil anything for Reaper, dang it.  But I have intended to write some short stories, that cover in gaps in the books, going back several books.  But especially scenes where you might expect some more slice of life chapters it this was a web novel.  But it isn't so you don't get them.  And you know how much I love slice of life.  I don't.  Bit it's good fodder for short stories.  I just don't like novels or movies being paused in the middle.  But that's the kind of thing I've considered; going over Cradle, and kind of doing almost like a collection of bloopers, but more like a collection of moments from different points in their lives.  So prepping for the Uncrowned Tournament, working for the Skysworn back a few books ago, in between books, that kind of thing.  That's the kind of thing I'd like to do.  And then of course just writing some random other short stories would be fun.  I'm going to write nothing but slice of life after Cradle.  That or a lot of romance.  You can hold me to that.

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    #35 Copy

    Questioner

    Do any of the Iterations have standard holidays?

    Will Wight

    Yeah.  Yeah, first of all, the iterations, they all have some kind of standard holiday.  But one of the reason I did the Traveler's Gate short stories a few years ago, I did them around the holidays, is that Amalgam, the Traveler's Gate world, has a seasonal calendar.  At least Damasca does.  So therefore, the turning of the seasons is always marked by a holiday.  And I did that both so you could have a sense of time that was sort of memorable, and so I could make a time line really clear.  But that means they have a winter holiday.  They have a spring holiday.  They a fall holiday and a summer holiday.  Everything kind of revolves around those.  So the have a lot of seasonal holidays. 

    So if this person is asking if there are any cross-iteration holidays, not sure.  I think seasonal holidays tend to be, most cultures have seasonal holidays.  So I would suspect, and this is probably how I would work in a holiday series, I would suspect there would be some sort of resonance in the Way, because it's such a commonly held concept.  So there would be some icon, so to speak, that would be reflective of what fall is, and what a fall holiday is, so you would end up getting some sort of blend between Halloween and Thanksgiving, that is almost a universal holiday, then there would be one of those for each season.  So that is probably the way I would do it.  (responding to chat)  The Santa icon.  Yes, that would be what it is.  It would be something like the winter, I mean you wouldn't, there wouldn't be a name for it.  It's not like an icon you manifest.  It's just a concept in the way.

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    #36 Copy

    Questioner

    As a reader and listener on audible the most memorable moment for me is when Fury advances to monarch. As the author do you have a similar moment?

    Will Wight

    There are a lot... Really, it's funny, because of course it's different for me, writing the scenes, but most of the scenes that stood out to you, also stood out to me.  Because I was like, oh, those stood out to me, I need to make them stand out to the reader.  So that's why I did it.  So you have something like the Dross scene at the climax of Ghostwater. and that is something that obviously stood out to me.  I went into the book saying, I need to make this pop.  Then I worked really hard to make it pop.  So did I have the same experience you did?  No.  Because I was not feeling this big revelation, I was going, the reader needs to feel it.  So then I set it up.  But in terms of the stuff that really hit me to write, in terms of the moments that stood out to me as a reader, it's really a lot of the ones that stood out to you I think.  The Dross moment in Ghostwater was definitely one of them. 

    Off the top of my head, the one that immediately comes to mind, is Lindon's showdown with his family in Bloodline.  Because of course, that was a fairly recent book.  And that was... I felt that scene.  It mirrored an earlier scene.  I felt like Lindon really would be that awkward.  One of the things that has frustrated people about that scene is there were a number of other ways Lindon could have handled it.  And, yeah, there were.  But what I like about it, is he's feeling like he is back where he was before.  And he's not, but he feels like he is.  And I feel like that's real.  That's something that stood out to me.  And because I felt, I don't know, I enjoyed it more?  It felt more memorable to me?  It was just something that I guess I empathized with Lindon a lot there.  

    Other scenes that really stood out to me...  Yes, there is a bunch of them from Reaper.  I'm not even kidding.  There's a few scenes that aren't even close to the end that really really stood out to me.  And they are really memorable to me.  Also, because that's the book I finished most recently, it is a lot clearer to me.  The problem is I can't talk about those, dang it.  So this is a land mine question.  There's a few of them that aren't even deep into the book.  They are fairly early chapter stuff, but I can't talk about them, dang it.

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    #37 Copy

    Questioner

    Back when Sesh was telling Sophara that he'd be fine with her as long as she fought like a dragon regardless of whether or she won or lost, was he being sincere?

    Will Wight

    Yes and no.  Yes, he was expressing a sincere thought that he has.  As long as his philosophy is brought across, and she honors him and doesn't shame him as a dragon, and she makes him look good, then yeah, he was going to be happy.  On the other hand, he does have to deal with the consequences of what happens when she loses, so he would still be irritated.  He's not known for his restraint.  But he wouldn't punish her.  It's one of those things where if she had done well and Mercy had just done better, then it's like, ok.  She wasn't going to get punished for losing to Yerin at the end there.  That wasn't going to happen.  Because how the heck was she supposed to win?

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    #38 Copy

    Questioner

    What Final Fantasy Summon would Lindon and crew be represented by?

    Will Wight

    Honestly, I've played a lot of Final Fantasy games, bit I'm not familiar enough with the series to say.  Well, Orthos would be Bahamut.  I would say that.  100%.  It's just him; that's who he is.  Other than that, I don't have a good answer to that.

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    #39 Copy

    Questioner

    Do you have an idea how long the last 2 books in the series will be compared to Wintersteel? Looking for as much Cradle left to read as possible!

    Will Wight

    No.  I don't know.  I think, I suspect book 11 will be a little bit shorter than Wintersteel.  Probably, my guess, and please don't hold me to any of this, this is just a guess, I don't know, is about 120, 130, thousand words.  Kind of like Reaper.  That's were I think book 11 will be.  Book 12 on the other hand, being the last book, one of the things I have, my personal taste, is that I wish the end of long series had a lot of epilogue, had a lot of falling action.  Because you're really doing the falling action not just for one book, but for the whole series.  So I would like to see the resolution for what happens to a bunch of people.  Therefore I intend to wrap up the plotline of the final book before the end of the book.  Normally of course, I'm very structured about hitting the climax of the story then getting to the sequel as soon as possible.  But in this case that's not going to be my philosophy for the last book.  So how long will the last book be?  I don't know.  As long as it needs to be?  Kind of?  I normally do not have this philosophy at all, but in this case my philosophy I'm going to try to put everything I can in it, because we're leaving.  Before I go out the door, I want to wrap everything up.  So it might not be massively bigger than the other books.  I don't know; it depends on what I feel like I need to wrap up.

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    #40 Copy

    Questioner

    Are there any items or artifacts that you would describe as the Excalibur of Cradle?  Something that legendary?

    Will Wight

    Yes.  One of the things I went and did originally is I went and designed other threats that are potentially existential threats to Cradle that aren't the dreadgods.  So I went through and did that.  And I think that is one of the only things that made it into the books from that is a reference to the plague that killed a monarch, Sha Leiala.  It's really like a biological weapon that sort of developed itself.  But there's a couple of those.  And there are a couple of references, I think in Reaper, I think there are a couple of references, to legendary weapons that aren't from Cradle specifically, but are other legendary weapons.  I wish I could off the top of my head give you a run down of a legendary weapon from Cradle, but I can't.  But there is stuff like that.