Brandon Sanderson

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Brandon Sanderson
Brandon Sanderson sign.jpg
Brandon Sanderson signing at Utopiales in 2010
Born (1975-12-19) December 19, 1975 (age 41)
Lincoln, Nebraska, U.S.
Occupation Writer, creative writing instructor, professor
Nationality American
Alma mater Brigham Young University (B.A., M.A.)
Period 2005–present
Genre Fantasy, science fiction
Notable works Mistborn series
The Stormlight Archive
Final three books in Robert Jordan's The Wheel of Time series
The Reckoners
Spouse Emily Bushman (m. 2006)
Children 3
Website
brandonsanderson.com

Brandon Sanderson (born December 19, 1975) is an American fantasy and science fiction writer. He is best known for the Cosmere universe, in which all his adult fantasy books (most notably the Mistborn series and The Stormlight Archive) are set; and his work in finishing Robert Jordan's epic fantasy series The Wheel of Time.

Sanderson was raised in Lincoln, Nebraska before attending Brigham Young University, where he received degrees in English literature and creative writing. In 2008 Sanderson started a podcast with author Dan Wells and cartoonist Howard Tayler called Writing Excuses, involving topics about creating and producing genre writing and webcomics.

In 2016, the American media company DMG Entertainment licensed the movie rights to Sanderson's entire Cosmere universe.[1]

Life and career[edit]

Brandon Sanderson was born on December 19, 1975, in Lincoln, Nebraska.[2][3] He became a passionate reader of high fantasy novels while a teenager, and made several early attempts at writing his own stories.[4] After graduating from high school in 1994, he matriculated at Brigham Young University (BYU) as a biochemistry major. He took a two-year leave of absence from 1995 to 1997 to serve as a volunteer full-time missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and was assigned to serve in South Korea.[5]

After completing his missionary service, Sanderson returned to BYU and changed his major to English literature. While an undergraduate, Sanderson took a job as a night desk clerk at a local hotel in Provo, Utah, as it allowed him to write while working.[4] After earning a B.A. in English, Sanderson entered BYU's creative writing graduate program and received an M.F.A. degree in 2005.[6] During his graduate work at BYU, Sanderson was on the staff of Leading Edge, a semi-professional speculative fiction magazine published by the university.

Sanderson in 2007

Sanderson wrote consistently throughout his undergraduate and graduate studies, and by 2003 he had written twelve novels, all unpublished.[7] While in the middle of a graduate program at BYU, Tor Books editor Moshe Feder contacted him to say that he wanted to acquire one of his books. Sanderson had submitted the manuscript of his sixth novel,[8] Elantris, a year and a half earlier.[5] Elantris was published by Tor Books on April 21, 2005, to generally positive reviews.[9][10] This was followed in 2006 by Mistborn: The Final Empire, the first book in his Mistborn fantasy trilogy, in which "allomancers" — people who have the ability to ‘burn’ various metals and alloys after ingesting them — can enhance senses and allow control over powerful supernatural forces.

In 2006, Sanderson married Emily Bushman, a fellow English major and teacher,[11] who later became his business manager.[5] They have three children and reside in American Fork, Utah.[12]

He followed up in 2007 with a sequel, The Well of Ascension. Later in that year, Sanderson published the children's novel Alcatraz Versus the Evil Librarians, about a boy named Alcatraz with a talent for breaking things, who confronts a group of evil librarians who are bent on taking over the world. In 2008, the third and final book in the Mistborn trilogy was published, titled The Hero of Ages, as well as the second book in the Alcatraz series, titled Alcatraz Versus the Scrivener's Bones.

In 2009, Tor Books published Warbreaker, which originally appeared serially on Sanderson’s website while he was writing the novel from 2006 to 2009. In the same year the third Alcatraz book followed, titled Alcatraz Versus the Knights of Crystallia.

