|Thus Spake The Creator
Q: Just curious, but what culture(s) were the Seanchan
A: A good deal of Japan, of the Shogunites, Imperial
China, and in general a good many rigid hierarchal
stratified societies. Too many to list really, I suppose.
Mr. Jordan, I play a one of the best telnet games based
on your books (cshadow.net port 4000). It runs as close
to your books as we can get. My question is this: I play
a Seanchan character and have for some time. What was
your basis when creating the Seanchan race and the
structure of their society? I enjoy the race completely
and love the structure of its hierarchy and was just
curious as to what they are created from in your mind.
Imperial China. Japan during the shogunates, with strong
dollops of the Persian Empire and the Ottoman.
In a previous statement, I believe you had basically said
that the action of the series would take place in the
lands known to Rand and his friends, i.e. not Shara or
Seanchan, and yet the new book has a lot of stuff about
those lands. Have you changed your mind? Is action in
either of these two lands a possibility now?
Except for the possible occasional divergence -- except
for Rand's excursions to Seanchan when he chased after
Aviendha. I was willing to put as much as I did into the
guide because I will not be using those things in the
books in the same way that I used Kandor or Saldaea.
Do you have any plans for introducing the land of madness
into the World of Time series besides its mention in the
guide, and if so, can you elaborate a little?
Read and find out.
Q: In tFoH, in the chapters "The Far Snows"
and "A Short Spear," was the timing of events
deliberately precalculated by him, or not? If the first
is true, I'm not asking for an explanation -- presumably
we'll get that in a later book. I'm just asking for a yes
or a no. (If he wants to know why the question was put,
please just say the two words "time zones.")
A: Yes, the timing was calculated. I know how far to the
west Seanchan lies.
Q: When will the LAND OF MADMEN (as shown in the Guide)
come into play, and are you considering ever making a
second edition of the Guide?
A: As for when or if it will come into play, read and
find out. As for another edition of the guide, I would
like to do a concordance or encyclopedia when the cycle
is finished, but I have no plans before that.
Q: If you were going to be stranded on the Island of
Madmen and could only take one book with you, what book
would it be?
A: I think a book on camouflage. Hiding there would be a
good idea, I think.
Q: How does Mat's medallion damage the Gholam? Also,
what significance to the Seanchan does his spear have?
A: Laughing... Read and Find out. If I tell you you get
bored with the new books!
Q: What a kind of numbers militarily do the
Seanchan have on this side of the aryth?
A: I don't want to answer this as it could be a
spoiler for those who have not read far enough.
Q: The Isle of Maddness is mentioned in the coffee
table book. Do you have any plans on incorporating it
into one of the next books?
A: Read and find out! There are some things I
might do that might take place there, but those things
could also just as well be done in other places.
Q: Which cultures in the Seanchan? (based
on things in the Guide)
The Seanchan also are the melting of things that have
come from many different human cultures to make their
culture. There have been many rigid stratified, rigidly
hierarchal cultures. It's a very human thing. The concept
of being able to climb above your station is a relatively
new one in human culture. You were born where you were
born for a reason, and that is the place you will stay,
that has been the norm for human culture, for most of
Q: is the Shara world going to be changed a lot now
that their male channelers won't go mad? Will they even
find out because they kill them so early anyhow?
A: shara will not be changed by the fact that male
channelers wont go mad because they kill man who might
possibly be able to channel at a very young age those
guys are nothing but breeding stock kept utterly innocent
and utterly ignorant until they are killed
Q: Are ther any channelers on the Seanchan continent
that suffer from an emotional block like Nyneave had
A: Read and find out
( I asked this question to support my theory that the
sul'dam have an emotional block, but I forgot that there
are probably some damane who suffer from it as well which
increased the chance to get a RAFO )
Reports from signings
There are no plans to visit Seanchan in any greater
extent than it already has been visited, and there are
not going to be any visits to Shara either.
Wouldn't say anything about Shara, of course...
oh and he said he
would bring the other parts of the world into the books
if he needed to. So Seachen and Shara have a shot.
Evidently, China was a real behemoth in the middle
ages, right on the track to world domination, until they
decided they didn't really want to rule the world.
The following is a summary from hastily scribbled notes
on a subject about which I am relatively ignorant; if I
fuck up, it means I can't read my notes.
1484: In the time before Columbus...
China has a huge fleet of ships (3000 of them, half-million
crew), printing presses, generally huge technological
advantage over everywhere else. The fleet is
commanded by a name that translates as "Three-Jeweled
(although he was evidently not a eunuch??). The
fleet had superior logistics (well, something about
logistics right about here) and had reached Madasgascar.
They were planning to round the Cape of Good Hope and see
what they found.
1490: The year they would have reached Europe... and
overwhelmed it. Unfortunately, bad things happened. The
current Emperor died and was succeeded by his son, who
was young and had self-confidence problems. The palace
eunuchs (evidently a powerful political force) grew
concerned over the changes caused by outside influences,
believing them to be corrupting Chinese culture. They
convinced the Emperor to shut China off from the rest of
the world by burning seafaring boats (including that huge
fleet!), restricting foreigners to certain cities and
killing them if they were caught outside, and killing
Chinese who left to see the world and then returned. It
seems the Japanese also did this -- twice, in fact.
This was a very long spiel coming from the nonfiction
military history books he recommended. There was a
lot more detail than I managed to capture, but one thing
that stood out in my mind was that he had just told us
the origins of Shara and the Seanchan. Or some of
them, at least.
Someone standing behind me commented about the
Seanchan being a bunch of sociopaths, and Jordan returned
that the Seanchan system is a reasonable response to the
conditions they found. I opined that we could have
serious debate in ethics over that point. I expect
that in other circumstances we could have rolled up our
debating sleeves and gone at it, but there were more
books to sign and I didn't want to get in anyone's way.
Q15: Were the Seanchan animals created before or after
A15: They are the exotics. They were brought
to Randland from parallel dimensions (like in the portal
stones). When Rand saw grolm in the PS world, he was
seeing them in the native land.
Raina's Hold / Thus Spake the Creator - Index