Ask me Anything

Posted on December 6th, 2012 in interviews, reviews

I’m participating once again in an Ask Me Anything over on Reddit’s fantasy sub-forum. I’ll be answering questions live there from 11pm GMT tonight for a couple of hours (I think that’s 5pm central), and will try to pop back a couple of times during the following day to pick up on any further questions or follow-ups.  The thread is live as of now, so you can leave questions and I’ll hopefully get to them tonight.  Unless I decide I don’t like a given question and refuse to answer it.  Or just ignore it from pure rattle-snake meanness.  But by all means stop by and, er, ask me anything…

In other news, writers Greg Wilson and Brad Beaulieu are doing a triptych of shows about my stuff over on their Speculate! podcast.  They’re starting with an in-depth review of Red Country, then next week they’re airing an interview we did a few weeks back, and finally getting into the nitty-gritty of the writing…

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  1. Can’t believe I misspelled Bayaz’s name. Also, I can’t believe that my favorite character is Bremer dan Gorst. It is very strange to me how you’ve made me like a crippled torturer and a sociopath scumbag.

  2. Here is a serious question.

    Is Euz dead?.

  3. Beth, I second Dans thought on the Mayor.

    It is pretty clear to me that it is Carlot. If only because of how amused Cosca was in finding her in yet another destroyed town she was “running” and then his amused refusal to name her or talk about where they met. And her distress on seeing him.

  4. No need to worry, Joe. What I’m really trying to do is get a sense of how far you are prepared to plumb the sordid depths in furthering this darker, morally ambiguous sub-genre of fantasy. Where are the boundaries? I take it from your response that while sex, cannibalism and multiple different forms of violence are tenable, sex-with-cannibalism is still beyond the pale?

  5. Bloody Hell. A little surprised how many specific and almost technical questions there are. A lot of these I’m not going to answer, cos I think they’re better left unanswered, honestly, or hinted at in the text.

    1. Bayaz suggests there should be a third law against taking forms, but there isn’t one.
    4. That’s a question for the reader to answer, really.
    6. No particular evidence of that.

    I already have maps, I always have had, it’s whether I give them to you that’s the question. It might have a largish scaled map.

    Yes I am gutted.
    1. Bacon.
    2. Not that close. I feel my superiority may have come between us.
    3. Rothfuss’ beard is pretty sensational, especially for a man of his relatively younger years.

    1. I guess that depends on the Eater.
    2. Because war suited him better than peace.
    3. Well, why do you think? a) he has a weakness for beautiful women. b) he admires what she did, even if he cannot do it himself. c) he wants to do something good to balance against all the evil he’s done. d) he’s pretty sure he’s going to die soon, so why not? e) he has a big contrary streak. And so on…

    Yes, I am the best.

    The others have answered, but there are plenty of clues.

    Lots of rogues and assassins in Best Served Cold, no?

  6. Marcus,
    That says more about you than me.

    Is god dead?

    Yulwei tells us that the Hundred Words are having a big eating orgy outside the walls of Adua in Last Argument of Kings so, no, sex+cannibalism has always been a strong combination.

  7. Annnnnddddd relax.

    Thanks for taking the time to answer all of our questions. You da man, as some are likened to say.


    Crispy bacon and runny egg sandwich is what my wet dreams are usually about. It’s making me hungry just thinking about it…

  8. ” A little surprised how many specific and almost technical questions there are”

    Thats what you get for

    1. Leaving lots of gaps in the history of teh characters, and only giving extremely tantalizing hints. This would have been OK if the characters themselves had been one-dimensional. But since every char is so 3D, the reader is ever curious.

    2. Keeping an AMA open for so long. :)

    PS : Realized that “specific and almost technical” isnt your style at all. Your style is vague, just as real life is.

    PPS :This keen interest in details should make you feel good, that you have the readers completely hooked, no ?

  9. Hi Joe

    Bit annoyed I missed this.

    I have a question about Shivers. When did you make the decisions to take him from a background character in the first Law into a central POV in the blade itself, then a pivotal non POV character in the Heroes and then have an awesome cameo in Red Country.

    Much as I liked him in Red Country I did have the feeling that someone new to your work, reading it as a standalone, might find his presence a bit disjointed to the rest of the story.

    And I guess Shivers is one of the most likely characters to show up in future?

    Thank you


  10. First I’d like to say your books are great. Now are you aware of the similarities between the scene were Bethod and Logan where talking at the end of LAoK and where Monza and Duke Orso spoke at the end of BSC? I felt they had the same type of twist.

  11. Oh. Sorry. I think I interpreted Yulwei’s words a bit metaphorically, like a ‘food orgy’.

    Thanks for responding to questions, one way or another. Like the lady said, you truly are applesauce.

    PS: There’s method in my madness… though sometimes it gets undermined by the madness in my method…

  12. Something almost as interesting as Joes answers, is everyones questions. Thanks everyone.

    Just goes to show that things I think are obvious, are not, and things I never even thought about, bear a LOT of thinking about.

    Cosca sure was contrary. I do think he was enjoying himself a lot there in his final march, just waiting for the axe to fall, daring it to fall, rolling the dice . . . no, wait, that is Sargent Friendlys metaphor.

  13. How is the Dogman faring? Especially with being a lord and member of the Open Council? Is he called Lord Dogman…or has he got a wife who made him change it.

  14. How many page hits do you get on this website ?

  15. Red country was amazing Joe.
    I loved seeing the bloody nine from another perspective and when his eyes glazed over during his fight with GG i couldn’t help but grin knowing what was coming.

    quick question: did Shivers pussy out of the fight at the end after seeing ‘Lamb’ was as much a badass as ever?

  16. Hi Joe,

    Will you be doing a video games of 2012 write up? I enjoyed reading the one you did last year where you briefly went through what you played before picking your top three.

    I’ve started reading Red Country and am really enjoying it so far. Great stuff, thanks for yet again writing something awesome! :-)

  17. Joe, would it be possible to do a 3-4 page re-write of the fight between GG and Lamb, *without* any interruptions in between? It could have the PoV’s of Lamb, GG, Bloody-nine and an observer.

  18. Hello Mr. Abercrombie,
    Outstanding effort in Red Country. Thanks for bringing one of my favorite characters in fiction back. I’m hoping the next trilogy is his continued failed efforts at redemption.

    One thing I noticed that perked my interest concerned the technological advancement that was happening off screen. Can you provide some insight into what this may mean in future novels? Are the rumors of potential steampunk (started by me right here) true?

  19. Hi Scully

    I don’t think Shivers would ever p…. out of anything. It is more a question of him being realistic about a situation like that.

  20. Bobthebuilder,
    I think that fight is excellently written. It stays with you and makes you wanna fill out the gaps not described.

  21. LOL @ Nathan. Very nice rumour starting mate, a rumour and yet, you can claim the credit any time you like with time-stamp and everything.
    When I read the part where Curnsbicks’ new manufactory is “The biggest building within a hundred miles. She hardly even knew what the place was for, except it had something to do with coal” I thought “Steam engines !”.

    Hey Joe, went into the main book shop in Auckland this afternoon. Guy with a dolly full of your book, re-filling the shelf. Asked him about it and he said “What is with this book?. Is it a good read or something, we can’t keep them on the shelf”.


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