After Robert Jordan’s death in September 2007, Sanderson was selected by Jordan's widow and editor, Harriet McDougal, to complete the final books in Jordan’s epic fantasy series The Wheel of Time. McDougal asked him to finish the series after being deeply impressed by his first Mistborn novel.[13] Tor Books made the announcement on December 7, 2007.[14] After reviewing what was necessary to complete the series, Sanderson and Tor announced on March 30, 2009, that a final three books would be published instead of just one. The first of these, The Gathering Storm, was published on October 27, 2009, and reached the number-one spot on the New York Times bestseller list for hardcover fiction.[15][16]

In 2010, Sanderson published the first novel, titled The Way of Kings, in a planned ten-book series called The Stormlight Archive. It achieved the number seven slot on the New York Times hardcover fiction bestseller list.[17] Towers of Midnight, the second-to-last Wheel of Time book, was published just over a year after The Gathering Storm on November 2, 2010, also debuting at number one on the bestseller list.[18] The fourth Alcatraz novel, Alcatraz Versus the Shattered Lens, was published a month later on December 1.

In October 2011, he finished a novella e-book, Infinity Blade: Awakening, based on the action role-playing, iOS video game Infinity Blade, developed by Chair Entertainment and Epic Games.[19] In November 2011, he published a sequel to the Mistborn trilogy, Mistborn: The Alloy of Law. It was originally planned as a standalone novel set about 300 years after the original trilogy, but it was later expanded into a four-book series. It debuted at number seven on the New York Times bestseller list.

On August 31, 2012, Sanderson published a science fiction novella entitled Legion. Another short work, The Emperor's Soul, appeared in October 2012. A few months later, on January 8, 2013, A Memory of Light was published, the final book in The Wheel of Time series.[20] On May 14, 2013, Sanderson published the first in a new young adult series titled The Rithmatist. Another young adult book series, The Reckoners, began with the publication of Steelheart on September 24, 2013.[21][22] Words of Radiance, the second book in The Stormlight Archive, was published on March 4, 2014.[23] The second novella in the Legion series, Legion: Skin Deep, was published in November 2014. In January 2015, the second book of The Reckoners, titled Firefight, was published. On October 6, 2015, Sanderson published Mistborn: Shadows of Self as a direct sequel to The Alloy of Law. On November 16, 2015, JABberwocky Literary Agency, Sanderson's agency, announced that Sanderson has officially sold over 7 million copies worldwide.[24]

On January 26, 2016, Mistborn: The Bands of Mourning was published as the sequel to Shadows of Self. On February 16, 2016, the third and final book of the Reckoners trilogy, titled Calamity, was published. In June 2016, Sanderson's first graphic novel White Sand—written with Rik Hoskin—was released. The series is planned as a trilogy.[25] The graphic novels are based off an original manuscript by Sanderson.[26] On September 6, 2016, the fifth and final Alcatraz book was published, called Alcatraz Versus the Dark Talent.

On November 22, 2016, an anthology of Cosmere short stories and novellas was published, titled Arcanum Unbounded: A Cosmere Collection. Oathbringer, the third book in The Stormlight Archive, was published on November 14, 2017.[27]

Teaching[edit]

Sanderson is adjunct faculty at Brigham Young University, teaching a creative writing course once per year.[28][29] Sanderson also participates in the weekly podcast Writing Excuses with authors Dan Wells, Mary Robinette Kowal, and web cartoonist Howard Tayler.

Cosmere[edit]

The Cosmere is the name of the series and universe in which Elantris, Mistborn, Warbreaker, The Stormlight Archive, White Sand and stories contained in Arcanum Unbounded: The Cosmere Collection are all set. This idea came from his desire to create an epic length series without requiring readers to buy a ridiculous number of books. Because of that, he hides connections to his other works within each book, creating this "hidden epic". The Cosmere sequence could conclude with at least 40 books.[30]

The story of the Cosmere is about a mysterious being called Adonalsium, who existed on a world known as Yolen. Adonalsium was killed by a group of sixteen conspirators, causing its power to shatter into sixteen different Shards, each of which bears immense power.[31] The sixteen people who took these Shards created new worlds, populating them with people and different types of magic. However, each Shard has an Intent, such as Ruin or Honor, and they became molded to it. A man named Hoid travels these so-called Shardworlds, interfering with the people of those worlds when they become heroes and come in contact with the Shards.[32]

In October 2016, the movie rights to the entire Cosmere universe were licensed by DMG Entertainment.[33]

Bibliography[edit]

Selected awards and honors[edit]

Sanderson has been nominated for and also won multiple awards for his various works. See Writing Excuses for additional awards and nominations.

Year Organization Award title,
Category
Work Result Refs
2005 Romantic Times Reviewers' Choice Best Book Award,
Best Epic Fantasy Novel Award
Elantris Won [34]
2006 World Science Fiction Convention John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer -- Nominated
Romantic Times Reviewers' Choice Best Book Award,
Best Epic Fantasy Novel Award
Mistborn Nominated [35]
2007 World Science Fiction Convention John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer -- Nominated
Romantic Times Reviewers' Choice Best Book Award,
Best Epic Fantasy Novel Award
The Well of Ascension Nominated [36]
Polytechnic University of Catalonia UPC Science Fiction Award Defending Elysium Won [37]
LDStorymakers Whitney Awards,
Best Speculative Fiction
The Well of Ascension Nominated [38]
Whitney Awards,
Best Youth Fiction
Alcatraz Versus the Evil Librarians Nominated
2008 Romantic Times Reviewers' Choice Best Book Award,
Best Epic Fantasy Novel Award
The Hero of Ages Won [39]
LDStorymakers Whitney Awards,
Best Speculative Fiction Award
The Hero of Ages Won [40]
2009 LDStorymakers Whitney Awards,
Best Speculative Fiction
Warbreaker Nominated [41]
2010 LDStorymakers Whitney Awards,
Best Speculative Fiction Award
The Way of Kings Won [42]
LDStorymakers Whitney Awards,
Best Novel of the Year Award
The Way of Kings Won [42]
Goodreads Goodreads Choice Awards 2010,
Best Fantasy of 2010
Towers of Midnight Won [43]
2011 DGLA David Gemmell Legend Award The Way of Kings Won [44]
LDStorymakers Whitney Awards,
Best Speculative Fiction Award
The Alloy of Law Won [45]
2012 Goodreads Goodreads Choice Awards 2012,
Best Fantasy of 2012
The Emperor's Soul Nominated [46]
2013 World Science Fiction Society Hugo Award,
Best Novella
The Emperor's Soul Won [47]
World Fantasy Convention World Fantasy Award,
Best Novella
The Emperor's Soul Nominated [48]
Goodreads Goodreads Choice Awards 2013,
Best Fantasy of 2013
A Memory of Light Nominated [49]
LDStorymakers Whitney Awards,
Best Young Adult—Speculative
Steelheart Won [50]
Goodreads Goodreads Choice Awards 2013,
Best Young Adult Fantasy of 2013
Steelheart Nominated [51]
2014 World Science Fiction Society Hugo Award,
Best Novel
The Wheel of Time Nominated [52]
DGLA David Gemmell Legend Award,
Best Novel
A Memory of Light Nominated [53]
Goodreads Goodreads Choice Awards 2014,
Best Fantasy of 2014
Words of Radiance Nominated [54]
Whitney Awards 2014 Whitney Finalists,
Speculative
Words of Radiance Won [55]
2015 DGLA David Gemmell Legend Award,
Legend Award
Words of Radiance Won
Goodreads Goodreads Choice Awards 2015,
Best Fantasy of 2015
Shadows of Self Nominated [56]
Goodreads Choice Awards 2015,
Best Young Adult Fantasy of 2015
Firefight Nominated [57]
2016 World Science Fiction Society Hugo Award,
Best Novella
Perfect State Nominated [58]
Dragon Con Dragon Award,
Best Young Adult / Middle Grade Novel
Calamity Nominated [59]
2017 DGLA David Gemmell Legend Award,
Legend Award
The Bands of Mourning Nominated

References[edit]

  1. ^ Lang, Brent (2016-10-27). "DMG Nabs Rights to Brandon Sanderson's 'Cosmere' Book Universe in Massive Deal (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. Retrieved 2016-10-31. 
  2. ^ "Profile for Brandon Sanderson". Writertopia. Retrieved August 10, 2006. 
  3. ^ "Famous Mormon Writers and Authors". Archived from the original on August 15, 2006. Retrieved August 10, 2006. 
  4. ^ a b "About Brandon". brandonsanderson.com. Retrieved 19 October 2017. 
  5. ^ a b c "Brandon Sanderson: About". Retrieved June 1, 2011. 
  6. ^ "Winter 2006 Alumni Profiles Update". BYU Magazine. Retrieved January 17, 2007. 
  7. ^ Sanderson, Brandon (October 19, 2008). "EUOLogy: My History as a Writer". brandonsanderson.com. Retrieved August 12, 2017. 
  8. ^ Sanderson, Brandon. "Annotation Elantris Chapter 7". brandonsanderson.com. Retrieved August 12, 2017. 
  9. ^ "Review by Orson Scott Card". Retrieved December 18, 2010. 
  10. ^ "Review blurbs on Sanderson's site". Retrieved December 18, 2010. 
  11. ^ "Newsletter, July 2006". Archived from the original on October 6, 2006. Retrieved August 10, 2006. 
  12. ^ "Newsletter, February 2010". Retrieved January 6, 2013. 
  13. ^ "An interview with Brandon Sanderson". December 8, 2007. Archived from the original on December 11, 2007. 
  14. ^ "Tor announces that the final novel in bestselling Robert Jordan's legendary Wheel of Time fantasy series will be completed by author Brandon Sanderson". Tor-Forge.com. December 7, 2007. Archived from the original on December 12, 2007. Retrieved December 10, 2007. 
  15. ^ "Best Sellers: Hardcover Fiction". The New York Times. Arthur Ochs Sulzberger, Jr. November 5, 2009. Retrieved November 7, 2009. 
  16. ^ "The Gathering Storm coming sooner than expected". Retrieved September 8, 2009. 
  17. ^ "The Way of Kings is a New York Times Bestseller". Retrieved September 8, 2010. 
  18. ^ "Best Sellers: Hardcover Fiction". The New York Times. November 21, 2010. 
  19. ^ Michael McWhertor (November 2, 2010). "The First Epic iPhone Game Is Now 'Infinity Blade'". Kotaku. Gawker Media. 
  20. ^ "The Release Date for A Memory of Light Has Been Set". Tor.com. Retrieved February 17, 2012. 
  21. ^ "Delacorte Press Acquires Steelheart by Brandon Sanderson". SFScope.com. June 13, 2012. Retrieved June 14, 2012. 
  22. ^ "Gollancz acquires new Brandon Sanderson series – STEELHEART is coming!". Gollancz. June 13, 2012. Archived from the original on July 9, 2012. Retrieved July 9, 2012. 
  23. ^ "Words of Radiance (The Stormlight Archive, Book 2) (Stormlight Archive, The)". Amazon.com. Retrieved December 19, 2014. 
  24. ^ "Brandon Sanderson Sells Over 7 Million Copies!". awfulagent.com. November 16, 2015. Archived from the original on February 6, 2016. Retrieved August 14, 2017. 
  25. ^ "BRANDON SANDERSON's Fantasy Epic Comes To Comic Books With WHITE SAND Preview". Newsarama. April 26, 2016. Retrieved June 2, 2014. 
  26. ^ Sanderson, Brandon (May 30, 2014). "Hugo Voter Packet with The Wheel of Time, Convention Deadlines, White Sand Graphic Novels". Dragonsteel Entertainment. Retrieved December 19, 2014. 
  27. ^ "Brandon Sanderson Has Completed the First Draft of Oathbringer, Book 3 of The Stormlight Archive". Tor.com. December 9, 2016. Archived from the original on December 10, 2016. Retrieved January 9, 2017. 
  28. ^ "Faculty & Staff Directory". Department of Humanities, Brigham Young University. Retrieved December 19, 2014. 
  29. ^ Sanderson, Brandon (December 20, 2013). "Application deadline for my BYU creative writing class is Monday". Dragonsteel Entertainment. Retrieved December 19, 2014. 
  30. ^ Sanderson, Brandon (December 21, 2016). "[No spoilers]State of the Sanderson 2016". Reddit. Archived from the original on October 5, 2017. Retrieved October 5, 2017. 
  31. ^ Sanderson, Brandon (26 January 2016). "Part Three, Chapter 2". Mistborn: Secret History. Mistborn series. Dragonsteel Entertainment. ISBN 978-1-938570-12-4. Anyway, there was a God. Adonalsium. I don't know if it was a force or a being, though I suspect the latter. Sixteen people, together, killed Adonalsium, ripping it apart and dividing its essence between them, becoming the first who Ascended. 
  32. ^ Whitehead, Adam. "Brandon Sanderson plans 36-volume fantasy series". Wertzone. Retrieved 21 September 2013. 
  33. ^ Lang, Brent (2016-10-27). "DMG Nabs Rights to Brandon Sanderson's 'Cosmere' Book Universe in Massive Deal (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. Retrieved 2016-10-31. 
  34. ^ "2005 RT Award Nominees & Winners". rtbookreviews.com. Retrieved April 16, 2013. 
  35. ^ "2006 RT Award Nominees & Winners". rtbookreviews.com. Retrieved July 13, 2013. 
  36. ^ "2007 RT Award Nominees & Winners". rtbookreviews.com. Retrieved April 16, 2013. 
  37. ^ "Universitat Politecnica de Catalunya". www.upc.edu. Retrieved August 28, 2013. 
  38. ^ "Whitney Awards 2007 Finalists". whitneyawards.com. Retrieved April 16, 2013. 
  39. ^ "2008 RT Award Nominees & Winners". rtbookreviews.com. Retrieved April 16, 2013. 
  40. ^ "Whitney Awards 2008 Winners". whitneyawards.com. Retrieved April 16, 2013. 
  41. ^ "Whitney Awards 2009 Finalists". whitneyawards.com. Retrieved April 16, 2013. 
  42. ^ a b "Whitney Awards 2010 Winners". whitneyawards.com. Retrieved April 16, 2013. 
  43. ^ "Best Fantasy of 2010". 2011. 
  44. ^ "The David Gemmell Legend Award for Fantasy Previous Winners". gemmellaward.com. Retrieved April 16, 2013. 
  45. ^ "Whitney Awards 2011 Winners". whitneyawards.com. Retrieved April 16, 2013. 
  46. ^ "Best Fantasy of 2012". 2012. 
  47. ^ "The Hugo Award 2013 Hugo Awards". thehugoawards.org. Retrieved April 16, 2013. 
  48. ^ "The World Fantasy Awards 2013". worldfantasy.org. Archived from the original on October 27, 2012. Retrieved August 15, 2013. 
  49. ^ "Best Fantasy of 2013". 2013. 
  50. ^ "2013 Winners". 
  51. ^ "Best Young Adult Fantasy Books of 2013". 2013. 
  52. ^ "2014 Hugo Award Winners". August 17, 2014. 
  53. ^ "The Gemmell Awards". 
  54. ^ "Best Fantasy of 2014". 2015. 
  55. ^ "2014 Whitney Finalists". 2014 Whitney Awards Committee. 2015. 
  56. ^ "Best Fantasy Books of 2015". 2015. 
  57. ^ "Best Young Adult Fantasy Book of 2015". 2015. 
  58. ^ "2016 Hugo Awards". April 2016. 
  59. ^ "2016 Dragon Award". Internet Speculative Fiction Database. Retrieved September 7, 2016. 

External links[edit]